The Pragmatic Studio
🎉 Our Ruby on Rails course is now completely updated for Rails 7!
As always, it's a free update if you bought the previous version of the course.

Ruby on Rails 5

This course covers Rails 5, and we also have a Rails 6 course.

Build a full-featured Rails web app from from idea to deployment, step by step!

Learn how to put all the pieces together to build a complete Ruby on Rails 5 app from scratch in this course. You'll come away with a solid understanding of Rails as well as key design principles and practices to help you craft robust and flexible apps on your own!

This course package includes both Rails 5 courses and the Rails 6 course!

Thomas Neal
This is the best Rails course hands-down! I've worked through several Rails courses and they don't even come close to explaining things as well as you do.” Thomas Neal
Dana Nourie
This Rails course is fabulous! I took a few other courses, but still felt really confused. I learned a lot, feel more comfortable with Rails...This is my favorite Rails course.” Dana Nourie
Eirik Holm
Our new hires are loving your online Ruby and Rails courses. In the past, our senior engineers taught new team members Rails on their own. But now with your courses, we are getting new engineers up to speed much easier and faster.” Eirik Holm, AppFolio
Jonathan Mundy
“I completed a few Rails tutorials before but this course contained more lightbulb moments than the rest of them put together. The explanations were clean, clear, and precise, and breaking things down into diagrams really helped. I know after completing your courses that I can build pretty much whatever I want in Rails.” Jonathan Mundy

Build a Full-Featured Rails 5 Web App From Scratch

Learn how to rapidly develop and deploy database-driven web apps the Rails way.

You can build amazing web applications with Rails, fast! But a huge part of developer productivity comes from understanding the Rails way of doing things. And the best way to learn Rails is by building real applications from scratch, preferrably with seasoned Rails developers at your side.

In this course, we incrementally build a Rails application step-by-step in the videos so you see exactly how it's done. Then, after each video, you apply what you learned by building another Rails application through a series of guided exercises. Learning this way makes everything "click", and it's just more fun! 😀

By developing real applications with real code, you'll gain practical experience putting all the pieces together to craft applications using Rails best practices. And you'll come away with a deeper understanding of both the how and the why.

Working in the context of an application, we explore the following topics in-depth:

Rails Programming Environment

Setting up your working environment and learning how to use it effectively is the first step toward becoming a productive Rails developer. We'll show you how to:

  • Install Ruby on Rails on your favorite operating system
  • Edit Rails code using the Sublime Text editor
  • Use the Rails console and supporting command-line tools effectively
  • Search Rails documentation
  • Use external RubyGems in your application
  • Troubleshoot problems and understand common error messages

The router is the central dispatch of your application. It receives incoming requests (URLs) and, depending on a set of rules, dispatches the requests to an appropriate controller action. You'll learn how to:

  • Define routes that recognize incoming URLs
  • Use named route methods to generate URLs based on the routing scheme
  • Apply and understand the RESTful routing conventions
  • Design apps to take advantage of the REST conventions in Rails
Views and Controllers

Rails has some strong opinions about how web apps should be designed. You've probably heard about the MVC design in the abstract, but we'll break it down in practice so you understand where to put your code and the benefits of a decoupled design. You'll learn how to:

  • Write controller actions to handle incoming requests and render views, or redirect to other actions
  • Design clean and flexible HTML 5 views using layouts, partials, and helpers
  • Write custom view helpers to encapsulate presentation logic
  • Remove duplication using before actions
Models and Database Design

Well-designed models are the foundation of any good Rails app. In the simplest form, a model is a Ruby class that encapsulates your application's business logic. But a model also often represents an entity stored in your database. Active Record is the object-relational mapping library that Rails uses to connect your business objects (models) to your database tables. You'll learn how to:

  • Manage your database schema with migrations
  • Use models to create, read (query), update, and delete records in your database
  • Use validations to enforce data integrity
  • Design models for better reuse and testability
Test-First Development

Both the Ruby and Rails communities place a high value on testing, and it's for good reason. Writing effective tests allows you to make changes and add new features with confidence. As a result, you're a more productive Rails developer. Throughout the course, you'll learn how to:

  • Use a test-first development approach to confidently add new features
  • Write and run high-level feature specs using RSpec 2 and Capybara
  • Test lower-level business logic by writing model specs using RSpec
  • Refactor your application code, safely!

