The 5 Best Ways To Learn How To Code

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SkillCrush copyPhoto: Courtesy of Skillcrush.
It’s no secret that the world of tech has a serious diversity problem. From bro-y CEOs and founders behaving badly on the regular, to Google’s disappointing workforce breakdown (hint: it’s mostly male and white), it’s clear that we’re in serious need of more fierce female tech talent to change the ratio. Plus, it never hurts to pick up some new skills that could help launch a new career path or, hey, maybe your own startup.

We’ve gathered five of our favorite resources for getting your code on.

Skillcrush
Skillcrush offers a free, ten-day bootcamp that demystifies tech concepts and jargon so you can start learning skills that they promise will make you “crazy employable.” Yes, please!

Once you’ve completed the bootcamp, you can sign up for more targeted online classes where you’ll be put in touch with a supportive community of classmates complete with group chats to keep you on track. Bonus: If you’re recently unemployed and looking to make a career change, you can request a special discount.

What you’ll learn: HTML/CSS, JavaScript, UI/UX, Photoshop, jQuery, Ruby, and how to interact with APIs
CodeCademy copyPhoto: Courtesy of Codecademy.
Codecademy
Codecademy has a beautiful, clean design and covers an impressive array of programming languages, whether you want to learn how to build your own website or write an app that interacts with Twitter’s API. Each course lists a time estimate and the required technical level, so you know what you’re getting yourself into before you start.

Oh, and did we mention it’s completely free? We like free.

What you’ll learn: HTML/CSS, JavaScript, jQuery, Python, Ruby, PHP, and how to interact with APIs
girldevelopit copyPhoto: Courtesy of Girl Develop It.
Girl Develop It
If you prefer a more hands-on approach, Girl Develop It is an organization that hosts affordable and accessible in-person classes in a bunch of cities across the country like New York, San Francisco, L.A., Chicago, and Washington, D.C. Not to mention it’s clearly geared toward women and they’ve got an impressive Code of Conduct to ensure you can learn in a safe, respectful space. No mansplaining here!

What you’ll learn: HTML/CSS, JavaScript, Python, WordPress
Dash copyPhoto: Courtesy of Dash.
Dash by General Assembly
Brought to you by the good folks at General Assembly, Dash’s free lessons are smartly organized into projects. When you’re done, you’ll end up with a finished product like a responsive blog theme. We dig this approach because, as Lauren Appelwick of The Webby Awards put it, “Many development skills are easily forgotten if not used immediately. It’s important that you have a project to work on, or all that time spent learning goes to waste.” And, we know you don’t have time to waste.

What you’ll learn: HTML/CSS and JavaScript
HackerSchool copyPhoto: Courtesy of Hacker School.
Hacker School
If you’ve already got some coding skills and you’re looking for something a little more intensive, Hacker School’s three-month retreat in New York could be just the ticket. It’s free for all students and they thoughtfully provide a gender-balanced environment. Not to mention, they’re sponsored by companies you love like Etsy, Dropbox, and Tumblr who are looking to hire alumni, so there’s a chance you could be hooked up with a sweet gig when you’re done.

What you’ll learn: Hacker School is self-directed and project-based. Think of it as the Choose Your Own Adventure of coding.

Honorable Mentions
We would be remiss if we didn’t mention amazing organizations like Girls Who Code and Black Girls Code who work tirelessly to expose young girls to technology and hopefully will generate some righteous future CEOs.

This post was authored by Alexandra Dao.

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