Learn PHP & MySQL

A Comprehensive Guide to Start Learning PHP & MySQL

PHP is an open-source, server-side coding language first developed in 1994. Commonly it is used with MySQL, an open-source database management system first developed in 1995. PHP and MySQL help power over 80% of the websites on the web today. Developers still value these back end languages for their simple and compatible syntax. This overview will teach you more about PHP and MySQL, what you can do with it, who uses it, and how to learn this language to add this skill to your developer toolbelt.

Discover why the open-source, server-side programming languages PHP and MySQL are critical skills for dynamic, fast website and application design, used by over 80% of online websites. Explore career paths that utilize PHP and MySQL, such as web development, full stack development, back end development, software engineering, and WordPress development.

Key Insights

  • PHP and MySQL are open-source, server-side programming languages essential for creating dynamic and fast websites and applications.
  • Despite declining popularity, PHP and MySQL power over 80% of online websites and are used by major web applications like Facebook, Netflix, Uber, and Twitter.
  • Careers that utilize PHP and MySQL include Web Developer, Full Stack Developer, Back End Developer, Software Engineer, and WordPress Developer.
  • Noble Desktop provides different ways to learn PHP and MySQL, including in-person and online web development classes, on-demand courses, and free seminars.
  • Learning PHP and MySQL can be a stepping stone for beginners in web development, offering user-friendly experience and more control over the language.
  • The average cost of PHP and MySQL courses ranges from $100 to about $1000, with the majority of the cost associated with website hosting, equipment upgrading, and training.

PHP and MySQL are open-source, server-side programming languages that create dynamic, fast websites and applications. Together, they power over 80% of online websites despite declining popularity. Keep reading if you've wanted to learn PHP and MySQL but need help knowing where to start. Here, you'll explore the various ways to learn PHP and MySQL, the free resources to look into, and the careers that utilize PHP and MySQL.

What is PHP & MySQL?

PHP is a widely used open-source scripting language on the server side of web development. This free and open-source coding language is one of the more accessible coding languages to learn while offering advanced features for professional programmers. The majority of the time, PHP is used for making web servers. One thing that makes PHP simple is that it is platform-independent and can run on any operating system without a problem.

Typically when you work with PHP, you will also work with MySQL as the database management system. MySQL is a structured query language that plays a central role in computing. Instead of storing data in a big storage room, MySQL stores all of the data in separate tables that efficiently tracks and manages all of the data from the websites. You can find that both PHP and MySQL power several of the most accessed web applications, including Facebook, Netflix, Uber, and Twitter. 

Read more about PHP and MySQL and why you should learn them.

What Can You Do with PHP & MySQL?

When thinking about what you can do with various programming languages, you'll probably think of the countless websites and web applications you could create; however, with PHP and MySQL, you can do much more. 

You can create dynamic page content by working with a server-side programming language. Many programmers working with PHP and MySQL work with e-commerce and WordPress themes. You can write the script for and create desktop applications. However, these are things that other programming languages can accomplish as well. PHP is great for web security as you can easily set up user authentication and two-step verification with PHP. This security trick will allow your websites to use the cornerstones of web security with a few simple steps. You have easy database connectivity, which is why you often see PHP paired with MySQL. 

With PHP, you can implement real-time applications like chats, bots, social networks, and games into your website. To do this, you need to create the application using a different language, then use local PHP back end code to implement it into the website. However, these are just a few things you can accomplish with PHP; the more familiar you become with the language, the more you will be able to accomplish.

Careers that Use PHP & MySQL

Before you begin your training in PHP and MySQL, you may wonder what type of careers await you once you finish that training, especially if the language is not as popular as others. While PHP and MySQL are still used on 80% of websites today, several companies still require employees to be proficient in the language. Here are a few viable areas to consider when you enter the workforce. 