Want to accept user input and store it in a database? Rails has a whole bunch of conventions to help you create robust and friendly forms. We'll unveil the "magic" and show you how to:

  • Design a form for creating and editing data
  • Validate form data and provide actionable feedback to the user
  • Store submitted form data in a database and dynamically display the data
  • Avoid common security pitfalls
CSS and Sass Basics

As a web developer, it's important to understand the basics of web design whether you aim to do it all yourself or plan to work hand-in-hand with a web designer. You'll learn how to:

  • Decouple your presentation (style) from the content using CSS stylesheets
  • Keep your stylesheets tidy and flexible using Sass extensions including variables, nested rules, and functions
  • Effectively use what Rails calls the asset pipeline
Model Relationships

One of the most powerful features of Rails is the ability to create relationships between different models and represent those relationships in a database. For example, if you're developing a movie review app then you'll need to associate each review with a particular movie. To do that properly, it's important to not only understand the Rails conventions but also what goes on behind the scenes. You'll learn how to:

  • Design a one-to-many relationship in the database using foreign keys
  • Declare associations in the models and use them to create associated records and navigate across the one-to-many relationship
  • Use nested resources to design a user interface for a one-to-many relationship
  • Encapsulate business logic that emerges once you have rich associations between models
Manage Users

Whether you choose to build your own user account management system or use a gem, it's critical to know how everything fits together. Managing your users' accounts isn't an area of your app that should be a black box. By learning how to design a solid user model and web interface from scratch, you'll be in a better position to adapt, customize, leverage, and troubleshoot either your own code or a third-party gem. We'll start off by looking at how to:

  • Design a solid user model
  • Securely store passwords with the bcrypt gem
  • Declare reasonable validations in the User model
  • Create new user accounts with a sign-up form
  • Display users' profile pages
  • Allow a user to edit or delete their account
Authentication & Session Management

You sign in and out of web apps every day. It's so routine that it's easy to take account management features for granted. But the reality is there's a lot going on behind the scenes. Implementing account management properly in an app requires a solid understanding of sessions, cookies, filters, security concerns, and Rails conventions for authentication and authorization. We'll break it all down and look in-depth at how to:

  • Add routes for a singular session resource
  • Design a SessionsController to manage the session resource
  • Create a sign-in form using form helpers
  • Sign in (authenticate) users and remember them with sessions
  • Automatically sign in a user when they create an account
  • Sign out users
Authorization & Admin Users

Exactly who gets to take certain actions and do certain things in your app? What can signed-in users do? What can't they do? What can admin users do? Authorization rules tend to vary widely depending on the nature of a specific application. The good news is once you understand the basic technique, you can easily design an authorization system that works for your custom needs. You'll learn how to:

  • Use before_action filters to restrict access to specific actions
  • Restrict access based on signed-in status
  • Redirect a user back to his intended URL after he has signed in
  • Hide unauthorized features
  • Allow special "admin" users to perform admin-only tasks
Many-to-Many & Through Associations

Rails has powerful conventions to help you manage many-to-many associations, but the conventions alone only take you so far. It's up to you to model the associations with the full stack in mind: from the database tables all the way through to the user interface. By way of six distinct examples (three in the videos and three in the exercises), you'll learn how to:

  • Design a rich many-to-many association that connects a user to their movie reviews using a join model and a form
  • Model a many-to-many association that lets a user "fave" multiple movies with a button
  • Create a through association for assigning multiple genres to a movie using checkboxes
  • Improve the performance of database queries
  • Name associations to better express your domain
Custom Routes

URLs are the user interface of the web. We tweet and email them. We bookmark pages we want to return to later. We use embedded links to connect across web apps. As part of your app's user interface, it's critical that your URLs are both expressive and friendly. The default resource URLs are a good start, but the Rails router gives us a lot of flexibility when it comes to customizing URLs. And well-designed URLs might also end up driving more search traffic to your site! You'll learn how to:

  • Generate friendly URLs for better SEO, bookmarking, and curb appeal
  • Customize routes to handle scenarios beyond the basic resource routes
  • Use route parameters and constraints

Putting your Rails app into production shouldn't cause fear and trembling. Deploying Rails apps has gotten a lot easier over the years thanks in large part to cloud services such as Heroku. We'll show you how to deploy your Rails app for the first time, and incrementally push out updates. You'll learn how to:

  • Set up a (free) Heroku account
  • Put your application code in a Git repository
  • Deploy your app to your Heroku account
  • Run remote Heroku commands such as to migrate your production database
  • Upload image files and store them on Amazon S3
  • Roll out updates to your app with ease!
Best Practices, Tricks, and Techniques

Now standing up a Rails app that just works isn't the same as designing a good Rails app. Mastering Rails—writing compact, readable, and flexible code—starts by learning the conventions, practices, and idioms fostered by the Rails community.

