4 min readThe best way to learn coding [7 Proven strategies].

Are you a university student hoping to become a programmer, an adult hoping to change your career path or a normal individual wanting to learn how to program to make the next Facebook or Google? Learning programming for the first time might seem difficult to almost anyone learning it. Why do you I say that, […]

Are you a university student hoping to become a programmer, an adult hoping to change your career path or a normal individual wanting to learn how to program to make the next Facebook or Google? Learning programming for the first time might seem difficult to almost anyone learning it. Why do you I say that, because I have witnessed that myself and a lot of programming testify to that fact. This is mostly due to the approach we all take towards learning to code. I started with a popular language called Java and stopped. Why? The language is very difficult for beginners and so I lost hope in programming. I later decided to give it another go with a different language which has helped me up to now. These strategies listed below are the same working steps I took in learning to code which has helped me to become a professional programmer!

1. Choosing the right language

As I was saying earlier, I stopped learning programming due to the language I chose. I knew nothing about that language; all I knew was that it was one of the best, popular and required languages by tech industries. This is a wrong approach since not all languages are beginner friendly. After learning Java for a while and later quitting, I later decided to begin learning to code. This time, I searched for other languages to try if they are easier as compared to Java. I learnt C, then Ruby, C++ and lastly Swift. In all these languages, I lost hope. So, I decided to search on the web for easy languages. I came by HTML which was said not to be a programming language but a great language that introduces you into coding in other language. So I tried it and it worked! The language that I would suggest you learn now is HTML followed by CSS. These are used in making basic websites. From there, moving on to other languages would be easier. I would recommend you learn Javascript or Python afterwards.

2. Method of learning to code

So after knowing which language to learn, how do you learn to get a better understanding. After I discovered HTML, I still had problems learning it. Surprised, right? Yeah, I found it difficult to even test my code on my laptop. That was because I was using the wrong method to learn one of the most simplest languages. I was downloading PDF’s from downloaded from certain websites, reading text tutorials online among others. The key here is that learning to code for the first with text tutorials doesn’t help. The language you are learning is something new to you, so the best method of learning is what I later discovered. And what’s that? Watching video tutorials! The number one online video streaming website which is youtube has tutorials of almost all programming languages in this world. And do you know the fun part, its free! You don’t need to pay to watch videos on Youtube. Watching videos made me see how HTML is written and tested or opened. With videos someone is doing it and you are practicing along. That is the best way to learn.

3. Interactive tutorials

The second best method of learning to code is by using interactive tutorials. After learning HTML and CSS, I switched to using interactive tutorials for JavaScript, PHP and other languages. This was not because interactive tutorials are better than videos, no! In my country cost for data for internet is not cheap as other countries. If you are in a situation like mine, then Interactive tutorials is the best way for you to go. With interactive tutorials, the lessons are very interactive and engaging. Completing exercises after sections, drawing code blocks to build a program, coding challenges are a few features that make interactive tutorials a good options. Sololearn (a mobile app) is a good example, you can also try FreeCodeCamp.

4. Grasp the fundamentals first

It is essential that you get the fundamentals of the languages you learn. Learning to code is like building a house, mess up with the foundation and the house soon collapses. Same with programming, if you don’t understand the basics of a certain language, moving on to advanced concepts of that language becomes difficult for you. Never skip basic lessons of a language. As you learn further, you will find out that the basics you skipped or did not understand fully are applied in the new aspect.

5. Try coding games

For me, I never tried this approach but at the time of writing this article, through my research I found certain coding games. I wished I tried these ones when I was starting. They help you learn whiles you play. Thats a good way of understanding the language. A typical one I tried on code.org was coding the flappy bird game where you drag blocks to create your code. Whiles you build your code, you play the game based on your progress. This a good method for children but works perfectly for adults as well.

6. Code by hand

Coding By Hand still remains one of the most effective methods to learn how to program. Be it on a whiteboard or notebook, coding-by-hand requires further caution, precision, and intent behind every line of code. Because unlike on a computer, you can’t run hand-written code midway through the sheet to check if the work is correct. Although more time consuming, this restriction will mold you into a more fundamentally sound developer, both in the classroom and the job market. For college exams and technical interviews – a critical component of the job interview process – you will have to code-by-hand, because not only is this good for learning, but it’s universally known to be the ultimate test for a programmer’s proficiency. So start early and get used to this old-school practice. Source: codingdojo.com

7. Get Help

After following all the mentioned steps above, you might still get stuck sometime somewhere. Never forget to seek for help or assistance from online coding forums or experts. It is good to try and fix your errors on your own but after a few tries and you are still getting errors, seek for help. You can search your problem or question on Google or visit coding forums like StackOverflow and Reddit for help.

Conclusion

To end this article, I would urge you to follow this strategy to better understand and learn to code. Have patience whiles learning so as not to lose interest in coding. It takes time to get the concept.

Good luck learning to code.


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