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From the title, you probably think I’ve got some major beef with Codecademy. I don’t.

In many ways, I admire them. Since 2011, they’ve introduced countless millions to the noble craft of software development Codecademy - Hands Down The Easiest Way To Code Codecademy - Hands Down The Easiest Way To Code Codecademy is a new website slash interactive programming tutorial that walks you through the basics of JavaScript. While it hasn't been around very long, the site has already been generating a lot of buzz on... Read More , and have launched the careers of thousands of developers. That number looks set to soar with the release of their first Java course. But at the same time, their product – and to be more precise, their teaching methods – leave a lot to be desired, and are leaving thousands frustrated, and unsure of where to progress with their formative development skills.

So, what’s so terribly wrong with Codecademy?

And how can you, as a journeyman coder, circumvent these flaws to reach your programming potential?

Problem One: It Doesn’t Teach the Mindset

Being a programmer is more than simply being able to regurgitate syntax. It’s about having a particular mindset, where you are able to systematically breakdown a problem into individual and logical steps, and then recreate that in a language that the computer understands.

You need to be able to look at a problem at a grand scale, and understand how each step you take affects the rest of the program. Moreover, you need to be able to tolerate a high level of frustration, and be able to persevere when you hit a mental brick wall 5 Ways to Beat Programmer's Block Right Now 5 Ways to Beat Programmer's Block Right Now Every programmer encounters an array of negative emotions over the course of their journey, and if left unchecked, these emotions can have a profound impact on progress -- even causing some to give up entirely. Read More . You need to be able to be able to research bugs and error messages, and communicate your problem to others. Simply put, you need to be able to think like a coder.

 Codecademy does not teach you to think like a coder.

Rather, it teaches you the basics of a number of programming languages, without any real instruction on how you’d apply them to real-life problems.

So, how can you get that invaluable experience?

Personally, I’m a big fan of Project Euler and Reddit’s Daily Programmer SubReddit, which features enough mind-bending programming puzzles to sink anyone’s teeth into. I’m a big fan of the latter, because you’re encouraged to share your code in order to receive feedback from other members of the community.

ProgrammingChallenge

The Daily Programmer subreddit, as the name suggests, comes with daily puzzles for all skill levels, from absolute beginners to hardened code jockeys.

Problem Two: Blink and You’ll Miss It

One of my biggest frustrations with Codecademy’s approach to teaching is that it feels so incredibly transient. You learn something, then you complete a challenge, and you scarcely revisit that topic again. Blink, and you’ll miss it.

CodeAcademy2

It’s unlike the approach taken by Duolingo Learn A Language And Translate For Practice With Duolingo (Now Open To All!) Learn A Language And Translate For Practice With Duolingo (Now Open To All!) The internet has given us some fantastic tools for language learning, and Duolingo is the latest site to give it a go. It's just come out of closed beta and is now available for everyone... Read More , for example, where you have to regularly revise and reinforce what you’ve learned in order to progress.

So, if you want to cement your progress, you’re going to have to do some deliberate practice outside of Codecademy. One of the best ways to do that is to simply write code. Many programmers – and I include myself in that cadre – also swear by deliberate notetaking and regular revision with flashcards.

Paper flash cards are cheap and effective. In fact, you can buy 1,000 on Amazon for less than thirteen dollars.

Oxford Blank Index Cards, 3" x 5", White, 10 Packs of 100 (30) Oxford Blank Index Cards, 3" x 5", White, 10 Packs of 100 (30) Blank on both sides Buy Now At Amazon $2.93

For those digitally inclined, there’s also a number of apps you can use. I’m a huge fan of Anki, simply because of how customizable it is. It boasts thousands of community-built flashcards, and is extensible through its powerful and well-documented application programming interface (API).

For mobile users, there are also lots of flashcard applications for Android 6 Flash Card Apps for Android, Compared: Which Is the Best? 6 Flash Card Apps for Android, Compared: Which Is the Best? Flashcards are an incredibly useful tool for studying, but they aren't always convenient to make and carry around; that's where your smartphone comes in. Read More , and for the iPhone Ace Your Next Exam Using Flashcard Apps for iPhone or iPad Ace Your Next Exam Using Flashcard Apps for iPhone or iPad If you want to start acing school exams, you're probably going to want to start using flashcards. Read More . You can also use Google Sheets How To Make Digital Flashcards With Google Docs Spreadsheets How To Make Digital Flashcards With Google Docs Spreadsheets Read More to make them!

I’m currently using CodeCode.Ninja – which, full disclosure, was built by my friend and former MakeUseOf writer Erez Zukerman. This subscription service is built with programmers in mind, and you can build a living, flash-card based knowledge base of everything you need to know.

CodeCodeNinja

What I like about the approach taken by CodeCode.Ninja is that to progress through your deck, you’re forced to deliberately type out the answer to each card. This, I’ve found, helps build up your muscle memory.

Problem Three: Syntax is Not Programming

Again, Codecademy will teach you the syntax of a programming language, but for the most part it won’t tell you how to apply it. Which is why you often see questions like this, which was posted on the aforementioned LearnProgramming subredddit.

WhereToStart

The introductory JavaScript What is JavaScript, And Can the Internet Exist Without It? What is JavaScript, And Can the Internet Exist Without It? JavaScript is one of those things many take for granted. Everybody uses it. Read More course doesn’t teach you how to embed a script in a webpage to add interactivity to otherwise flat, static HTML. The Java course doesn’t teach you how to compile your code in order to run it. Hey, it doesn’t even tell you that Java is a compiled language, or the difference between a compiled language and an interpreted language.

There’s other stuff that’s skimmed over. Codecademy doesn’t teach you how to write code that’s clean Arduino and Raspberry Pi Beginner? Here's How To Write Clean Code Arduino and Raspberry Pi Beginner? Here's How To Write Clean Code Read More , and stylized in order to be readable and easy to understand. It doesn’t teach you how to write code that’s self-documenting. It doesn’t teach you about package management, and how to use other people’s code in your own code.

This is something you can only overcome by leaving the safe harbors of Codecademy at the first possible opportunity. By writing code, and learning on your own steam.

Problem Four: Too Much Cake, Not Enough Vegetables

The reason why Codecademy is successful is because it takes coding, and transforms it into addictive bite-sized pieces that are easy to accomplish, and offer instantaneous feedback. It’s the candy of coding.

programmingboolean

The problem is, learning to be a developer often means that you have to learn about things that are important, but from the offset aren’t terribly exciting, or for that matter, easy. You don’t learn about the theory of programming. The stuff that Donald Knuth spent thousands of pages – and the best part of two decades – writing about in The Art of Computer Programming.

The Art of Computer Programming, Volumes 1-4A Boxed Set The Art of Computer Programming, Volumes 1-4A Boxed Set The Art of Computer Programming Volumes 1 4A Boxed Set Buy Now At Amazon $179.42

Codecademy essentially shields you from the sticky, complicated part of programming. There’s no way around this, other than by being disciplined, and doing your own research. If you don’t know what you should be looking at, consider asking more established developers for guidance.

 Codecademy Isn’t That Bad

There’s a lot to like about Codecademy. They’ve introduced thousands to the fundamentals of computer science. But there’s a lot of room for improvement, too.

Have you used Codecademy? Did it hurt or hinder you? Tell me about it in the comments below.

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  1. Martina Corinne Monti
    July 18, 2017 at 9:41 am

    Great for basics.

  2. KidCoder
    July 17, 2017 at 4:20 am

    In my view codecademy is good for basics, then you can go forward experimenting with yourself to improve or visit coursera for gaining mastery over it. But seriously that point of "blink and you'll miss it", is really true. So if you learning from codecademy always try to make notes or just scribble it in your way so you can revisit the the content you learned.

    Happy Coding !!!!

  3. chase
    July 13, 2017 at 4:01 am

    So what's you advice? you can't condem and not give a remedy.

    • Umberto
      July 18, 2017 at 10:21 pm

      To me it's good if you have previous knowledge of programming. Then it is very easy to learn the syntax of a new language with Codeacademy.

      Otherwise you will miss some important steps that are not code related. So indeed try free courses, the approach books or project based courses on Coursera or Udacity.

  4. Santo
    July 13, 2017 at 2:24 am

    I think codacademy good for CS student who had learn programming mindset in the classs. Have fun coding

  5. Alex
    July 10, 2017 at 6:26 pm

    What would you suggest?

  6. Kris
    July 6, 2017 at 8:55 pm

    I agree. Go to Codeacademy when you don't know anything. Then find somewhere else to learn how to use what you've learned in real world settings.

  7. RaynsKitty
    July 6, 2017 at 4:12 am

    This is boolshit, don't take someone else options about something, you should always try it out for your self!

  8. Franck Wattecant
    July 4, 2017 at 3:30 pm

    So codecode.ninja has not a lot of room for improvement ?

  9. Eric Olvera
    May 26, 2017 at 3:43 pm

    I use codecademy to learn syntax of other languages, but I am a relatively experienced programmer ( Senior CS student). Pretty good for learning syntax in a fun way I guess but yeah you don't get much more than that.

  10. OneFiftyThree
    May 18, 2017 at 5:06 pm

    I've recently used and have been taking the Javascript course. I'm in the beginning and have gotten up to the arrays and for loops. After learning about them there was an exercise about trying to search your name the number of times it shows up in a string and the exercise was bouncing around different things not explained in the for loop lesson. The way they were trying to explain it was very confusing for me to follow and I ended up really not learning what I just learned that well. I'd say if you've just want to familiarize yourself with coding for the first time use the site, if you're using it to become a full-blown developer then you really ought to be doing research then using a site that breaks half the time when you backspace trying to fix your code. That's just my two cents worth of the site.