And having developed with Rails for 15+ years, we've learned our own tips, tricks, and techniques for creating solid Rails apps. So, throughout the course, we discuss design principles and best practices to help you get the most out of Rails!

What You'll Get

Lifetime access to everything you need!

High-Quality Videos
Streamable and downloadable, DRM-free videos on any device. Includes English subtitles on each video.
Apply what you learned in the videos through a series of exercises to build a slightly different web app on your own computer.
Source Code
Includes starter files, stepped versions of the app for each module, and all the source code for two full-featured Rails apps.
Instant and Forever Access
No monthly subscription or time limit. Start when you want and repeat as often as you like!

Get started today!

No monthly subscription. No time limit. Start when you want and revisit as often as you like. In no time you'll go from "Argh, I'm lost!" to Aha, now I TOTALLY get it!"

Rails Courses
Rails 5 and Rails 6 Package: Both Rails 5 Courses + Rails 6 Course
  • Both Rails 5 Courses
  • Rails 6 Free Upgrade
Best Deal
Pro Bundle
Rails 5 and Rails 6 Master Package: Both Rails 5 Courses + Rails 6 Master Package
  • Both Rails 5 Courses
  • Rails 6 Pro Bundle

Questions? Email Mike and Nicole.

There's no risk. This course is 100% guaranteed for an entire 30 days. If you find it's not a good fit for you, we'll be happy to refund your money.

Live in a country where our courses are very expensive? We offer purchasing power parity discounts.

For New Rails Developers

Need a fresh start or a refresher? This course is for you!

Getting started with Rails?

Perhaps you've been intrigued by Rails, but haven't yet had the opportunity to learn it comprehensively from scratch. It all starts here! You'll learn the fundamentals of developing web apps with Rails so you're ready to create your first Rails app or jump right into an existing app. No prior experience with Rails is assumed.

If you're new to the Ruby programming language or new to object-oriented programming in general, we strongly recommend taking our Ruby course prior to this course.

Struggling to put all the pieces together?

Rails is a structured framework that relies on conventions to optimize development time and minimize the amount of code you have to write. This makes developing web apps a bit easier… once you understand how everything fits together. Through live coding, animated visuals, and hands-on exercises, you'll learn how to build a full-featured web app so you're more confident (and less frustrated) writing your own Rails code.

Ready for a refresh and a restart?

If you started learning Rails a while back but haven't used it in earnest, this course will help you quickly get back up to speed with the latest version of Rails and current development techniques!

Created with 💛 by
Mike and Nicole Clark

Mike and Nicole

We've been using Rails since version 1.0. In fact, Mike helped build and launch one of the first production Rails apps way back in 2005. Since then together we've built countless Rails apps, including the suite of apps that power this site and our custom video training platform. We still write Rails code almost every day, and we love it!

Mike co-taught the first official Rails course in 2006 which lead to us starting this little training company we call The Pragmatic Studio. He's also the author of Advanced Rails Recipes, co-author of Agile Web Development with Rails, and author of Pragmatic Project Automation.

As with all our courses, this is the course we wish we had when learning Rails. One that's easy to jump into, doesn't get bogged down in syntax minutiae, and focuses on building a real Rails app. Nothing is held back: we tackle complex features by breaking down the concepts so everything makes sense. We hope you enjoy it!

Thousands have loved learning Rails this way!

