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Build Course Tracker Using Ruby On Rails

Step by step tutorial for building Course Tracker using Ruby on Rails

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Most of the developers do take online courses across various platforms like Udemy, Coursera, Edx, etc... In this post, I will explain how to build a basic course tracker application using Ruby on Rails, which can help to track the progress of your courses.

fullpage.png

For this tutorial, I will be using

  • Ruby 2.6.3
  • Rails 5.2.6
  • Bootstrap 5
  • SQLite Database

But this step-by-step tutorial should work for the latest Ruby & Rails versions as well.

Index:

Create a project

rails new course-tracker

This command will create a project course-tracker with the following structure.

cd course-tracker/
├── Gemfile
├── Gemfile.lock
├── README.md
├── Rakefile
├── app
├── bin
├── config
├── config.ru
├── db
├── lib
├── log
├── package.json
├── public
├── storage
├── test
├── tmp
└── vendor

11 directories, 6 files

Start server

  • Run rails server or rails s (shortcut) to start the server and visit http://localhost:3000 in your browser. If there are no errors you will see the following screen.

rails-start-server

Create Model, Controller and Views

Let's create Course Model and corresponding Controller using rails scaffold.

A scaffold in Rails is a full set of model, database migration for that model, a controller to manipulate it, views to view and manipulate the data, and a test suite for each of the above. Our Course model will have following fields

  • title - string
  • image_url - string
  • url - string
  • status - string
  • started - datetime
  • completed - datetime
rails g scaffold Course title:string image_url:string url:string status:string started:datetime completed:datetime

This will generate the following files with Course Model, Views & Controller.

      invoke  active_record
      create    db/migrate/20210527131258_create_courses.rb
      create    app/models/course.rb
      invoke    test_unit
      create      test/models/course_test.rb
      create      test/fixtures/courses.yml
      invoke  resource_route
       route    resources :courses
      invoke  scaffold_controller
      create    app/controllers/courses_controller.rb
      invoke    erb
      create      app/views/courses
      create      app/views/courses/index.html.erb
      create      app/views/courses/edit.html.erb
      create      app/views/courses/show.html.erb
      create      app/views/courses/new.html.erb
      create      app/views/courses/_form.html.erb
      invoke    test_unit
      create      test/controllers/courses_controller_test.rb
      create      test/system/courses_test.rb
      invoke    helper
      create      app/helpers/courses_helper.rb
      invoke      test_unit
      invoke    jbuilder
      create      app/views/courses/index.json.jbuilder
      create      app/views/courses/show.json.jbuilder
      create      app/views/courses/_course.json.jbuilder
      invoke  assets
      invoke    coffee
      create      app/assets/javascripts/courses.coffee
      invoke    scss
      create      app/assets/stylesheets/courses.scss
      invoke  scss
      create    app/assets/stylesheets/scaffolds.scss

Database Migration

  • Scaffold command also generated database migration for creating Course table at db/migrate/20210527131258_create_courses.rb
class CreateCourses < ActiveRecord::Migration[5.2]
  def change
    create_table :courses do |t|
      t.string :title
      t.string :image_url
      t.string :url
      t.string :status
      t.datetime :started
      t.datetime :completed

      t.timestamps
    end
  end
end
  • Let's execute database migration using rails db:migrate command.
➜  course-tracker git:(master) ✗ rails db:migrate
== 20210527131258 CreateCourses: migrating ====================================
-- create_table(:courses)
   -> 0.0008s
== 20210527131258 CreateCourses: migrated (0.0008s) ===========================

Change Application Root

  • Now our migration is completed. Lets point our application home page to Course#Index page.
  • Update config/routes.rb to point root to course controller index action.
Rails.application.routes.draw do
  resources :courses
  root 'courses#index'
end

Integrate Bootstrap

  • Import bootstrap css and dependent js files in app/views/layouts/application.html.erb
<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
  <head>
    <%= csrf_meta_tags %>
    <%= csp_meta_tag %>

    <%= stylesheet_link_tag    'application', media: 'all', 'data-turbolinks-track': 'reload' %>
    <%= javascript_include_tag 'application', 'data-turbolinks-track': 'reload' %>

    <!-- Required meta tags -->
    <meta charset="utf-8">
    <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1">

    <!-- Bootstrap CSS -->
    <link href="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/bootstrap@5.0.1/dist/css/bootstrap.min.css" rel="stylesheet" integrity="sha384-+0n0xVW2eSR5OomGNYDnhzAbDsOXxcvSN1TPprVMTNDbiYZCxYbOOl7+AMvyTG2x" crossorigin="anonymous">

    <title>Course Tracker</title>

  </head>

  <body>
    <div class="container">
     <%= yield %>
    </div>
    <!-- Option 1: Bootstrap Bundle with Popper -->
    <script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/bootstrap@5.0.1/dist/js/bootstrap.bundle.min.js" integrity="sha384-gtEjrD/SeCtmISkJkNUaaKMoLD0//ElJ19smozuHV6z3Iehds+3Ulb9Bn9Plx0x4" crossorigin="anonymous"></script>
  </body>
</html>

Add Navigation Bar

  • Let's add a navigation bar to all pages. Adding this in the application layout will take care of loading navigation bar in all web pages.

