How to Improve Your Coding Skills

Programming skills are valuable nowadays. A programmer is a specialist in the development of computer and web programs who is responsible for the creation of the architecture of the program, its implementation, optimization, and testing. A programmer can work remotely, which means it is easy to find a job anywhere. What’s more, well proficiency programmers automatically enter into the category of highly paid specialists. 

To reach success in coding, you must love what you do. Even if you are already doing professional development, you should continue learning to be up-to-date with new technologies. This means studying new languages, frameworks, or libraries. It is important not only to be able to use the technology but also to be aware of its benefits. In general, the very choice of a career as a developer means that you “sign up” for lifelong studies and endless homework. There are some secret tricks to improve your coding skills. Let’s take a look at them.

Learn to Google

You will save your time when you learn to look for information and answers quickly on Google. Every time you google, include in the search query the name of the tool or technology that is associated with your problem (for example, JavaScript, SQL) and discard the results of more than a year ago (in the IT world, everything changes quite fast).

Write Clean Code

Any developer has to spend a lot of time reading someone else’s code. If it is incomprehensible, it will be very difficult to understand how it works. Therefore, the skill of writing understandable code is useful for everyone. To improve your accomplishments, you can write unit tests (for example, in JUnit) and catch bugs during development, or use short methods so that after months the code is easier to understand.

Study a New Programming Language

Studying a new programming language will broaden the way of thinking to solve issues, especially if the new programming language uses paradigms that you are not familiar with. Many of the acquired ways of thinking can be easily applied to the coding skills you already know.  Don’t limit yourself. The more programming languages you have mastered, the higher your chances of finding a job. Besides, there is always a chance of developing your techniques with STEM studying. If your skills remain the same over time, you can become outdated. So, try to keep fit and master the latest tools used by leading developers around the world.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask 

This is a great way to learn. Many coders are deluded into thinking that asking for programming help is showing weakness. If you don’t understand something, ask for advice, and then try to figure out the issue yourself. In case, someone’s assistance doesn’t work for you, there are different assignment services where you can always get expert help with coding homework online. This will give a deeper understanding of the topic. 

Practice and Start Simple

Everyone knows that practice is the key to improving skills. Still, it is not enough to practice the concepts you already know. You need to complicate assignments and go beyond the usual. If you continually practice things that are even slightly outside your existing knowledge, you will become a great programmer. 

Start by dividing projects into simple components. For example, suppose you want to create an evolving shape on the screen that follows the mouse and changes shape based on mouse speed. First, solve track motion by displaying a square and make it follow the mouse. Second, find a solution to track speed-shape by making the size of the square be related to the speed of the mouse. Finally, create the actual shapes you want to work with and connect the three elements.

How to Improve Your Coding Skills

Read the Related Literature

Everything you read about code will improve your programming skills. Here’s what you can read:

  • Code on GitHub
  • Books
  • Articles
  • Newsletters

You can learn a lot from someone else’s code. You can find experts in your field, or use GitHub to find code that is similar to yours. It’s interesting to see how other developers write code and solve problems. You will develop your critical thinking skills and ask yourself,  “Is the method they use better than my own?” Why not check. Besides daily programming, you can read at least one article or several pages of programming per day. Some useful books are Clean Code Robert C. Martin or Cal Newport: Deep Work.

Don’t Rush for Help Right Away

If you face a problem while coding, try to solve it by yourself first, even if you want to finish it as soon as possible. Better to spend the time trying to fix the error yourself. Take a paper, a pencil and describe the scheme of the algorithm, check it with the code. Doesn’t it work? Relax, go for a walk, refresh your brain, try to figure it out again. Have you been struggling with this piece of code for an hour or two? Have you googled for a solution? So be it, find helpers, but make sure you did everything to solve the issue on your own. 

Avoid Unnecessary Code

The most common mistake is using unnecessary conditionals and repeating booleans. Write concise and clean code because long and convoluted lines of code don’t make it any more valuable. Remove automatically generated code that is not involved, don’t create duplicate pieces of code, and develop multiple methods to break down functionality into small tasks.

Learn to Work with Different OS (Mac, Linux, Windows)

It is not necessary to become an expert on all OS, but it is important to know how they function and what their advantages and disadvantages are. This will save time when switching between them. For example, coding on Windows or Mac is seriously different from working on Linux or Ubuntu.

Practice Pair Programming Regularly 

This implies that two people are sitting at the same computer at the same time: one writes the code, and the other monitors the process and gives comments or advice. Pair programming has many advantages: it allows you to better understand problems, share experiences and ideas, fix bugs faster, and so on. It also helps make communication between developers more comfortable and build trust, which is useful for teamwork.

Take Part in Programming Competitions

Participate in various programming activities because the more you compete with other programmers, the more you acquire new coding skills. You can compete on online platforms such as the ICFP Programming Contest, or TopCoder, and a few other venues. Such websites will give you a problem statement that you must convert into a code-behind solution. Usually, when you submit your code it often gets rejected and this is where the learning starts. Also, such platforms can teach how to code efficiently, and how to debug bugs.

Don’t hesitate to look for more tips on the Internet to find life hacks to improve your coding skills. Good luck with searching online!

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Meet The Teacher: Brian Selke

Computer Immersion Instructional Coach | Redding, CA | Redding School District | Grades: 2nd – 8th Tell us a little bit about your

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