Here's what some of them have to say…

Thomas Neal
This is the best Rails course hands-down! I've worked through several Rails courses and they don't even come close to explaining things as well as you do. You have the perfect balance of teaching the right amount of information such that I understood each new piece without any confusion. I've always felt like Rails has too much of a learning curve, but you've communicated its elegance and flexibility. If you put out more courses I will certainly come back each time to learn more from you. Again, out of all the resources I've worked through, nobody has come close to connecting with me in the way that you guys have. Bravo!” Thomas Neal
Tony Barone
“Simply amazing. The best online course I have ever experienced. Nicole and Mike, you are the best!” Tony Barone
Nico Schuele
It is the absolute best for a first dive into Rails! It teaches you the correct way to start a new Rails app...If you go through the whole course, [the] magic will be explained and you’ll know what the Rails framework does instead of passively look at it do things for you.” Nico Schuele
Michael Zsigmond
I've tried almost every Rails learning site out there. While all of those resources taught me how to accomplish certain tasks in Rails, I felt there was a large gap between knowing how to do something vs. understanding what's happening at a deeper level. Your Rails course bridged the gap for me.Michael Zsigmond
Vita Dewi van Beurden
“I really love the quality of your videos and lectures, and the way it builds up an app. It's the best that I've taken!Vita Dewi van Beurden
Wassim Metallaoui
This is the BEST Rails introduction anywhere on the web! I learned a ton in this course that I didn't learn from other sources online. I was immediately able to start putting together an application that has been stuck in my head for a long time.” Wassim Metallaoui
Eric Ricketts
“This course along with your Ruby Programming course offers the best introduction to learning Rails for a beginning developer. I cannot think of any book or video series that does as good a job.” Eric Ricketts
David Theroff
“The main difference I have found after taking a lot of other Rails courses is that you explain things in greater detail which has helped me understand the 'whys'.David Theroff
Andrew Markle
“It seems like there are a lot of courses and tutorials out there that are great if you already know how to program in another language, but there are none that I know of (other than Pragmatic Studio!) that is great for a complete beginner. After taking your Ruby course I feel like I have a solid foundation to stand on. Now, learning Rails has been a lot of fun instead of a lot of frustration.” Andrew Markle
Miriam Tocino
“Thanks to everything I learned with you, I am about to land a new job in which I will be programming in Ruby on Rails. Thank you very much for that!” Miriam Tocino
Anne Richardson
The Rails course is leagues above some others I've tried. First of all, Mike and Nicole have skills as instructors, not just developers, so I didn't feel they were talking above my head. Also it's clear that the lessons and supporting files have been tested and edited -- because they work! The exercises in the example apps are very relevant and I left the course with a whole new level of expertise. I can't recommend this course enough!” Anne Richardson
Dana Nourie
“This Rails course is fabulous! I took a few other courses, but still felt really confused. I learned a lot, feel more comfortable with Rails, and really understand how controllers, models, and routes depend on each other. The explanations along with the illustrations were really fantastic. This is my favorite Rails course. Dana Nourie
Onur Özer
“The Ruby on Rails course from @pragmaticstudio was without a doubt one of the best online courses I've ever taken. So clear, fun and—dare I say—pragmatic!” Onur Özer
John Weir
“I've taken other Rails tutorials but yours really filled in the gaps in my understandings. I can now truly say that I've taken a big step towards developing with Rails.” John Weir
Eirik Holm
Our new hires are loving your online Ruby and Rails courses. In the past, our senior engineers taught new team members Rails on their own. But now with your courses, we are getting new engineers up to speed much easier and faster.” Eirik Holm, AppFolio
Alfian Losari
“Everything is great: the material, the teachers, the simple, concise, yet clear explanations in all the courses. I think these are the best Ruby and Rails online courses for people that want to jump into Rails. All of the courses are worth every penny!” Alfian Losari
Terrence Talbot
“This course is fantastic! I had read a couple of Rails tutorial books and sort of understood what the example code was doing, but was having trouble sorting out how to build my own app. This course really filled in some missing pieces.” Terrence Talbot
Bart Falzarano
“I highly recommend Pragmatic Studio's Rails Programming courses! The exercises allow you to build something more complex than a blog and do so by applying what was learned in the lessons rather than merely following along! This format really drove things home for me.Bart Falzarano
Rhys Yorke
“After trying many online Ruby on Rails courses across the Internet, this is the most thorough and enjoyable introduction available. Rhys Yorke
Justin Seiter
“A partner and I just released and started getting sales on an RoR app I created. I was able to build the prototype in a weekend! You all are a big reason I was able to do it. You have done a wonderful job of taking a lot of the 'magic' out of Rails.Justin Seiter
Brad Ballard
This is the best beginning Rails course I've found. I finally have a strong Rails foundation. Coming into the course, I had so many loose ends regarding how Rails worked, but I finished the course with the confidence to create my own app.” Brad Ballard