Let us assume that you are past the stage of wondering which career path to follow. You made a firm decision. You want to become a software or full-stack developer.
Congratulations! You are far ahead of many people who are stuck in unfulfilling careers. Some are wondering when to start pursuing their goals while others will not simply make a decision.
Your next big step is to choose a good coding school in Kenya. The requirements may vary from one school to another. Here are the basics that apply to all coding schools:
Surprised? Unbelievably, you must have a compelling passion for programming to succeed. Many students leave their coding programs halfway because they lack the passion to complete them.
Are you fascinated by the idea of developing software applications? Well, if you are here, we bet you are as passionate as we are about development. You need that passion to keep you going on tough days.
Sometimes you do not know how passionate you are until you start the classes. The more solutions you create the more problems you want to solve with software.
Passion grows but you need the initial self-drive to learn advanced programming concepts. Unfortunately, your tutors or mentors cannot transfer it to you. It has to come from within.
2. Clear career goals
Passion is good. However, it must be directed to specific life goals to turn into profit. You have many career paths to choose from as a developer.
One of the lucrative paths that you can pursue is mobile application development. You can choose between iOS app development and Android app development.
It helps to learn both at the same time to increase your capacity as a developer. You will have projects after school that will require skills in both areas.
Some students go for API integrations while others choose to specialize in web development. If you have training in one area, take lessons in another course to complement your skills.
Think about clients that need mobile and web solutions from the same developer. You can complete such projects without outsourcing any part with the right skills.
3. Basic computing skills
However, the skills required will depend on the coding program you intend to join. Some schools offer introductory courses to all coding programs.
You then graduate to the core programs, which are advanced and project-based. However, no one will teach you how to start your computer, install programs or connect to the internet.
If you own a PC or laptop, you definitely know how to operate it. Some students get a new laptop before joining a programming school in Kenya. Well, if you have such a plan, learn to use it before your first lesson.
It is frustrating to try to run a program on a new computer that you do not know to operate. Here is a tip. Use the internet to learn the basics of coding as you wait to join a coding school.
4. Learning resources
We have talked about computing skills. You will definitely need a laptop. Some schools provide computers in their classrooms to all students.
You will still need a laptop for your homework and personal projects. A fast internet connection at home is necessary as well.
Install the right programs or languages on your laptop depending on your course. Ask your tutor to guide you on the latest versions of the programs that will be used in class.
Coding lessons require proactive students. Update any outdated software on your laptop even if it is not related to your lessons.
Search for complementary learning materials and tutorials online. Tutors do their best to allocate as much time as they can to each student. However, you need to gain additional knowledge on your own to master the concepts.
You will find coding lessons easier if you do more than attend class. Remember that your skill level will determine your level of success as a developer.
Every coding school in Kenya has its own fee structure. The structures should guide you when picking a school. However, this should not be the most important consideration.
Your goal is to attain all the skills you will need to succeed as a developer. The payment schedule also varies with the school. Some require the full fees upfront while others break it down to two or 3 instalments.
Start planning for the fees months before the next intake. You may miss important lessons if you are locked out of school because of fees. It helps to inform the administration of late payments in time to avoid such incidents.
You may have all the things we have mentioned above but lack the time to attend your classes. How is that possible? Well, some students join coding schools while working or pursuing another educational program.
We talk about time as a requirement because of the intensity of some coding lessons. Missing a lesson may cost you more than the fee. Even the basic lessons are important to help you understand advanced concepts.
Luckily, some coding schools in Kenya like Kwetu Hub offer online lessons. You can easily balance your work or personal responsibilities while learning online.
Sometimes students fail because of a lack of commitment. Once you enroll in a coding program, be committed to attending all lessons. Set aside time to apply your skills on sample projects beyond the projects given in class.
The time required will depend on the program you choose. Some courses take weeks and others months. A degree or diploma in computer programming will take 2-3 years. Coding boot camps take days and sometimes a week or two.
Joining a coding school in Kenya is easier than you think. You can tell from the discussion that if you are passionate about building a career in development, getting the skills you need is easy. Most schools make it easy for new students to register and learn. You have no reason to procrastinate registering for coding lessons.