Blog, Tech 101

How Long Does it Take to Learn React JS?

how long does it take to learn React JS?
guide coding for beginners

Get Our Free Ultimate Guide to Coding for Beginners

Make a plan for learning JavaScript, React JS, and more with this 60+ page FREE ebook!

Tech is a skills-based industry, and that’s part of why it’s so appealing for career-changers—when it comes to tech work (whether it’s web development, web design, UX, or even tech-adjacent fields like digital marketing) if you have the skills to do the job, someone will hire you to do it.

Learning those skills doesn’t require going back to college and racking up tens of thousands of dollars in student debt, either. You can learn enough tech basics to start doing paid freelance work in only a matter of months.

But after you’ve learned the basics, e.g. HTML and CSS, then what? Does learning intermediate skills increase financial opportunities exponentially? And if so, what should your next step be, and how long will it all take??

To answer this question, we’re taking a look at Javascript and React JS—a front end JavaScript library used by web developers to create websites and mobile apps—as our example. ReactJs is one of the most common “nice to haves” on job descriptions, so it’s also a “savvy to have” on your resume. Then we’re breaking down how long it takes to learn this lucrative tool.

Table of Contents

  1. What is React JS
  2. Do You Need to Learn JavaScript to Use React?
  3. How Long Does it Take to Learn React JS?
  4. React Jobs and Salaries

1. React JS is a Tool That Makes JavaScript Easier to Use

First off, here’s a quick rundown of what React JS is ( you can get an even fuller picture from our Tech 101: What is React JS guide):

  • React JS is an open source JavaScript library used by web developers to build interactive website elements (things like animated graphics, photo slideshows, and interactive forms).
  • JavaScript libraries (like React JS) are tools for writing JavaScript code without having to rewrite repetitive
  • JavaScript functions (e.g. stock animation effects or autocomplete search bar features) every time they’re needed in a project.

React JS is just one of many of JavaScript libraries on the market, but its claim to fame is its effectiveness for building user interfaces, or UIs. UIs are the collection of menus, search bars, buttons, and anything else people use on screen to interact with a digital product.

Meanwhile, you probably noticed it’s hard to talk about React without also talking about JavaScript. So does this mean you need to learn JavaScript before you can even start with React? And how long will that take?

(back to top)

2. How Long Does it Take to Learn JavaScript—And How Well Do You Need to Know It?

According to Jesse DeOms, JavaScript Developer and the JS subject matter expert on our curriculum team, learning JavaScript fundamentals is a “must-do” before starting with React. This means you can’t put together a timeline to learn React JS without accounting for JavaScript basics. But don’t panic! You’ll be happy to know we’re still talking about months and not years when it comes to answering “how long does it take to learn JavaScript?”

While we covered the topic extensively in our article Is JavaScript a Hard Programming Language to Learn?, here’s the TLDR:

You can learn JavaScript basics over the course of a few months. Yep. Even though JavaScript is a step up from the most fundamental web languages like HTML and CSS (which can be learned in under a month), web development professionals agree that that’s about as long as it takes to get started.

Even better, learning JavaScript is something you can do online at your own pace. Our Skillcrush Front End Developer + React JavaScript Course, for instance, teaches you JavaScript AND React JS (along with critical web developer skills like HTML, CSS, jQuery, and more), and is designed to be completed in 4 months by spending only an hour a day on the materials.

Of course, DeOms adds that the “several months” time frame covers JavaScript basics only, but that’s OK. The basics are what you need to get started—after that, you’ll continue to learn on the job (as is the case with most tech skills). Meanwhile, if you want to get a better sense of what it’s like to work with React, look no further than this comprehensive React JS tutorial from the official React website.

(back to top)

3. How Long Does it Take to Learn React?

So you’ve spent a few months building a foundation with JavaScript. Then what? How long will it take to learn React JS?

DeOms says that, for someone with a basic understanding of JavaScript, React is a tool you can get started with in just a few days. However, he also says to keep in mind the phrase “get started.”
True, if you know your way around the JavaScript language you can start making use of React almost out of the box, but learning how to get the most out of the library will take several months of hands-on practice, according to DeOms.

The upside here is how active this learning process is. Learning how to use JavaScript and React isn’t like traditional fields where the educational process involves months (if not years) of book learning before you can even get your hands dirty. After your first few months of basic React JS training, you’ll continue to learn by doing (AND you can even make money while you’re doing it).

RECAP: HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO LEARN REACT JS?

JavaScript Basics: 3-4 months
JavaScript Advanced: Learn on the job
React JS Basics*: A few days
React JS Advanced**: 3-4 months

*Once you’ve learned JavaScript
**Again, can be learned on the job

(back to top)

4. How Much is React Worth? React Jobs and Salaries

Now that you know the time investment it takes to learn React JS (a few months to learn JavaScript fundamentals, followed by a few more months of hands-on practice with the React library), the question remains: is it worth it? What kind of return on investment will you see if you add React JS to your web developer toolkit?

To put things in perspective, a search for React developer jobs on Indeed.com as of this writing brings up nearly 14,000 open job listings ranging in salary from $85,000-$130,000 per year. Even at the low end, that’s $10,000 more than Indeed’s current average estimate for general web developer salaries ($73,000 per year).

Again, knowing general web developer skills like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript is a must for working as a web developer, but the more skills like React that you stack on top of your foundation, the more in-demand you will be to employers and the more money you can earn. And when you look at the time investment it takes to learn a skill like React JS (literally a handful of months) that investment becomes a no-brainer. Part of being a successful web developer is staying on top of current technologies, and right now React is at the top of the web technology heap.

(back to top)

Ready to learn the JavaScript and React JS skills you’ll need to start working as a web developer? Check out our Skillcrush Front End Web Developer + React JavaScript Course, an online class designed to be completed in 4 months by spending just an hour a day on the materials.

guide coding for beginners

Get Our Free Ultimate Guide to Coding for Beginners

Make a plan for learning JavaScript, React JS, and more with this 60+ page FREE ebook!

Scott Morris

Scott Morris is Skillcrush's staff writer and content producer. Like all the members of Skillcrush's team, he works remotely (in his case from Napa, CA). He believes that content that's worth reading (and that your audience can find!) creates brands that people follow. He's experienced writing on topics including jobs and technology, digital marketing, career pivots, gender equity, parenting, and popular culture. Before starting his career as a writer and content marketer, he spent 10 years as a full-time parent to his daughters Veronica and Athena.