In this series of lessons, you will be learning the C# programming language by creating dynamic web applications via ASP.NET. These lessons were adapted from the "C# Fundamentals via ASP.NET Web Applications" video series that can be found at:
If you have not purchased a subscription to that video series, doing so will provide you with an excellent, visually-oriented companion piece to the written lessons presented here. It is not strictly necessary to use the video lesson material along with the written lessons, or vice versa, but using both in tandem will significantly fast-track your learning process.
For a broad description of the available video courses on DevU, as well as available plans & pricing, visit:
A language like C# is typically learned "in a vacuum," and stripped of potentially distracting visual elements or front-end graphical interfaces. This type of learning process - which is considered the standard approach - is great for communicating the fundamentals. It allows you to focus on the most important and basic programming concepts you will need to understand, and is often presented through the output of a static, text-based console window. However, learning a language in this console vacuum can also be bland and boring, and can often lead to students becoming disengaged entirely.
Students are more likely to remain engaged by learning how to build web and Windows applications from day one in tandem with learning the C# programming language. Therefore, these lessons are designed to keep you engaged with the process of learning C# fundamentals by presenting it through a series of lessons aimed at creating simple, browser-based, web applications using ASP.NET.
In the first lesson, you will learn how to install your main programming tool (Visual Studio) that you will be using throughout these lessons. Right after that you'll be building your first dynamic web application, albeit a simple one, that you're going to use as a launching pad to learn more about the C# language. Along the way, you will also be learning a bit about ASP.NET - specifically ASP.NET Web Forms - which is one of Microsoft's web development technologies.
ASP.NET Web Forms is a combination of several technologies bundled into one cohesive whole. It's C#, HTML, ASP.NET, the Application Programming Interfaces, the Runtimes, along with Visual Studio that make generating ASP.NET code possible. Simply put, our main focus will be on learning C# fundamentals, while the side focus will be on learning ASP.NET. Once you understand the C# fundamentals, you will then be able to delve far deeper into ASP.NET, which will also be made easier having come to understand HTML, CSS, and other web related technologies.
It's important to note that the best way for you to learn in this series is by following along, typing each exercise by hand, and taking pause to review what you have learned in order to make sure you understand a given concept. A large part of the learning process is simply familiarization through muscle-memory and getting a sense of the common workflow: accessing menus, writing code, and so on. If you ever get stuck at any point in this process, feel free to review the lesson material several times in a row, if need be, in order to work through the kinks until the methodology begins to feel like second nature.
You will be able to test and track your progress by taking the supplementary challenges. Keep in mind that a solution to this challenge will be available to you if you find yourself getting stuck on a given challenge. However, you are encouraged only to consult the solution to help yourself become unstuck. The point of the challenges are not just to find the answer elsewhere in order to move forward, but to build valuable problem-solving skills you by trying to work through the problems on your own.
Another learning tool that will be presented to you throughout these lessons - to help you cement in your mind the concepts you are learning - is a cheat sheet that you can use for quick reference. The cheat sheet will usually contain common information at a glance, such as proper syntax for language elements, and workflows. This cheat sheet can be found on DevU under the C# via ASP.NET Web Forms documentation.
Lesson 1 - Series Introduction