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How to Boost Your Programming Skills

By Scott Gerber,
business.com writer
|
Dec 09, 2019
Image Credit: Dusanpetkovic/Getty Images
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As programming become increasingly important across industries, knowing how to code can help your career grow.

Continuing education is more important than ever. Professionals across all industries must invest in developing their skills and competencies to keep up with changing standards and best practices. This is especially true for those who work closely with technology. Tech tools (and the software they operate on) are used by nearly every type of business, so knowing how to write and read code can be incredibly valuable, regardless of your specific role.

A number of people learn to code independently, out of interest to learn more about the process or to help their careers grow. To help you improve your programming skills, you might consider one of these platforms and programs recommended by the members of Young Entrepreneur Council.

These answers are provided by Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most successful young entrepreneurs. YEC members represent nearly every industry, generate billions of dollars in revenue each year and have created tens of thousands of jobs. Learn more at yec.co.

1. LinkedIn Learning

LinkedIn Learning was the needle-in-the-haystack of valuable educational content I found in a sea of platforms out there. I've taken MOOCs at Stanford, Harvard, Yale, MIT, Dartmouth, Columbia, Brown and more, but I've also taken over one-hundred LinkedIn Learning courses, and I can't recommend them strongly enough. - Frederik BusslerAngelStarter

2. Kaggle competitions

The best way to learn is by doing, which is why Kaggle's machine learning competitions are so useful. Try your skills out against a community of other data scientists and learn from each other along the way. If you're interested in learning practical AI, it's a great place to start, along with Fast.ai. - Pete KistlerBrandYourself

3. Code Avengers

Code Avengers is a fun way to improve your programming skills. You can take learning modules at your own pace, make and share live projects, and more. They even have junior coding courses for kids as young as five. Although it's not a free resource, you only pay $20 per month for a one-year plan and you can try it out with their free trial. - David HenzelLTVPlus

4. Khan Academy

Khan Academy is one of the best places to improve your knowledge. It has detailed, high-quality written and video courses that cover programming. It's a free resource that anyone can use to build their coding skills. - Blair WilliamsMemberPress

5. Google Developers Training

Google Developers Training is a free online course that you can take to improve your programming skills. It has courses for complete beginners as well as for more experienced developers. Course topics include Android Development, Web Development, Firebase, Machine Learning and more. - Thomas GriffinOptinMonster

6. Code College

This website offers both free and paid options for courses. Depending on your budget, you can stick to free classes that still offer value or you can splurge for more in-depth details. There are more than 19 courses and tutorials users can choose from and the brand itself is well-known. - Stephanie WellsFormidable Forms

7. Ubuntu

Anyone with an old computer that they don't use anymore should install Ubuntu on it in order to improve their programming skills. It's a free Linux-based operating system that can run on a wide range of hardware. Successfully using Ubuntu will require you to learn more about Python, which is considered one of the most simplified and beginner-friendly programming languages in use today. - Bryce WelkerThe Big 4 Accounting Firms

8. Coursera

Coursera is a major learning platform that offers a wide variety of instructional courses. If you are starting a small business, looking to grow your programming skills or learn more about financial management there will be a course geared directly to you, and some of them are free. Use Coursera as a stepping stone to decide if you want to pursue further education and course work. - Jared WeitzUnited Capital Source Inc.

9. SoloLearn

When I started out in the IT industry I didn't know anything about programming, and I was overwhelmed by the number of languages out there. Given my fascination and interest in app development, I gravitated towards SoloLearn and Mimo for a quick solution — applications that teach you how to code and provide personalized lessons according to your available time and pace of learning. - Abeer RazaTekRevol

10. Udemy

I recommend using Udemy for learning or improving skills. This website offers several courses ranging from photography to coding, and the content is very easy to follow. Udemy is perfect for building upon whatever skill you want to improve. It has many courses for better coding skills for developers. - Chelsea RiveraHonest Paws

11. MIT CourseWare

For those who already know the fundamentals and are looking to improve their programming skills, I would recommend MIT CourseWare. This is a great resource, not only because it offers theory behind coding, but also because it's free! You can explore MIT's free courseware site that includes helpful classes, such as Java, MatLab C and C++. - Shu SaitoGodai

12. edX

edX is a nonprofit online course platform founded by Harvard and MIT in 2012. Today, they partner with over 120 top colleges to provide thousands of courses including many coding languages. You can learn Python, C++, Java and more. Plus, these are real, authoritative college courses, so you can apply them towards a college degree, put them on your resume or simply use them to learn new skills. - Shaun ConradMy Accounting Course

13. Treehouse

Treehouse is a gamified platform for learning a variety of languages, ranging from Python to Ruby. Not only do they have amazingly put together video resources, the gamification quizzes will also get you addicted to getting through them and learning more. They've got badges for accomplishments, quizzes to check retention and even code challenges. It's also super cheap. - Karl KangurAbove House

14. Codecademy

There are plenty of platforms where you can improve your programming skills, and some offer these courses for free. There's Coursera, edX, Udemy and GitHub. One of the most popular however is Codecademy. There's a free option and you can use the site to hone your HTML, CSS, JavaScript skills and more. - Andrew SchrageMoney Crashers Personal Finance

15. Knowable

Knowable has some really great audio courses, so not exactly e-books, but courses you can listen to while in the car or at the gym. They recently added a whole course for entrepreneurs with a lot of insight from very successful people like Alexis Ohanian. - Andrew SaladinoKitchen Cabinet Kings

16. Stack Overflow

For those who may have a basic foundation of coding, but continuously learn by example, Stack Overflow is a great platform that allows developers to share and grow programming skills. It is an open community forum where individuals can pose questions and receive solutions, but also limit interactions to coworkers within Stack if desired. Collaboration when it comes to programming is always key. - Lisa CurtisKuli Kuli Foods

17. YouTube

YouTube provides tens of thousands of quality free video content about programming. From beginner to advanced YouTube is a great resource to learn basic or complex coding skills. For instance, YouTube has a four-hour Python video course for beginners that has been watched by over nine million people. It's helpful that with YouTube you can sort videos by popularity, views and other attributes. - Kristopher Brian JonesLSEO.com

18. Blinkist

Blinkist takes popular books and cuts them down into 15-20 minute audiobooks so you can get the gist of important concepts from the book in little time. Not all programming is simply the ability to code; it's the philosophy behind it. What directs good programming is a good understanding of users, style, marketing, design and other elements that you can all learn from seemingly unrelated books. - Andy KaruzaFenSens 

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Scott Gerber
Scott Gerber
See Scott Gerber's Profile
Scott Gerber is the founder of Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses. Gerber is also a serial entrepreneur, regular TV commentator and author of the book Never Get a “Real” Job.
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