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iOS Development in Swift

by Plymouth University

This course material is only available in the iTunes U app on iPhone or iPad.

Course Description

If you are an existing developer who wants to learn iOS development, but have no prior experience with iOS, or maybe you have never even used a Mac before, this course is designed for you.

What the course will not be is a series of lectures - in fact I rarely give any lectures on iOS (in any case, others have that covered that really well on iTunes U).

This will lab-based learning, which is very much a philosophy used widely in our school. Each section of this course is a series of self-paced practicals. The written materials are published as electronic books, include embedded video and other active elements. Videos are also provided separately so others can reuse them. New this year are Swift Playgrounds for iPad.

The key objective is to make the learners independent in the shortest time. 

Most developers want to teach themselves, but there are hurdles, jargon and new concepts that can stand in the way. Navigating through all the information can seem overwhelming.

Our aim is to navigate learners through the key concepts and API as quickly as possible. By the end of the course, developers can become autonomous and self-learn the part of the API that interests them most. 

This model has served us well before, and many of our alumni having gone onto great (and well paid) careers.

Key philosophy

  • It should be fun from the start - we get straight into building an app in XCode.
  • Swift language features will be introduced on demand / in context as opportunity arises.
  • It's not just about Swift and iOS - computer science concepts matter too. Apple sometimes do things differently to others. Students appreciate new and often better ways of thinking.
  • There is a focus on jargon - Jargon is often the clue / gateway to learning new and often unfamiliar concepts. It's also vital to use the documentation
  • Minimise the API taught to a core set - teaching hours and hours of API can overload new learners. Teaching too much API can also lead to repetition. By the end of this course, you should be able to pick and learn those parts of the API you need for your app.
  • Learning should be an active process - learners are required to write code and solve incrementally challenging problems - solutions are always provided of course
  • Sample codes / solutions are kept simple and focused - although it's very temping to write beautiful and elegant examples, so cognitive overload is all too easy to achieve as well! Samples will be simple and focused on the point (but still look rather nice).
  • Learners are increasingly directed to navigating the excellent Apple documentation / sample code / books + WWDC Videos and other iTunesU courses. 
Source Code
Many of the challenges and solutions are available from our github repository. 

To obtain all the sources, type the following from a terminal:   
git clone

To update your sources, you can use either: git pull (more automated) or git fetch followed by git merge
There is also a GUI tool available from GitHub to help.

Have fun, and do let me know if you find any errors or have any feedback. We'd love to hear from you.
The best way to get in contact is via my blog at
Failing that, there is email of course.

Nick Outram
Associate Professor
Plymouth University, UK

Customer Reviews

Great Course

Thanks for this wonderful course. Recommend this to any body who is new to programming.

Please update it with new contents… Waiting...

Well Done Course….

Good balance of both Intro to Swift AND development within Xcode - where as some courses are primarily fixed on Swift alone and leave navigation and implementation within Xcode as secondary, if not external (Mainly with Playgrounds which is OK too, but I prefer this approach myself). Well paced with additional topics introduced nicely within the overall course content. I also like the electronic book format that accompanies this course on the iPad (not sure on the Mac). I’m also taking the Stanford Swift iOS Course, but would suggest this course first. Highly recommend to all and looking forward to additional content on Swift/Xcode development from this instructor.

-DLow 😌✌🏼

Good Introduction to Swift

Covers important things every developer needs to know, like shortcuts and navigating the documentation while at the same time getting started building apps quickly.

Looking forward to more sections.

iOS Development in Swift
View in iTunes

Customer Ratings