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Best Courses Guides

10 Best Swift Courses for 2024: Coding Apps for iOS

In this guide I’ve picked the best FREE and paid Swift online courses, a programming language for building apps for Apple’s ecosystem.

Are you dreaming of becoming an app developer for iPhone or iPad? Well, your journey starts with Swift – Apple’s innovative and open-source programming language, designed specifically for iOS and macOS applications. Swift is not just powerful; it’s also user-friendly, borrowing the best features from other modern languages to ensure simplicity and efficiency.

In this Best Courses Guide, I’ve meticulously selected the top online courses, resources, and tutorials to help you master Swift. This guide has something for you, if you’re a beginner taking your first steps in programming, or an intermediate coder looking to enhance your skills. And the best part? Most of these courses are free or free-to-audit, making learning accessible to all.

Click on the shortcuts for more details:

Here are my top picks. Click on one to skip to the course details:

What is Swift?

Swift is a modern open-source ‘protocol-oriented’ programming language for building apps for Apple’s ecosystem (iOS, watchOS, macOS, tvOS). It was created in 2014 by Chris Lattner to be a lot more efficient in both machine time and human time than its predecessor, Objective-C, and interoperates with two of Apple’s key frameworks, Cocoa and CocoaTouch.

Swift is easy-to-learn, reading much like English, making it an excellent first language for programming beginners. Not only that, but Swift is also safe by design, making it easier to catch common programming errors. Additionally, Swift is very versatile — it incorporates programming paradigms like object-oriented and functional programming — but its main speciality is the protocol-oriented paradigm: defining everything as protocols.

Swift is the 16th most popular language in the world according to the TIOBE Index, with over 42K public repositories on GitHub. Glassdoor’s data also shows that Swift developers make an average $118K annually, as many companies are willing to hire those who can catapult them into Apple’s walled garden.

Swift programming requirements

As Swift is mainly used to develop applications for Apple products, all of the courses in this ranking assume that you own a device that runs MacOS, as Apple’s integrated development environment (Xcode) is only supported there.

If you have an iPad but not a Mac or Macbook, then try out the Swift Playgrounds app.


  • All of the courses in this ranking except for one are free, free-to-audit, or have a free trial.
  • All of the courses in this ranking are for beginners, with the exception of one.
  • There is a diverse range of course providers in this ranking, with 8 providers in total.
  • 3.1K people are following Class Central’s Swift Subject.

Best Comprehensive, Project-Based Course (Hacking with Swift)

My pick for the best Swift course is 100 Days of SwiftUI by Hacking with Swift, because it is free, up-to-date, and comprehensive. Instructor Paul Hudson encourages you to take your time and spend around an hour per day without rushing ahead. The course includes 19 projects plus challenges for building your own apps.

This course is aimed at complete beginners who want to learn how to build iOS apps. It takes a hands-on approach towards learning: you’ll learn by building lots of apps, either with templates provided by the course or completely on your own!

You’ll learn about SwiftUI, Apple’s framework for building user interfaces with very little code, and Swift, a general-purpose, open-source programming language designed by Apple.

What you’ll learn:

  • Basics: variables, data structures, conditionals, loops, and functions.
  • SwiftUI: build apps with Apple’s modern UI framework, starting with simple projects and progressing to complex features.
  • Data Storage & Privacy: manage user data efficiently, understand local storage, cloud sync, and data privacy considerations.
  • Advanced Topics: explore user interface control, integrate additional frameworks, handle user interaction, and learn best practices for building great apps.
  • Bonus: optimize your apps for iPad, including split-view layouts and text formatting.


  • Build a check-sharing app, a flag-guessing app, and projects involving machine learning and animation.
  • Work on data-based projects focusing on sending, retrieving, and storing data.

Paul Hudson has written many books, courses, and even an app on the Swift programming language. He also discusses all things programming, especially Swift and iOS development on his YouTube channel.

Institution Hacking with Swift
Instructor Paul Hudson
Level Beginner
Workload 100–200 hours
Mode of learning Lecture videos, course articles, writing code, and quizzes
Certificate None

Best University Course (Stanford University)

The best university-level Swift course is Stanford’s CS193p, originally offered to Stanford students but now freely available to all.

Developing Applications for iOS explains the fundamentals of building iOS applications using SwiftUI. You’ll build two sizable applications: a card game and a drawing software. By the end of the course, you’ll be well-versed in Swift and SwiftUI programming.

