Learn Web3 skills for free and build real projects in 5 months [Full Guide + PDF]

Brandon Stover
Brandon Stover
Founder of Plato University
July 20, 2022
min read

The concept of Web3 is overtaking all industries. It’s not just a buzzword… billions are being poured into related web3 technology. It’s transforming every part of our world from education to economics to climate change.

This learning guide has the exact steps that you should take if you want to learn how to create, build, and master Web3 in 2022 and become more knowledgeable about Web3 than 99% of the population.

It will teach you everything you need to know to get up to speed on web3 including concepts like Blockchain, Cryptocurrencies (like Ethereum & Bitcoin), Smart Contracts, DApps, DAOs, NFTs, the Metaverse, and more.

If you're a complete beginner, you call yourself a non-techy, or you're curious about this industry, then this post is for you.

If you're an established developer, you will also find some useful links in here as I list the best free resources to level-up your skills and build on the blockchain.

If you find this post too long, skip over and start from Step by Step Web3 Learning Guide section. You’ll hurt my feelings… so know that you'll have to live with that guilt.

Ok, you’re still here. Great! I like you already. Let’s keep going…

Using only free online courses, tutorials, and tools, you can gain a valuable skill that will allow you to be employed in a great industry that is rewarding, challenging, and that is changing the world we live in.

The best part? You don’t need a college degree or an expensive bootcamp. And you definitely don't need to give away part of your income once you get hired, which some new schools are doing via something called an ISA (Income Sharing Agreement). This sounds great until you have to start giving away some of your paychecks.

Important note: This post may seem like it's just a step-by-step guide of what to do to become a developer. But if you look more closely, it's also a strategy you can apply to any sort of learning.

Also... no pressure, but I don't want you getting mad at me for not telling you that if you want a downloadable version, you can sign up below and I'll email you a full PDF version of this guide that includes the month-by-month checklist!

Download PDF Guide (With Checklist) For Free

No pressure, but I don't want you getting mad at me for not telling you that if you want a downloadable version, you can click the button below to sign up on Plato University and get access to PDF version of this guide that includes the month by month checklist!

Sign Up

Why learn about Web3?

This learning guide is not here to add to all the hype of web3. We can all agree there's too much of that these days.

Instead, this learning guide is designed to give you a deep understanding of Web3, the underlying technologies, and their applications. Then, we will take this one step further by having you actually learn by doing, creating your own NFT’s, DAO’s, or blockchain applications. (Don’t worry, you will learn what all that means in no time.)

What is clear about Web3 is that there are A LOT of companies, top investors, and VCs jumping head-first into Web3 technologies right now. That means there are already tons of Web3 jobs and likely to be a lot more in the future.

Before we get into the steps you can take to become a web3 expert, we must first dive into why you would want to go down this path.

  • You want to be working in an industry where there is a high demand for the skill and many possibilities to be in important roles at the top of the food chain.
  • You love being location independent. You want a skill that allows you to go anywhere in the world and still be able to find a job easily. If you decide to move to Iceland tomorrow, you want to make sure that you won’t have issues finding a job.
  • You’ve noticed the difference between 2000 and 2022 and how much technological progress we have made in only ~20 years. You want to be at the forefront of an industry that is impacting the world.
  • You think change is good and that learning should never stop. So why not do something new?

Still with me? I haven’t scared you off? Ok, we shall keep going then…

IMPORTANT POINT. READ IT: The first 2 months will feel like you are climbing an insurmountable mountain. Every tutorial, course or lesson you do will make you feel like you are the only person in the world that doesn’t know this stuff.

This is called Impostor Syndrome. The feeling of complete self-doubt.

Stay strong. You will get there and you will have more and more ‘AHA!’ moments as time progresses. Rest assured, we all feel this way when we learn something new. This is good. This is how you know you are stretching your boundaries. It's kind of like doing a really tough workout and your muscles are sore for the next couple days. You know you're pushing yourself and growing when you feel uncomfortable.

What you will learn at the end of this is that being a master in a skill isn’t just memorizing a whole bunch of facts. It’s about learning how to solve problems using all of the tools that are available to you. It’s about being a problem solver and getting from a state of not knowing, to knowing. This guide will help you get those skills.

