How Difficult is it to Learn Java?

Explore the vast possibilities of Java programming, from creating robust, scalable applications to analyzing large data sets using open-source tools. Break into tech professions such as Web Developer, Mobile App Developer, Data Scientist, Game Designer, and more with the power of Java under your belt.

Key Insights

  • Java is an object-oriented programming language and software platform that offers "write once, run anywhere" flexibility, making it a desirable skill for employers in various tech professions.
  • Java can be used to code across multiple operating systems and hardware architectures, allowing code to be reused in any Java program, making it highly adaptable for new technologies.
  • Java is highly useful for web development, mobile app development, data science, game design, UX design, and scientific applications, highlighting its versatility.
  • Learning Java can be a challenge, especially for beginners, due to the complexity of its syntax; however, with regular practice and support from fellow coders or an instructor, one can grasp it effectively.
  • Noble Desktop offers several options for studying Java, including a Java bootcamp, which provides practical Java skills and computer science principles making it easy to qualify for entry-level coding positions.
  • Java developers' salaries vary greatly depending on their experience and the nature of their role. However, they are generally well-compensated, with the average Java Developer in the United States earning around $104,663 per year according to Indeed.com.

Are you curious about learning Java but worried it might be too hard? Of course, the difficulty that comes with learning a new skill is somewhat subjective. The challenges of learning Java depend on factors like your level of coding experience, the amount of time you are willing and able to put into learning the language, and the amount of support you have in your learning process.

No matter your current schedule or comfort level with Java, plenty of tools are available to help make learning more manageable than you might think.

What is Java?

Java is both an object-oriented programming language and a software platform in itself. Its creators designed it as a “write once, run anywhere” tool. It is portable, scalable, and adaptable. An app created in Java can function across multiple platforms and over distributed networks. This flexibility makes the Java language widely useful and Java coders highly desirable to employers. Professions that use Java include Web Developer, Mobile App Developer, User Experience Designer, Data Scientist, Game Designer, and Laboratory Scientist.

Java’s modular nature allows developers to take existing pieces of code that are useful to them and then combine those modules in a new context for a new purpose. Also, programs in Java do not need to be compiled because the virtual Java Runtime Environment tool interprets the code and translates it for the computer you are using. Java’s portable and adaptable nature allows it to serve a wide range of use cases. For this reason, it has become the chosen tool of key players in the technology space: for example, the Android operating system is based on Java code. In addition to being critical for mobile app development, Java is also a crucial skill for Web Developers. It is also used for data science, game design, user experience design, and scientific applications. Many employers are eager to hire Java coders because the language is highly flexible, with many possible use cases and adaptations to new contexts.

Read more about what Java is and why you should learn it. 

What Can You Do with Java?

Software Engineering Certificate: Live & Hands-on, In NYC or Online, 0% Financing, 1-on-1 Mentoring, Free Retake, Job Prep. Named a Top Bootcamp by Forbes, Fortune, & Time Out. Noble Desktop. Learn More.

Knowing Java means you can code across multiple operating systems and hardware architectures without modifying your programs for a new environment. Because it is an object-oriented programming language, Java allows you to create modular units of code that you can reuse in any Java program, even across platforms and environments. You can quickly adapt code created for one use case to apply in another, as Java is highly flexible and adaptable for novel contexts. So as exciting new technologies arise, your knowledge of Java will remain relevant and desirable to employers.

Using Java also speeds up the development cycle. This is due to its unique interpretation process, which allows developers to sidestep much of the routine testing and debugging necessary when coding in other programming languages. You can use the Java Runtime Environment to keep your applications robust with its automatic memory management. The JRE also supports robust graphic interfaces through multithreading. Another advantage is that its built-in virus and tamper protection keeps your code secure.

With Java, you can build mobile applications for the Android platform and, in some cases, for iOs. If you’re into big data, you can use Java to analyze large datasets with open-source tools like Hadoop and Spark. Java’s “write once, run anywhere” functionality makes it perfect for writing cloud-based applications and powering data collection within them. Though machine learning is typically associated with Python, libraries such as Deep Learning for Java and MLib make it easy to take advantage of Java’s speed and security by providing a stable environment for deep learning or machine learning processes. Another great application for Java is programming smart household devices. Java is also useful for game design, both mobile and desktop. 

What Are the Most Challenging Parts of Learning Java?

A student coming to any new programming language will find some challenges. Java is fairly easy to learn if you have already studied another programming language. However, if Java is your first, it will be a little more complicated.