This course is not for complete beginners to programming. You’ll need some experience with another programming language, preferably within the object-oriented paradigm.

In this course, you will:

  • Start with a real project: Build a card-matching game called Memorize while learning key SwiftUI and Swift concepts
  • Master core tools: Understand object-oriented programming paradigms, data types, and property observers in Swift
  • Build dynamic interfaces: Utilize protocols, generics, and animations to create engaging user experiences
  • Expand your skills: Create an emoji drawing app called EmojiArt, learning touch gestures, persistence, and various SwiftUI elements
  • Go multi-platform: Transform EmojiArt into a multi-document app using SwiftUI’s document architecture
  • Bridge technologies: Integrate UIKit for advanced features and port your iOS app to macOS as the final project.

CS193P has been uploaded freely each year since 2020.

Institution Stanford University
Instructor Paul Hegarty
Level Beginner
Workload 25–50 hours total
Mode of learning Lecture videos, code demos, and programming assignments
Certificate None

Best Course That Also Covers More Advanced Topics (Angela Yu)

In this paid course by Angela Yu, you’ll learn the ins-and-outs of the Swift programming language from a complete beginner with no programming experience all the way to a proficient iOS app developer!

The course emphasizes on learning by doing, which means you’ll be making fun real-world apps like Pokemon Go, Whatsapp, QuizUp and Yahoo Weather. In addition, you’ll acquaint yourself with some of Apple’s latest technologies: SwiftUI, ARKit, CoreML, and Create ML.

What You’ll Learn:

  • Install Xcode and explore its interface
  • Create a new project, design an app with an image and text
  • Learn Swift basics such as constants, variables, and control flow
  • Design a flexible layout for different screen sizes
  • Deep dive into object-oriented programming (OOP) concepts
  • Implement the Model-View-Controller (MVC) design pattern
  • Create a choose-your-own-adventure game with clean code
  • Learn networking, data storage, and in-app purchases
  • Explore Git, GitHub, machine learning, and augmented reality.

Angela Yu is the founder of The App Brewery, London’s leading programming bootcamp. She is a popular Udemy instructor, having over 2.5 million students and over 770K reviews in all her courses combined

Provider Udemy
Instructor Angela Yu
Level Beginner
Workload 60 hours
Enrollments 369K
Rating 4.7 / 5.0 (89K)
Mode of learning Lecture videos, resource list, hands-on projects
Certificate Paid

Best Short Project-based Course (raywenderlich.com)

If you’re a complete beginner to iOS and SwiftUI development and wondering how to get started, this free course is for you. In Your First iOS & SwiftUI App: An App from Scratch, you’ll start by learning the basics of SwiftUI, a new way for iOS developers to build user interfaces for their apps using Swift. You’ll also explore the Swift programming language itself, learning fundamentals like if/else statements, variables, constants, type inference, and the Swift standard library. You’ll add more cool functionality to your game and practice your new coding skills.

You’ll even learn useful techniques you’ll use as a developer in the real world, including App Architecture and Unit Testing!

Bull’s Eye Project:

  • Scope: Create a simple, fun game using SwiftUI
  • UI: Design a user-friendly interface with minimal code
  • OOP: Learn basic concepts and debugging
  • Data: Focus on state, binding, and a simple data model
  • Randomness: Utilize the Swift library for a random target number
  • Testing: Write unit tests to ensure functionality and understand TDD
  • Gameplay: Calculate points in multiple iterations
  • Coding: Master basic Swift techniques like if/else, variables, and type inference
  • Goal: Build a complete, enjoyable Bull’s Eye game.

Raywenderlich.com’s mission is to create a world-class educational platform and community for mobile developers. After this course, you can take Your First iOS & SwiftUI App: Polishing the App, where you’ll give your app a professional and polished look and experience.

Provider raywenderlich.com
Instructors Ray Wenderlich and Jessy Catterwaul
Level Beginner
Workload 3 hours total
Rating 4.8  / 5.0 (16)
Mode of learning Lecture videos, follow along as the instructor codes
Certificate None

Best Intermediate-length Project-based Course (Curtin University)

Build your very first iOS app by Curtin University teaches you tools, techniques, and concepts needed to develop iOS apps from scratch, without prerequisites.