Finally, just as the Web3 ecosystem evolves, this learning plan will also constantly evolve and be updated with new lectures and resources as well so that you can stay on the cutting edge of what is already a cutting edge field.

Who is this learning guide for?

  • Anyone, beginner or otherwise, who wants an efficient crash course on Web3 technology and concepts
  • Passionate problem solvers who want to learn the tools of the future
  • NFT and cryptocurrency enthusiasts that want to learn the other facets of Web3
  • Programmers and developers who want to start building on the blockchain

Who are you and why should I listen to you?

Wow, you’re direct, but I guess that’s a fair question.

First off, I’m the Founder of Plato University, where you can get a personalized education built around your passions, highly in-demand, real world skills, and the impact you want to make.

Being a poor kid from the trailer park living in a broken home, I know the power of education to transform one's life. But after chasing education's promise of a golden ticket, I graduated with a degree in a career I was not passionate about or felt would make a real difference in the world. Ultimately I felt I had no meaning, impact, or sense of purpose in his life.

Since then, I’ve surrounded myself with and learned from dozens of social entrepreneurs making a difference in the world, built half a decade of experience as a designer, marketer, and educator for mission driven companies, and built educational programs that have reached over 80,000 people.

But like you I started from zero. From nothing. Yes I had some formal college education, but that was in architecture. The other skills I have built have come from thousands of hours of self-taught, self directed learning.

This includes the Web3 space. After selling my first piece of real estate, I was fortunate enough to invest in crypto like Bitcoin and Ethereum. I’m also one of the first 100 genesis members of the ED3 Educators DAO. I’ve also spent years doing 3D modeling virtual spaces in architecture before the Metaverse was a thing.

So yes, I have been where you are and I know what it takes. When I was getting started, I wished there was something like this that outlined things for me step by step. Now, I've become obsessed with the art of learning and helping you master skills you can apply in the real world. I want to teach skills that you can use to create real change, solve major global issues, and find real fulfillment in your life/

How to use this learning guide

Everything at Plato University is based on Mastery. For this reason we design all of our courses into bite sized chunks that build on each other. You master each small chunk by applying what you have learned before moving on to the next. By the end of the course you will have mastered the entire skill and created something to show for it.

However, we believe that there is a ton of great content out there on various subjects. Although we would like to have original courses on all material, it’s just not possible. Nor are we always the best ones to teach something. This is why we create learning plans, scaffold pathways for you to navigate learning materials to master skills.

So in order to extend the concept of mastery to these learning resources we can’t control, we recommend approaching them in this way for the most optimal learning:

  • Before you get started with any of these learning resources, make sure you take our How to Learn Anything course which will teach you the science based tools of pro learners to become smarter, remember more, and master any hard skills. This will ensure you are truly learning over the course of the next 5 months instead of just using your short-term memory.
  • Create a learning habit, where you learn 20-30 minutes of original content everyday and then spend up to 60 minutes applying the skill. This makes learning manageable and easy to fit in your schedule. But you’ll also realize it improves the quality of your learning.
  • Always learn, then apply. We are not here to just take in knowledge. We are here to make real change in our lives. This only happens if you apply what you learn.
  • Only learn what you’re interested in. There is no exam. No one tells you what you have to learn. If you’re only interested in NFT’s then learn that part, skip the rest. If you want to master the entire Web ecosystem, then follow this learning plan in its entirety.

Download PDF Guide (With Checklist) For Free

No pressure, but I don't want you getting mad at me for not telling you that if you want a downloadable version, you can click the button below to sign up on Plato University and get access to PDF version of this guide that includes the month by month checklist!

Sign Up

Step by Step Web3 Learning Guide

We will be focusing on the most usable and in-demand skills of Web3 in 2022. Time is important to you and you want to be building as soon as possible and learn the most modern skills.

Before you get started with any of these learning resources, make sure you take our How to Learn Anything course which will teach you the science based tools of pro learners to become smarter, remember more, and master any hard skills. This will ensure you are truly learning over the course of the next 5 months instead of just using your short-term memory.

(Yes I just repeated that advice from the last section. Why? Because it's important!)

Week 1: Crash Course into Web3

This first week we will get up to speed as quickly as possible about the entire landscape of Web3. Each day will focus on getting you briefly familiar with that part of Web3. Then in the following months you will dive deep into each piece individually.

