Is Programming Background Important? 3 Questions You Should Think Clearly
Computer programming is a desirable skill because so much of our world is automated online. As a computer programmer, you will write and test code to create websites and software programs or to keep programs running and functioning well. Your goal is to innovate and continuously improve upon existing processes.
Even if you’re in a non-coding role, knowing how to write code can be of use. Some popular jobs that require coding are software application developers, web developers, and computer systems engineers. See careers for computer programmers to explore more options.
Even in fields where coding isn’t required, achieving fluency in coding can help increase your marketability.
So is a great programming background important? Here are three questions you should consider:
- Why Should You Learn Programming?
- Is it Possible to Become a Coder with No Programming Background?
- Why Should You Learn to Code Even if You Don’t Work in Tech?
Read these tips to find out how you can stand out from the crowd, and improve your chances of landing a job!
Why Should You Learn Programming?
1. Attractive salaries
Because technology keeps developing, learning to program also can increase your potential earning, explore other career opportunities, or start your side hustle.
2. Have valuable skills on your resume
Coding skills can improve how you do business. This is valuable to potential employers. For instance, an e-commerce business owner not only needs a website, but they need someone to collect data about how users interact with a page and modify page elements accordingly, leading to increased sales down the road.
Even if you’re in a non-coding role, knowing how to write code can be of use.
There are plenty of programming jobs for you to pursue in the world of technology. Perhaps you’d like to spend entire days writing code from home and use your programming knowledge to drive business decisions.
3. Work from anywhere
Technology jobs–especially within the emerging startup culture – are well known for their flexibility and perks. Depending on the company, this could look like unlimited vacation time, telecommuting from another state or country, or work-from-home capabilities.
4. Flex hours
Many programmers work flexible hours since all they need is a laptop and an internet connection. Companies usually have core hours where the team is required to log on for collaboration and meetings.
Tech companies that implement flex hours are less concerned with where you are, but rather that you get your work done. If you are a self-motivated high achiever who doesn’t do well with micromanaging, you may love this perk.
Since programmers work on computers most of the day, it’s a great job to do via remote work. The benefit of technology is that companies can now hire teams globally. No longer are they hiring just local talent. Rather, they can hire the best of the best from anywhere in the world.
5. Express your creativity
Learning to code not only allows you to give machines instructions, but it also teaches you abstract thinking and problem-solving. Problem-solving skills and creativity are key to becoming a successful computer programmer. Of course, you’ll also need to know some coding languages to apply your knowledge.
Learning and applying coding allows you to use your creativity to come up with innovative solutions to real-world problems. To expand, when programmers are tasked with a problem, it’s up to them to come up with a solution. They start with a blank screen. With the big picture in mind, they use both creative problem-solving and logical thinking. Understanding your preferred coding language and how it relates to the task at hand forces you to delve head-first into a problem and solve it for the best outcome. Every time you face a new challenge, you get to solve yet another problem.
Is it Possible to Become a Coder with No Programming Background?
Yes, a candidate can become a coder from a non-coding background. There are many resources available to help individuals learn how to code, including online tutorials, coding boot camps, and college courses. Additionally, many companies are open to hiring individuals from non-technical backgrounds, as long as they have a willingness to learn and a strong work ethic. It may take more time to become a proficient developer for someone with a non-coding background, but it is definitely possible!
Programming can be learned by anyone. The only thing is you have to be passionate. Also ready to solve problems and ready to update your skillsets.
8 Steps to Learn Programming
1. Start with one simple programming language (Python/Scratch/PHP/Go)
2. Understand its syntax and program structure.
3. Start solving basic problems to understand the use of various elements. (Arithmetic operations, Loops, Switch, Conditional Operators)
4. Understand the problem, identify a solution then implement it in the program.
5. Use StackOverflow to get solutions.
6. Make use of HackerEarth, CodeChef, HackerRank
7. Learn from websites: Google Python Class, GoLang Tour, Go by Example, Learn Python
8. Read free programming e-books
Adding a programming language to your skill set can demonstrate your abilities. It can also complement your current knowledge. If you work in a people-focused career, learning to code can strengthen your reasoning and logic skills. And if you're in an analytical field, coding can sharpen your ability to work with data.
7 Non-coding Jobs that Benefit From a Programming Background
1. Product/Project Manager
Knowing how to code can help you better communicate with engineering and design teams. You understand technology limitations and lingo, so you can more accurately estimate timelines and explain goals.
