CS 132 Creating Modern Web Applications

CS 132: Creating Modern Web Applications

Welcome to CS132


Students who have developed project proposals must submit them HERE by Saturday, January 27 @ 11:59PM.

Syllabus can be found HERE

CS132, Creating Modern Web Applications, is a spring semester course within the Brown CS department. The course has two tracks, one intended for CS concentrators, and one intended for non-concentrators with previous design experience. It takes a holistic look at the process of developing web and mobile applications and aims to bring the students to a point of mastery of many of the most used web technologies, and development practices. The course includes a semester long group final project in which the students will be working with external companies, non-profits, and other organizations.

The class will be held in MacMillan 117 10am to 10:50am on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Final Projects

The materials covered in CS132 culminates in a final project, where students work in groups to implement a web application for a client. Examples of previous projects include:

  • A front end to let spectators provide input regarding music volume and fire status for Waterfire.
  • A web site for posting of free cultural events in NYC
  • Mobile remote for Shelby.tv
  • Food truck locator
  • Music player for one or more business locations
  • Textbook exchange web site
  • Visualizer for Tracelytics
  • Web shell for MongoDB
  • Polling using text messaging via Twilio
See the submissions page for information on submitting a project.

CS132 will allow a number of student projects. A successful student project proposal is:

  • Well-defined: you should know not only the specifics of your project (who would use it? how would they use it?), but what technologies you might use. You should also have a clear way of evaluating the project. Define what a successful project would look like.
  • Well-scoped: the TAs have to believe it can be successfully completed during the semester by an appropriate team of students.
  • Well-paced: you should have concrete milestones and checkpoints with your mentor TA throughout the semester.

If your proposal is accepted you will serve as a mentor for your project. This means you'll be responsible for your project and the rest of your team. Other students will be able to select your project like any other and we will assign you an appropriate project team.

Student project proposals should be sent to cs1320headtas@lists.brown.edu as early as possible and no later than the second class. Project proposals should include a paragraph pitching your project to students.

Different Tracks


  • The concentrator track will teach students everything they need to know to program a practical and workable web or mobile application. It starts with HTML, covers JavaScript in the front end, various back end technologies, databases, as well as security, scaling and testing issues. Students in this track can expect to do significant programming (mostly in JavaScript) on their assignments and in their final project.
  • If you have not taken CS32, it is completely acceptable to take the concentrator track. Students who have taken CS32 will have had experience in working on large-scale, open-ended projects. Such experience is not a prerequisite for the course. However, students should bear in mind that the concentrator track of CS132 may be an intense experience, especially for students without previous web background. Expect assignments to take upwards of 5-10 hours to complete.


  • The "Designers" track is for students with a design background that would like to apply that background to creating web and mobile applications. Students in this track are expected to be familiar with various design tools and have some background in HTML or web design. Designers will be expected to take the lead role in the user interface design for their final project.
  • The "Designers" track does involve some programming, but to a much smaller degree than the concentrator track. Assignments in this track will let students show off their design expertise rather than their programming skills.


  • Students taking CS132 for capstone credit must take the concentrator track. In addition, they are expected either to propose and guide a project or to act as the leader of their project team (or both).

Who should take CS132's Concentrator Track?

CS132's concentrator track is appropriate for any student who has completed an intro level CS course (CS15, CS17, CS19) or has equivalent programming experience. Students should be comfortable with basic programming concepts.

Computer Science concentrators (or potential concentrators) are highly encouraged to take the concentrator track; a student who has taken CS15/17/19 has the required rigorous programming background to succeed in that track. First year students who have taken CS15/17/19 or equivalent are welcome to register for the course.

CS33 (Introduction to Computer Systems) and CS32 (Introduction to Software Engineering) are listed on CAB as recommended courses. Having taken either of these courses certainly will make the material easier, but they are by no means necessary for students to succeed in CS132's concentrator track.

Students who wish to take CS132 as a capstone course must take CS132 through the concentrator track

If you are still unsure about which track of the course is right for you contact the TAs: cs1320tas@lists.brown.edu

Who should take CS132's Design Track?

CS132's design track is appropriate for students with a prior design background. Students are expected to have an understanding of a design software of their choice. Students will learn how to apply their preexisting design knowledge to web design.

The design track is most appropriate for non-concentrators with design experience, as well as most RISD students.

If you are still unsure about which track of the course is right for you contact the TAs: cs1320tas@lists.brown.edu

Other Information

The first class will be held in MacMillan 117 at 10am to 10:50am on Wednesday the 24th, 2018.

Please let us know if you have any other questions we can help address! The TAs can always be contacted by sending an email to cs1320tas@lists.brown.edu