  11. YAN
    May 9, 2017 at 9:01 am

    Is this article was written about Codecademy only or also Codecademy Pro.
    As far as I know - Codecademy in a Pro option has "problem-solving section" that is teaching programmer mindset - but maybe I'm wrong - I'm hesitating wheter to go for pro option or start by the way some other course like Coursera or Udacity?

    Has anyone got a reliable info on this matter?

    • LaRose
      May 27, 2017 at 4:57 pm

      This article was written in 2015. Please bear in mind that the course setup has changed since then, including the addition of the Pro learning line and the Ready version, according to my research. Most of these comments are for the Free version of CodeAcademy I think. I am just now learning about CodeAcademy but I am looking forward to taking the Ready learning line. I think, for me, it is just what I am needing. I have a CS degree but haven't been programming for over 10 years and need access to a learning format for the current languages. Even the $19.99/mo would offer more "real-world" type of information given you have access to professional programmers along with programming projects.

  12. Sande
    May 4, 2017 at 2:34 pm

    I agree that the Python course is heavy with syntax.
    But what frustrated me more was a section on Boolean logic where you simply copied crazy code with 5 expressions in them. The kind that no one can make sense of. Doesn't contribute to programming skills at all. Maybe fun if you do Boolean logic for a living.?

  13. JZZZZ
    April 23, 2017 at 4:36 am

    I use code academy currently because it is a free resource and had been recommended to me by several people. I thought I was weird for taking notes but the article made me feel clever for doing it! I keep half my screen on google docs and the other on code academy and I just take down information like crazy. I don't get to dedicate time everyday (difficult job situation) so I also like to take time and read through my notes so I don't forget concepts.

    As far as it hindering/hurting me I can't say for sure just yet. I mostly use it to learn the basic concepts because I am planning on starting a bootcamp and I want to get a head start on learning the concepts before I get there. I do agree that it doesn't really give you any application or help you with the mindset.

    But for now it's something to get "my feet wet."

    Thank you for the article, I will be checking out the links!

    • Heidi B
      June 20, 2017 at 2:39 pm

      I do the same thing, taking notes on one half of the screen using Evernote. I found that Codecademy cleared up some of the programming principles that I failed at understanding at teamtreehouse.com and lynda.com. It's much easier to take notes when you can see words on the screen, rather than presented in a video format, in my opinion. And it provides useful code to copy and paste into notes for reference later. I understood object oriented code immediately at Codecademy, but this was difficult to learn in video format elsewhere. I have my notes to rely on forever. Codecademy follows a logical flow of giving new info, and it gets right to the point. It's been very helpful after floundering on video-based instruction courses. It's also much faster to get through the material. So I recommend using a free trial somewhere like Lynda to get one's feet wet with their teaching styles, then go to codecademy to get through the syntax quickly, then back to traditional computer books, Lynda.com, or pluralsight for deeper knowledge and projects.

      I have yet to try codecademy's pro version, but very tempted because it offers projects with ability to ask for help, which the other sites fail miserably. No peers answered most of my questions on teamtreehouse, so I moved to lynda.com where I felt more comfy but found very few projects to practice with, then ended up at codecademy where I did the PHP course with the ability to do code on my existing websites, no problem. Of course I need to go to developer resources to learn more, but I don't need to return to lynda.com for that one. Now I'm in python and it's the same - take careful notes and accept that you'll be seeking more detail using developer websites and books, when you're ready.

  14. tusu
    April 18, 2017 at 11:36 pm

    It's just such a horrible PITA. It will at times just not work. I'm talking about when I haven't made an error and the thing just DOES NOT WORK. And as a 'free' user I don't get any support.

    Definitely it doesn't teach the mindset or the thought process, and definitely regurgitating syntax is not REALLY what programmers need to do. In fact, most programming languages have programming environments that remember most of the syntax for you, so regurgitating syntax is INCREDIBLY worthless and actually SLOWS YOU DOWN. Especially in an environment where you use a number of different languages, some of them extremely infrequently, and in multiple different versions (some of them very old). In situations like that it's an incredible waste of time to try to keep track yourself, of all the different flavors you're dealing with. Especially when you have a programming environment that does that for you.

    • Riley
      April 22, 2017 at 10:01 pm

      What do you suggest using to learn as an alternative?

      • cacarr
        April 26, 2017 at 10:31 am

        FreeCodeCamp and Codecademy concurrently is not a bad idea.

  15. Harshada
    April 17, 2017 at 6:21 am

    The way I look at it is - use Code Academy to upskill on syntax and immediately take a course with Udacity/coursera to learn the mindset

  16. jason
    April 14, 2017 at 10:45 pm

    CodeAcademy is great for learning HTML & CSS basics, for me so far. As someone whose programming chops have fallen into disrepair, i'm finding it invaluable for getting the juices flowing again.
    I'm in front of my computer, coding at 2am. I'm inspired again. That, for free, is worth a lot

    But I think that's all it's meant to be - not the penultimate coding sensei, but a solid foundation of fundamentals to get you rolling. Get you inspired. Then, you take it from there...

  17. Tim
    April 12, 2017 at 6:04 am

    100% agree.
    Good for those who already have a knowledge of programming and want to relearn it years later.
    I know this because it worked for me. But then I trialled it in the classroom (13-14 year olds) with Python. Terrible idea. Turned them off programming altogether. Made no sense and they commented the exact same complaints.
    inventwithpython.com by Al Sweigart is way better. But I had to write challenges to go with it. Otherwise there was no challenge, therefore no learning occurring!

  18. Joubert
    March 26, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    Good day

    Personally, I love codecademy. I started off with FCC(FreeCodecamp), finished the first few levels of html and css. Then I got to Javascript, and it made no sense to me. I did a couple of exercises, but had no idea what I was busy doing.
    Then I found codecademy, the way they explain the "code" so to say makes sense to me. So now I'm literally busy with the Javascript course, and I get it.
    Yes, as you said, they do not tell you how to implement it into "code" for everyday use. Or even how to apply it, but they explain it better than FCC.

    Maybe there is another site that has the two (FCC and codecademy) combined, but for now I'm happy.

    Hope this helps anyone who would like to start coding.

    Regards.

    • Joubert Blanche
      March 26, 2017 at 7:49 pm

      Me again.
      I'm actually doing codecademy and FCC together.
      Whatever the one does not teach you, you will pick up on the other website.
      I've literally coded for about two months now. All I can say is, research, research, research.
      That's the only way forward. It's not always the case where one website will work for all users. Do and apply where you feel comfortable.

      Everyone has to start somewhere. These two sites are doing it for me.

  19. ram
    March 21, 2017 at 4:29 pm

    hi ya
    sorry if you come across any grammar issues in my comment.my biggest concern about code academy is when you cant write a code using the instruction on the left you dont have an option to get the code according to your wish and you have to wait till the option get the code flashes.i have only used it for 5 hours over two days keep in mind.i am pharmacist trying to get into web analytics .w3schools is good but one of my friends recommended code academy for coding .i have tried it not sure tried it enough to write this review.

  20. Peter
    March 21, 2017 at 3:40 pm

    I am revisiting learning to become a software developer (I did a little prior in Michael H Ruby tutorial). I am using code academy with the understanding that it is a sampler so I can get an introduction two different languages and how they relate to each other in a basic level. Reviews like yours are the reason why I believe I have the correct mindset for learning with codecademy. I think of it now as a match to the fuse of a firework. Thanks.

  21. mohit jain
    March 19, 2017 at 3:04 am

    well i started using codeacademy a month ago since i needed some skills for programming to come up with a startup and also to know more about it . i basically had very little knowledge based on it . so i just started with html and css so that i could come up with a website .at first it seemed to be easy but later i realised tat they thought all the jigsaw puzzle pieces and explained them step by step but didnt teach how to join these pieces which kept on bothering me cause otherwise i would forget most of the stuff and so i started making notes started keeping points and so it turned out ok . even though it has this problem the webite is still decent as it helps me get the basic knowledge to get through stuff

  22. Daisy
    March 14, 2017 at 10:52 pm

    I've found learning to code really hard. I started by enrolling on MOOCS courses, and then getting a bit of a way through them, and getting completely lost, and giving up. However, I did get through a whole Processing course, and got some pretty pictures, but I've completely forgotten everything now. Except that I decided to started learning HTML/CSS/Javascript, and all that stuff that I'd forgotten, or half learnt made it easier. This time I've managed to get carry on without giving up, and have got through the barrier.

    But the way to get through the barrier is hard to explain. It's really hard to make the leap from learning the syntax basics of a language to doing anything with it, but, especially for a beginner, without that basic syntax you aren't going to ever do anything. I enrolled in Code Academy, and so far it's been part revision, and part learning stuff I missed on all my other courses. I just think it's good to have lots of different sources, because they all explain stuff from different perspectives, and sometimes I find a particular perspective is really useful, and other times not so much. There's nowhere to learn everything, so it's just pushing forward, and Code Academy is a useful tool, but not a complete one. But for beginners reading this, keep on trying, every time I failed, and gave up, I was surprised when I started again, how much I did learn, when I seemed to be learning nothing. Also it's nice getting badges, everyone needs a badge.

  23. Chris Downing
    March 8, 2017 at 12:44 am

    I just completed the JS intro course on CodeAcademy. I took C++ in college several years ago so I already had an understanding of the coding mindset that you mentioned and instantly recognized that CodeAcademy wasn't going to be teaching too much other than syntax. That being said, however, it was a great way for me to shake the rust off and get myself feeling ready for a more intensive course. I think the service is a great introduction for people in that respect but should only be looked at as that - a bare bones introduction.

  24. David Hettena
    March 7, 2017 at 11:52 pm

    Great informative post.
    I just started Codecademy.
    I know nothing about coding, so this kind of very simple, very basic, very gradual walkthrough is heaven for learning the basics. I have no doubt it's just the first step of many before I'm out in the world writing real code for businesses. But I have no need or want for more complexity this early. Like martial arts, the first part of your training tends to be useless, but you're worse off in the long run if you don't build on a foundation of solid fundamentals.

