The Best Online Resources to Learn Code

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The e-Learning industry was worth $56.2 billion dollars in 2014 and is poised to double by 2015 according to elearningindustry.com. Someone interested in pursuing coding and website design could spend just $19 a month for unlimited specialized courses. Meanwhile, the average undergraduate degree at a public four-year, in-state school runs $18,943 dollars, according to the University of Maryland.

It’s no secret an online education can run a fraction of the cost of its non-traditional counterpart. But with rising competition for online courses and programs, it’s hard to know where to start. Here’s a look at three of the best online coding resources for 2015 and how they stack up against the competition.

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Codecademy

To date, Codecademy has over 24 million users, crushing much of its coding competition. Courses can be completed in three hours and are suitable for beginners. Codecademy makes our list for its hands-on approach with relevant, cutting edge websites. Students can build replicas like Airbnb’s homepage for a practical approach to learning Web development. In another course, students build Flipboard’s homepage to figure out how to add more interactivity to a website.

Pros to the course include learning how to use the latest trends in coding like jQuery and JavaScript complete with drop down menus and carousels. Depending on the user, the downsides vary. Some might find learning the fundamentals on variables and strings to feel dense and not immediately applicable. For some, it can take a little time to grasp the practical knowledge involved and take advantage of the momentum you’re trying to build.

Skillfeed

Skillfeed’s interface features a simple, straightforward approach to learning. Unlike other coding sites that commission instructors and produce videos, Skillfeed attracts worldwide instructors to submit videos for review. The staff selects the best and makes them public for users. Skillfeed’s video tutorials makes our list for its economical price tag at just $19 a month for unlimited video tutorial access. Tutorial topics include CSS and MySQL with other courses that help put together websites without any coding.

The pros to joining Skillfeed include a wide variety of courses beyond just coding. The $19 subscription fee gets access to everything from How to Make a Custom Stained Glass Window in Photoshop to Applying Design to Wireframes with HTML5 and CSS3. But because they’re not exclusively a coding school, you may not find enough robust courses on topics like Ruby on Rails and how to turn coding into a career from scratch.

Code School

Code School teaches by doing with fun challenges and a variety of short, interactive videos that keep you engaged without getting restless. Users can see instant feedback on coding submission and request challenge hints to help move them along. Courses cover classic topics like Ruby, JavaScript, building iOS applications for iPhone and iPad mobile devices and HTML and CSS among others.

Pros include the videos designed as a collection of specialized courses instead of one training package. This could also be a con, depending on how intensely a student wants to learn to code. Another pro includes Code TV, a library of screencasts produced by the community with supplementary training to help give your code learning a boost.

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