  • create file app/views/layouts/_navbar.html.erb with the following html content.

<nav class="navbar navbar-expand-lg navbar-dark bg-primary">
  <div class="container-fluid">
    <a class="navbar-brand" href="/">Course Tracker</a>
    <button class="navbar-toggler" type="button" data-bs-toggle="collapse" data-bs-target="#navbarNavAltMarkup" aria-controls="navbarNavAltMarkup" aria-expanded="false" aria-label="Toggle navigation">
      <span class="navbar-toggler-icon"></span>
    </button>
    <div class="collapse navbar-collapse" id="navbarNavAltMarkup">
      <div class="navbar-nav">
        <a class="nav-link active" aria-current="page" href="/courses">Courses</a>
      </div>
    </div>
  </div>
</nav>
  • Now render this navbar in app/views/layouts/application.html.erb . Add <%= render 'layouts/navbar' %> in application layout <body> as follows.
<body>
    <%= render 'layouts/navbar' %>
    <div class="container">
     <%= yield %>
    </div>
    ..
    ..
</body>

Add Course status Select option

We have status field in Course Model. Now we want this to have only 3 values for this.

  • Upcoming - use this status if u are yet to start the course and it is on your wishlist.
  • In Progress - use this status if u are currently doing the course.
  • Completed - use this status if u already completed the course.

Open app/views/courses/_form.html.erb and update status field to the following.

  <div class="field">
    <%= form.label :status %>
    <%= form.select :status , ['Upcoming','In Progress','Completed']%>
  </div>

After adding this your create form will look like this http://localhost:3000/courses/new

create-course.png

Styling Course Forms

Now we will add styling to our Course Index, Create, Edit forms.

1. Add Styles to Edit/Create Form

  • Change app/views/courses/_form.html.erb to the following html.
<%= form_with(model: course, local: true) do |form| %>
  <% if course.errors.any? %>
    <div id="error_explanation">
      <h2><%= pluralize(course.errors.count, "error") %> prohibited this course from being saved:</h2>

      <ul>
      <% course.errors.full_messages.each do |message| %>
        <li><%= message %></li>
      <% end %>
      </ul>
    </div>
  <% end %>

  <div class="field">
    <%= form.label :title %>
    <%= form.text_field :title, class: "form-control" %>
  </div>

  <div class="field">
    <%= form.label :image_url %>
    <%= form.text_field :image_url, class: "form-control" %>
  </div>

  <div class="field">
    <%= form.label :url %>
    <%= form.text_field :url, class: "form-control" %>
  </div>

  <div class="field">
    <%= form.label :status %>
    <%= form.select :status , ['Upcoming','In Progress','Completed'], class: "form-select"%>
  </div>

  <div class="field">
    <%= form.label :started %>
    <%= form.datetime_select :started, class: "form-control" %>
  </div>

  <div class="field">
    <%= form.label :completed %>
    <%= form.datetime_select :completed, class: "form-control" %>
  </div>

  <div class="actions">
    <%= form.submit 'Submit', class: "btn btn-primary"  %>
  </div>
<% end %>
  • Change app/views/courses/edit.html.erb to the following html.
<h1>Edit Course</h1>

<%= render 'form', course: @course %>

<br/>
<%= link_to 'Show', @course , class: "btn btn-primary active" %> 
<%= link_to 'Back', courses_path , class: "btn btn-primary active" %>

After styling, Edit Course Form Looks like this.

edit-course.png

2. Add Styles to Show Form

  • Add can_show_started? and can_show_completed? methods in app/models/course.rb. These methods will be useful to show started and completed timestamps based on the status.
class Course < ApplicationRecord

    def can_show_started?
        self.status.eql?("In Progress") || self.status.eql?("Completed")
    end

    def can_show_completed?
        self.status.eql?("Completed")
    end
end
  • Change app/views/courses/show.html.erb to the following html.
<p id="notice"><%= notice %></p>

<br/> <br/>

<div class="card w-50">
  <div class="card-header">
    <h3> <%= @course.title %> <h3>
  </div>
  <div class="card-body">
    <img src="<%= @course.image_url %>"/>