    • Galina
      March 18, 2017 at 7:24 pm

      Well said!

    • Debby
      March 31, 2017 at 3:52 pm

      My thoughts exactly. I just signed up to Codeacademy to get the basics since I've never done coding before. It will be a good way for me to know if this is right for me. We all learn in different ways and have to start somewhere. After all, we all learned the basics of our native language as a child before we went on to school for further education on how to speak it/use it better, right? I figure this same concept will work for me to learn coding. We shall see.

  25. MiztaRobot-sama
    March 5, 2017 at 11:36 pm

    Code Academy is a great website to get started with some languages syntax when you are learning about programming, the people that use it to learn something else than that are totally losing their time.

  26. booo
    February 22, 2017 at 10:15 pm

    this is a sponsored article you hack.
    "oh btw they sell flashcards on amazon, heres a link to their website"

    content creators like yourself are trash

    • Nate
      March 9, 2017 at 1:09 am

      Do you honestly think amazon is paying him to sell 11 dollar sets of flash cards? And in order to do that he wrote a extended look at Code Academy which has nothing to do with flash cards at all?

      Sponsored articles exist in the world and you should be wary of them. But critical thinking is needed to identify them. You are not using any in this situation.

  27. Dave
    February 20, 2017 at 10:51 am

    I totally agree with your views...that's why I stopped learning from CodeAcademy a few years ago...

  28. Vik
    February 18, 2017 at 9:09 pm

    Its fun and its free. After it you can understand better other peoples codes and can write basic coding.

    No it won't make you an expert programmer but there isn't any single tool out there that will make you.

    I don't like the title of the article but I like the article content hmm. :)

  29. Esther
    February 13, 2017 at 2:22 am

    I found Codecademy Pro to be great for HTML and CSS, but once I got beyond that I was frustrated by the lack of fundamentals. I cancelled my subscription because I am also interested in Python, but their Python classes don't come highly recommended.

    • Isaac
      February 14, 2017 at 9:16 pm

      Codeacademy is not at all an independent source of education in programming. It will only cram syntax into your head. Personally, I find it best to use a combination of books and youtube videos to learn a language, and then use Codecademy to consolidate your syntax when you feel like you forget them.
      I recommend thenewboston for any language. I learnt HTML, CSS, Javascript and Python from there and trust me, it's very good. It may be outdated now, I'm not very sure, but there is most likely a plethora of resources on youtube.
      Also, make use of Project Euler to keep testing your abilities.

  30. Hitesh Motwani
    February 12, 2017 at 7:29 pm

    i think some of their coding languages aren't accurate at all i am a beginner as in i want to learn all stuff beginner and have started learning ruby but the commands puts and print which i enter in the online terminal at coding ground, it shows that such commands are not found.So maybe i am right and maybe i am wrong but i sure want to learn this language so can CodeCode ninja help me in this

    • Eric Harman
      February 18, 2017 at 9:33 pm

      I went through the Ruby course at Codecademy and I thought it was pretty good. I think the author's criticisms are valid.
      My main criticism is that it isn't hard enough. Too much is simply spoon-fed.
      I didn't have any problems with print or puts, so I'm not sure what is up there.
      Sometimes I think it can be a bit specific about what they want. I remember trying to do things differently or "better" and Codecademy not being able to parse that.
      I have no experience with Code Ninja or any of the coding bootcamps.
      One thing I would recommend with any online programming class is that you supplement the lessons with additional work on your own. I would either install Ruby and a good IDE/editor locally or use Cloud9. That way when you are done with a lesson on a certain concept you can then go and play around with it in a free environment.

  31. mr.right
    February 8, 2017 at 5:15 pm

    worked fine for me. it's not perfect, but it'll teach a noob basics of coding, it won't turn him into a software engineer

  32. Hanna
    February 8, 2017 at 5:15 pm

    Back in like 2006 or 2007, I literally sat down at my desktop computer with library books like "HTML 4 for dummies" and "The Idiot's Guide to JavaScript" and learned quite a bit. Because you don't have an interactive interface to practice with, the books walk you through creating a webpage and putting JavaScript in it, etc.
    I think they came with CD-ROMS, too, but I never used those scratched old things in the back of the library books.
    Code Academy has been a good refresher for me, but I think to build on things from here I might need to grit my teeth and sign up for some community college courses.

  33. Semtex
    February 5, 2017 at 9:12 pm

    "Too Much Cake, Not Enough Vegetables"
    That's all fine and dandy but you won't turn someone into a vegetarian if you don't offer something sweet before. If this whole coding world seems scary to you, starting with the cake (one that is, as you admit, addictive) is a surefire way to get someone started.

    • Budang Dang
      March 15, 2017 at 7:34 pm

      I agree.

    • Budang Dang
      March 15, 2017 at 7:35 pm

      Agree.

    • Jonathan
      March 20, 2017 at 3:47 pm

      I agree with you 110% and also I think all this coding dogma about which is the best way to start is totally up to the person. I honestly think the real matter here is this. If you really want to learn how to code you will learn no matter the cause. If that's with Codecademy, Udemy, YouTube, Reading, etc...You will become a Coder in whichever way you started but it all comes down to self determination and dedication. No one is born a fighter but through vigorous training and having a strong-willed mindset and dedication became a fighter. Same thing with coding, through vigorous learning, frustrations, downfalls, confusions, at the point of calling it quits but instead hold on and don't. Those that persevere no matter cause are the ones that truly learn a Craft. One of my favorite quotes of the many Marcus Aurelius said and I quote "Do not imagine that, if something is hard for you to achieve, it is therefore impossible for any man: but rather consider anything that is humanly possible and appropriate to lie within your own reach too."

  34. Wes
    February 5, 2017 at 4:37 pm

    All are good valid points, but you have to take it as it is. No, it should not be by any means the be all, end all, resource for a person seriously considering a career as a developer. But - who's to say it's not a convenient (free) supplement? At least you are learning the syntax. It's perhaps more beneficial to people who already have a good foundation in a programming language and understand coding on a fundamental level.

  35. GS
    February 4, 2017 at 1:08 am

    I tried Codeacademy Pro and got a refund 5 days later. The comparison made with Duolingo was an excellent one because I effectively learned Spanish and German grammar so well that I was ready to find a tutor and continue my learning. Today, I speak Spanish decently but unfortunately, no Germans to take my money. I read another article published in 2012 about this and Codeacademy still suffers from the exact same problems. Hard to believe that they still exist. This leads me to believe that it's designed for people who are familiar with at least one programming language.

    No matter what I do, I am forced to look at the forums after looking at the problem and not understanding the error. Hints should be given in different levels and most of the time, they are useless. So when I look at the forum, I don't learn anything and become dependent on the forums in perpetuity.

    Why has no one followed the example of Duolingo of constantly revising what you learn? It's by far the best learning experience I have ever had.

  36. Jasmine
    February 3, 2017 at 1:19 am

    It's free. So there's nothing wrong with something free unless it's teaching wrong things . I learnt from codecademy and then I did code wars which really taught me how to code. I think it's good if it gets people into coding. I think people keep who people down who want to get into code. This one guy on Facebook berated a girl for attebding a coding workshop saying 'youre think you'll be the next Zuckerberg with this?' which was disgusting to read. I learnt coding just cos there was a big craze over it and now I actually use it in my job . People like that guy is what made me give up coding for a while. Now I strongly dislike anyone who tries put off newbies or are pessimistic about people learning to code

  37. Lubert
    January 31, 2017 at 3:20 pm

    I believe this is quite true, but I can't seem to find a way to learn coding myself. I've tried with YouTube videos but most of them just tell you to copy stuff off your screen and they don't really teach you how to think for yourself as a programmer.

    • AS
      February 11, 2017 at 12:24 am

      When it comes to free online content, Coursera's "Programming for Everybody"
      (https://www.coursera.org/learn/python) is one of the best intros to programming I've found. Provides a great intro to data types, sequential operation, conditionals, for loops, and data structures that balances accessibility and rigour.

      I like how the instructor focuses on walking students through the code line by line, in order to understand what a given program is actually doing. Even now, when I approach a new codebase (esp. those written in unfamiliar programming languages), I analyze it in this way, in order to figure out what I can about how it works, but also to figure out what I don't know.

      By watching the exercise walkthroughs *after* attempting the problems myself, I found I learned a lot about debugging and systematic problem solving. Even though I was usually able to complete the exercises without referring to the "worked exercises" videos, it was still invaluable to watch someone experienced (ie. the prof) work through the exercises. I gained a better sense of how to break down a larger problem into a series of small, testable steps b/f adding complexity to the code (a skill I still use when I write code today).

      If you take the course, review the course textbook (a free download), watch the videos carefully (take notes, try to quiz yourself, go through the examples in the videos and try to get the code to run), do all the exercises (the course duplicates some of the textbook exercises, but the book has more - do those, too). Make flash cards of the textbook glossary if you feel you need the extra reinforcement (through try to restate the definitions in your own words). If you want, feel free to use Codecademy's Python track as a supplement (a lot of their explanations are actually quite concise and well-written, some less so), but use the Coursera courses as your primary learning material (I found Codecademy worked better for me once I had encountered the concepts in a more traditional textbook/lecture-based format, with a good prof).

      If you do all of the above, you'll have a solid foundation for future study. I was somewhat familiar with front-end dev and really basic programming b/f this, but this course was what really gave me the foundation to take on more advanced material. I currently work in the field, and I credit this course (and a mentorship program for aspiring devs) for helping me develop the skills and confidence to move in this direction.

