Codecademy before College

Hey everyone! I’m just inserting myself here into the forums to say what’s up. I’m enrolled to start a CS degree this Fall, and thought I’d get started learning now, as I have no experience with coding. I’m super excited! I graduated High School 10 years ago and it feels really weird to be going back. I’m going to school part-time, and this academic year I’ll only be taking General Ed. courses, so I have a little time to prepare myself for the programming world. Any suggestions?

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Hey!

I’d just say, there’s no rush to be a specialist right away at the point you’re at.

It’s a beautiful thing, so take your time to experiment and be open with different routes. In your experimentation, try to be “honest” and don’t skim through easy exercises… meaning try to deduce what core concepts are being built, and what implications it can have (an exercise is only as basic as one’s approach to it).

Some of the most popular languages in CS are Javascript and Python. But there is a world of other languages out there that can engage your mind/inspiration if you take the time to look (for me, I wish I were younger so I could put more time into learning C and Haskell without worries).

And don’t forget about aesthetics and design. If that’s your jam, CSS, Blender, Photoshop, etc can be things that interest you (or not, it’s really for you to figure out).

The internet has a ton of great learning material so take advantage: IRC, discord, youtube, reddit, scribd, podcasts, newsletters, and real books are all legitimate ways to learn and have your ears to the ground in the field. Computerphile is a fun youtube channel that shows you a wide cross-section of people in the field doing neat things.

Don’t forget that people you already know fit into the picture too (they might not work directly in computers, but many will probably have potential needs for applications and web services relevant to what they do). And people you meet along the way can can also fit in in surprising ways.

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@toastedpitabread Awesome thank you! Yes I often find myself in the forums here, and I understand there is SO MUCH to learn. Baby steps, I guess. Thanks for your input!

Commencing 30-Day Challenge

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But here’s the distinction (for me anyways). They seem like baby steps when you’re young, but they’re giant steps if you do them right. They might not look awesome to outsiders, but consider them awesome for yourself.

I used to perform and teach a lot of violin. I could always tell from the first 2 months who was going to be an incredible player in 5-8 years simply by how they approached learning (and it wasn’t because their talent was superior, often they were average talent-wise, sometimes even below-average, but their learning mentality helped overcome those initial bumps). There were edge cases where as well, but those that start off badly and persist still come around to the point where fundamentals are a key asset. Obviously, it’s the teacher’s job to encourage everyone to get the most out of it like this!

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@toastedpitabread
I just completed the 30-Day Challenge, and I am so excited to look back and see what I’ve learned!! And that’s just in 30 Days?! What?!

I’m finding a lot of enjoyment out of this, especially when something which takes a while to click finally clicks!! I haven’t yet dabbled in anything besides Python and maneuvering through my system via Command Prompt/Bash, but I think I’m going to play around with Java next. Class/ starts in 3 weeks, so I’ll have to figure out how to get coding into my work/school/study/play schedule. I have no doubts that I’ll make it work.

I just thought I’d plug you in on how everything is going on my end!

Thank you so much for your input,
Student31CS

That sounds great!!

Keep at it!!