Top Online Programming Resources

With the advancement of technology, the demand for I.T. related careers continues to rise. One of these positions that continue to be in-demand is computer programmers. Programmers create and write computer languages that continue to improve hardware functionalities.

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It seems that public interest in computer programming does not match its demand. Tech companies have resorted to paying people to get trained to fill positions. Nowadays, a degree or certification is generally required to succeed in the industry. In most cases, the cost of education may deter prospective students from getting a degree. It is not an easy field; although it may demand, the competition is still challenging. In today’s world, the internet makes it possible to self-learn coding. One can receive certification without the need to spend thousands for school. At this stage for a beginner, learning standard programming basics like variables, functions, and arrays or lists is very important to establish the core structure in building your programming path. Following are affordable yet reliable resources that aspiring programmers can use.

I. Paid Online Programming Resources

One top paid online programming resource is Udemy. They offer courses related to business, art, and technology. Courses vary from graphic design, web design, SEO marketing, photography, and even software testing. As for coding, they offer beginner to advanced classes for C#, C++, Python, and many more. You pay for each course you want to take and receive quality lectures for as low as $9.99. Udemy currently has 44 million students, 65k instructors with 75 languages available. It is generally accessible to anyone with a computer around the world. The one exception is that face-to-face classes are not available. Overall, Udemy is affordable to learn to code and get certified.

Another online programming resource is CBT Nuggets. Unlike Udemy, CBT Nuggets offer I.T. courses primarily. Their courses can range from Cisco networking to Microsoft Word. Instructors are world-renowned in the industry, which makes them reliable lecturers. The CEO and founder, Dan Charbonneau, worked at Microsoft when he began recording training videos in the 1990s. CBT Nuggets also offers courses for businesses with an I.T. training team. Unlike Udemy, CBT Nuggets provide a 7-day free trial, in which you can decide if the course is right for you and your team. Afterward, you either pay a monthly due of $59.99 or $600 per year — which beats the thousands you would have paid per year at university! They also offer lab courses that allow you to learn hands-on and design your lab. The downside of CBT Nuggets is that programming courses are limited. They offer Python and Java courses, but nothing for C# and C++. They are heavy on CCNA courses and AWS developers. Another website that offers great content to learn programming fundamentals is Pluralsight. They offer a 10-day free trial, but they make you pay to use their website after that. They offer standard and premium for their pricing plans. Standard costs $179, and you have access to core library access, skills and role assessments, and learning paths and channels. Their premium costs $269, and they offer expanded library access, certification library access, and interactive courses and projects. Both plans are based on yearly payments but can also be monthly occurring. Their core library features 2,500+ their most popular courses on in-demand topics, including cloud, data, security, software development, infrastructure, and more. The expanded library gives an entire 7,000+ course library that includes advanced topics for individuals who need deep knowledge and specialty topics for those working on unique projects.

II. Free Online Programming Resources

Udemy and CBT Nuggets are for those who enjoy watching videos to learn. For those who don’t mind paying some fees for their classes. However, there are always free alternative resources! One of the most straightforward and generally accessible resources is YouTube.

Nowadays, plenty of YouTube teachers provides free beginner videos for any subject. Some content may not always be free; some creators have paid extra content available. Most of the time, you’d only need beginner videos to gain skills in which paid content will not be necessary. Here is an example of a YouTube lecture from a non-profit group, freeCodeCamp.org, that teaches basic Python skills: Learn Python — Full Course for Beginners [Tutorial]. freeCodeCamp.org also has its official website that you can use directly. Since 2014, they have gained over 4.6 million subscribers and amassed over 258 million views. They offer videos from beginners Python to C# and Java. They also have video games, web development, and interview tips. They also have secondary channels on YouTube that provide lectures in Hindi, Chinese and Spanish.

On their official website, you can sign up for free and continue to use their services for free. More than 40,000 students from this organization have gotten hired at top tech companies like Apple, Google, and Amazon. With unlimited access to their 8000+ coding videos, you will also access their interactive code editor. Their interactive code editor lets you run checks to get a specific code right. Students who enjoy listening to music while studying have a radio tab with music and sounds compiled for coding students. They have a community forum available for everyone that allows users to ask questions about any coding language and even give each other interview tips and words of encouragement. It is a helpful and reliable community to free gain and enhance your coding skills!

Another free programming resource is CodeAcademy. Although it comes with a caveat, it is only accessible for limited resources. They offer three plans. CodeAcademy provides an extensive amount of coding languages on top of the most popular languages such as Python, Java, C++, and C#. They also offer HTML/CSS, Ruby, PHP, and Kotlin, which are scarcely taught on Udemy and CBT Nuggets. It works by giving a platform to input codes like <h1>Hello World</h1> on their website. You can then run the test, and if it’s wrong, you can get a hint to ask for help, etc. They also provide dozens of cheatsheets for all coding languages and subjects. These cheat sheets can be beneficial for both aspiring and established programmers.

III. Programming community help support

Learning how to code by yourself is already not an easy feat. Often, you will need support and help from other people. Being part of a community will help motivate you in the field. There are great forums that you can join to connect with other programmers. You can share ideas, encourage each other or with a peer. There are always people online 24/7 as it is accessible worldwide. Before, I mentioned freeCodeCamp forums. There are language-specific forums like in Japanese, Chinese and Italian.

Another helpful forum is Stack Overflow. It is the most popular website that programmers frequent. You will have already found your answer before posting your question in most cases. If not, you can post your code for help, or you can resolve someone else’s code. You are essentially benefiting from each other. You can also find jobs and companies on Stack Overflow. Much like a job-searching site like Indeed, you can filter it to your area of expertise. You can also find companies that use the coding language you want to work with.

The most popular website you can find a community would be Discord. While Discord is not generally known as a technology-specific forum, it is a great place to grow a community of your interest. They have gaming, music, education, entertainment, science, and tech servers. They also have a separate student hub where you can exclusively meet with peers to form study groups. You can form valuable friendships to see which server you have in common. You can create connections with other people of the same aspirations as you. An example of a Discord server specific to coding is The Coding Den. They have 93,000 members and are open to joining publicly. Python also has its Discord server, with over 279,000 members, aiming to form a large community to learn Python.

Takeaway

There are plenty of great sources that can provide excellent content for aspiring and experienced programmers. The resources listed here are just the tip of the iceberg. These resources can provide the fundamental skills needed to have a strong programmer foundation.

One of the benefits of online learning is that we are not limited to only using one website as our resource. We can have multiple resources to learn from. It is up to us to start the journey and search for what we are interested in.

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