Difference Between Full-stack Developer and MEAN Stack Developer

Juliet D'cruz

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Difference Between Full-stack Developer and MEAN Stack Developer

With the increasing demand for hybrid development, there is felt a need for a customized and scalable Full-stack that uses a single language, JavaScript. The need for fast, dynamic, and efficient websites and apps has given shape to the latest trend in development, with many industries like shipping and logistics, energy, utilities, retail, and FMCG looking at MEAN stack for their applications.

The open-source nature, use of a single language for both Client-side and Server-side, data storage in JSON format, and rapid development of apps and prototypes have made it popular among organizations such as Google, Netflix, LinkedIn, Paypal, Accenture, Uber, and more.

If you are an IT professional or a Developer looking at higher career prospects, opt to become a Full stack Java Developer with online certifications. Broaden your job profile and prospects of landing a lucrative job with large enterprises vis-a-vis small and medium-sized firms.

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What is Full-stack Development

Full-stack Development is about building both client and server software. In other words, handle the front-end and the back-end of web applications and includes programming the browser, server, and database. Back-end focuses on how the website works and manages databases through APIs and libraries with client-side commands.

The front end is the user side of the web application, which is visible and interacts directly. front-end development typically involves the use of HTML, JavaScript, and CSS, while the back-end uses  Python, C++, and JavaScript. Front-end and back-end development make use of AngularJS open-source framework,  React js and jQuery libraries, and tools like Bootstrap. A variety of skills belong to his/her arsenal: graphic design, UI/UX management, testing and debugging, scaling requirements of the software, and more.

Who is a Full-stack Developer

As the term suggests, the Full-stack Developer manages and maintains the Full-stack, end to end of the software development process, like a Jack of all trades. He/she develops both client-end and server-side software. They develop and maintain platforms with databases and servers. The Full-stack Developer will manage projects involving databases, APIs, and user-facing websites.

What is MEAN Stack

The MEAN Stack is a Full-stack solution that follows the three-stack pattern: the display tier (AngularJS), the database tier (MongoDB), and the application tier (ExpressJS for the front-end and NodeJS for the back-end).

It is a JavaScript-based framework named after the four key technologies that make up the layers of the stack: MongoDB, Express, Angular, and Node. 

MongoDB is a cross-platform database written in C++. ExpressJS is a lightweight server framework that supports single and multi-page web applications. AngularJS is an open-source web and mobile application framework used for development as well as testing. And NodeJS is a cross-platform, back-end runtime environment working on a JavaScript Engine meant for scalable network applications.

MEAN can be used in many applications with a write-once cross-platform and is bests suited to real-time apps and dynamic web pages.

Who is a MEAN Stack Developer

A MEAN Developer is essentially a JavaScript Developer with experience in Full-stack Development and expertise in all four technologies, MongoDB, Express, Node, and Angular. Additionally, knowledge of HTML/CSS, Jquery, PHP, Java, Python, UI/UX design, AWS, Git, JSON, AJAX, frontend CSS frameworks like Bootstrap, Agile methodologies, and database architectures are the must-haves.

It takes three to six months for a highly skilled Developer to master the MEAN stack.

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Difference between Full-stack Developer and Mean Stack Developer

The Developer who works on both the client and server side of the software is called the Full-stack Developer. The Developer who works only with JavaScript technologies for the development of web applications is a MEAN Stack Developer.

A Full-stack Developer must know all the frameworks, technologies, and programming languages for Full-stack development. A MEAN Developer needs to know only the four Full-stack technologies (MongoDB, ExpressJS, AngularJS, NodeJS) for Full-stack Development.


The work of the Full-stack Developer involves multiple databases such as SQL Server, Azure SQL, MySQL, Oracle, PostgreSQL, etc. The Work of MEAN Developer is confined to one database, MongoDB.

Framework and Programming languages

The Full-stack Developer has the choice of many front-end frameworks for front-end development. The MEAN Developer uses the Angular framework for front-end development.

Full-stack Developer is skilled in all the languages and web development frameworks required for the end-to-end development of a functional website. The MEAN Stack Developer must additionally know all four tools of framework development.

Full-stack Developer has a choice of various technologies like MEAN, MERN, etc. But the MEAN Stack Developer uses only the MEAN Stack type of development.


Full-stack Developers know web architecture with in-depth knowledge of concepts like data structuring, file separation, and storage. MEAN Stack Developers must have knowledge of concepts like cloud architectures, continuous integration, etc.


Full-stack Developer leverages the advantages of server-side programming languages. MEAN Stack Developer uses NodeJS to write server-side code in JavaScript.

The Full-stack Developer is a programmer with the know-how of multiple programming languages, while the MEAN Stack Developer is a JavaScript-based application programmer. 

Full-stack Developers must have an active profile at GitHub with experience on Git. MEAN Stack Developers must have an understanding of the software development lifecycle and experience developing in an Agile environment.


A Full-stack Developer must be an expert in HTML and CSS, and other languages to program front-end and back-end. A simple knowledge of HTML and CSS suffices for the MEAN Stack Developer. 

The Full-stack Developer is required to have working experience with back-end languages like Python, RUBY/RAILS, Java, PHP, and SQL. The languages used by the MEAN Stack Developer are NodeJS, Python, C#, ASP.NET, PHP, and of course, JavaScript.  

Full-stack Developers must have a sound knowledge of databases and web design, whereas a MEAN Stack Developer is required to know architecture design guidelines and programming templates. 

The responsibilities of the Full-stack Developer include monitoring and management of the software and databases. While MEAN Stack Developer has simpler roles, usually assigned to a fresher or intern.


When it comes to your programming requirement, the advantages of using a Full-stack Developer are many. The Full-stack Developer can switch between front-end and back-end as per the project needs. The Developer is not restricted to a particular set of frameworks but has the flexibility to work with many technologies and frameworks. They are best suited to small and medium-sized enterprises. At the same time, the advantages of hiring a MEAN Stack Developer mean shorter software development lifecycles, as front-end and back-end coding is done only once in JavaScript, and the code output can be tested on the cloud. Underpinning technologies of the MEAN Stack allow the MEAN Stack Developer to migrate the code to any other framework.   

As both types of Developers fulfill different needs and leverage specific technologies and frameworks, the choice depends on the project at hand, the time and resources available, and cloud availability.