  38. Danny Morck
    January 27, 2017 at 9:01 am

    Hi Matthew

    This article was an eye opener for me. Thanks for that. Can you give a good hint on some easy reading, based on your point about how to mindset the mind in programming? If related especially to python it would be great, but JS also works.

    - Danny

  39. Ruben
    January 26, 2017 at 5:11 pm

    it bother me a lot, for sure..

  40. Andrew Mark Allen
    January 24, 2017 at 5:50 pm

    Hey, just a small correction, Knuth has been working on The Art of Computer Programming since some time in the early 1960's (year dependent on when you start counting). So closer to five decades than two!

    • Ken
      January 25, 2017 at 5:00 am

      Lots of truth here. I like the idea of Codecademy and the personalized help, but it's not rigorous enough.

  41. Vincent
    January 18, 2017 at 9:47 am

    INTERESTING!

    I practice martial arts! Codecademy was like that for me. First I had to see everything, then I took it apart, and studied each piece. Codecademy for me, was a good teaching tool to start me off, then to get deeper I had to do my own study or practice or research or whatever it is people do to get better at anything they do.

    Discipline is important and commitment, but none of that matters if there isn't a passion. I'm lucky I discovered my passion for programming before I almost GAVE UP! I did the same with martial arts.

    Codecademy gave me a great start and I'm thankful. I wanted to learn some words maybe even a sentence. That is what I wanted from codecademy. The sticky side of things I can learn on the way, but it was the start that I needed.

    Codecademy was easy enough to get the information flowing, but once you're full, you need to take the time to digest.

  42. Emanuel Holanda Barroso Holanda Barroso
    January 13, 2017 at 9:39 am

    i thinking code academy help , but doesn solve the problem of lear to code , i think the synthax is the most dificult aparrt of programming computers , and i have good memory.

  43. Student
    December 30, 2016 at 11:54 am

    I have finished about 7 or 8 courses on codeacademy from PHP, Javascript, Python, SQL, HTML/CSS and so on and the thing that i missed the most, was explanation for the things we did or the comparison with real life projects. I have no idea how to implement the things ive just learned nor do i really remember the things i learned due to the fact it races through every assignment.

    The only thing i really learned from Codeacademy was HTML and CSS. That was a solid course and i could implement the knowledge in webdesigning. But other than that.. Javascript, PHP, i never fully understood it and the community wasnt always as friendly for beginners stating that you should do something else if you didnt understand simple coding which made me a bit insecure about learning this stuff. Tho that is just a small part of it! A lot of people are really kind and are trying to help, but still it feels a bit shitty.

    For a website that gives free courses Codeacademy is great to learn different things about coding, like syntax or loops or IF ELSE statements, especially HTML/CSS but other than that it doenst teach you to think like a coder or even remotely solve problems or bugs.

    Tho they have a paid version for codeacademy which would give more acces to projects and real life problems, so maybe thats the solution to really learning this stuff..

    • Jasmine
      February 3, 2017 at 1:22 am

      Do code wars!! It's a website where you do applied stuff. And it's amazing

  44. matt
    December 29, 2016 at 12:19 am

    I started Code Academy and loved it. I then went from code academy to another online tutorial that re enforced what I learned and gave me a different view of the woods. I expected to do 2-3 tutorials from different companies just to gain the scope of coding. it was fun, informative and it works. None of the methods standing alone would have brought me where I am.

    • Graham
      January 29, 2017 at 5:12 am

      What was the tutorial site you used ??? Im taking some basic Intro to Programming courses this semester and will use Codeacademy in the summer to get some coding basics. Would be great to have a more robust learning plan

      • Anand
        February 5, 2017 at 11:33 am

        You can use udacity's cs101 intro to computer science. Its by far the best course I have seen which introduce basics of CS and programming in python.

  45. abuttuba
    December 27, 2016 at 4:36 am

    I have been learning Python on codeacademy and my friend who also codes gave me a book he read on python, and that book helped me 5000 times more than codeacademy has.

    • Bookey
      January 6, 2017 at 12:13 pm

      What was the book called?

      • Marko
        January 18, 2017 at 8:53 am

        Book is: "Learning Python the Hard Way".

        • Eddie
          February 1, 2017 at 8:00 am

          Absolutely amazing book. I've read through the online version, on the authors site. Probably the most thorough tutorial on py when it comes to real world application I've seen yet.

  46. Koustabh Das
    December 22, 2016 at 6:19 am

    Codecademy is awesome. It would be much better if they allow us to do some of its projects in normal version(not pro).

  47. Coder98
    December 22, 2016 at 12:27 am

    I tried learning HTML from them. It was horrible! Try out w3schools.com You might like it.

    • CS
      December 28, 2016 at 9:41 am

      Know what you mean. I pointed out a glaring flaw in their HTML lesson that would just confuse students. And guess what? No reply. Even though they ask you to submit errors or problems. Wonder what they do with all that money from subscriptions? It's not going into customer service.

      • liss
        December 29, 2016 at 2:11 am

        Can I ask what the glaring flaw is? I just started the HTML lesson today and I don't want to fall victim to it!

    • lbot
      January 16, 2017 at 7:11 pm

      I just started out coding, and chose the codecademy and their 14 day money back guarantee pro model. I can tell you 100% I'm getting my money back. They are just about ending their current html/css course and updating it to a new html5/css3 course, and I can't tell you how many bugs and mis-information I stumbled across. It's a site about programming, built by the same and still, errors everywhere. I am going to finish out the course because it is at least some version of the groundwork of html/css. I agree with the author though, this entire time I've been thinking, how does this teach mind set, where is the real world practice, why aren't they reinforcing writing "clean" code?? You also, can't review answers you've got wrong on quizzes/tests which is frustrating. How am I supposed to learn if I get something wrong, and all they do is put a big red X up and say move along.

      Hell, if they can make $20 a head per month off of people with all these gaps, its an open market people, make yourself rich.

  48. Tyrone Drain
    December 20, 2016 at 8:58 pm

    What people recommend for learning how to program online? are there any sites that do a good job on teaching the basics of programming?

    • Craigles
      January 23, 2017 at 2:46 am

      I am learning too, just started about a month ago. I started with Codeacademy and thought everything was going great until I had to do projects in HTML/CSS and I couldn't combine what I had been told once with what was expected. It was driving me bonkers!

      I am also checking out freecodecamp.com. I am benefitting from the combination of these two, and code camp does have a chat room and local gatherings in some places so you can actually talk to people. So, I hope it works out!

      I'd be happy to hear other advise too!

  49. Joan Patience
    December 19, 2016 at 9:09 am

    I use code academy mainly to brush up on my coding skills on different languages that they offer...i like the small addictive challenges.

  50. Andi
    December 16, 2016 at 5:29 pm

    Code Academy is perfect for me NOT for a beginner.
    I have years and years of experience in programming from BASIC, Pascal, Modula 2, Scheme, C++, Java, and others like Matlab and VHDL, Verilog. So for me it was perfect just to have some hours to learn Python and JavaScript syntax. I was able to immediately apply the new syntax combined with my algorithmic understanding to a new Python project which is live by now.
    Again this is me having already tons of experience in CS and need only to learn a bit of Syntax difference. I would recommend Code Academy hands down for experienced folks who want to add that n-th language. And I totally agree it is not teaching CS fundamentals.

  51. Carlos
    December 13, 2016 at 1:10 am

    I think Code Academy is good when you need to learn syntax, I agree when you say programming is more than learn syntax, but if you program, syntax es perfect. I've learn JS, Ruby, ReactJS, Python...
    For me is Ok.

  52. D.Jackson
    December 8, 2016 at 2:22 pm

    Codecademy is perfect for someone who has absolutely no coding experience at all. It goes over the very basics of learning programming languages. It should only be used as a starting point. Then the learner should move on to more advanced topics. I do agree that it doesn't teach you how to think like a programmer but after taking the course, it will be easier to understand reading a much detailed book on it.

  53. Grant Willison
    December 3, 2016 at 2:27 am

    I'm with you on part of the hand holding. But I really enjoy having someone help me out of the stupidest mistakes I make as a newbie on codecademy. If time is money - and i'd spend 20-40 min trying to figure out what dumb ass mistake I made every time I made one. I would have spent days trying to figure out things that instead I spent minutes on. Take good notes, start looking at documentation, and if you hit a wall or spend more than 10 min on it- just ask someone who knows whats up! its the best 20 a month i've spent /invested on myself in a while. As I get better, I see less and less need for the help. But I've saved 30+ hours with 60 bucks and that is worth it. My programmer friends making 80k-150k a year don't want to walk through all the bs for me every day. I ask 5 questions a day and am happy paying pennies for it.

  54. GHcoder
    December 2, 2016 at 11:44 pm

    One of the key words in this industry is PROCRASTINATION. Code academy is a starting point, period. Learn your trade and progress from there. If you want to subscribe to code ninja by all means subscribe but and this is the bull in the china shop: There is too much bullshit info out there leading to people giving up because one guy/gal says eh learn this or subscribe to this. Blah blah blah.

    1. Sit down open you laptop
    2. Subscribe to a channel or site (there is millions out there and free too)
    3. Code code code!!!!

    John from simple programmer must be sick to death of calling out the same questions from constant procrastinators asking what should i do?
    Whats the best programming language to start with?
    How can i concentrate and learn to code?

    Its hard work!!

  55. Seth
    December 2, 2016 at 6:16 am

    As an engineer, I have already learned some coding. So I feel like the problems of mindset and developing (problem solving) are not as critical. So I have confidence that if I had a goal, I could probably do it. Whether logic based, math based, or a combo of the two, I could apply myself and make the code. I think every engineer could find great value in this site.