Day 1: What is Web 3.0?

  1. Start by watching this 8 minute video explaining what Web 1.0, Web 2.0, and Web 3.0 is.
  2. Then read this brief article to further understand their differences. 
  3. Read this and begin to analyze why web 3 is important and its limitations.
  4. Finally, Start exploring some of the different parts of Web3 in this easy to consume intro to Web 3.0.
  5. Want to go deeper? Take a Web3 field trip.

Day 2: Introduction to NFT’s (Non-Fungible Token)

  1. Start by watching this 11 minute video and this 17 minute video explaining what NFT is and why they are all the hype.
  2. Finally, Start exploring the world of NFT’s, where to buy them, and how to sell them in this easy to consume intro to NFT’s.

Day 3: Introduction to Cryptocurrencies & DeFi (Decentralized Finance) 

  1. To start understanding Bitcoin vs other cryptocurrencies like Etherum, watch this video on Proof of Work and this video on Proof of Stake
  2. Then read about Bitcoin, Ethereum, and why to invest in crypto.
  3. Next, learn the difference between a cryptocurrency and a token with this short video and this short article.
  4. Understand how these all work in Decentralized Finance with this 16 minute video and this short article. Then dive deeper here.
  5. Finally, Start exploring DeFi and staking crypto in this short interactive intro and this easy to consume intro.

Day 4: Introduction to DAO’s (Decentralized Autonomous Organizations)

  1. Start by watching this 8 minute video
  2. Then dive a little deeper into how they work and why we need them with this article.
  3. Finally, start exploring what a DAO is and how to join one in this intro to DAO’s.

Day 5: Introduction to the Blockchain and Dapp’s (Decentralized Applications)

  1. First, understand what the blockchain is with this video and this short article.
  2. Watch this video and learn the difference between Layer 1 & Layer 2 on the blockchain.
  3. Now start learning what Decentralized Applications on the blockchain are in this video and dive deeper into their role in Web 3.0 here.

Day 6: Introduction to the Metaverse

  1. Get an overview of the Metaverse with this 11 minute video.
  2. Learn the difference between XR/ AR / VR / MR technologies in this article.
  3. Finally, read this article to become familiar with the tools needed to build in the metaverse.

Month 1: How to Create & Sell NFT’s

Now comes the exciting part, actually building and interacting with Web3. These next 5 months will take you through each facet of Web3 in depth. Each month will focus on one particular facet, such as NFT’s, and provide you with in depth tutorials for you to create something. By the end you will have gained extensive skills in a rapidly growing field.

Using this learning guide you will:

  • Know what it means to be an NFT developer
  • Learn how to create, buy and sell NFTs
  • Build exciting projects using NFTs

Learning Resources:

  1. Refresh your knowledge about NFT’s in the intro to NFT’s article and why NFT’s create value.
  2. Learn the simple process of buying your first NFT.
  3. Now learn how to build your first NFT through Web3 University which has helped over 100,000 students learn about NFT’s and smart contracts for free.
  4. Expand your knowledge a little further and understand the nuances of building NFT’s through the NFT School, a collective of web developers and technology enthusiasts.
  5. Want to get even more proficient? Try building an NFT collection.

Month 2: How to Invest in Crypto & Get Started with DeFi

Alright let’s ramp things up and get you fully onboarded into the world of Decentralized Finance. We’re not here to give investment advice, but we will cover how you can start buying your first crypto coins, how you can stake coins or earn yield on your crypto, and how you could start creating your own tokens or startups around crypto.

Using this learning guide you will:

  • Know what makes crypto valuable 
  • Learn how to create, buy and sell cryptocurrencies
  • Begin the path to going bankless with DeFi

Learning Resources:

  1. Review why to invest in crypto and the easy process of getting your first cryptocurrency.
  2. Review this intro and this intro into Decentralized Finance.  
  3. Consider Ether & Bitcoin & nothing else until you understand why they're valuable. Start with this article, read everything in the archive of crypto money, go through Haseeb’s history of money, and read this book.
  4. Learn the economics behind Bitcoin and watch a few interviews from Micheal Saylor of Bitcoin’s potential. 
  5. Now learn what it means to go bankless, recommended tools, and the bulk of the core concepts you should understand about Crypto and DeFi.
  6. Finally, put your knowledge to use and begin building your own crypto projects. Crypto Startup School will help you build a crypto company. DeFi Academy will help you to build your own tokens on the Ethereum Blockchain.

