How Hard Is It To Learn A Programming Language?

Many will say that it’s hard to learn to code. It’s a sad fact that many of these people fail and then give up.

What these people don’t understand is that there is no such thing as “instant code”. It will take some time and practice to become a suitable encoder. If you expected to be able to write programs for IBM in just a week – or even a month – it’s no wonder that it’s hard for you.

So, if you’re looking for a magic bullet that will turn you into an instant action programmer, you are in the wrong place. But what you will find is an explanation of why many people find coding difficult and how to make it easier.

Why Coding is So Hard

A lot of people get excited about “learning the code”. They expect to become professionals in the sphere of code development after finishing a couple of lessons. They find a few code learning materials online, fill them in, but then realize that they won’t achieve anything. They know that they are not coding professionals, and they don’t know how to create a website or application.

That’s when they give up and say:

  • “This is too hard for me!”
  • “I’m not smart enough!”
  • “I’m just not made for coding!”

However, it doesn’t have to be like this. Coding isn’t hard. It just takes more time and practice than you might expect. To be a competent encoder, you need to learn how to produce products, not just write code.

To become a web developer, you need to be able to make a website, not just write HTML tags.

To be a mobile developer, you need to be able to create applications, not just build objects in Objective-C or Java (though, with service like codewars.com and codegym.cc learning Java became much more easier today)

Most coding tutorials do not cover these things, so it is no wonder that people get upset and give up. The reason you might think it’s “hard” is that you don’t get results. However, you have to understand that to develop your coding skills. You can’t just boldly follow the instructions in a textbook. You have to take responsibility and start doing it.

Starting Your Project

The key to developing your coding skills is to put down the textbook and start your self-managed coding project. This could be an application, a website, or anything related to what you are learning. It doesn’t have to be a massive project – it’s just a small project to help you apply the skills you’ve learned.

Remember, your ultimate goal should not only be to study the code, but also to produce the product. It will give you the experience you need to become a professional coder, and at the same time give you a result you can be proud of.

When you finish your first product, start another one! This is the way forward. The more you get used to creating things, the more you learn, the more accessible coding will be for you.

Computer programming languages are not easy to learn, but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn them either. In many ways, coding is like cooking – you are required to follow a set of instructions without leaving room for errors.

It also helps if you understand that the most common condition for a programmer, especially for a new programmer, is a feeling of being incapable. Learning is almost limitless, so programmers have to learn new tools, languages, and technologies all the time.

Learning a computer programming language is like learning everything else – it will be easier for some people and harder for others. Whether or not you find it difficult to program depends not only on your personality but also on your computer skills. According to Brian Feldman, a robotics specialist and founder of Feldman Consulting Enterprises, there are several key personality traits that programmers must be successful with (among others):

  • Almost unlimited tenacity to continue trying to troubleshoot, fix, and develop
  • Excellent short-term and long-term memory
  • To understand how everything is interconnected.
  • Excellent attention to detail

If you don’t have these traits, you can still learn to encode. However, your experience of learning a new programming language can be more complicated than for someone with a programming personality.

Which Programming Languages are the Easiest? Hardest?

WP Engine has interviewed almost 1000 developers (presumably in 2017) and asked which languages are the easiest and most challenging to learn. If you are interested in learning to code and want to know where to start, the results of the WP Engine Developer Survey can help you make a decision.

Most natural Programming Languages To Learn

When the question “What do programmers think is the easiest language?”. 

They replied that the five easiest languages to learn are:

  • HTML 
  • Python
  • JavaScript 
  • PHP

Hardest programming languages to learn

On the other hand, the question “What do programmers think is the most complex language?”.

Complex means that it is difficult to read, understand, debug, and maintain, and difficult to learn.

 The five most difficult ones are:

  • Build
  • C#
  • TeX 
  • Goal C
  • C

Choosing Your First Programming Language

While it may be useful to consider which languages other programmers think the most straightforward and most challenging to learn, the truth is that, like any different foreign language, learning code will require some effort and dedication. For this reason, the best question to ask rather than which language is the easiest to learn is – why do I want to learn coding in the first place?

Below is an overview of the most common ways to use some of the most relevant, popular computer programming languages:

​Languages​Most Common Uses
​Python​Web and internet development, scientific computing, graphical user interfaces (GUIs)
​Java​Internet of Things (IoT), enterprise architecture, cloud computing
​Ruby​Web app development, robotics, networking, system administration, and security
​HTML​Web development, email programming
​JavaScript​Front-end website development, gaming development
​C​Artificial intelligence, computer graphics, image processing, systems programming
​C++​System/application software, client-server applications, embedded firmware
​C#​Windows-based platforms
​Objective C​Software development
​PHP​Web application development, server-side scripting, command line scripting

If you plan to become a web developer, for example, you can learn Python, HTML, and/or Ruby. If you want to develop and build applications, think about learning PHP or C++. Either way, the first step is to find out what you would like to do as a programmer, and then find out which language to aspire to.

To Sum It Up

There are several different routes you can follow to become a developer or programmer. You can learn to program by yourself, thanks to a lot of online resources dedicated to teaching people how to read, write, and interpret code. 

However, if you want to learn the theoretical basics of computer programming to do more than write code, you may want to consider a master’s degree in computer science.

How Hard Is It To Learn A Programming Language? was last updated January 12th, 2020 by Dmitrii B

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