If you are a budding coder and looking to grow your coding skill, you have come to the right place. Today, I will list the ten best websites to learn programming.
Programming is the 21st century way of expressing to the whole world. It doesn’t matter if you are new or old to technology and programming, it still lets you express your ideas, the way it is meant to be done.
To help you in your quest to becoming one of the best programmers the world has ever produced, I will list the best websites to learn programming.
The sites are chosen according to the accessibility, the ability to give you a challenge and the variety of courses it offers to the students. Keeping all the criteria in mind, Udacity does come at top. It is project focused and offers a unique learning experience.
One of my favorite website to learn programming is Udacity. It is project focused and offers a unique learning experience. More on this later.
So, without much delay, let’s get started with the best websites to learn to program.
Top/ Best Websites to learn programming
Even though, I might look biased to Udacity, but in reality, I am not. Udacity is the one of the first platforms for me to try out programming. It provided me a platform where I can explore my limits, and it did succeed in doing so. The clarity of the courses is what makes Udacity one of the best places to learn to program.
Udacity offers an excellent array of courses to take. Are you a beginner? Don’t worry; they got it covered. Udacity also offers tons of courses that targets semi-advanced and advanced users.
All the courses are project based, and this is why I would recommend Udacity for anyone who is starting to learn to program.
Programming is like experimentation. The more experimentation or projects you do, the more you will be able to explore your talent and what programming holds for you.
Features of Udacity
- Perfect for Beginners and advanced programmers.
- Project-based courses.
- Short and informative lectures. Attention is given to learning with quick questions between short videos.
- An extensive array of courses available. Mostly related to computer science.
- Learning paths are introduced using Nanodegree, a paid program that teaches you industry standard programming.
- Big companies and big universities collaborate to create the courses. Excellent for students who get the exposure.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5. The lack of gamification is one of the biggest cons of Udacity platform. There is no free certificate, and you will not get any gamification badges or levels to keep you motivated. If motivation is not an issue for you and you are looking to make the most out of the free content, head over to Udacity and start learning.
The next best place to learn to program is Coursera. Coursera, just like Udacity, is an MOOC platform where universities across the world come together to deliver their online courses. Unlike Udacity, the courses are controlled by the universities and are not in direct control of Coursera, affecting learning quality. But, you can expect high quality from the universities that are releasing the courses using the platform.
As usual, you can make the most out of the platform without paying anything. But if you are interested, you can learn the course path for various subjects including computer science, biology, economics, etc. For a verified certificate, you need to pay a fee as described by the course.
Features of Coursera
- An open platform for universities to release their courses online.
- You can learn anything from Coursera. It includes Chemistry, Math, Biology, Economics, Philosophy and of course Computer Science.
- Coursera comes with a lot of diversity as the nature of the online course is not controlled by the centralized authority like Udacity.
- You can earn free certificates which help keep motivation and gamify the system[Udacity lacks big gamification time].
- New universities and courses are released at much faster pace.
- Offers peer to peer grading for the assignments.
Rating: 4.3 out of 5. The quality of the courses depends completely on the publisher or the university. It is always a good idea to read up reviews before starting the course.
CodeAcademy has seen some wrath of the critics who think that CodeAcademy is a nothing more than just a platform for writing down syntax and getting a result. In other words, it showcases you coding, but it hardly tries to make you a programmer. The general concept is to make you think like a programmer, and the website courses fail to deliver in this aspect. But, that doesn’t make the website completely worthless. I utilize the website to get familiar with the syntax of any programming language. It is easy to use, and friendly UI makes up for the deficiencies.
Features of CodeAcademy
- Great for a newbie to learn programming basics and syntax.
- Offers MyPath features to track how you are progressing and help you keep your personal and professional goals.
- Great user interfaces for learning stuff.
- Experienced users can learn the syntax of a programming language for their next project.
- Completely Gamified experience.
- Offers API tutorials for popular API platforms including Evernote, Github, YouTube, etc.
Rating: 3.0 out of 5. The current standards of teaching programming have risen a lot. Codeacademy lacks in interactive videos and can be too simple for advanced programmers. So, if you are a beginner, and want to learn something quick, CodeAcademy is for you. Also, the fact that most of the quizzes are now locked to the pro members speaks volume about the failure of the platform.
CodeSchool is a premier programming website. It hosts both free and in-depth articles on many diverse programming languages. All the courses are accompanied with project-based learning, and I am quite fond of what they have to offer.
CodeSchool currently offers multiple course paths. They are as follows.
The electives offer a unique way of exploring your abilities.
Features of CodeSchool
- A high quality of videos and challenges available in each course.
- A unique way of presenting the courses. Most of the courses have a unique story attached to them and are entertaining to some extent.
- Great User interface and design.
- The platform offers gamification.
- Offers screencasts and great support.
Rating: 4 out of 5, Free courses are limited. It is a paid platform. If you don’t wish to spend, the platform might not be for you.
Edx is yet another MOOC platform created by the collaboration of MIT, Harvard, Berkeley and others. Edx is similar to Coursera in many aspects, but it has tighter policies regarding admission of universities to host the courses. Edx courses are focused on delivering high-quality content and can be taken up for free.
Last year, they scrapped the free certificate to make their platform more aggressive towards profit. If you wish to earn a certificate, you need to invest a small amount of money.
Edx offers extensive courses on coding. The courses are aimed both at the beginner and the advanced user, so if you are new to coding, you can find courses that can help you improve quickly.
Features of Edx
- A wide range of courses for programming.
- Non-programming courses are also offered, making it a great platform to learn.
- Excellent control on the quality of the courses.
- Offers excellent experience with community and project-driven courses.
- Hundreds of courses in the different discipline are available. They also offer XSeries program for better learning experience.
Rating: 4.3 out of 5. Excellent platform. Hosts the world’s most famous introductory CS course, CS50.
Other platforms worth considering
The internet is full of resources. If you are still not satisfied with the above websites for learning how to program, you can check the following websites.
TreeHouse – TreeHouse is a paid service where you can learn from the best. They also follow project based learning. If you are interested in learning WordPress, they have a course for you! You can choose between the basic plan or the pro plan to get started. The basic plan is only $25/month, whereas the pro plan is $49/month.
CodeHS – CodeHS offers a better approach to teaching coding. They offer paid services. Their teaching style resides more into the theory for the better understanding of computer science. With projects and challenges, you will surely learn.
KhanAcademy – Khan Academy is one of the best places to learn how to program. The only downside of KhanAcademy is non-structured content. Even with unstructured content, there is a lot to learn, both from novice and experienced users.
ThinkFul – ThinkFull offers self-paced courses for their audience. To ensure that everyone understands the value of learning, the self pacing is the right way to go. Udacity also follows the similar path. The courses are costly, and that’s why the platform should only be used by those who are sure what they are going to do.
When it comes to online learning, confusion is paramount. There are too many resources/website to learn from, and it can easily puzzle anyone. In today’s post, I went through the best websites to learn programming. All the websites that I have mentioned offer unique way to learn the content and also ensures that skill is developed during learning — through projects and challenges.
I will pick Udacity, Edx, TreeHouse as my favorite platforms to learn to code. CodeAcademy is good for beginners, but their current business model makes me wonder its existence. Many websites will speak highly of CodeAcademy, but I will request my readers to skip CodeAcademy whenever possible.
Wondering what to do next? Open up one of the websites that you liked, and start learning. If you have any questions about the above websites or programming in general, don’t forget to comment below. I will answer them gleefully.
Until, next time!