Cloud Engineering for Python Developers

Become familiar with AWS' foundational services and workflow - writing, deploying, monitoring, and updating applications on AWS.

This is a hands-on course for intermediate Python developers.

Course Overview

The course includes

  • 12 live lectures and Q&A (MWF from 8:00-9:00 AM MDT)

  • Weekly live TA office hours (possibly more; TBD)

  • Lifetime access to

    • recorded lectures and Q&A sessions

    • self-paced video lessons, labs, and articles and any improvements made over time

    • the course project codebase

    • free enrollment in all future cohorts

    • private Discord server with your cohort (TA's and instructors can't commit to a response SLA when a cohort isn't in session; TBD - possibly all cohorts could be in one server)

  • Certificate of completion after successfully deploying the course project and passing it off

  • (Optional ) opportunity to complete a <3-week, self-directed, solo- or group project and to present at a demo day with industry professionals

  • Refund within first week; just message Eric (course is 5 weeks long + optional project)

$500 USD

Registration closes August 1, 2024 - Or when 15 seats are filled

Learning Outcomes

Become an intermediate cloud engineer with a foundation you can build on to learn specialized, advanced areas of AWS or other cloud providers.

  • AWS account management

    • Set up an AWS account in an advanced way to safely grant access to code and collaborators

    • Manage permissions with IAM, following the principle of least privileges

    • Calculate and manage the cost of applications on AWS

  • Cloud-native software design

    • Become comfortable with the AWS console, SDK, and CLI

    • Learn best practices for authoring "cloud-native" applications by writing a REST API

    • Become comfortable writing and testing scripts using the AWS Python SDK (boto3)

    • Minimize vendor lock-in

  • Deployment and "serverless" cloud development

    • Deploy the REST API to AWS using AWS Lambda and AWS API Gateway

    • Iterate quickly by speeding up deployments and developing locally

  • Fundamentals of observability

    • Track logs and metrics for the application

    • Set up alerts to notify you of failures

    • Diagnose root cause of errors and identify performance bottlenecks

  • General cloud skills

    • Understand how most services in AWS are used such that you feel confident learning new services

    • Feel comfortable exploring and utilizing other clouds. The concepts taught transfer well.


Week 1: Advanced AWS account setup. Intro to permissions and the AWS SDK

Set up your AWS account. Create an isolated AWS account just for this course. Write and test a script with the AWS SDK.

Week 2: Write a cloud-native REST API

Review FastAPI. Locally develop and test a FastAPI app that does CRUD operations on S3, making use of OpenAI's endpoints. Implement the principles of the 12-factor app and RESTful conventions.

Weeks 3 and 4.5: Serverless deployments

Deploy the FastAPI app to AWS Lambda and expose/secure it with API Gateway. Iterate quickly by speeding up deployments and developing locally.

Weeks 4.5 and 5: Foundations of observability

Capture logs and metrics from our FastAPI. Create alerts from this data to notify when problems arise. Set up a workflow to diagnose errors and identify performance bottlenecks.

Earn the certificate after successfully completing and deploying the project to this point.

(Optional) Weeks 6, 7, 8: Self-directed solo- or group project

Plan and build a project that makes use of AWS. Self organize a group or work solo. This is a chance to collaborate with motivated partners at a similar level to you and build something you personally care about.

TBD: will see if TA's can continue to provide office hours during this portion. Looking into pairing groups with a mentor, but not confirmed.

(Optional) End of week 8: Demo day

Present on your course project and hold Q&A with an audience of professionals across the industry.


This course does not cover

  • Infrastructure as Code

  • Container orchestration

  • DNS and HTTPS

  • In-depth auth, e.g. OAuth 2.0

  • Advanced CI/CD

  • Networking on AWS

These concepts go beyond intermediate level.

We consider the contents of this course to be prerequisites for these advanced topics and hope to lead a follow-up course covering them in the future.

In office hours and at the end of lectures, questions on any topic are encouraged.

You are more than welcome to ask about these and other topics, provided other students are getting the help they need on the official course material.

Course Delivery

  • Live lectures and Q&A over Zoom. MWF from 8-9 AM MDT

  • Homework: Complete 2-4 hours of async videos, labs, and readings before each lecture. Access to all released materials is available with in a course portal.

  • Lectures will be recorded and posted within 8 hours on the course web portal. Live attendance is optional but strongly encouraged.

  • Chat with TAs, classmates, and instructors on Discord. TAs and instructors will commit to be responsive during certain hours.

  • TAs will hold office hours in voice channels on Discord. TBD on exact hours.


Eric Riddoch

ML Platform Tech Lead @ BENlabs

  • 6 years building on AWS (Analytics, Data Engineering, MLOps)

  • Highly-rated Udemy instructor (course here)

  • Creator of ML and data engineering systems handling 2-4 million requests/day and many open-source projects

Built cutting-edge ML Platforms on AWS and presented at Netflix

Authored a bestselling, highest-rated Udemy course

See you in June!

Note: need-based scholarships may be available. We will not be sure, by how much, or how many until we draw nearer to the start date and have finalized TA hours. There is a place to explain your situation in the application survey.

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