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Be a Techie without a degree #6 – Programming

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Computers use a code (which is their ‘language’) which we have to learn if we want to communicate and make them do anything. The programming code allows us to create computer software, apps and websites. Browsers, apps on your phone, Facebook, and this website – they’re all made with code.

Coding is the place to start and there are dozens of training courses online to help you on your way. But like learning any new language, it is not easy, especially at first, so commit yourself to long-term goals.

  • Programming languages: According to several sources these are the best programming languages to learn for different goals:
  • If you’re looking for something easy: Python
  • If you want a solid foundation to make you a master developer: C
  • If you’re looking for a job or want to make mobile apps: Java
  • If you want to try front-end development: Javascript
  • If you’re programming for your startup website:
  • However many people starting with creating websites may choose HTML HTML is used to create electronic documents (called pages) that are displayed on the World Wide Web. Each page contains a series of connections to other pages called hyperlinks.

MORE INFORMATION AND RESOURCES TO HELP YOU MASTER TECH LEARNING ONLINE focuses on written instruction and coding exercises on their site. They include HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Python, jQuery, SQL, PHP, Bootstrap, XML

It is free for anyone to use. If you prefer video instruction, you may not enjoy this site as much. However, the coding exercises are easy and fun to use. Any experienced computer programmer will tell you that the best way to learn coding is to “tinker” with the language until you feel comfortable with it.

If you want a certificate it will cost you for example: HTML $95 (roughly R1700)

 Udemy (Computer Skills Courses)

Udemy is not free, but they are low-cost (most courses cost less than R150). Their course catalog is vast. If you are looking to learn about specific computer skills or programs, you can use the search bar at the top to find what you are looking for.

Udemy: Master Computers – From Beginner to Expert in One Week

This is one Udemy class that many students with bare minimum computer knowledge say they enjoyed. The instructor is a former college professor. Check out the preview on the right-hand side, and read through the course overview to see if this is a course you’d be interested in.

 MIT Opencourseware: Introductory Programming Courses

Massachusetts Institute of Technology is perhaps one of the world’s leading tech universities. Naturally, tuition costs are extremely high. But the MIT Opencourseware is a registry of free online classes.

App Academy

App Academy is a Silicon Valley computer programming school. It was the first coding school to base students’ tuition on their first year’s salaries after the course. They say ‘No matter what changes, we will continue to tie our success to yours.’ , Switchup, a comprehensive resource where prospective students can compare top-rated tech bootcamps and programs, gave it a 5 star rating.

 edX Computer Science

edX is a platform for education and learning. Founded by Harvard and MIT, it is home to a majority of top-ranked universities in the world. Fulfilling the demand for people to learn on their own terms, edX is provides stackable learning experiences including the MicroMasters® programs. Courses ranging from data and computer science to leadership and communications.

Example: Python for Data Science. Beginner friendly. This course is part of a Professional:

1 Weeks Effort: 2–5 hours per week Price: FREE Add a Verified Certificate for $39 (about R700)

 LinkedIn Learning (Beginner Computer Skills Courses)

LinkedIn is not just a professional social media platform, it also is a place for people to build basic computer skills.

Also, if you haven’t already built a LinkedIn Profile, doing so will help you become acquainted with some critical computer skills to boost your professional career (as well as help you connect with peers and potential employers).


Coursera offers a wide range of courses from leading universities, free to start, and a fee once you want a certificate.


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