How to learn any Programming Language quickly?
By Shreeram Geedh
October 11, 2020
Learning Programming Language can be difficult. You can spend time reading a textbook or watching videos, but then struggle to put what you've learned into practice. Or you might spend a ton of time learning syntax and get bored or lose motivation.
How can you increase your chances of success? By building that programming language project. That way you're learning by actually doing what you want to do!
When I was learning a particular programming language, building projects helped me bring together everything I was learning. Once I started building projects, I immediately felt like I was making more progress.
Where do you start? What makes a good project? What do you do when you get stuck? In this article, I will solve your problems.
1] Why Building Projects Is the Best Way to Learn?
- This helps you stay motivated, which is important in preventing you from giving up when things get tough.
- You won't waste time learning irrelevant things, because you’ll be actively trying to learn the specific things you need to build your project. If you’re trying to learn Python for data science by building data science projects, for example, you won’t be wasting time learning Python concepts that might be important for robotics programming but aren’t relevant to your data science goals.
- Building projects thus forces you to practice what is perhaps the most important skill in programming. And the more practice you can give your brain in solving problems with code, the faster your skills will develop.
- When employers are looking to hire entry-level candidates, they want to see that you have the key skills they need. A great way of achieving this is having a portfolio of relevant projects that demonstrate your skills. If you’re looking for your first job in the field, employers are going to want to see tangible proof of your programming language skills. In other words, they’re going to want to see what projects you’ve built.
2] What you need to do before you build your first project?
If you have some programming experience, you might be able to dive straight into building a project. For most people, however, you'll need to take a little time to learn some of the basics of that Programming Language first. The idea here is to spend a small amount of time to learn these basics so you have what you need to dive into projects.
As a first step, you might like to try building a structured or guided project. Structured projects are important because they allow you to build something without having to start from scratch.
3] What makes a successful project?
Now that it's time to build your project, you need to decide what to build! Choosing what to build is extremely important — it will impact whether your project will be successful or not.
So these things make for a great project for beginners:
- The important factor in choosing a topic that interests you. If you're interested in what you're building, you'll have more motivation. Motivation is important because it's the momentum that carries you through when you hit roadblocks.
- What your overall goal is in learning a programming language. If you want to get into web development, then a project that builds a small web app is ideal. If you want to get into data science, then a project that analyses a dataset is a good choice.
- It's much better to start with an extremely small and simple version of your project and then add more functionality later. If you don't, it will take a long time before you get any sense of accomplishment from finishing and you might even give up. By starting small and expanding, you're much more likely to have success.
4] Strategies to use when you get stuck:
You've learned the basics of that programming language, completed a guided project, selected the perfect topic for your first solo project, and you're ready to get started. After about half an hour, you run into a problem: there's something you don't know how to do!
I promise you that this will happen, and it's not a nice feeling. No one likes getting stuck. That said, what you're being presented with is an opportunity. These moments — roadblocks — are where the learning happens. The key is knowing how to research to get yourself around the roadblock and keep working.
The good news is that most of the time, someone has been in the same situation — with the same roadblock — as you are in right now. What you need to be able to do is find the resources left behind by those people. Enter: Google (or your favorite alternative search engine).
Now you're ready to get started. If you haven't learned the basics of chosen programming language yet, I recommend a search on YouTube regarding the programming language, there are also some leaning sides with free courses like great learning.
If you already know the basics, there’s no reason to hesitate! Now is the time to dive in and find your perfect project.
Just focused on your goals, never stop learning, and remember one thing Mahatma Gandhi said that
Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.