Whether you're a graphic designer laying out a website, or a product designer planning the functions of a physical thing, you're using digital tools to do so.
Knowing the basics of coding streamlines conversations with engineers and other pieces of the assembly line.
Those in the marketing field are constantly engaging with engineers to do things like change images or copy on websites, set up discounts, etc. Much like with management positions, you'll have an easier time as a marketer communicating with engineers and designers to discuss your needs and understand feature and time constraints.
4. Customer service
These positions often involve helping customers install, troubleshoot, or upgrade a product. It's super helpful to have a coding background in these instances so you can be confident in the advice you're giving!
5. Data analyst
With a coding background, you'll have practiced a large amount of math and problem-solving skills. Data analysis is just that: analyzing numbers to solve problems! Being comfortable with number crunching and drawing conclusions is paramount in this field.
Scientists use computer programming to analyze experiment results and to create real-world simulations.
With a coding background, CEO knows how to communicate with our team of designers, managers, customer service representatives, marketers, and coders. Your meticulous attention to detail, awesome writing skills, and quick problem-solving are all part of what makes you a great CEO.
Not only adults, but kids can also start to learn to program and build a strong programming background now as programming is used in wider fields. Moreover, learning coding is great for kids' STEM education. Check more reasons why kids should learn programming:
Why Should Kids Learn Programming?
1. Coding teaches problem-solving and logic-reasoning skills
Kids practice decomposing problems by making them smaller, sequencing them, and then solving them. While kids are writing their code, they’re also forced to solve errors that come up with their program, called debugging.
Also, every game has game logic and this is one way that kids practice logical reasoning in coding. With every project, they build on these skills and transfer them to other challenges and situations.
2. Coding experience helps college applicants stand out and lead to a high-paying job
The college application process is highly competitive. Every student has good grades and extracurriculars. Knowing how to code will prepare students generally and an APCS preparation course can help students feel even more confident they’ll pass the class and the test.
There will be plenty of well-paid jobs that directly or indirectly involve coding, but benefit from coding knowledge and experience. For example, kids interested in biology can use their coding skills in bioinformatics.
3. Coding develops concentration, perseverance, and self-confidence
Since coding is mentally challenging, it naturally allows kids to practice and develop their ability to focus. It can sometimes take hours to accomplish a single task in a program. During this time, they will need complete mental focus to try and solve the problem. Kids need to concentrate on the syntax to avoid bugs.
While learning to code, kids become better at coding and this positive feedback loop boosts their self-confidence.
Debugging why the code didn’t work or work as expected takes a lot of perseverance. Often the first fix tried won’t solve the problem. When this happens kids have to repeat the debugging process, sometimes several times, until they find the best solution.
4. Scratch coding teaches strategic thinking
That function is used on multiple pages that make up the whole website. So, what happens if you change that function? How would it affect the website? Strategically thinking, when we change in one place we also need to understand its implications everywhere else.
5. Coding gives kids a way to express their creativity
While there are guidelines for best practices, you will see that almost every developer you speak with will have a different solution to the same problem. There’s really no right answer, so coders must think for themselves and get creative.
Coding Robots Picked For Your Kids
1. mBot Ultimate
Ultimate by Makeblock is an advanced programmable robot kit that is more suitable for kids aged 14-16 years old who have some basic knowledge of coding and robotics. The kit consists of over 550 mechanical parts and provides a comprehensive range of features. The kit also includes 10 custom robots that genuinely make the possibilities for maker combinations infinite—everything a kid needs to make their ideas come alive. Read: Top 10 Programmable Robot Kits for Adults
2. mBot Ranger
mBot Ranger has 3 robot building forms to explore: a robot tank, a self-balancing robot, and a racing car, which can conquer all terrains like flat roads, grassland, gravel, and sandy beach and supports Scratch and Arduino C programming. You can learn coding from beginner to expert. mBot Ranger can be your coding learning assistant at home or even outside!
3. mBot Mega
mBot Mega is an omnidirectional remote control car that supports 360° rotation and side drifting which is perfectly matched with Scratch. It is an ideal STEM kit for kids to learn electronics, engineering, and coding. You can explore learning coding fun in mBot Mega's multiple functions: obstacle avoidance, line following, and remote control.