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    How to Get Into Coding: Education and Skills

    By The Fullstack Academy Team

    A coder typing on a laptop.

    Demand for technology careers is high, and coding is at the heart of today’s technology.

    The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a 13% increase in the employment of computer and information technology (IT) professionals between 2020 and 2030. That growth, which is roughly three times faster than the average for all occupations, translates to about 667,600 new jobs.

    Coding provides instructions that direct the actions of a broad range of devices powered by technology like laptops to airplanes to coffee makers. Using the right messaging, in the right coding language, and in the right order is vital to technological operations.

    In many technology-related jobs, coding is a basic requirement. Coding touches nearly every profession in the field, whether it’s a position in web design, software development, or data analysis. If you’re ready to explore what careers you can pursue with an education in coding and the path to preparing for those roles, read on to learn about:

    • How to start a career in coding

    • The different types of coding jobs available

    • Coding careers for beginners

    • Jobs you can get with coding skills and experience

    How to Start a Career in Coding

    Whether you’re just getting started professionally or you want to make a mid-career change, you can follow some key steps for how to get into coding.

    Pick a Discipline

    When considering how to start a career in coding, first choose what type of work you want to do. Then select your education pathway and programming languages to learn accordingly.

    Most coding professionals specialize in several programming languages, depending on the discipline they choose. Python, JavaScript, Go, and Java tops the list of most popular programming languages for 2022, according to outsourcing and IT recruiter Next Technology.

    Here are some of the most popular languages according to the type of career you want to pursue:

    • Front-end web development, or the web mechanisms that users experience—JavaScript, Elm, and TypeScript

    • Back-end web development, or the behind-the-scenes web-related work—JavaScript, Scala, Python, Go, and Ruby

    • Mobile development—Swift, Java, Objective-C, and JavaScript

    • Game development—Unity and TypeScript

    • Desktop applications—Scala, Go, and Python

    • Data analytics—Python, JavaScript, and Scala

    • Systems programming, which guides user interface with computer hardware—Go and Rust

    Pursue an Education

    Several educational options are available for learning to code, from bootcamps to self-learning.


    Resources such as hard-copy books, e-books, YouTube videos, and online forums are an option for self-learning coding. Online coding-focused games can provide an additional resource, helping you practice what you learn.

    While self-learning allows for maximum flexibility, it also requires you to research your own learning materials and rely on self-motivation. It also may not provide networking or career-search assistance.


    Coding bootcamps are short-term programs that can provide a foundation for careers in a variety of technology fields. They may be full-time or part-time and in person or online. The immersive, supportive environment of a bootcamp can help you stay committed to your coding education.

    Pursuing a guided approach like a bootcamp can also ensure you have current, expert instruction on in-demand languages, critical coding skills, and best practices to follow, and more.

    Develop Soft Skills

    In addition,your education should help you develop the soft skills that are important for success in coding, including:

    • Analytical skills—to understand complex instructions and navigate complicated processes

    • Attention to detail—to check that each coding element is in place to ensure correct operations of the systems the language is directing

    • Communication—to coordinate work with others on large projects

    • Patience—to manage large, detailed projects, often on tight deadlines

    • Problem-solving—to find ways to correct problems that can affect whether the program works

    Math skills also are important in coding, which relies on the use of logic and numbers to develop code that delivers correct messaging.

    Seek Certification

    Another step in how to start a career in coding is to earn certification in the languages or programming products you use. Some companies require these certifications of their employees who code.

    Google Certified Professional Cloud Architect, Project Management Professional (PMP)®, and Sun Certified Java Programmer are among the many certifications that can help you reach your career goals. Most certification organizations require you to pass a proctored online exam that can last one to four hours.

    Create a Portfolio

    Make a portfolio of your work showing potential employers what you have learned about coding. Whether you redesign a popular website, create a simple game or app, or enhance an existing mobile app, it’s important to show that you have the skill set you need to pursue your chosen career.

    Participating in a coding bootcamp will give you the opportunity to create apps you can use to demonstrate your coding skills during your job search.

    Find a Job

    Find a job that matches your skills and experience, and use your first role to determine the kind of work you enjoy and want to pursue in the future. Bootcamps can offer professional networking opportunities—and instructors and staff who can help connect you with jobs at top companies.