  • Web Developer: Those in this position primarily build different web pages with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. You can choose to work in front end development, back end development, or full stack development. However, no matter which area you choose to enter in this career, you will mostly be looking at program functionality and troubleshooting errors in code.
  • Full Stack Developer: These developers will work on building web applications for both the front end and back end powers of the application. Those who choose to go this route will need to spend time learning front end languages as well as back end.
  • Back End Developer: Those in this position will work on the server side of websites and web applications. They will need to integrate front end development components. Users do not see the majority of this work.
  • Software Engineer: In this position, you will use your knowledge of programming languages to develop different software. Those in this position can create software ranging from games to operating systems.
  • WordPress Developer: More often than not, you will see those with expertise in PHP and MySQL working in this position. Those in this position can create full WordPress sites or new themes for existing ones. 

Why Learn PHP & MySQL?

You may wonder why you should take the time to learn PHP and MySQL. Over the years, PHP has declined in popularity, with new coding languages coming onto the scene. Despite the decline in popularity, it is still used in about 80% of websites today. It is still an easy-to-learn language accompanied by a large community that willingly shares information and tips. You can find many jobs requiring proficiency in PHP and MySQL. 

PHP is a great language to learn if you start with web development. It can be a great stepping stone to other coding languages. Starting with PHP and MySQL gives you a user-friendly experience that gives you more control over the language. The syntax is forgivable, making it perfect for those who have never coded. Beginners can take their time to work out the hiccups with simple language before jumping into a more complex language. PHP and MySQL are for more than just beginners. The more you work with the language, the more advanced coding you can do with it. 

Read more about why you should learn PHP and MySQL.

How to Learn PHP & MySQL

Learning any coding language can be challenging for beginners, so you may need to take structured classes to help you succeed in web development. Noble Desktop provides different ways to help you find the program right for your needs. You can use the school's Classes Near Me tool to locate in-person web development classes near you in you prefer a face-to-face environment. For students who want the flexibility of a virtual environment, you can use the tool to find live online web development courses or check out Nobles web development virtual courses. 

Enrolling in a class is a significant time commitment, which can be challenging to fit into a busy schedule. You should continue learning even if you cannot commit to a lengthy course. You can find several on-demand web development courses that will fit your busy schedule. On-demand courses are available in all skill levels and several different programming languages. You may find some free introductory courses, but the majority of the courses will require some upfront fee ranging from $100 to about $1000. The more expensive a program is, the more resources are available. These courses may also be asynchronous: you can take the course when you have the time to devote, but it is still an entire course. Other courses will require you to purchase a platform subscription. 

Another great way to begin working with programming languages is to watch video demonstrations. Noble Desktop provides several YouTube playlists on different programming languages, including Python and JavaScript. For an overview of web development, watch the Web Design and Development playlist that discusses multiple topics. You may also browse through Noble Desktop's free seminars to find several courses covering various programming languages. To learn the basics of PHP, consider taking the Intro to WordPress for Developers course. 

Read the full guide on how to learn web development.

Free Introductory PHP & MySQL Course Online 

If you cannot commit to a lengthy course but want to start your programming journey, you can learn for free online. Check out Noble Desktop's free Intro to WordPress for Developers course. This course will give a basic overview of how to use PHP in WordPress. In this course, students will focus on the developer side of WordPress, learning how to develop themes, how they work, and how to upload them. Noble Desktop also provides other free seminars in various programming languages. 

Other schools also provide free web development courses. Coursera provides courses on how to build websites using WordPress and how to build web apps in PHP. You can also audit their longer web development courses for free. Udemy also offers several free introductory courses for PHP and MySQL. You can also find hundreds of web development videos on YouTube to help you get started with various programming languages. You can check out Noble Desktop's YouTube Channel for various web development videos. 

Read about more free PHP and MySQL videos and online tutorials.

Level of Difficulty, Prerequisites, & Cost 

Learning any programming language is daunting, as learning to code is challenging. There are ways to make the transition into web development more straightforward. One of those ways to begin is by learning PHP and MySQL. PHP and MySQL provide beginners with a simple and forgivable syntax that is easy to learn. Beginners can become proficient in both in under a year. 

To start learning PHP and MySQL, one should consider having a high level of basic computer skills. Entering the tech world, you will need to know how to navigate your way around your computer, troubleshoot any issues, and know essential software like Microsoft Word, Excel, and Outlook. You should also learn the basics of HTML and CSS before getting started with PHP HTML can be embedded with PHP code. This task is unnecessary but can make the learning process easier. 

