I want to become a developer, where should I begin?

Taking your first step into technical career often starts with learning how to code.

3 months ago   •   5 min read

By Karla Evelize
Table of contents

So, you heard there is a shortage of developers and you want to take your first steps into coding? Maybe you’ve built a few websites, some simple games and now you are ready to take it seriously, you want to make a career out of it. That’s when things start to get complicated, because as you saw, there are a lot of options out there and no clear path to tell you exactly where to start or even with which programming language to start learning.

The first thing you should take into account before jumping into any language is what you want to program, basically: what do you want to build with code? Do you want to make websites? Apps? Games? Machine Learning? If you can answer this question, you can get some better guidance on where to start. Let’s consider a few different paths that you  could choose and try to come up with a list of technologies that are relevant for that field. I’ll cover Web Development more in depth and just mention the other ones:

  • Web Development
  • Mobile Apps
  • Cyber Security
  • Games (not covered here)
  • Machine Learning (not covered here)


Web Development

Maybe that’s the first option that comes to your mind when you think about programming: building websites or being a web developer. Web developers are responsible for creating and designing websites, they make sure everything is up and running, they can add and remove functionalities and also decide what to use to build different platforms. If you are looking into this field, you have probably heard words like JavaScript, React, Angular, TypeScript, GraphQl, Vue and much more. As you see, even though we chose a path, there are still a lot of options out there. So where to start? Here are a few technologies that are extremely important:

  1. HTML, CSS and JavaScript: yes, together, because as you’ll see, one thing will lead to the other. Learn the basics of HTML, learn about the structure of the page and make some very simple websites. Then take the next step and add CSS to make it look nice, spend some time learning flexbox, believe me, it’s life changing. The next thing you want to do is add JavaScript to make your website more functional and dynamic. Spend some time learning JavaScript.
  2. JavaScript Framework: frameworks are very popular amongst developers and most companies make use of them, so just pick one and learn the basics of it (by basics, I mean you are able to build a nice website, let’s say a webshop). There are some very popular ones, like Angular, React and Vue. If you want to enter the job market quickly, I’d go with React or Angular.

The two points mentioned above cover a lot of what we call “frontend development”, if you want to learn more about “backend development” they are still relevant, but you could add a few other things to the list.

  1. Node.JS
  2. Express
  3. GraphQL

I didn’t mention above, but there are other languages you can focus on besides JavaScript, like Ruby or PHP, I just described the ones that, in my view, are easier to learn by yourself or to land a job as a developer. Now that we already have a few technologies listed, you might be wondering where to learn, I also have a few tips:

  1. Start learning by yourself to see if it’s something you like, you can start with free courses
  2. Buy and follow online courses, Udemy is a great platform for that.
  3. If you are sure this is a career path for you, join a bootcamp, Codaisseur offers a great program


Mobile Apps

If your goal is to develop for mobile, your path is a bit different from the regular web developer, since there are very specific tools for developing apps, some of them are only for Android and others are only for iOS, we also have the so called hybrid or cross-platform frameworks, that allow you to develop for both systems. I’ll list the most relevant stacks for each of these three.

  • Android Developer: Java, Kotlin
  • iOS: Objective-C, Swift
  • Cross-Platform: Ionic, ReactNative, Flutter

Codaisseur doesn’t offer a full program on mobile development, but it offers a one day workshop on React Native,  this way you get a taste of it and see if it’s something you would like to do professionally.


Cyber Security

After doing some research, you probably came to the conclusion that the Internet is not the safest place in the world and a lot can go wrong if we don’t protect our data efficiently, that’s when Cyber Security comes in handy. When you try to get into this field, we are talking a lot about certifications that you should get, but of course you can still follow online courses to learn more about it. I’ll list some of the most relevant certifications here, and if you are interested in following a course, have a look at the Codaisseur Cyber Security Course.

Important certifications: CISSP, CISA, CISM, CompTIA Security+

If you decide to get one of these certifications, make sure to visit its official website and also check specific courses to perform better. All these certifications require study and preparation time.


Conclusion

We only briefly went over three possible career paths and as you can see there are still a lot of different languages and a lot of choices to make, so don’t forget to do some extra research before choosing a path to follow, also make sure to try a lot of different things before choosing one, you can always follow free different courses online until you find the right one for you.

Learning how to code and use these technologies is possible on your own. But if you want to become a market-ready web developer, it’s helpful to learn at a Code Academy that aligns the curriculum with market needs. After you graduate, you’ll be prepared to start your first job at a company and build your career as a developer. The Codaisseur Academy trains students to become web developers in just 9 weeks. For more information, you can read more about the course curriculum here.

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