You’ll be introduced to the Swift programming language and learn how to use Apple’s developer tools to build an app. By the end of the free-to-audit 8 weeks limited access course, you’ll be able to confidently converse with iOS developers and develop your own simple iOS Apps.

What you’ll learn in this course:

  • Basics: Intro to programming & Swift for iOS.
  • Xcode: Explore environment, variables & operators.
  • Core Concepts: Conditional statements, arrays & dictionaries.
  • UI Design: Build app layouts with Xcode’s interface builder.
  • Project Management: Navigate projects, document code & debug.
  • OOP: Master functions, classes & structures.
  • UI Interaction: Make user interfaces interactive with controls & views.
  • Navigation & Views: Create a navigation hierarchy & implement TableViews.
  • MVC: Build responsive apps with the Model-View-Controller pattern.

This course is part of Mobile App Development with Swift Professional Certificate, with the next course being Work with augmented reality (AR) and the web. The professional certificate will give you practical, hands-on skills needed to start a career in app development.

Institution Curtin University
Provider edX
Instructor David A. McMeekin and Tristan W. Reed
Level Beginner
Workload 64–80 hours total
Enrollments 49K
Mode of learning Video lectures and readings; quizzes for certificate-strand learners
Certificate Paid

Best Course for Short Instructional Lessons (LearnQuest)

Introduction to Programming in Swift 5 by LearnQuest introduces you to the absolute basics of Swift. This free-to-audit course is excellent for both beginners to programming, or those with programming experience wanting to get involved in the Swift language.

By the end of the course, you’ll know how to build simple iOS applications so you can move on to more advanced topics.

What you’ll learn:

  • Set up Xcode: Get started with the development environment
  • Programming Basics: Learn variables, data types, and printing to the screen
  • Program Logic: Master conditional statements and loops
  • Data Structures: Use arrays and dictionaries to organize data
  • Functions: Write reusable code blocks
  • Object-Oriented Programming: Understand inheritance and polymorphism
  • MVC Paradigm: Design applications using the Model-View-Controller architecture.

This course is part of the Swift 5 iOS Application Developer Specialization, with the next course being Introduction to iOS App Development with Swift 5. The specialization aims to provide the skills needed to get employed in Swift and iOS application development.

Institution LearnQuest
Provider Coursera
Instructor Mark Price
Level Beginner
Workload 11 hours total
Enrollments 23K
Rating 4.3 / 5.0 (711)
Mode of learning Video lectures and readings; quizzes and programming exercises for certificate-strand learners
Certificate Paid

Best Interactive Course (Codecademy)

In Learn Swift, a free limited-access Codecademy course for complete beginners to programming, you’ll start with the fundamental programming concepts before digging deeper into the more advanced Swift topics, like structures and classes.  You will build a Magic 8-Ball and a Caesar Cipher.

In this course, you will:

  • Begin by writing your first Swift program printing ‘Hello World!’
  • Learn fundamental programming concepts: variables, strings, booleans
  • Implement program logic for decision-making and code repetition
  • Explore data structures: arrays, sets, and dictionaries
  • Understand their importance in organizing data for complex programs
  • Learn to write and interact with functions, named reusable code blocks
  • Explore creating structures to represent real-life objects in code
  • Conclude with a lesson on classes, representing real-life objects with inheritable properties for children

Codecademy was co-founded by Zach Sims and Ryan Bubinski, with the goal of giving  anyone in the world the ability to learn the skills they’d need to succeed in the 21st century.

Institution Codecademy
Instructors Sonny Li, Kenny Lin, Galina Podstrechnaya, Alex DiStasi
Level Beginner
Workload 25 hours
Enrollments 153K
Mode of learning Interactive tutorials and exercises; portfolio projects and quizzes for certificate-strand learners
Certificate Paid

Best App for K-12 and High School Students (Apple)

Although not strictly a course, we’ve decided to include Swift Playgrounds as it is a learning app with structured lessons.

Swift Playgrounds is a free iPad app developed by Apple that makes learning and experimenting with code interactive and fun. It is aimed at primary and high school students, although older learners can still benefit.

Students begin by solving bite-sized problems that will help strengthen their foundations, before moving to interactive walkthroughs to teach them the building blocks of apps.

No prior coding knowledge needed!

