June 13, 2022
Many university students or even experienced professionals in other industries are interested in programming careers because of the great employment opportunities and higher salaries. The number of people searching for "Web Developer" on Google has increased dramatically, according to Indeed Hiring Trends. One of the biggest reason behind the trend is that learning how to code will allow you to have a wide range of skills that is often required as fundamental expertise in various profession, including technology and design industry.
If you're looking to start your career in programming, the first question that will come across your mind would be 'What program language should I learn?' I wanted to help those looking for some advice make an informed decision when choosing the best programming language to start with as a beginner in this blog. I had to ask myself 'What is my long-term goals for learning to code?' to make the decision when I just started out learning to code.
When it comes to choosing the first coding language to learn, you shouldn't be swayed by current trends in the industry. Then, what question should you ask yourself? Here are 3 important factors to consider in order to make wise choice.
Let's say you're simply interested in finding out what it's all about. It's better for you to begin with a language that teaches you the fundamentals of programming, such as writing in a structured syntax, for instance HTML and CSS. Even though HTML and CSS are not truly programming languages, it's a good place to start. You may then use your first expertise to see if programming is something you want to pursue further.
However, you should also keep in mind that the trends and demands are always changing in tech industry. Besides, jobs with the most popular language might not turn out to be the field you’ll enjoy.
Technology has never been more accessible than it is today. We are immersed in technology literally 24/7. What technologies pique your interest and encourage you to learn more? If you spot one, you've found a good starting point in selecting a first programming language.
Before diving in to the details, let me explain why there are so many programming languages. It's because one language can't be used to create software for every platform. You'll need a different language to develop certain programs for each technology.
I went through which programming languages you'll need based on the applications and technologies you want to building. Let's look at the illustration below. This is not an exact list, but it's a good start. Please keep in mind that this is only a general idea of what programming languages are popular for which type of applications and you should do plenty of research before starting a project.
Depending on your weekly availability, you might want to consider the language's level before investing your time in learning it. If you have a tight schedule, you can start with comparably easy languages that has low entry barrier for beginners such as Php, Ruby, and Python.
Remember that it's better to stick to one language until you're more comfortable with it rather than switching to several languages too soon and losing confidence because you're bored or exhausted. You may want to try another language if you discover that it's not the right fit for you after putting in considerable amount of time and effort. However, before you move on to another language and attempt that one, I recommend you complete at least one or a few projects in the language you've chosen.
These 3 factors serve as a just starting point for you to consider how you should choose your first programming language. Don't put too much pressure on to picking the right one for you because at the end of the day, the first language won't define what type of developer you are forever. You will find as you keep practicing and experimenting your coding over the next years and most likely, you'll eventually have to write more than one language because most of applications need multiple languages.
I suggest you also look up resources like coding bootcamps, online courses and books to supplement your learning. One of the most important things is to get started coding as soon as possible regardless of which language you choose. And don't forget to have fun while coding!
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