Read This Before Signing Up for a Programming or Coding Course!

MakeUseOf | 6/14/2018 | Ryan Dube
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It’s student orientation, and you’re sitting at a table with a bunch of other students. You’re staring at a course catalog and trying to decide which classes to take next semester. You spot a few programming classes, and wonder if they’re right for you. Do you even need them with your major?

If you’re an Engineering or Computer Science major, the choice is made for you. Programming classes are usually a core part of the curriculum. But if you’re studying any number of other fields from biology or psychology to telecommunications or nursing, the choice isn’t so clear.

Computer - Science

What Is Computer Science?

What Is Computer Science?

Simplest - Terms - Computer - Science - Study

In the simplest of terms, computer science is the study of information ("data") and how it can be manipulated ("algorithms") to solve problems, mostly in theory but also in practice.

The answer is that the actual course to choose, and your reasons for choosing it, can vary from person to person.

Classes - Math - School - Computer - Class

If you’ve never done well in classes like math in high school, you may be wary about taking on a computer programming class.

You’ve probably heard upper-level students telling horror stories about a programming class they attempted to take, and failed miserably—or dropped out before the class could destroy their GPA.

Reason - Programming - Class - Level - Computer

There’s good reason to fear taking a programming class that’s too advanced for your level of computer knowledge. The students who tell these stories usually chose coding courses the wrong way.

To choose the right programming course, you should ask the following questions:

Students - Level - Computer - Knowledge

Is it geared toward students with your level of computer knowledge?

Does it teach a technology you might actually use in your career?

Course - Description - Skillset - Resume

Does the course description describe a skillset that could enhance your resume?

Could the class give you a competitive advantage in your field of study?


These questions aren’t always easy to answer.

A nursing student may not know that when...
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