    The Different Types of Coding Tools Available

    Because coding is at the base of so much of modern technology, there are many coding tools available to those trained in the discipline. When considering how to get into coding, it is important to keep in mind some of the technology equipment and functions that coding professionals use. These tools and processes include:


    Software, such as business applications or operating systems, instructs a computer on what to do. It guides processes that help organizations meet their customers’ needs. There are four basic types of software:

    • System software—directs core functions like operating systems and hardware and disk management

    • Programming software—provides tools that facilitate tasks like text editing and debugging

    • Application software—helps users perform tasks like data management and playing online media more easily

    • Embedded software—controls machines that aren’t computers, such as cars and appliances


    A network is the connection between two or more computers to facilitate the transmission, exchange, or sharing of data and other resources. These networks use hardware—such as routers, switches, or cables—in addition to software. Networks allow for an organization’s employees to share and store information necessary to do their jobs.

    Types of networks include:

    • Local area networks (LANs)—connect computers between short distances, such as within an office building

    • Wireless local area networks (WLANs)—offer wireless short-distance connectivity

    • Wide area networks (WANs)—connect computers across a greater distance, even across the globe

    • Metropolitan area networks (MANs)—typically connect city and government computers

    • Personal area networks (PANs)—share content between one person’s devices

    • Storage area networks (SANs)—attach to computers to store data

    • Campus area networks (CANs)—serve locations such as college or business campuses

    • Virtual private networks (VPNs)—encrypt data that multiple sites share

    Database Administration

    A database is an organized set of data stored in a computer system. Database administration is the management of an organization’s databases, a critical function for any organization with a heavy reliance on information storage. The types of database administration are:

    • Systems database administration—involves installing and maintaining equipment for data storage

    • Development database administration—focuses on writing the language that directs data storage

    • Application database administration—calls for installing new software applications or checking system integration

    Business Intelligence

    Some coding jobs involve business intelligence (BI), which is the collection and evaluation of data to help guide companies’ strategies and tactics. BI tools can access and analyze data on anything from supply chain processes to consumer preferences and present findings in reports and graphics.

    Organizations must determine which data to collect and where to store it so they can retrieve and evaluate the information when making decisions.

    Coding Careers for Beginners

    As you explore how to get into coding, you may consider what job opportunities exist for coding beginners.

    Entry-level coding jobs allow you to further develop your skills, adjust to working in the field, and establish relevant professional connections. The following are among the coding careers for beginners that you can consider as you start your job search:

    Data Analyst

    Data analysts use data from digital sources, as well as other resources, to learn about specific topics, analyze and share that information, and inform organizational decisions. They design processes for collecting information to gain insight about a business and its customers and market. They use computer programs to:

    • Gather information about customer needs and technical issues

    • Establish processes for presenting data to address the questions and concerns of business leaders

    • Develop ways to enhance the data collection, analysis, and reporting process

    The median annual salary for data analysts in the U.S. is about $73,240, according to Emsi Burning Glass.

    Digital Analyst

    Digital analysts typically focus on digital data from sources such as websites, search engine rankings, and electronic surveys. As with data analysts, their work helps companies to determine changes to make or products and services to offer. Tasks include:

    • Examining and analyzing collected data

    • Developing recommendations for an organization’s leaders

    • Ensuring the security and accuracy of data collected

    Digital analysts had a median annual salary of about $62,200 in February 2022, PayScale reports.

    Web Designer

    Web designer is another coding career for beginners. These professionals create templates and mock-ups for the way a website will appear on computers, phones, tablets, touch screens, and televisions. They develop plans for the basic look and the functions of the site, often relying on knowledge of coding languages to shape their designs—and gauge whether their plans will work. They also perform tasks such as:

    • Determining client preferences for the elements and look of a website

    • Creating visual guides that outline the website’s look and features

    • Following organizational design guidelines in creating templates for the site’s appearance

    In April 2022, the median annual salary for web designers was approximately $52,500, according to PayScale.

    Web Developer

    Web developers create the features that allow a website’s graphical, text, video, and audio elements to work as designed. Often working in collaboration with web designers, they write code that directs the site’s look and operation, and they assist with client reviews. Web developers are responsible for tasks such as:

    • Building websites and online applications

    • Testing front-end and back-end web mechanisms

    • Making adjustments to fix operational issues

    Emsi Burning Glass indicates the median annual salary for web developers is about $92,349.

    What Jobs Can You Get With Coding Skills and Experience?