PHP and MySQL are open-source languages. This designation means you can download the code free from the correlating websites and begin manipulating the language as you see fit. You will encounter the cost of PHP and MySQL from website hosting, upgrading equipment, and training. 

Read about how difficult it is to learn PHP and MySQL.

How Does Learning PHP & MySQL Compare to Other Languages?

If you are interested in entering the web development field, you may wonder what other languages you need to know or where you should start. With web development, you will need to know various languages to be successful. One of those languages is Python. 

Python is a general-purpose language that is in high demand. Those who use Python typically use it to develop applications, create machine learning algorithms, automate tasks, and analyze and visualize data. This open-source language emphasizes readable and efficient code while remaining flexible and scalable. Python has developed multiple frameworks and libraries to perform different tasks that allow it to be more flexible and efficient. 

Most commonly, Python is used for Data Science as it can quickly analyze and visualize data sets. Data Scientists find ease in Python as the language is simple to learn and use. One will also see Python used in machine learning, software development, and automation. With Python, one can explore several different avenues as a programmer.

Read about what Python is and how to learn it

How to Decide the Best Way to Learn PHP & MySQL

With various languages to learn within web development, you may wonder about the best way to start learning the language. When deciding which learning method to use, remember why you want to start learning and what you want to accomplish with your training. Noble Desktop's Intro to WordPress for Developers free seminar introduces students to the simple and easy-to-learn programming language PHP. As a beginner to web development, this can be a great place to start, as this prerecorded class provides the basics of this language in a low-risk environment. If you decide that PHP or programming is wrong for you, you lose nothing but time by enrolling in one of these courses. 

If you want a training program to enhance your current career or position, consider enrolling in a bootcamp. Noble Desktop offers a PHP and MySQL bootcamp that dives into the server-side language and database system to create dynamic websites. You may check out Noble's other web development bootcamps to learn other languages. Bootcamps are a more expensive option; they range from $1000 to over $4000, depending on the school and length of the program. However, bootcamps allow you to learn a new skill quickly, allowing a faster move up in your career. 

For those who seek a new career or to change industries, consider a certificate program. Noble offers a JavaScript Development Certificate and a Python Developer Certificate. These courses provide students with in-depth training on the back end programming languages. These certificate courses will be the most expensive option; however, students will leave these courses with the necessary skills to jump into a new web development career. 

Determining which method will work for you can be stressful initially; however, deciding which way to go early will save you time and money in the long run. As you decide, consider looking for programs that will be manageable for your budget and schedule. To be the most successful, you should avoid putting yourself in a high-stress position, as that will not allow you to retain the information in the classes. You can start small with the free courses and resources and pivot to a different method if and when needed. 

Learn Web Development with Hands-on Training at Noble Desktop

Noble Desktop provides various web development classes that meet various scheduling needs and learning styles. No matter which class you enroll in, you’ll learn from expert instructors in small intimate classes. Any students can attend in-person training at Noble's Manhattan campus or remotely from anywhere worldwide. In addition to the courses, students can retake the course within of year of completion for no additional charge, giving them more time to hone their skills.

For those interested in beginning their web development journey, Noble offers a short Intro to WordPress for Developers course that covers the basics of PHP. This course covers how WordPress Themes work and how to develop and upload them onto a live site. For a more in-depth look into web development through WordPress, consider the WordPress Bootcamp. This course goes more in-depth on how to use HTML, CSS, and PHP to develop websites for WordPress. 

If you want a general overview of PHP and MySQL, you can take the PHP and MySQL bootcamp course. In this course, you learn the fundamentals of both PHP and MySQL. Before taking this course, you should have some basic knowledge of HTML and CSS. 

Those interested in learning other back end web development languages to start their web development career should consider enrolling in the JavaScript Development Certificate course or the Python Developer Certificate course. Both courses go in-depth into each language. After learning PHP and MySQL, you should consider learning JavaScript and Python, as you will encounter them throughout your programming career. Having each of these languages on your programming toolbelt with help jumpstart your web development career!

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