In this course:

  • Module 1 is set in a dynamic 3D world
  • Build basic programming vocabulary with simple commands, functions, and loops in Swift
  • Gain familiarity with algorithms by the end of the first module
  • Module 2 encourage students to create their own worlds
  • Cover more in-depth topics: variables, data types, initialization, and parameters
  • Empower students to change the rules of their world
  • In Module 3, expand coding skills from Learn to Code 1 & 2
  • Develop thinking like an app developer
  • Cover graphics, coordinates, image placement, manipulation, and touch events
  • Explore strings and their representation
  • Conclude with designing games using event handlers

Swift Playgrounds can also subscribe to lessons and other content published by third parties, including lessons allowing users to control educational toys such as Lego Mindstorms EV3 and Sphero robots.

Institution Apple
Level Beginner
Workload 30–60 hours
Mode of learning Interactive tutorials and exercises
Certificate None

Swift for Beginners (Udacity)

In Udacity’s Swift for Beginners, you’ll learn the fundamentals needed to start creating your first app. By the end of this course, you’ll be able to solve problems, construct algorithms, and build feature-rich mobile applications in Swift.

No prior programming experience is required to take this free course.

In this course, you will:

  • Jump straight into variables as the basic building block of any program
  • Learn to assign values to variables with correct data types
  • Explore strings, understanding their representation and manipulation
  • Install and experiment with Xcode, Apple’s integrated development environment
  • Cover integral components like conditional statements (if and else) for branching code execution based on defined logic
  • Conclude with a lesson on functions—lists of code accomplishing specific tasks
  • Learn to organize and reuse code efficiently with functions

Jarrod Parkes is currently a senior software engineer at Aryeo, a leading content management platform for the real estate industry.

Institution Udacity
Instructor Jarrod Parkes
Level Beginner
Workload One week (or less)
Mode of learning Video lectures and readings; interactive exercises and problem sets
Certificate None

Best Bite-sized SwiftUI Course (Swiftful Thinking)


SwiftUI Bootcamp by Swiftful Thinking is here to help beginners get a mastery of the basics of SwiftUI. Unlike other courses, this free course is not focused on building an app. Instead, each video will tackle and master one specific component in SwiftUI so that by the end of the course, you’ll be a master of all the individual components to create a really beautiful app.

The instructor also has a Discord server where you can ask questions about SwiftUI.

No experience with Swift is needed to take this course.

What you’ll learn:

  • Start by learning to use Xcode in Swift projects
  • Add text and shapes in SwiftUI to create a blank canvas
  • Paint the canvas by adding color, depth, and gradients to shapes
  • Turn shapes into colorful art
  • Explore Apple’s pre-made system icons, both unicolor and multi-color
  • Add and modify images for your app’s background
  • Learn about states and bindings, essential properties for app interactivity
  • Add buttons and functionality using loops, conditionals, and ternary operators
  • Implement responsive animations for enhanced user experience
  • Detail various interactive widgets for user interaction
  • Explore Swift objects and properties
  • Adapt for dark mode
  • Document code
  • Incorporate touch gestures

Nick Sarno is also a Udemy instructor and you can view other contacts and projects on his website.

Institution Swiftful Thinking
Provider YouTube
Instructor Nick Sarno
Level Beginner
Workload 16 hours
Views 825K
Mode of learning Lecture videos and follow along as the instructor codes
Certificate None

Best Courses Guides Methodology

I built this ranking following the now tried-and-tested methodology used in previous Best Courses Guides (you can find them all here). It involves a three-step process:

  1. Research: I (Elham) started by leveraging Class Central’s database with 200K online courses and 200K reviews, finding courses in the Swift subject.
  2. Evaluate: I read through reviews on Class Central, Reddit, and course providers to understand what other learners thought about each course and combined it with my own experience as a learner.
  3. Select: Well-made courses were picked if they presented valuable and engaging content and they have to fit in a set of criteria and be ranked accordingly: comprehensive curriculum, affordability, release date, ratings and enrollments.

Pat revised the research and the latest version of this article.

Best Courses Guides. Start Learning, Stop Procrastinating.

Elham Nazif Profile Image

Elham Nazif

Part-time content writer, full-time computer science student.
Pat Bowden Profile Image

Pat Bowden

Online learning specialist, still learning after 200+ online courses completed since 2012. Class Central customer support and help since 2018. I am keen to help others make the most of online learning, so I set up a website:  www.onlinelearningsuccess.org

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