Coding is the language that gives computers instructions for making the websites, software and applications people use every day. It’s an essential skill for any modern job and looks great on a resume.
There are many different ways to learn coding. But you’ll be more successful if you understand why you’re learning and have clear projects to keep you motivated.
- Understand What You’re Learning
If you’re a newbie to coding, it’s essential to understand what you’re learning. It’s also important to figure out why you want to learn to code. The reasons for learning to code are as diverse as the people who do it, but they’re all motivated by some kind of desire or interest that goes beyond the potential paychecks.
Beginners can choose from a wide range of online resources to learn these programming languages. Some popular choices include Python and Java. For a more structured approach, try an online course like CareerFoundry’s free introductory coding short course.
- Work Backwards
Coding is the ability to write instructions for a computer to follow. This allows us to create websites and applications, among many other things.
While learning coding is an excellent way to improve your tech skills, it’s not always easy. This is why it’s important to have a mentor and a community. This will help you get the most out of your coding education.
When you’re stuck on a particular problem, try working backwards. Find a piece of code that works and figure out what it does, then work from there. This will help you understand the logic behind it and will make it easier to spot errors in your own code. Using this approach will also help you become more comfortable with debugging, which can be one of the most frustrating parts of coding.
- Make Projects
Coding is a learn-by-doing pursuit, so the concepts won’t fully materialize in your mind until you put them into practice. Building projects is an effective way to do this, and it also helps keep you motivated. When your first program works, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment that will drive you forward. When it doesn’t, you’ll get experience debugging code and figuring out what went wrong.
Beginners can start by creating small tools like calendars, calculators, or drawing tools. They can also build simple games to help them familiarize themselves with coding fundamentals, such as the use of physics engines and collision detection. A game-based project can also be a great opportunity to develop effective verbal communication skills, which are an essential component of programming and software development.
- Install the Right Tools
Coding is one of the most important aspects of technology development, and learning it will give you a whole new perspective on how technologies work. It’s not only essential for creating software, but it will also allow you to create websites and applications.
To learn coding, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with a programming language, which is a set of instructions written in a structured format that computers can understand. The most common coding languages look a bit like English, and have a syntax that is easy for beginners to grasp.
You can get started with online tutorials and courses, like Skillcrush or freeCodeCamp. You can even take a full-stack coding course from MIT for free. Other resources include online communities, such as Stack Overflow and Github, and in-person tech meetups and hackathons.
- Find a Mentor
Finding a mentor is one of the most important steps in becoming a programmer. A good mentor will be able to teach you how to code and provide advice on career choices. They can also help you understand industry standards.
Coding is difficult and lonely, so having a mentor to help you through the tough times is crucial. They can encourage you when you feel down or they can push you to go further than you thought possible.
You can find coding mentors in many different places. Try attending coding meetups or joining online communities. If that doesn’t work, you can always ask friends and acquaintances if they know any programmers. You can also join an open-source project that aligns with your interests and goals.