Learning basic coding skills can be a great way to increase the opportunities you’ll have when you enter the workplace. But learning to code isn’t just about boosting your resume – it also develops valuable life skills such as creativity, lateral thinking, and persistence. What’s more, many who try it simply find learning to code a lot of fun!
Why are Coding Skills in Demand?
Basic digital literacy has been a must-have skill for job seekers for many years now, but more recently, coding skills have come to be in high demand across Canada, and throughout the wider world.
So, what’s driving this surge in demand?
Modern businesses are looking for new, streamlined ways of operating, and are automating operations that used to be labor intensive. In the long term, this trend is likely to put a squeeze on many traditional jobs, but automation and the rise of AI are also creating new opportunities, and driving up the demand for skilled programmers.
The Benefits Beyond the Workplace
As we touched on earlier, learning to code isn’t all about setting yourself up for the world of work, and many students get a much wider range of benefits from learning even the most basic coding skills.
- Computer Literacy: Programmers quickly develop advanced levels of computer literacy. Most of us take software for granted, without truly questioning what goes on behind the scenes. Not so for students learning to code, who soon come to understand the inner workings of programs, apps, websites, and operating systems.
- Problem-Solving Skills: Developing software isn’t always simple, and, at its heart, coding is really all about problem-solving. That’s because most of the tech and software that we use on a day-to-day basis exists to overcome challenges as efficiently as possible. Coding also needs persistence, creativity and the ability to be self-critical – three of the most valuable life skills, both in the workplace and beyond.
- Community Spirit: It’s easy to think of coding as a lonely activity, but in fact, there are many community-led projects that you can easily take part in. Some of the world’s most important software is developed on an open-source model – meaning that anyone can access and modify the source code, and therefore contribute to the development. Some well-known examples include the office suites Libre and Open Office (free alternatives to Microsoft Office), the web browsers Firefox and Chromium (an open-source version of Chrome), and the content management systems WordPress and Magento (both used for building and maintaining websites).
Learning Coding Skills for Fun!
The best curriculum should be rounded, balanced and enjoyable, and focusing on developing skills that you actually enjoy can be one of the most productive ways of learning. Many who learn to code actually start out thinking of it as a hobby, and take pleasure from the creative aspect of what they do. In fact, anyone who’s ever built a program coded an app, or developed a website will tell you that there’s a huge sense of achievement in the creation of something out of nothing!
It doesn’t matter whether you’re serious about pursuing a career as a programmer or developer, or just want to get a better understanding of how every-day tech actually works, whatever your motivations, you’re sure to gain a lot from learning how to code.