Ionic is growing every day, more and more companies bet on cross-platform apps over native development and the need for developers skilled with Angular is continuously rising. So let’s talk about the Ionic Academy today.
Early in 2017 I set out to give people interested in learning Ionic a better way to achieve their goals faster with more support. The idea for the Ionic Academy was born.
But how has the Ionic Academy evolved until now?
How have the first few months worked out for the members?
What can people expect in the future?
This article will give you a more detailed picture of whats going on behind the scenes and if you should consider to join the Ionic Academy.
The Original Idea For the Ionic Academy
The first announcement was made in January 2017, and I first spoken open about in the this post about the idea and the technical details of running a membership site.
From the technical point of view the Ionic Academy is exactly like I wanted it to be. All building blocks were included since the early days, which means the learning system with courses, the paywall and even the private community are working flawless.
So far the overall learning approach has not really changed. Members can take different courses, and most courses have an additional project attached at the end to take action with your just learned skills.
If problems arise, the community and Slack channel offer quick help, so people feel never alone or lost while learning.
The Library of the Ionic Academy
The Academy launched with about 9 ready courses, while we currently already have 20 courses!
The initial library was way to small so I worked off all the open hot topics like Firebase or Ionic Cloud Services as fast as possible for the members who already joined in the launch week (I’m super thankful for each of you!) and currently release new courses about every 2 weeks.
Of course this might slow down especially if there are critical changes that needs to be fixed inside the existing content. Currently this process works very smooth as members mostly report if something is not working so it can be fixed soon for the next person going through the material.
There is no final number of courses, the library will grow and grow because there are infinite interesting topics that are worth to be covered.
The community has over 700 posts by now and while the initial exchange between people has slowed down a bit, it’s still the best place to ask questions while learning.
Besides the community on the side there is also a Slack channel for all members of the Ionic Academy. It is not used heavily but offers a way of getting a quick response to a question or just an exchange of ideas and links.
Overall this part has still a lot of room for improvement, but you can’t force people to be active inside a community/channel. This is one of the areas that still needs to grow a bit to become more mature.
It feels like there’s always something to do. In the future of course more course material and projects will be released to cover even more interesting topics that people are interested in.
But the work is not only on the material, it’s also on the learning form.
In June we started experimenting with monthly challenges which are not yet working as expected. There are a few more ideas on my list like monthly hangouts or live webinar sessions. There has been the idea to have an app (with Ionic) for the whole membership so people can download all the material.
We will continue with trying out different ideas to see what works best for the members.
How much work is a Membership site?
More than you wish and less than you might think.
At the beginning of the Academy I quit my job to work full-time on this blog and other projects I have. The Ionic Academy takes at least 50% of that time.
It’s not only the creation of courses, it’s all the other hats you have to wear: Marketing, Outsourcing tasks, pleasing German taxes (this is especially hard), planning new features, writing content, keeping up with the problems of members, answering questions…
If I still had a full-time job this wouldn’t be possible I’m sure.
But besides all those tasks that always come up, sometimes you can just enjoy a round of your favorite game as nothing urgent is open.
So it’s not “passive income” like a book where all the work is upfront, but currently I enjoy all the tasks (all but the taxes stuff) and wouldn’t trade it for any other job.
Initially I thought the target group would be young male people after college or inside their job and web developers getting into mobile.
Well, that’s not true. Actually, many people inside the Academy are 50+ years, some even 60+!
I have an unbelievable amount of respect for these people. Some just want to get back into some “doing”, some enjoy technologies, others have been learning all their life new software development stuff.
Regarding countries I have no statistics but drawing from the introduction section of the community people from all over the world have introduced them. Some living in cities next to me in Germany while others are from Canada or Singapore.
It’s amazing to see people from everywhere come together in learn in one platform, so hopefully I’ll get the chance to meet at least some of them in person if I make it to their countries some day.
Why should I join?
Perhaps you came across the page before and were not sure if it’s for you. And you are right, the Ionic Academy is not for everyone.
You have to be willing to learn and interested in Ionic, and you can’t only consume but never work on your skills.
How the Ionic Academy can help you?
If you want to get started with Ionic but feel you are lost after the quick start guide, the Ionic Academy offers a roadmap which takes you through different courses ranging from beginner to expert.
You can expect more support for your problems and questions as well as a friendly place for just some talking.
And of course you can participate and talk about the courses and material that you would like to see in the future.
The Ionic Academy is growing, evolving and I’m super happy for everyone who supports me on this journey!
I’d love to meet you inside.