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JavaScript vs JQuery: Difference Between JavaScript and JQuery [Which One Should You Choose?]

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27th Mar, 2020
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JavaScript vs JQuery: Difference Between JavaScript and JQuery [Which One Should You Choose?]

When you begin learning web development, you come to know newer and more interactive options as you move ahead in the learning process. Over a period of time, you reach a stage when optimizations, interactive elements, and other related things start coming to you naturally. No matter why you chose to study web development, you would, sooner than later, realize that the tool that is preferred by most developers globally is JavaScript.

It is also referred to as the language of the internet for the same reason. However, there is another option that isn’t too dissimilar – JQuery. This piece will discuss the continuous confrontation between JavaScript and JQuery, and what this confrontation leads to. 

Both JavaScript and JQuery have been around for quite a few years, though JavaScript came a little earlier. Both are powerful web development tools that serve a somewhat similar purpose, the most important of which is to create dynamic and interactive web pages. They are used to add life to web pages.

This is the reason that often creates confusion. When both are used for the same purpose, then where exactly does the difference lie? Well, there are indeed similarities between the two, but there are differences too. We will take on the JQuery vs JavaScript debate in the coming sections. 

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But, one thing is very clear – you need to have a great understanding of JavaScript to use either of the two scripting languages. When you develop a thorough understanding of JavaScript, you will come to know that JQuery is as lethal, and needs less coding than JavaScript.

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What is JavaScript?

JavaScript is a powerful scripting language that developers use to make web pages more interactive. Along with CSS and HTML, JavaScript is a part of the top three technologies for web development. CSS and HTML are used for structuring web pages and apply look and styling features. On the other hand, JavaScript is used to add dynamism and interactivity to web pages. So, developers use JavaScript to add code for entering events on the web page, such as mouse click, mouse over, etc.

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JavaScript is compatible with all web browsers as it has an integrated JavaScript engine that enables them to identify the scripting language and work with it. This primarily makes it a client-side language. It is the single scripting language that can work as an object-oriented language as well as a procedural one. Primary JavaScript is its procedural form, while advanced JavaScript is its object-oriented version. 

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JavaScript is an independent language and is not associated with Java in any way. You can use JavaScript to create slide shows, fluctuating layouts, carousels, image galleries, and other interactive elements on your web page. In addition to these, you can also use it to create pointer movements, animations, games, 3D graphics, and data-driven applications.

Though it was originally used for client-side browsers, its evolution over the years has allowed developers to use it to provide features and functionality to web servers, server-side databases, and other host software. 

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Read more: Event Bubbling & Event Capturing in Javascript

What is JQuery?

JQuery is a JavaScript library that makes HTML event handling, document traversing, interaction handling, and animation for Ajax more simplified, fast, and efficient. It’s both feature-rich and cross-platform. It is designed for a specific purpose, which is to take care of HTML client-side scripting.

JQuery’s syntax makes the creation of HTML elements, animation, and event listeners an easy task. It is fast, light-weight, and compatible with different types of web browsers. It allows developers to easily use JavaScript on web pages to make them user-friendly and interactive. And it does all this with less coding.

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However, JQuery isn’t a language. It’s instead JavaScript code that is very accurately written. It comes with several integrated features and functions that developers can make use of to easily and efficiently perform so many different tasks. The best thing, it’s great at handling cross-browser problems without requiring too much code.

It can be used to perform so many common tasks that usually require extensive coding. It allows developers to be more productive without needing them to put in too much effort and consume a lot of time in writing several lines of coding. There is no need for developers to be aware of new syntaxes to implement JQuery. This saves the time and effort that goes into writing many lines of odes. 

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Difference between JavaScript and JQuery

1. Basic Difference

The fundamental difference between the two is that one is a scripting language, while the other is not. JavaScript offers you endless possibilities to make web pages more interactive and dynamic, while JQuery has a limited scope. JavaScript was created as an integral element of the web development process.

On the other hand, JQuery was developed to make web development through JavaScript easier and faster.  As we already mentioned, JavaScript is used to write the code for JQuery. Understanding of JavaScript is necessary to learn JQuery. 

2. Features

JavaScript is an essential component in client-side web development. Also, its use in server-side applications is experiencing an exponential rise. JQuery is only used for client-side development. However, it has brought certain new features of JavaScript to the notice of developers.

For example, developers can use JQuery for accomplishing certain tasks on parts of a website, and that too, without having to wait for the entire website to reload. It won’t be wrong to say that JQuery has completely changed how developers previously used JavaScript to write codes. 

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3. Performance

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If you are using Plain JavaScript, you will find it to be faster than JQuery. However, as the logical codes get more complex, JQuery starts to perform better than JavaScript. For complex logic, coding in JavaScript gets too lengthy. This could be one of the reasons why coding in JavaScript underperforms when it comes to complex logic. JQuery is the ideal alternative in such a scenario. 


JQuery is an extension of JavaScript. In that sense, there isn’t any difference between the two. However, when it comes to purpose and functionality, JQuery comes across as a more developer-friendly alternative. And JavaScript can do everything that JQuery can, but vice-versa isn’t true. 

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Arjun Mathur

Blog Author
Arjun is Program marketing manager at UpGrad for the Software development program. Prior to UpGrad, he was a part of the French ride-sharing unicorn "BlaBlaCar" in India. He is a B.Tech in Computers Science from IIT Delhi and loves writing about technology.

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2How do you use JavaScript with CSS?

JavaScript is an interpreted high-level programming language. It is a popular choice for web development because it is lightweight and efficient. Many desktop applications use JavaScript as well. CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is a style sheet language for expressing how a document produced in a markup language should be presented. A style sheet is a set of instructions that tells a web browser how to display an HTML or XML document. JavaScript can be used with CSS in a number of different ways. To set the style of an element, one option is to utilize the style attribute. Another option is to add a class to an element with the class attribute, then use the className property to set the element's style. You may also utilize the document object's style property to change the style of all the elements in the document.

3Can I build a website using Python?

Python is a high-level, interpreted, general-purpose programming language with a focus on readability. It is now widely utilized in a variety of fields, including web development, scientific computing, data analysis, and artificial intelligence. Python can be used to create a website in a number of different ways. Using a web framework like Django or Flask is one option. Another option is to parse HTML and extract data from web pages using a library like Beautiful Soup. Yet another option is to scrape websites and collect data using Python.