    • Nasser Alsinan
      December 3, 2016 at 1:15 pm

      Seth, if you don't mind me asking, what kind of engineering did you study? I'm in 11th grade, and I'm trying to decide what to major in. My mind is on engineering, and I've read that electrical engineering includes coding( which is something that I'm very interested in), but I'm still not sure about what to do. Your feedback is appreciated!

      • Seth
        December 4, 2016 at 3:43 am

        Hey Nasser! I am a graduate student in Chemical Engineering. You certainly can make great use of coding in electrical and computer engineering. This is where coding leads to for the most part. If that is what you are really interested in, go for it. On that front, you will be looking at coding control systems and solving the issues of modern computing. Modern computing issues include creating better algorithms such that computations take less time. However, if you are interested in doing something different with coding, chemical and mechanical can lead to some unique problems. As a graduate student in chemical engineering, I code numerical methods to solve heat and mass transfer problems, thermodynamic models, fluid dynamic systems, etc.
        If you have any other questions let me know!

  56. Javier
    December 1, 2016 at 5:38 pm

    This was a nice article. By describing what codecademy doesn't teach you, at the same time you expose the abilities of a good software developer. However i would like to point out (at least from my perspective) a couple of concepts that would help us understand a bit better the overall scene.

    First of all, codecademy teaches you how to code, it doesn't teach you how to develop software, which are 2 separate things. Coding is about the writing activity, about explicitly telling the computer what to do, and i don't think it matters if it has the correct style, if the code it's readable, or even if the solution written is the best.

    Developing software is an umbrella term that covers many activities, being coding, one of them. I believe that the points on this article (what codecademy lacks) describes a classic software development scenario, and all the good practices the author describes are related to that, in part. Codecademy offers a great way to introduce anybody the software developing scene, by providing tools that are easy to grasp in order to explain abstract concepts.

    In conclusion, i don't think codecademy lacks on these points because it's out of their scope. I don't believe that codecademy is a software development school/academy, but a practical set of introductory lessons about what programming is all about.

    • Sandy
      January 28, 2017 at 3:55 pm

      I wholly agree with your comment.
      Books delving into software development best practices are rarely targeted at a specific language or if that is the case, only towards the advanced levels which is not the level Codeacademy is pretending to take the student to.

  57. Rabten
    November 24, 2016 at 11:17 pm

    So what do you suggest is a good website to learn coding and programming. I'm just a beginner and has been doing it for less then a month. For starter it's great for amateur, as you said it really does set up the path for a newbie. But I wanna know a better site to really learn coding . So please can you suggest something. Thank you

    • Anon
      December 4, 2016 at 11:58 pm

      tl;dr Get a in depth textbook on a preferred programming language.

      I started on Codeacademy and it was a great start. You really skim the surface, although it doesn't feel like it at first. After you feel done with Codeacademy, I'd suggest getting a book on any language really. I started with Java Big Late Objects by Horstmann and it's a great book for Java and beginners.

      But really, any programming language will suffice, for a newbie I think a good textbook is ideal. Just search "good programming languages for beginner" to learn or if you already have one in mind, go with that. Look for TBs on that language that have good reviews or a style you like and finish it, especially work on writing your own code/ producing solutions to problems presented in the TB. For a newbie, I'd recommend getting a long say 1,000 or more page book and reading it completely. It could take a while but learning your first language relatively thoroughly is very important imho as it will be a great foundation as you move forward in your CS career.

    • kungfucoding343
      January 24, 2017 at 11:35 am

      To be completely honest, the only thing you will get out of textbooks is theory, that's about it.

      you never see kung fu masters reading textbooks to learn kung fu!!

      the only way you can REALLY! get good at coding is by doing, not by reading books.

      create your own personal website with codes, keep predicting every chance you get.

      I would also recommend you to find a good coding instructor, where you can follow along at your own pace.

      udemy has some instructors as well as youtube

      Best of luck on your journey!!!

    • kungfucoding343
      January 24, 2017 at 11:35 am

      To be completely honest, the only thing you will get out of textbooks is theory, that's about it.

      you never see kung fu masters reading textbooks to learn kung fu do you?
      the only way you can REALLY get good at coding is by doing, not by reading books.

      create your own personal website with codes, keep practicing every chance you get.

      I would also recommend you to find a good coding instructor, where you can follow along at your own pace.

      udemy has some good instructors as well as youtube

      Best of luck on your journey!!!

  58. aria6shell
    November 21, 2016 at 4:51 pm

    Adding a short comment, for fun (or, oh dear, grammatical correctness - which to these readers might be seen as good, proper syntex, no!?).
    Friends in IT - stop confusing nouns with prepositional verbs! SETUP and SET UP! BREAKDOWN and BREAK DOWN!
    Example from this article: (Breakdown)
    "It’s about having a particular mindset, where you are able to systematically **breakdown** a problem into individual and logical steps, and then recreate that in a language that the computer understands."
    What a Breakdown! I hope he will Break Down the problem correctly next time!
    And please Set Up the meeting, which will need the proper Setup for the number of attendees. Thanks!
    Happy coding, happy reading. : D

    • suchi
      December 14, 2016 at 1:03 pm

      So glad somebody was irked by the same things that I was while reading this article. =D

    • sean
      May 23, 2017 at 4:56 pm

      "log in" vs "login" always annoys me. I worked in IT for a few years (am now just starting in web dev) and we dealt a lot with passwords and whatnot. Everyone used "login" for both referring to THE login screen, and the act of logging in, such as "login to the login." All day long I had to see people doing things like that...and Im just thinking, "we are in IT... we are supposed to be better than that..."

  59. Phil
    November 21, 2016 at 8:33 am

    You are spot on about code academy. I am a relatively inexperienced coder and agree that code academy does not stretch the student.

    The only thing I would say it was useful for (me personally) was introducing me to Ruby a language I had not had any experience with.

    Phil

  60. Jacob Carroll
    November 17, 2016 at 9:21 pm

    I am a teenager and I have started learning HTML on code academy. It's really fun and I have learned a lot, really fast. I would like to ask, where can I learn how to apply these skills? (Perferrably on a reddit post or something) I didn't even realize because I have no precursor to any programming language, but it is free so I use it. Any insight from a skilled programmer?

    • Daan
      November 21, 2016 at 9:53 pm

      I have the same question! Just started today, and it is really fun! And i am learning so much. But yeah, where can i learn to apply those things and where can i learn to get the programmer mindset? I really want to know.

  61. Ahsan Iqbal
    November 17, 2016 at 1:30 pm

    I am already experienced with C# & C++, since they teach a lot of it in universities here. However, when I had to learn Ruby and Java for some industrial projects, Codecademy helped me a lot to learn the syntax, because this is what I had to learn, 'SYNTAX'. Though I agree, Codecademy isn't too helpful for extreme starters, since it lacks fundamental problem-solving challanges, but for guys like me, it can be really helpful to grasp the differences between languages we are already familiar with and get on with it.

  62. Ashington
    November 16, 2016 at 11:43 am

    I have used codecademy, but only as a crash course option, since I already am a programmer. I think it'll be helpful for programmers who want to quickly pick up a new skill or language (keyword being quickly), but I certainly won't recommend it to people who have no programming background.

    • Daan
      November 21, 2016 at 9:54 pm

      What would you recommend to people who have no programming background (like me)

      • Ashington
        November 22, 2016 at 2:12 am

        oh wow, I'm sorry but I don't think I can recommend anything online for people who have no programming background. I myself picked it up in college. that said, programming is basically about solving problems. I would certainly recommend learning about algorithm and problem solving first and I am pretty sure there are online courses for these. Try Udemy.
        And good luck :)

  63. DonDroga
    November 14, 2016 at 11:54 pm

    How about you join the douchebag academy. Code Academy is free to a point and a great way for people to get their feet wet.

    • VodkaWhiteNoise
      January 10, 2017 at 8:24 pm

      Do I need any prior knowledge to join the douchebag academy? I've often seen douchebags and thought "that may be something I'd excel at", I just don't know where to begin.

      • Dee
        April 6, 2017 at 10:39 pm

        That was an awesome reply.
        Just saying, LOL.

  64. Trakvh
    November 7, 2016 at 8:29 pm

    If web development it's what you're into then freecodecamp.com is honestly amazing.
    You have about 2200 hours (if I recall correctly) of courses which include a lot of projects and even the courses themselves are a little bit harsher than Codecademy.
    The best part honestly is that you will be given projects for various non-profits and it's a great way to practice (you only get tasks and maybe an example website but besides that you're on your own, they won't hold your hand like Codecademy). The community is also very active, there are a lot of chat rooms and the forum is also popping. You can also attend meetings but I can't speak on that because I live in pretty small European city so there aren't a lot of them here but I'm sure that you will find something if you want to.

    And it's 100% free, no premium memberships or anything like that, the only thing that you can buy is merchandise

  65. Ronald
    October 28, 2016 at 11:04 pm

    Codecademy seems to be a scam. I started learning JavaScript on it and logged out and came back and when I click on resume or try to get back to where I left off they always redirect me to a page about Codecademy Pro for $19.99/month and no matter what I do that always pops up and will not go away. Then I did a much closer look at what the coursework was. Some of the coursework was titled "PRO tiral" but it didn't tell me anything about that when I was going over it. They have one or two lessens each chapter that is free and the rest is PRO and if you do one PRO trial you get shafted and have to instead of going from exercise to exercise bounce yourself around to different lessens. It's a classic bait and switch scheme.

    • Larry
      November 11, 2016 at 11:19 pm

      So, just don't click resume. I've had that problem, too. Instead, go to codecady.com/learn, which is the page it directs you to once you log in. Then go to "Courses" on the left. you should see the course Syllabus, then click on whatever lesson you re in the process of doing.

