This course is currently between semesters— the information on this website is presented for informational purposes only; material is subject to revisions before the course begins.
DGMD E-2 Web Programming for Beginners with PHP

Web Programming for Beginners with PHP

DGMD E-2   Instructor: Susan Buck (

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Please see the Harvard Extension School academic calendar for information about registration dates.

Course Description

This course introduces students to the fundamentals of programming via the lens of web development using PHP.

We start by learning about basic programming paradigms such as data types, variables, conditionals, loops, functions, classes, and more. Next, we apply these concepts to build simple web applications that involve form processing and database interaction.

In addition to coding, students are also introduced to universal programming tools such as command line, Git version control, server management, and software testing. Emphasis is also placed on troubleshooting strategies and technical communication.

While we primarily work with PHP, we address how the concepts we are working with apply to other web-capable programming languages. Additionally, we take a broad look at numerous tools and frameworks used on the web and learn about when and how each tool is most appropriate. By looking at the field as a whole, students leave this course with a big picture understanding of the many technologies used on the web, so that they can make informed decisions on what courses to take next and what tools to use in their next project.

Note: This course is a logical precursor to CSCI E-15 Web Server Frameworks with Laravel/PHP.