In this tech-loving world, programming is a very useful skill to have. Plus, it may come in handy when you need some extra cash. Nowadays, it appears everyone is trying to write some code for themselves. The number of self-taught programmers is rising. Some get really good at the craft. Others do not. For those who do not, there are probably some inconsistencies in their learning approach:
Wanting to know everything at once
This goes especially for the beginners. A baby doesn’t start walking straight from the womb. You have to slow it down. You should also check my list of 5 worst habits every programmer must avoid, It’ll make sure that you are on the right track.
Just reading and watching
The internet is filled with tons of programming tutorials; either in written form or as a motion picture. You’ve collected them, and you may spend all day reading/watching them. This is not going to help you unless you begin practicing. Reading and writing code are two different things. You may read the syntax, and think you get it, but once you get to an editor, it starts to get frustrating. Get typing and compiling!
Relying only on tutorials
Tutorials are helpful, no argument there. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try another approach. Instead of trying to follow tutorials, pick out a project you love and imitate it. Github is a programmer’s best friend. Open source projects are everywhere. One way to increase your skill is to look at actual programs, try to understand the code that makes them work and possibly try to imitate it. You will be surprised at how fast you’re learning. Also, this is more fun.
One should really make use of social media and the many online communities flooding the web. Learning is not all about watching and listening. Sometimes, you have to talk also. Head out to communities like StackOverflow, Quora and maybe programming subreddits.
Ask questions and voice out your worries. There will always be someone online to answer your questions. Interact with the coding community and meet others with the same passion as you. You never know when/where a good friendship can build. Here are the 5 Best Online Communities for Programmers and Developers
Not practicing enough
We all know the popular saying: “Practice makes perfect”. It’s true for every skill. Humans are prone to forgetting stuff with time. And unless you code often, you will eventually forget. Even masters need to practice. Create a schedule. Try to write at least a few lines of code from time to time. This way, it will become forever implanted in your brain. Also, with the more practice you get, the more you get better at debugging. You can immediately know where you go wrong in your code. You get familiar with errors (Especially those where you may have forgotten just one bracket or semicolon).
Not testing yourself
You think you know, but just maybe you don’t. Get quizzes, look at a few questions and try to answer them. Then you can be confident of yourself. There’s also competitive programming. Find a few challenges and test yourself. You should consider making use of these top programming contest websites to enhance your coding skills
Find out what learning approach works for you. If you find it easy to learn just by reading and no practice, feel free to do so but that doesn’t work for many and it’s unusual. In the end, what matters is mastering the skill. Remember that the learning process never ends. There’s always something new to learn. You just have to be willing to.