  66. Sebastian
    October 27, 2016 at 2:17 am

    Codeacademy is deffinately a supplement program. This experience would have gone a complete opposite way had I not learned Visual Basic and Java from Highschool and College. Yes you won't truly learn the art of software engineering or computer science, but it's definitely a great tool for someone who already knows a few languages, can translate that skill well, and wants to pick up a few others without too much fuss. After picking up Java and Python in school and on my own, being able to understand other languages comes really easy to me. So picking up HTML+CSS+JS+PHP, its almost second nature now and it would have been if I just got a book, but codeacademy makes this process just that much easier. Basically, don't expect to complete all the courses and expect to get a super high paying job without the principals of syntax, theory, and engineering of code.

  67. Milon Hossain
    October 23, 2016 at 9:27 am

    i think code academy is best option when u already have a basic programming knowledge like you are familiar with programming syntax,branching,loop , also basic concepts of data structure and algorithm and want to learn about or explore about new language's.
    and yes i totally agree with you about the first three problems you mentioned about codeacademy.
    about the fourth problem "Too Much Cake, Not Enough Vegetables"
    i dont totally agree with you cause i kind of think this method inspires the beginners or newbies in a kind of way :)
    yet thanks for pointing out the limits of codeacademy in such a gentle way .

  68. Mathew
    October 13, 2016 at 2:20 pm

    As a programmer, I find Codecademy great for learning the syntax of different languages. But as this article says, it does not do much in training a coder way of thinking

    • CS
      October 15, 2016 at 3:59 am

      I concur.

      Perhaps this wasn't their original intention, but as someone already familiar with coding, I find codeacademy useful as a primer to a language I'm not familiar with.

      It's not going to make you a better or more competent programmer of course, but it'll get the basics and fundamentals across in a more tactile way than bullet points on a Wiki.

      You only really learn languages, in my opinion, by thinking of an arbitrary task and working through the solution - with only the official language documentation as a reference.

  69. Dave R
    October 10, 2016 at 7:09 pm

    Some good points and I think the new code academy pro address most if not all of them, I have only just started with it and it seems to work well.

    We will see how it goes

    • Abdelhaq
      November 1, 2016 at 11:01 am

      Hi Dave,

      Could you please keep me updated on your experience??

      I'm a complete beginner and, to be honest, don't know were to begin... I finished all the free courses and am hesitant about entering the PRO courses...

  70. Aditya shiddapur
    September 30, 2016 at 8:55 am

    I am an Indian and in India we aren't even taught basic programming or coding.So if we want to learn coding we have to pay a lot of money to private institutes for the courses.So compared to that Codecademy is really a better alternative.

  71. Carolyn
    September 29, 2016 at 2:38 pm

    Seems to me Code Academy is simply a starting place not unlike learning to cook. You can learn to boil water but are you making pasta, eggs, vegetables? Gotta start somewhere and if this is fun when you're a kid, you'll probably revisit or expand as your needs and skills increase. Ever wonder how many chefs started with an Easy Bake oven?

  72. Lisa Kopitzke
    September 22, 2016 at 2:50 pm

    codeacademy is a fantastic forum to engage and inspire kids to start coding. It's a wonderful way to encourage exposure to coding and prepare them for formal training in the classroom setting. They'll have a headstart.

  73. Adam
    September 12, 2016 at 2:02 am

    Ok

  74. adangi
    September 1, 2016 at 9:07 am

    codecademy is good platform. i learned pyton from it...... and complain about codecademy...

    stop barking on codecademy to promote ur stupid friend site... feeling like a "Dog barking on Elephant" lol stupid man

    • Na
      October 6, 2016 at 2:44 am

      @Adangi...You must behave a miserable life to insult someone out of no where...Don't know where you are from but here people are fee to express what they like and don't. Try to stay positive when someone express something than what you like...:)

  75. Esther Stepansky
    August 31, 2016 at 2:33 pm

    With all due respect the title of this article is simply clickbait to give you a forum to tell about your friend's program. You don't make yourself (or your friend's program) better by bad mouthing Codecademy.

    You can't write an essay until you can write in a language. Likewise with coding. There are many good resources online, each with its own style and ideal student in mind. Many assume the student already has SOME digital fluency. Codecademy is one of the few that does not & despite having a degree in CS, I continue to use it when I want to learn or teach a topic to beginners.

    Whether or not they become professional programmers will depend a lot on their first programming experience. If you make people feel stupid in lesson one they are not likely to even come back to lesson 2.

    The time & place for learning & doing the hard stuff is AFTER mastering the basics, which codecademy does an excellent job of providing.

  76. joana
    August 24, 2016 at 11:40 am

    Code academy its a free source of learning for newbies , why so many complaints?
    Smarter people I guess go somewhere else and do something about it, don`t sit around complaining. These people tried to create a good idea in offering free education. Takes time to perfect it. Jesus you people!!!

    • HWANG
      October 17, 2016 at 1:45 am

      I think you are carried away by the title. You are just complaining about what-seems-like complaints.
      The author is warning the simplicity of the codeacademy that may harm the potentials of the code learners.
      I too loathe complaints the 3rd parties make without an intention of looking into the content but I think the author is making good points by analysing in his perspective in which I did not perceive otherwise personally.
      I found the sites the author suggested very useful too.

  77. Dan
    August 20, 2016 at 3:03 pm

    Aren't those things that are gained by experience? What I think is that any place that teaches coding, is not gonna be able to teach you everything. Just enough so you can identify a problem and ask the right question, get the solution so you can continue your work. Read the doc, look in google ( countless coders do this daily, don't think they are have mounds of hardrives knowing every single piece of code on any given language) and by the time you have done that a few times, you'll have gained a wealth of knowledge.

    One thing is for certain, you can't just sit around and pretend FFC, or any other site is gonna teach you everything about something. Heck, even college barely gets you trough the door sometimes. You have to keep looking and learning for a multiple stream of knowledge. Books, videos, documentation, ect.

    Don't get me wrong, I get the post, I really do. In my case I have decided to stick with them because I find it more risky starting to go around jumping from site to site ,looking for one that fulfills all my expectations, and then just giving up completely.

    I do agree with the points to a certain extent. But like I said, that's for the dev to optimize himself, semantics, clean coding not just hacking it, are things that have to come from the student, the intention to be the best at what he's doing. And that means taking bits of information from the right places.

  78. Anonymous
    August 19, 2016 at 9:32 pm

    Codecademy is, at least in concept, a good fit for someone like me. I have some programming background (not expert, but have taken university-level classes in the past). So, when I want to explore a new language, I just want to learn the commands and syntax without sitting through Programming 101 all over again. I've recently been using (or trying to use) Codecademy to learn the basics of SQL.

    However, I really dislike their user interface. The lesson pages are ugly, poorly designed, and difficult to navigate. Reviewing previous lessons is counterintuitive. If you get stuck on an exercise (which can happen simply because some of their instructions are more vague than they realize), there's no easy way to get hints unless you want to use their chat feature. I'm ready to give up because I'm spending more time Googling answers to my questions than I am using the actual Codecademy site.

    I understand that it's a free service, so I'm willing to overlook some of its faults, but given the amount of work that must have gone into developing the content, I'd think that they could spare a bit of effort on a better interface.

  79. manish
    August 17, 2016 at 3:52 am

    i think codeacademy is best platform to start

  80. Jeremiah
    August 12, 2016 at 6:34 pm

    Hi Matthew,

    So how would you recommend learning to program if not from codecademy?

  81. Jone
    August 9, 2016 at 3:12 pm

    For me codecademy was the very first resource where I had started to learn coding. It was very helpful, 'cause I don't even know what html is and it stands for. Now, ttanks to them, I can create sites with html, css, javascript, and I learn ruby and sql. Very helpful. And, by the way, basic stuff for free

  82. dd
    August 7, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    ddd

  83. heuss
    August 6, 2016 at 8:02 am

    I REkt it for the cake and for the pleasure , how many other hot grillsr on the internwt now? u gotta meetem thu stuff like thus bruh

  84. MrLeorine
    August 2, 2016 at 3:48 pm

    the room of improvement is , they need to add a flow-chart courses . hahaha

  85. LOU
    July 27, 2016 at 6:45 pm

    I agree but only to some extent.
    Its a GREAT place to START but thats about it... the rest is personal interest and development

    • heuss
      August 6, 2016 at 8:03 am

      u think ur so smart lou

  86. Anonymous
    July 25, 2016 at 5:58 pm

    I wrote a piece of information and my experience with Codecademy and then this login page came in. I signed in and all the data I had written has gone. You don't even have this basic system. Have this 1st then criticize or point fingers to others.

    • heuss
      August 6, 2016 at 8:01 am

      npooo

  87. Oye
    July 25, 2016 at 2:13 pm

    LOL

  88. Charlie
    July 22, 2016 at 12:44 am

    I personally think codeacademy is very useful but only as a starting point. Everyone wants to be able to code but it can be a daunting prospect and can seem un-rewarding in the early stages but codeacademy helps with that. However there is only so much it can do and lile many others after completing a few courses I was left wondering what next? I ended up using codewars which is great for challenging and reinforcing knowlege and gettimg the 'programmer mindset' as mentioned. I've come a long way in quite a short time and I can say sincerely that codeacamy played a crucial role in that.

  89. Alma
    July 22, 2016 at 12:20 am

    I disagreer with you. Codecademy is where I learned to code!

  90. Marcelo
    July 16, 2016 at 7:32 pm

    I'm just starting in programming world and I was learning with Codecademy, but even I couldn't tell what I felt that was something wrong. Then I searched "Codecademy bad" and found your article.

