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If you’ve always wanted to learn computer science but can’t figure out how to get started, this guide is for you. Here, you’ll learn more about the various ways to learn computer science, free resources to take advantage of, and the types of careers that commonly use computer science.
Computer science is an immense field that encompasses the study of information systems, computation, and automation. Hardware and software design, machine learning algorithms, and data visualization fall under the computer science purview.
On the theoretical side, computer science includes information theory, algorithms, and computational theory. The practical side of computer science covers hardware and software design and implementation. While data science has emerged as a discrete discipline in recent years, many computer science pros still consider it a subcategory of the larger computer science field.
Read more about what computer science is and why you should learn it.
Computer science classes cover a wide range of subjects, encompassing anything from web development and software engineering to data science. Tools like Python and Java are popular among numerous career paths in this growing field, and as far as computer science applications go, the sky’s the limit.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the Computer and Information Research Scientist job outlook is especially bright: they estimate a 21% growth rate between 2021-2031, well above the average growth rate of five percent. Top positions for computer science professionals include Software Developers, IT Security Analysts, Data Scientists, and Product Managers.
Areas of specialization for computer science professionals include programming languages like Java, the development and application of robotics, and the development of new systems, tools, and programming languages. In our ever-more connected digital world, computer science generalists and specialists can thrive both now and in the future.
Computer science is a broad field, so it’s essential to understand how different professions use it in various ways.
Data science pros take a different approach to their computer science training. They may learn tools ranging from Python programming to machine learning models and data visualization. Popular tools among Data Scientists include SQL, Matplotlib, NumPy, and Pandas. Many data science pros also prepare for entry-level roles through comprehensive certificate programs.
Cybersecurity professionals also learn computer science skills, though with a unique emphasis. An Information Security Analyst or Cybersecurity Analyst may begin their computer science training by learning everything from Python to digital forensics, Linux, and cloud computing. Here again, immersive training in computer science tools and skills can launch a successful career.
Learning a field like computer science can take many forms, from Python programming to software engineering. With the urgent demand for computer science professionals in numerous sectors, there’s never been a better time to study this exciting field. Machine learning, web development, and application development all fall under the computer science category.
Want to learn more? If you’re interested in a computer science career, consider enrolling in a comprehensive bootcamp or certificate program. These immersive courses can prepare computer science beginners for entry-level positions in web development, data science, or software engineering.
Read more about why you should learn computer science.
To master computer science for your career, you’ll want to learn different tools and skills. Live online or in-person classes are among the best learning options for computer science students.
Live computer science courses offer a variety of benefits. Students can get real-time answers to their questions, and live courses are both hands-on and interactive in most cases. For those who cannot commute to an in-person computer science class, live online computer science courses can be just as beneficial. Noble Desktop’s Full Stack Web Development Certificate is an example of one such program, available both in-person and online.
While they may not offer the same level of engagement as live or on-demand classes, free seminars, tutorials, and blog posts can also benefit students beginning a computer science education. Computer science trainees can find free seminars like Intro to Front End Web Development, the Intro to Node.js seminar (appropriate for web development students), and Intro to SQL, a perfect choice for data science and Python programming students.
Are you considering a career in computer science but not ready to dive into a full-length course? If you’re looking for a simple computer science overview or cannot commit to a full-length bootcamp or certificate program, check out the many online resources you can use to start learning computer science for free.
Want to learn data science as part of a broader computer science curriculum? Your education can begin with Noble’s data science video tutorials. These include Get Started in Data Science, Intro to Python Fundamentals, and Exchanging Excel for Python.
Additional free online courses include:
Read about more free computer science videos and online tutorials.
Costs also vary. Some entry-level computer science positions require a degree, but a bootcamp or certificate program can prepare students for many other entry-level roles.
Read on to learn more about how difficult it is to learn computer science.
While experts estimate it takes at least six months to master computer science fundamentals, many beginners immerse themselves in bootcamps or certificate programs to get in-depth training in a concentrated timeframe. The most significant difficulty may reside in deciding which avenue of training to pursue. Keep in mind you may need a broad-based computer science curriculum, while other students will require more targeted training in any of the following roles:
Cost is another relevant factor; your budget and availability will also influence your decision about how to master computer science skills that meet your goals.
In deciding the best method to learn computer science, think first about how and in what way you want to use the skills and knowledge you’ll get from training. Beginners may not want to invest income yet want a high-level overview of the field. Students at this level should consider a free introductory tutorial like Noble Desktop’s Intro to SQL.
Want to master computer science for your career? One of the best options is a lengthier program like Noble Desktop’s Full Stack Web Development Certificate or Software Engineering Certificate. These immersive bootcamp-style courses prepare students for entry-level positions and include 1-on-1 mentoring plus the option to retake the programs at no additional cost.
If you focus your computer science training on the subcategory of data science, Noble Desktop’s Data Science Certificate gives you the skills you need for an entry-level position. This immersive program provides training in essential tools from Python programming to machine learning fundamentals. It’s a great way to prepare to work as a Data Scientist, Data Analyst, or Machine Learning Engineer.
High school students preparing for the AP Computer Science exam can benefit from Noble’s live online computer science NextGen Bootcamps. These summer classes offer an ideal way to learn disciplines like web development, Python programming, or data science in a beginner-friendly environment.