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Learn Programming? Take an Online Python Course!

Maybe you’ve heard you should learn how to code and are wondering how to get started. In this article, I show you what first steps to take on your way to becoming a developer. First, choose a good Python online course. Don't worry, there is value in learning to code even if you are not going to work in IT. Python helps you with your day-to-day tasks in any industry.

Imagine you work for a company that sells home appliances. Since the products are large and heavy, your company delivers the products to customers’ homes the day after the purchase. You have 4 truck drivers who deliver products to the different parts of the city.

A part of your job is to organize the deliveries. You first export the purchases made yesterday from the system, read the addresses and make note of the ZIP Codes. Then, you assign each delivery to one of the 4 truck drivers based on the ZIP Code. You also give them the IDs of the products. Another important point is there is a limit on how many products each driver can deliver. So, if the number of deliveries to a particular ZIP Code exceeds this limit, you assign the extra products to another driver who delivers to the nearest ZIP Code.

You have to do all of this every morning. It gets boring after some time. Then there is always the risk of making mistakes when you do repetitive tasks like this manually. You need a more practical solution.

The answer is programming. Get started by choosing the best interactive online Python course!

What Is Programming?

One of your friends who just started learning Python tells you there is a more practical and much easier solution for the task you do every morning. You can write a Python code that:

  1. Connects to your company’s database and export the purchases from yesterday.
  2. Extracts the ZIP Code from the address.
  3. Assign the deliveries to the drivers, taking the delivery limit into account.
  4. Add the product information.
  5. Writes the final output to an Excel or CSV file you can just print with one click.

Congratulations! You have just written your first computer program. Although it is not a complicated task, you now have a quicker solution. Instead of doing this task by hand every morning, you can spend your time more productively elsewhere. Besides, by using programming, you eliminate the risk of making mistakes, for example, in reading the addresses. We, humans, are prone to making mistakes when doing the same thing over and over.

Online Course in Python

Most people hesitate to learn programming because it seems like a very difficult thing that requires a comprehensive set of skills. I had similar thoughts before I took my first step in programming. My beliefs and thoughts completely changed when I actually started to learn it.

Programming does not have to be very complex. We use programming for solving everyday problems as well. Communicating with and retrieving data from a database, automating emails, using calculators in our mobile phones, and finding the best route to your destination, are some examples of programming applications.

Computers do stuff extremely fast and without any mistakes. Once you have a well-designed and well-implemented code, the chance of producing an error or failing a task is almost zero. In contrast, people are much more prone to making mistakes on repetitive tasks. These are the main reasons why programming is used as a solution to a wide range of tasks and applications.

To make a computer do a particular task or a set of tasks, we need to give it instructions in a particular way. Take a look at the 5 steps of the task we defined earlier. This is how you explain these steps to a friend. But you cannot just input these steps into computers. They have a specific way to communicate, also known as a programming language.

Why Python?

We give instructions to a computer through programming languages such as Python, Java, JavaScript, C++, and Go. Each language has its own dynamics and syntax.

One of the most popular programming languages is Python. It has increased its dominance across many fields in recent years. Although Python is mostly associated with operations related to data science, it is a general-purpose language used in many different areas.

Python was created by Guido van Rossum in 1991 with the following goals in mind:

  • An easy and intuitive language, just as powerful as its major competitors.
  • Open source, so anyone may contribute to its development.
  • Code that is as understandable as plain English.
  • Suitability for everyday tasks, allowing for short development times.

These goals come together in a single objective: make programming easier. This is the main reason why Python is the first choice for starting your programming journey. Python’s intuitive syntax makes it easier to understand what a script does.

Its ease of learning does not make Python any less competitive than other programming languages. It has a wide range of application areas in data science, IoT, web development, and mobile game development, just to name a few. Thus, it is definitely worth your time and effort to learn Python. Here is an article that explains in detail why it is worth learning Python.

Python also has a very active community, which is important for two main reasons:

  • You can easily and quickly find answers to your questions.
  • There is a rich selection of libraries built by the community that simplify most of the common tasks.

You are now convinced learning Python is a good idea. If you still have second thoughts, read this article about why you should learn Python in 2022. The next question is how to learn Python.

How Do You Learn Python?

Since it is a very popular language, there are a lot of resources to help you learn Python. They include books, tutorials, and online courses.

The traditional option is to learn Python from books. Here are Part I and Part II of the article that lists the best books for learning Python. If you want to learn Python for data science, we also have a list of top Python data science books.

Another type of resource for learning Python is online tutorials. There are a vast number of them on YouTube. They are great if you look for a specific topic. However, when it comes to learning a programming language from scratch, you need a more organized approach. Moreover, online tutorials do not provide an environment for you to practice while learning.

As stated in this article by Nick Dam, “changes in neural connections, which are fundamental for learning to take place in the brain, do not seem to occur when learning experiences are not active. Many research studies suggest that active engagement is a prerequisite for changes in the brain. Not surprisingly, just listening to a presentation or lecture will not lead to learning.”

Once you read or watch something related to programming, you understand what it does. However, understanding and learning are two different things. To take your understanding one step further and learn something, you need practice. Hands-on experience is the best method for learning especially when it comes to programming.

Online Course in Python has several interactive online courses that offer an active engagement experience. You can practice while learning thanks to its interactive console. Another advantage of learning Python on is that the online courses are organized in a very specific way to make it a smooth learning experience.

You can start with the Learn Programming with Python track. It introduces you to the fundamentals of programming, so you do not need to have any prior experience with IT. This track consists of 5 fully interactive Python courses, carefully organized and presented for beginners.

By the end of this track, you will have learned the most fundamental topics for programming with Python:

  • What variables are and how to use them.
  • Control flow (if) statements.
  • Loop structures (for and while loops).
  • The most commonly used Python functions and how to write your own functions.
  • How to work with files.
  • The built-in data structures in Python: lists, dictionaries, tuples, and sets.

The courses have several interactive exercises. Each exercise has a little bit of reading, a working code example, and a problem for you to solve by writing your own piece of code.

The courses in Learn Programming with Python track are:

  1. Python Basics. Part 1. The estimated time to complete is 10 hours. The course contains 95 interactive exercises.
  2. Python Basics. Part 2. The estimated time to complete is 10 hours. The course contains 74 interactive exercises.
  3. Python Basics. Part 3. The estimated time to complete is 8 hours. The course contains 60 interactive exercises.
  4. Python Data Structures in Practice. The estimated time to complete is 24 hours. The course contains 118 interactive exercises.
  5. Built-in Algorithms in Python. The estimated time to complete is 15 hours. The course contains 67 interactive exercises.

You will have a smooth learning experience with these interactive courses. Since it starts at the absolute basics, all you need is the time and the dedication to learn!