  91. SandraF
    July 4, 2016 at 8:29 pm

    Even though this was a helpful post for future reference, I have to disagree on some fundamental points. Coming from a completely non-technical background in marketing I have no idea about programming, coding, whatever you wanna call it. Zero idea. Not a clue. For me Codeacademy is heaven, because of many reasons you have stated in you post. For an absolute beginner who might not even aspire to become a developer but rather wants to understands the basic principles underlying things like web development, I haven't seen anything else out there that helps me with that like Codeacademy does. Not to say that at some point I might switch to a different platform to work on 'developing a programmers mindset', but for now that is not even something I think about. So I agree, that Codeacademy may not be the greatest solution of all time, but for the audience it is designed for, people like me, it is an amazing way to get started and not become frustrated right away.

  92. Mohamed Thasleem
    July 3, 2016 at 9:36 am

    Code academy is just a start. Exploration doesn't have a end!

  93. James Boelter
    July 2, 2016 at 2:29 pm

    Excellent article. I'm currently pursuing a CCNA certification via 3rd party books, videos and simulators, and the same thing applies - completing these (and the cert) won't make me a network engineer - it will just give me a vocabulary and a look at the concepts the field is based in. It's a foothold, but it's up to me to start climbing. Same with Codeacademy - all they can do is give you a foothold, but it'll still be more than you had before.

  94. Aidan
    June 30, 2016 at 3:29 pm

    I have just started the Codecademy Angular JS course, and I am finding that that teaches about how JS is used in relation to HTML.

  95. ehsan
    June 26, 2016 at 5:51 pm

    What about learnjava-online? Does that also suck? Please don't tell me that, I love it. :)

  96. JonSnow
    June 26, 2016 at 12:52 pm

    Thanks for your useful post, another question : Are video tutorials constructive like udemy.com or not?

  97. payu
    June 21, 2016 at 4:36 pm

    codecademy for me is like a place where I can get in touch with some very basic knowledge of a new language. Then decide if I will learn deep about that language. It doesn't matter if its teaching pace matches me or not.

    The key principle of being a smart coder is "continue study," which no platform or others can teach you. If one thinks he/she can learn coding online or in school then become a qualified code monkey, he.she must misunderstand this career.

  98. Fukuo
    May 20, 2016 at 7:43 am

    I came across this blog after trying out the beginners courses in Code Academy and felt I wasnt learning well. You alternative refers to more advance options. Any alternative for complete beginners?

  99. PersephoneK
    April 18, 2016 at 9:13 pm

    I just finished their JS course (having taken the HTML and CSS course before that) and agree with everything you said. Perhaps it was because I already had a foundation in HTML/CSS that those were easier to me, but it seemed also that they had more practical applications included in the courses, whereas JS basically never explained to me why learning whatever I was learning might be useful in real programming. And knowing that JS is one of the 3 key pieces of web programming, it was shocking that there wasn't one module devoted to using JS with HTML. Overall, it was very frustrating and I found myself just copying/pasting answers from the forums towards to end just to get through it. It was just too dense for a newbie.

    • Aidan
      June 30, 2016 at 3:27 pm

      As I was reading your comment, it struck me just how similar my experience was. I did their HTML and CSS course, and there I learned how the work together. However, I felt like their JS course was leading people to the thought that it can operate well alone. However, this is very false. I also found myself taking answers from the forum on the last 3 levels.

  100. Jacques Soulé
    April 14, 2016 at 2:13 pm

    The fifth reason that could be added is their policy when using their free subscription.
    On the free subscription when you are stuck because you are blocked and you don't find the right solution, or because they have bugs on their exercice like on the Javascript N°23 exercice, you are not able to access the right solution or to find the way to be unstuck. In addition their forum is limited to a daily number of messages which prevents you to continue discussions and to be helped. For that you have to upgrade to the PRO version. It is not fair.

  101. Maxence
    April 12, 2016 at 2:25 am

    What the article says would be absolutely right ONLY if yes base assumption was also right.

    To sum up, this article is built around the assumption that codecademy's purpose is to make of you a developer. But it is NOT.

    Codecademy is an introductory class to some of the most popular web design and programming languages syntax.

    It is simply the equivalent of the first courses of any module you'd find in university when about to learn and new language.

    Now, if it was self declared a tool to make you a developer, this article would be spot on. ( I myself thought of it when using codecademy)

    Now that being said, one thing for sure being missing (but keep in mind that there is now paid projects which I don't know the content of and might actually do what I'll suggest) would be to LINK every languages and that every time you enter a new language, it tells you how to make it function through another one you learn previously. Hence helping you understand how thy articulate and then be able to make real world projects.

  102. Ryan
    April 4, 2016 at 2:54 pm

    I personally think that codecademy is excellent when paired with code.org, since code.org teaches mindset, while codecademy teaches syntax. Any questions I have are answered online at stackoverflow.com. These 3 sources make coding as easy as pi.

    • JonSnow
      June 26, 2016 at 12:57 pm

      Damn code.org with its inspirational videos >:-(

  103. JD
    March 7, 2016 at 7:42 am

    So, we shouldn't learn to code from Codecademy, instead we should learn from...? Where?? Please complete the sentence. Will that subreddit be a better starting point? Just trying to tackle challenges without knowing anything about syntax?

    Come on.. you're holding it to an unrealistic standard. You're not wrong about it lacking all of those things, but tell me a place that has everything Codecademy does and none of it's shortcomings.

    If you were to see it as what it is: a tool to get you off the ground, teach you fundamentals, get you excited about coding, then you'll realize how great it is at it. If you then complement that with other resources and put it to practical use, then you'll be well on your way to become a decent programmer.

    • Ryan
      April 4, 2016 at 2:58 pm

      The best thing to do would be do code.org courses to get the mindset down, then use codecademy to learn syntax. Stack overflow can answer any questions.

      • JonSnow
        June 26, 2016 at 12:54 pm

        I don't agree about this : stackoverflow.com can answer all of our questions, sometimes you yourself should answer you questions!

      • BizzFuzz
        August 30, 2016 at 2:51 am

        Code.org is very high level since it's aimed at young students. There are quite a few free college CS and related courses online now via coursera and edx (Harvard's CS50) as well as on Youtube and that's what an adult who wants to learn seriously should use. Also agree with JonSnow in that if you have to constantly search for answers and copy someone else's work, you are likely lacking some core knowledge that you'd get in the courses I mentioned before. Of course a lot of learning how to handle problems comes as you encounter it, you can't prepare for everything, but if you don't want to look and feel like an imposter assuming you are hired, you're going to need to know the common algorithms, sorts, data structures and how to create them, etc. Copying and pasting code won't teach you those things.

  104. 1TB Cloud storage
    February 20, 2016 at 2:17 pm

    There is no good place to learn . The best place is in your heart.
    No one is suppose to teach you how to think. Many are thinking in this direction because the world has abandoned the sixth sense which is vital in developing any good idea or thought

  105. james scott
    February 14, 2016 at 9:11 pm

    So, what are the best alternatives to CodeAcademy, for someone just starting out?

    I would love to know. I have been using CodeAcademy for the last few weeks, and it has proven to be useful. But, I am left feeling as if I am on unstable ground. It does feel as though the exercises, and projects, could be constructed in a more thorough manner. And, as someone who is NOT a programmer, and barely beyond beginner, it feels as though the thought process is grossly overlooked.

    I'm a professional musician, 26 years of experience, and I've taught guitar for the last 23 years as well. I can say, without a doubt, that the "how to think musically" is the biggest issue in learning music, and it can be taught. But, it cannot be taught by doing simple exercises one time.

    • Sean
      May 26, 2016 at 6:17 am

      try to write some scripts in a text editor and run it through command line, google it if you get stuck. Also recommended beginner books are a great start if you are ok with paying a small amount of money.

  106. Anonymous
    December 31, 2015 at 7:09 pm

    Although I agree with some of the points in the article, we seem to forget that codecademy is just a tool to get non-programmers excited about programming. It's not a one-stop shop to learn everything about programming. It focuses on one goal: build interest. It doesn't promise to be the only tool you'll need. So, asking it to teach things taught in a four-year Computer Science program is like asking your dad to be pregnant.

    • jason
      April 14, 2017 at 10:46 pm

      Hit the nail right on the head. Bravo!

  107. Ralph
    December 11, 2015 at 8:07 pm

    I agree with you on many points of the article, but I think you missed one important point.
    Codeacademy doesn't actually teach the programmer mindset and the thought pattern, since it only scratches the surface of the languages, and it doesn't teach you the basic concepts deeply enough (its lack of well written code is clear and there are obvious clues on almost every 'challenge'), but it does pretty well the task of making people feel interested in coding, just by showing them a few examples and what they can make on a basic level.
    Overall, I think it's a good tool to try programming and get excited about it, maybe searching for more complete offers (books, webs, Youtube tutorials..) later on if you really liked it.
    Good article, though :)

  108. Vinny
    December 11, 2015 at 6:19 pm

    If you can't think of how syntax and coding basics can help solve problems, then you are not cut out for programming

  109. sigshane
    December 10, 2015 at 11:45 am

    I just read through all of the article, and while it was rich on the codecademy bashing, it offered very little in the way of viable ALTERNATIVES.

    And sorry dude, suggesting the Euler and Reddit 'mind-bending puzzles' to learn programming would be like me telling you that figuring out how to treat gunshot wounds or drug overdoses can be accomplished by heading down to the local ER and pulling some rubber gloves on and jumping into the fray... you gotta have some fundamental base as a starting point, and CA goes a long way toward providing that.

  110. Ben
    December 5, 2015 at 8:59 am

    I agree that Codecademy is not a great primary learning source. That being said, it has its uses.

    first: Everyone needs to start somewhere. Codecademy is great for just touching "what is this programming thing?" Of course you won't become a developer doing it, but you're also not really a developer after taking Programming 101 in college, and you sure as heck aren't a developer after reading the K & R, but it's considered one of the best references on C around.

    second: maybe you're already a beginning or intermediate programmer - it's a really quick way to get into a new language. No, you won't be a pro when you're done, but you'll probably be able to read the language, and maybe poke and prod an existing script as needed. You already have the developer mindset - why learn it again?

