Just Express (with a bunch of node and http). In detail.

Just Express (with a bunch of node and http). In detail.

No MERN or MEAN… just Express js. For those who’ve learned a bit about the most awesome node framework, and want more.

What you’ll learn

  • Express. That’s (mostly) all we cover so when you finish, you’ll know it!
  • Set up an Express server that can do anything Express can do!
  • Operate that Express Server as a REST API
  • Use that Express Server to render your front-end web pages with EJS, PUG, & handlebars
  • Understand the basics of HTTP and the request/response cycle


  • You have a working knowledge of JavaScript (Not a ninja, but you should not be brand new).
  • You have at least run a Nodejs program before. I will cover some basics, but this is NOT an intro to node class.
  • You have basic command line knowledge (at least capable of navigating and running a program)
  • You have a computer capable of running Nodejs.


You have some notion of what Node, Express, and http are or you wouldn’t be here. Node and back-end JavaScript have taken the world by storm, [SOME BIG COMPANY] moved to node and it changed the world, blah blah blah. One of the first things you’re going to learn in any node course is about the Express module. But how much do you really learn about it? How to render a page in one template engine? How to make a get and a post route? Most MEAN and MERN stacks students I’ve met learned Express in a few breaths and then moved on to MongoDB, MySQL, Angular, React, or whatever was in the rest of the tech stack. What is http anyway? Should I even care? It’s easy to get 2 inches deep and find you’ve accomplished your task, but in fact have no idea why it works or how you’d go further. That, in my opinion, is no good for someone who wants to be a great developer.

I’ve had a lot of students ask for a course on just Express js because they were either overwhelmed when they learned it, or they can’t find any detail on it to go further than beginner knowledge. That’s what this course is for. We will go through the various pieces of Express in detail so you can know why it behaves the way it does and get the most out of it. Express 5 is currently in alpha, so when it hits beta or full release, and as questions come up, the course will expand accordingly!

Note: this course is not a quick path to launch a webapp with Express/Node. You can get that in 10 minutes in many other places. This course is meant to take a longer, deeper look at what Express js actually does.

I’ve been using Express since V.2, in 2012 and have seen it do just about everything. It is one of my favorite node modules and consistently one of the most downloaded on npm. There are other awesome technologies that patch into Express that get easily missed. This course will naturally lead into other things like websockets, webRTC, etc. Prepare for one of the most awesome node modules on npm!


  1. Environment Setup (skip if you have node installed already)
  2. Before Express… – TCP & HTTP, making an express-less node server
  3. Express 101 – Making a basic web sever with Express
  4. Express 201 – Middleware and Rendering
  5. Express 301 – Req & Res revisited, the router, and the express generator
  6. Rendering Project
  7. API Project
  8. Passport (jwt & local strategy still coming)
  9. Best Practices (Coming…)
  10. Supplemental – connecting to various DBs (very basic – only for those already familiar with a database)

Who this course is for:

  • Beginner node developers who want to learn Express but overwhelmed by full MERN or MEAN courses
  • Beginner node developers who need a review of JUST Express js
  • Developers who want to go into the various pieces of Express in a little more depth without having to look at the docs
  • Developers interested in using node as a webserver or using web sockets with Express

So far my experience with this course has been excellent. I just finished a full stack web development track at Woz U, and give it very mixed reviews. This course begins to clarify many of the things that were explained in a very enigmatic way there. I look forward to completing this course and taking the next steps. Thanks to Rob Bunch for an elucidating and easy-to-follow course.

Course content

11 sections • 58 lectures • 12h 32m total length
  • Introduction
  • Environment Setup (skip if you have node installed already)
  • Before Express…
  • Express 101
  • Express 201 – Middleware and Rendering
  • Express 301 – Req & Res revisited, the router, and the express generator
  • Starter Project – Movie Fan App
  • Project – Building an API
  • Supplemental: Passport
  • Supplemental: DB connection
  • Supplamental – Uploading files to Express with Multer
Created by: Robert Bunch Code school instructor, software architect and engineer
Last updated 7/2020
English [Auto], Indonesian [Auto], Italian [Auto], Polish [Auto], Thai [Auto]

(946 ratings)
5,674 students

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