Month 3: How to Join or Create a DAO

Feeling alone on this journey? Then it’s time to join communities 3.0. Behind all this great technology are people, like you, who are building the future. Let’s learn about Decentralized Autonomous Organizations.

Using this learning guide you will:

  • Know what DAO’s are and the value of contributing to them
  • Learn how to join, contribute, or build your own DAO
  • Use the tools to build your first DAO

Learning Resources:

  1. Review what a DAO is, some of the types of DAO’s that exist, and the pros and cons of building one.
  2. Learn how to find and join a DAO. Then read about how you can best contribute to a DAO with this article and this article.
  3. Ready to create your own? Start with understanding the different parts of the DAO you will need to build with this article, this article, and this article. Now learn how to build your own.

Month 4: How to Become a Web3 Developer and Build Dapps on the Blockchain

For the past few months you have been learning and interacting with all kinds of technology that is powered by the blockchain. If you’re more technical or interested in becoming a developer, here is where you will dive into how to create your own applications, smart contracts, and protocols that run on the blockchain.

Using this learning guide you will:

  • Know what the blockchain is and how it works
  • Learn how to develop and implement blockchain applications
  • Build dozens of projects on the blockchain

Learning Resources:

  1. If you’re not a developer and have no desire to become one, then try this course to learn how to build Web3 applications using no code tools.
  2. Creating Decentralized Applications (Dapps) is going to require some technical knowledge. The famous CS50 — fundamentals for Computer Science — free course issued by Harvard itself will teach you all you need to know to understand the basics of computers and data handling. If you don’t have the technical chops already to become a developer, then now is the time to learn those.
  3. Next, take this specialization in blockchain to understand what it is and how it works. 
  4. Just wanting to understand and create smart contracts? Start with this course from Web3 university and free resources to create your first smart contracts.
  5. Ready to learn how to build everything we already covered like Dapps, NFTs, DAOs, DeFi, and Smart Contracts? Take all the tracks of this extremely comprehensive course.
  6. Learn how to build on different platforms on the blockchain.
  7. Finally, let’s learn by doing and have you apply your development skills. Start with simple projects on Metaschool, Questbook, and Crypto Zombies. Then advance to more complex projects on Build Space and Cadena

Month 5: How to Build in the Metaverse

Ready to be someone who creates the virtual world of our future? Then dive into the skills and tools you will need to build in the Metaverse.

Using this learning guide you will:

  • Know how the metaverse is created
  • Learn how to model and create spaces for the metaverse
  • Build real projects

Learning Resources:

  1. Refresh your knowledge on the difference between XR/ AR / VR / MR technologies in this article.
  2. Take this virtual reality specialization from Coursera to learn the 3D modeling skills required for building in the metaverse. Then dive into some real projects.
  3. Learn some AR technologies.

Want to Get Certified?

If you follow this learning guide, by the end you will have dozens of projects to show your skills to employers or other Web3 creators and builders. However, sometimes a certification can help signal quickly your mastery of a skill. If you’re looking to get certifications in Web3, consider these opportunities:


This learning guide will give you a comprehensive crash course into Web3 in the most efficient way possible. By focusing on the things that matter, it makes learning fun. But it doesn’t end here. Learning never stops. Our first goal is to help you get started creating in Web3 as soon as possible so you keep learning in the real world.

The real growth happens when you start working on real projects with real teams. That’s why I strongly believe that you want your initial ‘study’ period to be as short as possible. And you get to avoid going into debt and increase your time in the best environment for learning: working in teams.

With this learning plan we have built the foundations for which all your other learning can be built on top of. As you begin to expand your knowledge and really master skills, your rate of learning new things will be exponential.

Make 2022 the year that you took a risk, you learned a highly in-demand skill, you were terrified, you had new experiences, and you received new opportunities. Good luck!

Download PDF Guide (With Checklist) For Free

No pressure, but I don't want you getting mad at me for not telling you that if you want a downloadable version, you can click the button below to sign up on Plato University and get access to PDF version of this guide that includes the month by month checklist!

Sign Up