APIs and Web Scraping in Python

Start collecting your own data! Learn how to use Python and Beautiful Soup to scrape the web and download data from APIs in this interactive web scraping course.

Why learn web scraping?

A data analyst or data scientist doesn’t always get data handed to them in a CSV or via an easily accessible database. Sometimes, you’ve got to go out and get the data you need.

The ability to collect unique data sets can really set you apart from the pack, and being able to access APIs and scrape the web for new data stories is the best way to get data nobody else is working with.

Start setting yourself apart from the pack by signing up for a free account and diving into our APIs and Web Scraping course right now.

What’s in this APIs and web scraping course?

The course begins with several lessons about accessing and using data from APIs. Among other things, you’ll learn to use Python to:

  • Create and process API requests
  • Deal with data in the JSON format using Python and pandas
  • Deal with pagination
  • Handle more advanced requests like POST requests, PUT/PATCH requests, DELETE requests, etc

You’ll apply your new API skills to a challenge by working with the reddit API to do some real-world data analysis.

From there, the course moves into web scraping using Python and Beautiful Soup and the requests library. Among other things, you’ll learn how to:

  • Request and download a website’s HTML content
  • Retrieve specific elements from the page with Beautiful Soup
  • Use Find All, IDs, and Classes to extract specific parts of a page
  • Use CSS selectors, including nested CSS selectors

While each API and each web page has its own unique quirks, by the end of this course you’ll be comfortable with extracting data via APIs or via web scraping.

Does this APIs and web scraping course have prerequisites?

This course does assume that you already have some familiarity with the basics of using Python for data science, including using the pandas library.

But if you don’t have that, don’t worry! We offer a carefully-designed course sequence that’ll help you learn Python from scratch and build the skills you’ll need to succeed in this course. Start here, in our introductory Python course.

On Dataquest, you learn at your own pace!

Dataquest’s interactive courses can be completed as quickly or as slowly as you like. We don’t teach with videos, so there’s no limit to how quickly you could complete the course.

On Dataquest, you’ll be challenged to write and run real code on virtually every screen. How long you take will depend on factors like how many attempts it takes to got to the correct code (but don’t worry, we’ve got hints, an answer key, and community assistants ready to help if you get stuck!)

In practice, how long this web scraping course takes will depend on how much time you have each week to dedicate to it. Most learners should expect to spend at least a few weeks of part-time study in this course, but every learner is different.

Sign up for a free account to try a lesson — this will help you get an idea of how long it takes you to move through the content.

Learn by doing with Dataquest!

In all of Dataquest’s Python courses:

  • You’ll write and run real code
  • You’ll analyze real data
  • You’ll build read data science projects
  • You’ll work at your own pace
  • All you need is a web browser!
  • Best of all, it’s totally free to get started!

APIs and Web Scraping in Python Lessons List


Working with APIs

Learn the basics of accessing and pulling data from APIs in R.

Intermediate APIs

Learn to work with a more complex API that involves authentication and POST requests.

Working with the Reddit API

Practice making requests to an API that requires authentication.

Web Scraping

Learn how to extract data from Web pages.

Frequently asked questions about this web scraping course:

How long does the course take?

On Dataquest, you can learn at your own pace. There’s no set course schedule you need to worry about.

Different learners work at different paces, but a typical learner might finish this course in a few weeks to a month, depending on how much time they were able to dedicate to it.

Where are the videos?

We don’t teach with videos. We think the best way to learn programming is to actually write code, not watch someone else write code.

Read more about the science behind our hands-on learning approach.

Can I try it for free?

Yes, and you should! Sign up for a free account and get started right now, right in your browser!

What is this web scraping course useful for?

There’s a huge amount of data out there, but most of it isn’t available in easy-to-analyze CSV files.

Being able to collect your own data by scraping it from websites using BeautifulSoup or downloading it via API will open up a world of new analysis possibilities.

Most data positions will require you to be able to work with APIs and some may also require web scraping. These techniques can also be very helpful for getting a job — using web scraping to grab a unique data set to analyze can really help make a job application stand out.