Free Online Courses On Learning How To Code

Learn how to code with web courses for both web development and computer science.

I’m a full-time human. Or so I thought. I was scared and unable to see beyond the bottom of the barrel of my career path. One day a friend dropped this message on my phone: “Hey girl, coding was so big. So, a lot of people aren’t even really into it. Especially as it becomes more and more lucrative.”

This conversation illuminated something. It changed my path entirely, and I’ve never looked back.

Not to say that I was out of the woodwork when it came to learning coding… I was sick of being in a position where I could apply the same skills to a boring project in a dusty office. I was an artist trying to figure out how to apply the marketing skills I learned in college. I was self-employed — most of my projects were based on social media and Internet design.

I learned to code, and got a lesson in the huge world of “school.”

I knew I would only be able to achieve success in the tech world if I learned how to code. So, I made a plan: I would learn by going online. To begin, I researched for open coding classes. I found a plethora of international open-online courses (OOCs).

It’s an easy way to dive in and learn online because the classes are not set up for supervision or grades. The theses typically are taught by people in their home countries. Some of them are game-changing courses that you won’t be able to achieve in a traditional classroom. Others are cookie-cutter edutainment courses.

I found that most of the classes were set up so that you didn’t get attached to a course person. Each syllabus has an expiration date. You’re able to choose when to take the course and leave it in its entirety. Plus, I did not need to get a mentor. I started by taking a couple-week introductory, practice and advanced courses. Once I got comfortable with how my computer worked, I was able to enroll in more advanced courses at my convenience. Each individual course is different and full of interesting material.

It was hard to learn all of the necessary details. And since I was self-motivated, I had to roll my sleeves up and push for it. My computer helped me keep up with the learning process. I figured out what my every day life was like. I coded routines that would govern how I connected to the Internet. I worked out in a secure, public space in a physical office. I learned to draft emails that would be visible to no one. I learned to set Twitter alerts. I used bots that would tweet promotional tweets about my project. I built detailed websites that explained my project. I organized my WordPress site to handle the community input and analysis of my assignments. I became better at dealing with multi-tasking.

My personal computer/browser is tasked with a system that grants me more than one keystroke at a time. When I’m typing quickly, I will speed up the keyboard to save time. I can make my work more organized with a cursory tool that compiles dozens of dashboards into a single screen with the project picture. I coded really complex games and tests to improve my skills in a field I always assumed would be boring. I created my own website that ran like a Web-based email client.

Dozens of different OOCs can be found in the Coding Academy website. I chose Coding Academy because I wanted a practical course in programming. For people like me, who love to use code and technology but are scared of what the future holds — most people focus on the technical parts of the endeavor, like simulating 3D graphics and design, as if this is what’s important, not as part of the technical process. Programming is far from that. Ultimately, programming is about writing code. Coding can be complicated, but in the context of the syllabus for one particular OOC, the learning process is easy.

You have to finish the course before you can take an OOC, so make a plan. You have to pick your course wisely. You need to pay attention to how your brain works. Test your wits every so often. Take a break. Take notes. Learn to love yourself for who you are. It will transform you from a scared spanish teacher to the same spanish teacher I am now.

Even before I got into tech, I struggled with dealing with noise and clutter. I could experience boredom. I was uncomfortable asking for help. I was most comfortable behind a computer. I now learn to let others help me.

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