CAREER ADVANCEMENT / MAY. 22, 2015
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7 Places Where Anyone Can Learn to Code

With the growing dominance of technology in our lives, increasing numbers of people are signing up for coding lessons to better understand how technology works. Learning to code, some argue, should be given the same importance as learning to speak a different language. Education should not only be about reading, writing and ’arithmetic, but it should also be about algorithms. Below are seven places where anyone can learn to code.

See Also: Learning to code: Choosing Your Coding Language

1. Maker’s Academy

Maker’s Academy will teach you to code in 12 weeks. They offer paid, "highly selective" full time courses in London which culminates in a graduation ceremony where graduates are introduced to technology companies looking for entry-level developers. Complete beginners are welcome. Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • Ruby on Rails
  • HTML and CSS3
  • Javascript and jQuery
  • Git and Heroku
  • Software design
  • Agile and lean             

Tuition takes place in “teams of highly motivated students” with students spending the majority of their time coding in pairs: “a fantastic way to learn”.

2. Udacity

Give your coding education a flying start by hooking up with Udacity, an excellent resource for those looking to break into the tech world.  All Udacity courses offer free access to course resources, but selected courses come with a price tag. These paid courses offer  “projects, code-review and feedback, a personal Coach and certificates”. You can expect the following from a standard Udacity course:

  • Interactivity: quizzes, and exercises
  • Videos
  • Interviews with tutors and industry experts
  • Project work, e.g. a blog, search engine, game or app
  • Udacity’s courses are flexible, so you can start when you want and learn on demand

3. Udemy

At Udemy you’ll find a large number of excellent video tutorials on everything from guitar lessons to coding. You can sort courses by price, language or instructional level (i.e. appropriate for all, beginner, intermediate or advanced), which is handy. You can also rate courses. Examples of courses include:

  • Python programming for beginners
  • Java programming for beginners
  • C ++ programming for beginners

Although the most in-depth courses are not free there are plenty of free courses that are superb for beginners.

4. Code Academy

Code Academy,  which aims to “teach the world how to code”, offers a range of free coding languages: JavaScript, PHP, Python, jQuery, Ruby, HTML + CSS. Learn how to make a website;  an interactive one;  or even web apps. One of its alumni,, Sam Fellig, went from knowing nothing about coding to building one of Time’s “50 Best Websites”. 

5. Khan Academy

Our mission is to provide a free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere.” Khan Academy

Khan Academy was one of the first free online coding resources. Here you can learn how to program drawings, animations and games using JavaScript and ProcessingJS. There are also courses that will instruct you in the building blocks of a webpage using HTML and CSS. And if you only have an hour to kill you can use that time to learn the basics of programming, making web pages or creating databases. Known for its user-friendly programmes, Khan Academy provides learners with exercises, instructional videos and their own learning dashboard.

6. Coursera

At Coursera you can take “the world’s best courses, online, for free”.  If mathematics isn’t your strong point, then Coursera’s Programming for Everybody Course (in Python), which has no pre-requisites and asks for only a knowledge of simple mathematics, could be for you. And if your computer experience can only be described as “moderate”, you “should be able to master” the course.

7. MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW)

MIT offers general, language-specific and follow-up courses in coding. Their Introduction to Computer Science and Programming course is targeted at students with either basic or no prior programming knowledge and uses the Python programming language. The course seeks to give students an appreciation of how computing can help to "solve problems" and helps students, irrespective of their major, to create small programs that allow them to  achieve "useful goals". To be successful in the course, you’ll need to have "mathematical and logical aptitude".

See Also: How to Become a Clinical Coding Officer

If you are keen to learn to code right now then you could also consider one of the growing number of coding boot camps which are intense, usually two or three months training courses where you will be immersed in all things code. These camps include but are not limited to the following:

Have you tried any of these resources to learn to program? How did you find them? Did you manage to learn to code using them?

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