For a person learning to code for the first time, one challenge when learning Java can be getting the hang of the language’s syntax. For example, Java syntax is longer and more complex than the straightforward syntax of Python. To print a line of text in Python, you need only write the text within the print command, whereas in Java, you must first establish it as a string variable.

However, you do not need to learn Python or another language before learning Java, even if you are new to coding. The key is to practice regularly and, ideally, seek feedback and advice from an instructor or fellow coders who use Java.

How Does Learning Java Compare to Other Languages?

As you consider whether you want to learn Java, you may wonder how it compares to other programming languages you might study instead. The languages most comparable to Java are Python, JavaScript, and R.

Like Java,Python is an object-oriented programming language. Java and Python are organized around “objects,” units of code that programmers can reuse and combine in a modular fashion to serve different purposes. While Python is highly sought after for coding in data science, Data Scientists also code in Java because of useful frameworks like Hadoop and the many open-source Java libraries that facilitate deep learning. Some instructors consider Python easier to learn than Java because the language is more intuitively readable for human beings on a first encounter.

It is important not to confuse Java with JavaScript, as they are completely separate languages, but it is still worthwhile to compare them. JavaScript allows developers to add interactive components to websites and apps. This language is used for front end web development, while Java is used on the back end. Both JavaScript and Java are highly desirable skills for full stack web developers. While Java is fairly beginner-friendly, JavaScript is a complex language to understand if you’re unfamiliar with HTML and CSS.

Like Python, R is particularly useful in data science, though it is not nearly as popular today as Python is. R’s creators designed it specifically for data analysis.This language is known for being difficult to learn because of its unusual syntax.

Ways to Make Learning Java Easier

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to make your study of Java go smoothly.

  • Basic concepts first: To learn Java effectively, it’s best to start with the basics. You’ll need to understand the concept of object-oriented programming before you go deep into Java. Also, you should familiarize yourself with Java’s classes, data types, and functions. Knowing these concepts will make it easier to understand the syntax rules.
  • Find a mentor: Whenever you learn any skill, it’s always a good idea to find someone more advanced to guide you and help out when you encounter problems. Even if you choose a learning method that doesn’t involve an instructor, it’s still a good idea to find someone who knows a great deal about Java and get in the habit of asking that person for help.
  • Use the available frameworks and libraries: One major advantage of Java is the number of free frameworks and libraries available to make coding in the language more accessible. Before you write a complex chunk of code, check to see if someone has already created a Java framework or library that will do the trick.
  • Join the community: Besides finding a mentor, you’ll have an easier time learning Java if you join the broader community of Java coders. For more on that, read on.

A Supportive Community

An advantage you’ll have when learning Java is the large and supportive international community of Java coders. Worldwide, about 10 million developers use Java. When you meet a challenge in your study of Java, this community can help in several ways. There are many free frameworks and libraries available for Java that you can plug into your code to serve a wide range of functions, allowing you to skip tedious coding by traveling a road others have already paved. For individual problems, you can post a question on the Java Programming Forums or another coding forum site. 

Learn Java with Hands-on Training at Noble Desktop

Noble Desktop offers several options for studying Java. Its small class sizes and expert instructors make for an ideal learning environment. And if you want to enhance your knowledge further, you can always retake the class—for free. With both in-person and live online options available, you can learn Java in whichever way best fits your needs.

Noble’s Java bootcamp is a great way to learn Java quickly and well. You can do the bootcamp either in-person or live online. This program teaches practical Java skills and the computer science principles that form the foundation of Java’s effectiveness. The course covers object-oriented programming, recursion, and data structures. You’ll also discover the secrets of the interpretation process that streamlines the creation of a new program in Java. By the end of the course, you’ll be ready to pass the Java SE 11 Programmer 1 Exam, helping you qualify for entry-level coding positions. In addition to the bootcamp, some of Noble’s other coding classes also include instruction in Java.


High school and college students can take summer Java classes through NextGen Bootcamp, Noble’s partner school. For those who can attend an in-person program in New York City, NextGen offers a Java programming summer camp. This 50-hour course culminates in each student creating a final project in Java, which they can include in their portfolio when applying for computer science programs. The camp also gives students a head start preparing for their AP Computer Science exam. Students who can’t make it to NYC have another option: NextGen’s live online summer Java program. Though different in the delivery method, this course offers the same content, final project, and exam preparation as the in-person course.

How to Learn Coding

Master coding with hands-on training. Learning how to code in JavaScript, Python, and other popular languages can pave the way to a job in tech, such as web development, data science & analytics, or software engineering.

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