    Once you gain some experience working as a coding professional, you can seek out opportunities that require a higher level of expertise. What jobs can you get with coding skills and experience? The following are some higher-level roles:

    Computer Programmer

    Computer programmers write and test code, turning designs by software developers and engineers into instructions that make those prescribed functions work. They use code libraries, or collections of lines of code, to make their work easier and more efficient. Working with designers and content developers, computer programmers perform tasks including:

    • Writing programs in various programming languages

    • Testing the functions that language directs and correcting code as needed

    • Updating and adding to existing programming languages

    • Creating, changing, and testing code that simplifies the operational process

    Computer programmers’ median annual salary in May 2020 was $89,190, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

    Software Developer

    Software developers create computer applications that allow users to perform tasks with computers or other devices that rely on technology. They work closely with systems engineers and computer programmers, designing each piece of an application or system to ensure all parts work together. Among the tasks of software developers are:

    • Analyzing users’ needs and developing software to address them

    • Creating models that help computer programmers apply the code that guides software operations

    • Recommending software upgrades for improved performance

    • Overseeing the testing and maintenance of software to ensure proper function

    In March 2022, software developers made a median annual salary of about $73,400, according to PayScale.

    Computer Systems Engineer

    Another job that you can get with coding skills and experience is a computer systems engineer role. These professionals design and plan solutions to complex problems with applications, systems, or networks. Computer systems engineers’ tasks include:

    • Collaborating with software developers to design systems to meet design requirements and compatibility needs

    • Developing the setup for system and software engineering

    • Reviewing system functions to ensure stability, compatibility, and security

    • Guiding regarding project costs and design plans

    According to the BLS, computer systems engineers’ median annual salary in May 2020 was $92,870.

    Network Administrator

    Network administrators manage an organization’s computer systems or database networks, helping to ensure proper function and security. They work to determine the network needs of an organization and oversee the installation of hardware or software to address those needs. The following are among network administrator tasks:

    • Maintaining computer networks and systems

    • Delivering and setting up hardware and software

    • Correcting hardware or software issues

    • Evaluating network efficiency

    • Training staff on the use of hardware

    Network administrators earned a median salary of about $61,200 in March 2022, according to PayScale.

    Start Your Journey Toward a Satisfying Career

    The importance of technology—and the coding jobs that guide how that technology works—means that coding can be a smart career choice. If you’re ready to explore more about how to get into coding and what to learn to prepare for this satisfying career field, find out more about Fullstack Academy’s bootcamps.

    Fullstack offers in-person and remote options and full-time and part-time programs. You can focus on coding, cybersecurity, or data analytics. You’ll learn from industry experts and get support from career coaches to help guide your job search.

    Discover how Fullstack Academy can help you reach your professional ambitions.

    Recommended Readings
    3 Common Barriers to a Successful Career Change—and How to Work Through Them
    Data Scientist vs. Data Analyst: What’s the Difference?
    How to Get a Job in Cybersecurity
    3Pillar Global, “Importance of Software Development”
    Business Insider, “What Is Coding? A Brief Guide to the Facet of Computer Programming”
    CIO, “What Is Business Intelligence? Transforming Data Into Business Insights”
    Codementor Community, “How to Start a Career in Coding”
    CompTIA, “Top IT Skills in Demand in 2022”
    IBM, Networking
    IBM, “What Is Software Development?”
    Indeed Career Guide, “15 Programming Certifications for IT Professionals”
    Indeed Career Guide, “Q&A: What Is Coding?”
    Indeed, Network Administrator Job Description
    KnowTechie, “Teaching Yourself to Code: The Learning Process
    Marketing91, “Self Learning—Definition, Importance and Advantages”
    OCI, “What Is a Database?”
    O*NET OnLine, Summary Report for Computer Systems Engineers/Architects
    PayScale, Average Computer Programmer Salary
    PayScale, Average Digital Analyst Salary
    PayScale, Average Web Designer Salary
    PayScale, Average Network Administrator Salary
    PayScale, Average Software Developer Salary
    Sphero, “10 Real-World Coding Examples That Save the Day”
    Teach Your Kids Code, “Coding Is the Future, but Why?”
    Techopedia, System Programming
    TechRepublic, “The Best Programming Languages to Learn in 2022”
    ThinkAutomation, “What Is a Database Administrator (DBA)?”
    U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Computer and Information Technology Occupations
    U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Computer Programmers
    U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Software Developers, Quality Assurance Analysts, and Testers
    Warwick, “Computer Networking: What Is It, and Why Is It So Important?”, “Do Web Designers Need to Know How to Code When Designing a Website?”
    Zippia, Top Computer Programmer Certifications for Your Career in 2022

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