My tech journey has brought me to want to learn a programming language. I’ve picked up some SQL for my professional life and really enjoyed writing queries, digging into data and solving problems. I want to learn a language that I can leverage both at work and for personal use. I did some research and decided that Python would be a great fit for my goals. As a data geek, I’ve been seeing Python used for many things I’d like to be able to do. From web scrapping, data processing, statistical analysis to even things that weren’t on my radar like web development.
So where do I start? I looked at the familiar free tools available out there. I started with Codeacademy. but I didn’t really like the format. I tried using the forum but people were just posting the solution code so I wasn’t learning much. I switched over to Udacity and began Intro to Computer Science. This is a class that is taught in Python and the ultimate goal is to build your own search engine. This project sounded fun but again I struggled with the format. The self-paced aspect had me putting it off constantly. Life happens and it became an after thought. I need deadlines.
So now comes Coursera. I spoke to colleague at work who was about to finish the Programming for Everyone (Python) class. He enjoyed to the experience so I decided to check it out. Coursera classes differ in length. But they follow a weekly schedule with deadlines. I believe this will assist me in satisfying my goal. The #PR4E class is taught by a professor at the University of Michigan, Dr. Chuck. Once you start watching the class videos, his passion for teaching and educational technology is clearly evident…and he has the tattoos to prove it. Check out his TEDx talk on MOOCs here.
MOOC stands for Massive Open Online Course. I love how technology has enabled MOOCs to grow and continue to mature. I wish these were available when I was younger and had more free time. I look forward to continue learning in my life from MOOCs.
The Programming for Everyone class started on October 6th and it runs 10 weeks long. But there is still time to join so if you’re interested, click here.
– Future Pythonista