    <h5 class="card-title"><strong>Status : </strong> <%= @course.status %></h5>

    <% if @course.can_show_started? %>
      <h5 class="card-title"><strong>Started : </strong><%= @course.started %></h5>
    <% end %>

    <% if @course.can_show_completed? %>
      <h5 class="card-title"><strong>Completed : </strong><%= @course.completed %></h5>
    <% end %>

    <a href="<%= @course.url %>" class="btn btn-primary active">Go To Course</a>
  </div>
</div>

<br/> <br/>
<%= link_to 'Edit', edit_course_path(@course) , class: "btn btn-primary active"%>
<%= link_to 'Back', courses_path , class: "btn btn-primary active"%>

After styling, Show Course Form Looks like this.

show-course.png

3. Add Styles to the courses List page

  • Now we reached the final stage of our project. We just need to style our Home page. i.e Courses Listing Page.

  • Create new file app/views/courses/_card_section_title.html.erb with the following html.

<div class="row">
    <div class="card border-light">
      <div class="card-body">
        <h3 class="card-title text-primary"><%= section %></h3>
      </div>
    </div>
</div>
<br/>
  • Create new file app/views/courses/_course_cards.html.erb with the following html.
<div class="row row-cols-1 row-cols-md-4 g-4">
  <% courses.each do |course| %>
    <div class="card border-dark">
      <img src="<%= course.image_url %>" class="card-img-top" alt="<%= course.title %>">
      <div class="card-body">
        <h5 class="card-title"><a href="<%= course.url%>"><%= course.title %></a></h5>
      </div>
      <ul class="list-group list-group-flush">
        <h4 class="list-group-item"><strong><%= course.status %><strong></h4>
        <% if course.can_show_started? %>
          <li class="list-group-item"><strong>Started : </strong><%= course.started.strftime('%d-%b-%Y') %></li>
        <% end %>

        <% if course.can_show_completed? %>
          <li class="list-group-item"><strong>Completed : </strong><%= course.completed.strftime('%d-%b-%Y') %></li>
        <% end %>
      </ul>
      <div class="card-body">
        <%= link_to 'Show', course, class: "card-link" %>
        <%= link_to 'Edit', edit_course_path(course) , class: "card-link"%>
        <%= link_to 'Delete', course, method: :delete, data: { confirm: 'Are you sure?' }, class: "card-link" %>

      </div>
    </div>
  <% end %>
</div>

<br/>
  • Update app/controllers/courses_controller.rb to return Courses filtered by status
  def index
    @upcoming_courses = Course.all.select {|c| c.status.eql?("Upcoming")}
    @completed_courses = Course.all.select {|c| c.status.eql?("Completed")}
    @inprogress_courses = Course.all.select {|c| c.status.eql?("In Progress")}
  end
  • Update file app/views/courses/index.html.erb to the following html.
<p id="notice"><%= notice %></p>

<% if @upcoming_courses.length > 0 %>
  <%= render 'courses/card_section_title', section: "Upcoming Courses" %>
  <%= render 'courses/course_cards', courses: @upcoming_courses %>
<% end %>

<% if @inprogress_courses.length > 0 %>
  <%= render 'courses/card_section_title', section: "Inprogress Courses" %>
  <%= render 'courses/course_cards', courses: @inprogress_courses %>
<% end %>

<% if @completed_courses.length > 0 %>
  <%= render 'courses/card_section_title', section: "Completed Courses" %>
  <%= render 'courses/course_cards', courses: @completed_courses %>
<% end %>


<br>

<%= link_to 'New Course', new_course_path , class: "btn btn-primary active"%>
  • Add Create New Course link in navigation bar app/views/layouts/_navbar.html.erb
<nav class="navbar navbar-expand-lg  navbar-dark bg-primary">
  <div class="container-fluid">
    <a class="navbar-brand" href="/">Course Tracker</a>
    <button class="navbar-toggler" type="button" data-bs-toggle="collapse" data-bs-target="#navbarNavAltMarkup" aria-controls="navbarNavAltMarkup" aria-expanded="false" aria-label="Toggle navigation">
      <span class="navbar-toggler-icon"></span>
    </button>
    <div class="collapse navbar-collapse" id="navbarNavAltMarkup">
      <div class="navbar-nav">
        <a class="nav-link active" aria-current="page" href="/courses">Courses</a>
        <a class="nav-link active" aria-current="page" href="/courses/new">New Course</a>
      </div>
    </div>
  </div>
</nav>
  • After Styling Courses Index Page, It finally looks like this :)

fullpage.png

This is a long tutorial to follow. Hope you enjoyed this ...!!

Find out the complete code in Github here. If you like this, please give star for this Github repository.


Thank you for reading

Hope you find these resources useful. If you like what you read and want to see more about system design, microservices, and other technology-related stuff... You can follow me on


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