Would you like to learn to code and build popular websites or apps? Do you know the necessary steps to achieve this goal? Most people start by reading popular programming books or subscribing to online courses and tutorials that teach coding. While this approach may seem enjoyable at first, you’re likely to encounter confusing concepts and inadequate assistance quickly frustrates most newbie programmers. When you’re faced with unfamiliar terms and concepts, it becomes difficult to understand logic, solve problems, know how to proceed and build real-world applications.
What’s the Best Approach for Newbie Programmers?
Programming isn’t necessarily about learning a language but more about acquiring problem-solving skills that are applicable to writing applications. Potential employers care more about whether your knowledge of Java, Python, or C++ provides practical solutions by solving problems.
The best way to learn to code is to follow a project-based technique. That means building as many applications as you can to improve your problem identification and solving skills. The following steps will help you achieve your objective.
1. Pick a Language and Understand Its Principle Concepts
Some beginners make the mistake of ignoring coding fundamentals and moving directly to the tech aspects. This approach will leave you confused during interviews or projects. The first step is to pick a language that you’ll enjoy learning. C++ and Python are two of the most comfortable options for coding beginners, although the actual choice will depend on your intended goal.
You need to understand the syntax of your chosen coding language and master other basic concepts, including variables, loops, operators and conditionals. Attending a high-quality coding school would be great, plus there are various resources you can use to improve your skills, including Stackify by Netreo, Codecademy and HackerRank.
As you learn to code, it’s advisable to focus on one language instead of trying several. Although you might initially have a hard time understanding syntax, it will get easier with practice. Other tips include consistent attempts to solve problems and creating simple apps such as a calculator.
2. Master Data Structure and Algorithms
Data structure and algorithms form the backbone of programming. Understanding these concepts is the next logical step after getting comfortable with your preferred language and will help you solve coding problems better.
You need to understand how to implement the relevant data structures for specific problems. Algorithms allow you to implement step-by-step procedures towards a solution.
Stackify by Netreo helps developers code faster and more accurately with Prefix, a profiling tool that helps you virtually guarantee optimal performance. Other points to ponder while learning data structure and algorithms are:
- Understand one concept at a time, then practice it before moving to the next
- Break complex problems into smaller, more manageable chunks. Solving complex problems in steps will make it easier to arrive at a final solution
- Constant practice is the most effective way of gaining confidence. If possible, participate in competitive coding on various websites to sharpen your problem-solving skills
- Learn to code by implementing data structure and algorithms in practical applications. For instance, creating web applications will give you a deeper understanding of Array and Strings. You may also go back to a previously built app and implement a new feature based on additional knowledge
3. Use the Acquired Knowledge to Build Projects
As previously stated, tutorials won’t help you learn to code if you don’t apply the relevant tech tips. After building a basic app or static website, you can keep adding features to it as you gain incremental knowledge. High-quality coding resources provide examples to help you understand the concepts. The following tips are crucial for fine-tuning your coding process:
- Master developer tools, debuggers, and editors. To learn to code efficiently, you must know how to use templates, libraries and packages whenever necessary
- Focusing on and solving error messages helps you learn faster. Although you might initially be intimidated, chances are there’s an online solution out there for you to discover. Stackoverflow is an example of an online community of developers that helps newbie programmers
- Avoid perfectionism because it will result in procrastination and unnecessary complications. The first objective should be to make your code work, then fine-tune it to make it right. The final step is to make it fast
An APM tool helps you monitor and optimize your new app’s performance. A good example is Retrace APM, which performs several crucial tasks, including troubleshooting, error tracking, performance insights, code profiling and application logs.
4. Explore Related Fields
According to statistics, people who learn to code enjoy fulfilling careers even in fields outside tech. Computer science is a large field with several fascinating technologies, including Machine Learning, Virtual Reality, cloud computing, mobile app development, systems programming and blockchain.
Make a habit of reading and testing code on online communities such as StackOverflow, Github, and Stackify. You can also find several resources on the internet that cater to your specific interests.
These four tips will come in handy as you learn to code. With consistent practice, you’ll soon grasp the most advanced programming concepts and use them to solve complex problems. As you gain skills and experience, your career prospects also improve because coding is one of the most in-demand skills worldwide.
- Learning to Code: A Quick Guide for Beginner Programmers - November 16, 2021