I feel like a failure

Throughout the entire Aggregate Functions section of the Data Science Path, I haven’t been able to solve a single problem on my own, even in the slightest. I legit feel like the rules I learned in previous lessons are being thrown out, and/or that there are things that I missed. Granted I’m still grateful for Codecademy for offering me Pro membership for being laid off from my job, it’s just the hope of trying to even get an entry level job in this field seems unlikely now given how dumb I am.

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Hi Justin,
Are you referring to SQL aggregates?
Learning new material and concepts is tough. It’s like learning a new language (which you are b/c coding is a language). The only way anyone gets better at coding is by repetition. Do you happen to take notes when you’re reading and typing code in the console? For me, I take notes (I have so.many.notebooks) while I’m reading. I even draw pictures if necessary so I can grasp what’s being asked of me while learning each new concept.

Think of learning to code just like anything else you’ve learned: it takes practice. You didn’t just immediately pick it up, right? It doesn’t mean you or anyone is dumb b/c they can’t figure out how to write a sql query. I’ve failed SQL assessments for jobs and kicked myself afterward b/c I figured out the solution (total “D’oh!” Homer Simpson moment).

Nobody knows everything because we’re always learning.

Keep practicing and you will have an “ah-ha!” moment. (trust me) :slight_smile:


Hi Lisa thank you for the kind words. I actually have an Oracle SQL certification from a few years back, and figured that would help along this path alot. Which in the beginning it did, after that though, the lessons turned into a whole other type of beast, and yes I do take notes, and I try to be as thorough in them as I can.

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Don’t lose hope! There’s a difference between being good at “solving modules” and being good at the actual material. We all process information in different ways at different rates.

I’ll give an example of my struggles through the CS Path: I got really stuck in the middle when data structures came up (linked lists, hashmaps), not on the conceptual level, but with the actual code. I took some time off from the modules, wrote the code down on pen and paper, looked at some other books on the matter, and studied some videos. Coming back to the modules after that process, it felt a lot easier!

I’m not saying you have to do that exact path, but for example you were already skilled enough to get SQL certification… so you’re ability/intelligence is not the problem! It might just be that it needs time or a different approach.



I’ll try not to, here’s a perfect example:

Q: To the nearest minute, how many minutes of content were streamed on Codeflix?

My answer: SELECT user_id

FROM watch_history

GROUP BY user_id

HAVING AVG(watch_duration_in_minutes);

Simple enough? NOPE

Codecademy answer: SELECT ROUND(SUM(watch_duration_in_minutes), 0)
FROM watch_history;

Would have never gotten that in a million years.

I say that frequently! :slight_smile:

Aggregations go in the SELECT statement.
Okay, so, you break it down. What’s the column you want to do some sort of aggregation on: watch_duration_in_minutes.
the Q asks, ‘how many minutes of content were streamed?’
so, you’d want to SUM that col.
The ROUND() function just rounds the total of SUM (the 0 denotes you want the number rounded to a specific number of decimal places

The thing to keep track of is open and closing parens.