Android Nanodegree From Google & Udacity
Written by Sue Gee   
Friday, 29 May 2015

Among his announcements at Google I/O Sundar Pichai (SVP, Android, Chrome and Apps at Google) signalled the launch of the Android Nanodegree, built by Google and Udacity. It is now open for enrollment so if you want to be in the first cohort sign up before June 8.

The Android Developer Nanodegree adds to a growing list of this type of credential from Udacity, which already includes an iOS Developer Nanodegree.

The news from Google is that the Android Nanodegree (which is expected to take an average of 6-9 months to complete spending 10-15 hours/week and at a cost of $200 a month will cover everything from fundamentals to advanced development skills, as well as Google Play services and Material Design.

Google adds:

Real-life projects, like designing a media player and using Google’s services to build apps, will be graded by our global network of 300 code reviewers. Upon completion, students will receive a joint certificate from Google and Udacity -- a first for the industry. Fifty students will be invited to a three-day summit in Mountain View at the end of the year.  

Completing a Nanodegree differs from just doing several courses in that is is focused, practical and designed to make you job-ready. Introducing the Nanodegree program in June 2014, see Udacity Offers Nanodegrees, Udacity founder Sebastian Thrun said they are intended as:

a new kind of compact, hands-on, and flexible online curriculum. They are designed to help you effectively learn the most in-demand skills, when you need them, so that you can land your dream job.



In his email to Udacity students about the new nanodegree, Thrun points out the employment potential of Android:

With more than one billion active Android users worldwide, Android development is one of the most promising areas for career opportunities. Even as I write this, there are tens of thousands of job openings for Android developers around the world.

That’s why we’ve been working with Google to create a brand new curriculum focused on developing for the Android platform. It’s a comprehensive set of courses, projects and a certification designed to prepare any qualified student to become a valued contributor in the Android ecosystem.

The Curriculum Director for the new Android Developer Nandegree is Udacity's Chris Lei. The four instructors, Jocelyn Becker, Dan Galpin, Katherine Kuan and Reto Meier and all from Google. 




To gain  this Nanodegree you have to build a portfolio of completed projects including a music streaming application and a joke telling app. You also have to "productionize" apps to go from a functional state to production-ready and implement the new material design techniques. 

A series of courses is provided to teach you the skills you need. All the courses come from Google and some are already available. The starting point is Developing Android Apps: Android Fundamentals. This title might suggest it is for beginners.Instead it is at intermediate level and is intended for students with preferably 3 years of programming experience in Java or another object-oriented programming language. If you want to enrol in the Nanodegree with less experience you are pointed in the direction of preparatory or refresher courses.

The other courses are at advanced level and are titles are:



Udacity offers students a one week free trial of its Nanodegree program that lets you discover if its mix of training materials suit your learning style. There is a lot of pent-up demand for this Nanodegree so being in the first cohort could be very motivating - as is the prospect of a 3-day summit at Mountain View for 50 high-fliers.






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Last Updated ( Friday, 29 May 2015 )