  111. Codenext
    December 4, 2015 at 3:10 pm

    Whoever wrote this article I want to give 10/10. I Just want to add my real experience here.

    1. I wanted to develop the website which I started from zero, starting from zero means I was not even knowing what is variable and what is constant, I mean I know the dictionary definition but not in context of programming.

    2. So, I started learning HTML then CSS, Ruby and Ruby on rail from codecademy then I finished the course of Java, JavaScript then PHP, so if the person know all these then he should be able to develop the website completely. But I was not able to do anything. because I learned from the codecademy is just the syntax, write array, object etc. But no where I learned how to use all of this when shall i put all this files how shall I attache all this files? It is like I just learned x, y, z but that does not mean you learned X^2 + Y^2 = Z^2 equation and their use in real life. So I wasted 3 months in all this.

    3. Then I took 15 days break of frustration of what to do and after searching & searching I came across Drupal, then I came to know learning each language separately does not make a website, THERE IS SOME FRAMEWORK REQUIRED, so you can apply your learned languages through this frame. So, WHILE LEARNING DRUPAL I CAME TO KNOW HOW ALL THIS FILES ARE COMBINES AND MAKE ONE ENTIRE MACHINE....and in reverse way then I started actually learning those languages......Now I am able to combine HTML, CSS, Jquery, JAVA and PHP and now I am able to get output what needed in real world.

    4. learning from the codecademy, which just do all thing on one black screen. But real world does not work like that. You need to make file, you need to know how to use editor, you need to know how to use Terminal. These all basic, very Important you are not learning from the codecademy, which is like A, B, C, D of the language.

    5. What I learned: I learned from the codecademy all the syntax, But there are some important real life syntax and HTML and CSS element are not there in codecademy, if you compare with w3school, they have lots of example of real world stuff.

  112. Ash
    December 4, 2015 at 5:22 am

    This is crap.

    I agree with your thoughts but your missing one main point. Code-academy is only the very beginning. It teaches the very basics and then they need to be applied.

    The way I learnt was to do codecademy whilst having a side project to apply it to. Thus I'm learning the syntax whilst trying to solve a real-world problem.

    Agree codecademy won't teach you to be the finished project of a real-world programmer. That being said it's a great way to start. You just need to combine it with real-world problems and projects. I personally think doing a project at the same time is perfect.

    Thinking how will I solve this problem X. Write out in English how you think it might be solved. Then do codecademy and use it where you can in your project.

  113. Lorenzo
    December 3, 2015 at 9:46 pm

    Code academy is like school it tells you everything but it doesn't learn you what to do with it next

  114. Rene Baron
    December 3, 2015 at 7:54 pm

    There is a good chance that your next job interview will come up with the same low level of stupid questions you will be able to answer from CodeCademy.
    Has happend to me :-(
    Ok, fine for a student, but it will not qualify for real life projects. It will not qualify for team. And it will definitivly not prove that you are able to deliver something really useful after a month of working.
    CodeCademy is an entry point. But not efficient nor effectiv. CodeCademy ALONE is not the way your brain works! Your synapses will be underfired nor will they spread out to link with the things that really matter.
    CodeCademy will prove that you have followed something. That's it. But being a follower does not make a doer.
    So, nothing bad about CodeCademy - as long as you understand its niche.
    Me pesonally, I do some lessons just for repetition. Just to check whether all is still there in my brain or whether something got lost that might be important.
    CodeCademy gives you some structured guidance and tracks your progress and gaps. Off course there are other ways as well - but sometimes listening to people is just more fun than reading (e-)books.

  115. Chris
    December 3, 2015 at 12:47 pm

    I *like* the narrow focus of CodeCademy. I've been a self-taught developer for 20 years, and the most efficient, effective, and pain-free language tutorial I had ever used was an old book/floppy combo - 'Mastering C' by Waite Group, which used a similar approach.

  116. Sirko
    December 3, 2015 at 12:32 pm

    I would like to point out that neither does the Scholl teach you how to think...but this is up to the individual....a lot of jobs today ppl take for granted and think they can learn online...coding is one od them

  117. Rui Lourenço
    December 3, 2015 at 11:45 am

    I found codecademy very useful when, out of curiosity, i wanted to learn about css and javascript. However after taking the time to finish the courses i felt like i wasn't prepared to do anything with it... regardless of that i still think that projects like codecademy should still presist and are very helpful for someone who wants to give it a try. I just hope that what they have now is not a finished product and they keep improving and maybe dig a little deeper in every course and also having an extended exercise section tailored to what you've learned so far (Bonus Level :p).

  118. Ionut Virtaci
    December 3, 2015 at 8:26 am

    I learned a lot from CodeAcademy. Mostly, I agree with your post. I tried applying what I learned in real life and the results were shaky at best. But through perseverence and a lot of googling, I eventually got my sea legs. That said, I think platforms like it are great because they introduce people into the basics. The takeaway is that whatever you learn, you should try to apply it outside of your learning environment as soon as possible. As with anything, don't learn to x, learn to think.

  119. Anonymous
    December 3, 2015 at 4:50 am

    So what aspects of programming do employers look for? That way, people can jump into learning the basics then develop these skills.

  120. Vijay Pal
    December 3, 2015 at 4:38 am

    I think when you are starting the syntax of any programming matter a lot than programming which is subset of logic and mathematics, this is the are which you must lesrn and develope in school while solving any readoning question or maths problem, snd codecadely is not for that, essentiallly it teaches you the concept of any programming language so if you have your own idea or concept you dont have to struggle with converting it into reality, most of the people like me have idea about lot of things but it can not be converted to reality untill or unless you are familiar with any programming, like creating a beatiful interface is the process of visualization in your mind then if you know the html and css you can convert it into reality, and thats what the sole purpose of codecademy is, they are not promissing you to make hardcore programmmer,computer software engineer or scientist but giving you a start of your journey.

  121. Chris
    December 3, 2015 at 2:59 am

    I found when I came out of the HTML and CSS courses that I did not really understand how to link my files to get them to reference each other properly. That said, I am going through the Odin Project which supplements this with the outside bash your head on the keyboard exercises that really frustrate you. I googled a lot and I am sure I will do the same with the JavaScript. I am learning syntax, but so far have no clue what I am going to use it on when I am done. I assume I will learn that after I complete the code academy portion. Overall I like it a lot. I know I am no where near what a developer is capable of but like a chef you cannot expect a guy off the street, who learns to cook in a 12 week course to execute a menu that has been perfected over years of practice.

  122. Anonymous
    December 3, 2015 at 12:02 am

    "Problem One: It Doesn’t Teach the Mindset"
    Does CA require flowcharting as a prerequisite to all programming courses? Does it even offer a flowcharting course?

    Flowcharting is a prosaic part of programming. Some would even say that it is archaic and/or unnecessary in today's software development world. However, flowcharting teaches how to break down a problem or a process into logical steps. It forces you to think logically like programmer.

  123. RDF
    December 2, 2015 at 9:25 pm

    I won't blame CodeAcademy. What would you expect. Some if not all courses are free. For me it still ok to learn the basics and then supplement your learning with more coding.

  124. Phil Spitler
    December 2, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    I would like to start by saying I have no affiliation with CA. I'm just extremely passionate about providing anyone and everyone with the best opportunity possible at starting a career in the tech industry.

    So on to this post.

    Problem #1:

    "Codecademy does not teach you to think like a coder."

    Do you expect them to? For your brain to make the neuroconnections necessary so that in some milliseconds worth of time, you can be immediately fired up about your first go at a solution because you know if you're off on your hypothesis of what it is, you know it's not by much. That takes years of experience. Other than experience, what would you propose Codeacademy change in their offering to teach you to "think like a coder"?

    Somehow you managed to follow the negative comment about CA "it teaches you the basics of a number of programming languages, without any real instruction on how you’d apply them to real-life problems." almost immediately with the statement "which features enough mind-bending programming puzzles to sink anyone’s teeth into" as a positive about 2 other online learning aids. How are theoretical mind-bending puzzles better than showing how you LITERALLY loop through an array for a beginner?

    Problem #2:

    "Blink and You’ll Miss It"

    If your ambition was to reach as many potential developers as possible for them to have the opportunity to to see if it sparks something within them, how would you go about doing it? Would you teach someone brand new to construction how to hammer a nail or how air compressors work so they can contemplate how much energy may be wasted if they used a nail gun vs a hammer?

    Quite frankly, I blinked and missed your argument. All I saw was a bunch of marketing after your first sentence.

    Problem #3:

    "Syntax is not programming."

    I agree with you on your point there. Anyone can reference an API. That said, While the issues you bring up would effect you if someone hired you based on the fact that you just took a Code Academy course. I'm fairly likely someone who just took the Java course on Code Academy would not find themselves in that situation after an interview.

    Saying you'll have to go elsewhere to obtain more knowledge is like saying humans need water to survive. This isn't a CA thing. It's a thing you do when you are always challenging yourself and understand and are OK with the fact that none of us will know everything. The hunger for knowledge and desire to seek out more compelling answers is one of the key components of "thinking like a coder".

    Problem #4:

    Too much cake, not enough vegetables

    Learning to be a developer is challenging. Overcoming a problem you've spent the better part of 72 hours working on is euphoric even. I've pushed myself a lot. And I'd have to think really really really really hard for a time when I've put myself in a position where programming and the things I needed/wanted to learn were not exciting.

    If you love being challenged and have a growth mindset (it's a lifelong journey), I believe the fairly light, and still technically accurate Code Academy courses can be a great test to see if it excites you.

    • heuss
      August 6, 2016 at 8:05 am

      phil ur so smart
      if every1 did a phill
      theres no war
      #nevertrump