Say a job posting says requires javascript (1 year), and I have little/no experience in javascript. Is it worth it to study it for the interview? Assuming they don't have a coding test this is just to answer basic questions.

  • One year of javascript doesn't actually represent that much knowledge, to be honest. If you took some crash courses, familiarized yourself with NPM, and tried out one or two frameworks, you would definitely have your bases covered. You could probably do that in a week or two. Jan 4 at 17:06
  • "Javascript" is an insanely wide scope. It is both front end and backend (NodeJS), as well as all the frameworks. Something like ReactJS and VueJS are COMPLETELY different things and have a completely different paradigm, never mind common syntax. We're not even talking about higher level models like MVC, and that'll cross the JS boundary into server-side code, which can ALSO be JS now...
    – Nelson
    Jan 8 at 1:21

1 Answer 1


I'm going to give two contradictory answers:

Portraying yourself as having a Skill which you don't have, for a role that you are insufficiently qualified for is a great way to burn bridges in an industry and tarnish your reputation...

That is the Official answer.

Now, the more nuanced answer.

Some 'requirements' are put on Job interviews as either nice-to-haves or as a way to filter out candidates.

So, for example, if it's a Sysadmin role - where 90% of the job isn't Javascript - then reading about it, and getting a base understanding enough so that when you encounter the 10% that the role does require (I should point out - I'm plucking the numbers from thin air), then you at least have some basis to start learning.

Furthermore - Where there are similar technologies or similar concepts - you can be a little more 'Aggressive' with the fudging. So for example, I've got quite a bit of familiarity with writing SQL queries - if a Role came up where KQL or other SQL-Like languages were used, I'd swat up a bit on the key differences and some common scenarios (the ones a recruiter might like to ask to trip a candidate up) and then use my transferable skills to try and cover up the rest.

In reality, whenever I go Job hunting (which isn't very often, but I did do so recently) I would spend, on average, about 1 hour or so researching the Companies that I got to the Interview stage with - who they were, who their clients were, what their main line of business was etc. what technologies they used... And if there was a technology in their Tech Stack that I was unfamiliar with, I'd read up on that too - I wouldn't say I had experience - I'd say: 'Although, I don't have direct experience with that technology, I have this understanding and I have these transferable skills'

In short - depending on how critical or not the requirement is to the role (and usually 1 year of experience means you know what it is and you don't look like a Deer in Headlights when exposed to it), this can be a viable strategy, I wouldn't represent myself as having years of experience (that's lying) but I would draw on my related experience.

  • 2
    If you have decades of experience in other scripting programming languages, and you accept that JavaScript is at it's core a scripting programming language, but don't or have not used JavaScript significantly during your career. It's safe to say you can transfer your considerable knowledge as a programmer with decades of scripting programming language experience relatively fast to understanding JavaScript. However, JavaScript is more than just a scripting language, there is a massive amount of knowledge that might need to know. In the end, as this answer suggests, it really depends.
    – Donald
    Jan 4 at 18:31
  • @Donald though a job requiring "1 year" of JavaScript suggests that one wouldn't need vast amounts JavaScript specific knowledge.
    – Questor
    Jan 5 at 17:02
  • @Questor - I was speaking more generally, I understand the author has nowhere near that amount domain knowledge, which is the reason they should be careful about their own sanity of overselling their capability to learn a new knowledge set quickly.
    – Donald
    Jan 5 at 17:05

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