5 Methods Of Continuing Education For Software Developers
Software Developers never stop learning. Languages are constantly being updated or created and to stay on top of your game, you need to always be learning. Earning a degree alone is not enough to stay relevant in this field (or many others for that matter). If you need some ideas for how to refresh your skills this year and beyond, check out these 5 methods for continuing education as a software developer.
1. Teach Yourself
Software Developers are naturally curious, making self-education ideal. In a Stack Overflow survey, 86.8% of professional developers reported that they “taught [themselves] a new language, framework, or tool without taking a formal course.”
2. Complete A Training Course
While many developers explore technologies on their own, enrolling in a training course can be extremely beneficial to learning a new technology quickly. Training courses are offered in a number of formats; you can easily find one that works for your learning type and schedule. The three common delivery methods include:
- Self-paced online
- Live online
Courses are also delivered during the week, nights and weekends and can take as little as a few days or a full semester to complete. As you can see, there are a number of ways you can learn the skills you need to grow in your career.
3. Participate In A Competition
If you are looking for continuing education outside of a classroom environment, coding competitions or hackathons may be just what you need. Coding challenges can be found online, such as the ones in this list from GeeksforGeeks, or you can find them through local organizations such as Chambers of Commerce, Tech Councils or Innovation Centers.
4. Contribute To Open Source Software
Another way to develop your skills outside of the classroom is to contribute to open source projects. Continuing education as a Software Developer can be as easy as finding an open issue you can tackle on a project or simply asking if there are opportunities for you to contribute. This guide provides a great resource on all of the ways you can start contributing to open source.
5. Learn On The Job
Do you work in an organization with experienced Software Developers you can learn from? Or do you work for a small start up that is flexible with you taking on new projects? Either way, seize these opportunities to learn on the job! Take any opportunity you can to learn from those around you and to volunteer for something outside of your comfort zone. Doing so will help you increase your skills rapidly since you are immediately reinforcing your knowledge as you apply it to your work.
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