Start with the Basics: Set Goals and Create a PlanFirst of all, you should decide whether you’re learning Java as a hobby or as a career. If the latter, you may further decide what exactly you would like to become — a software developer, mobile app developer, or QA specialist. As soon as you've set your mind on the role, it’s better to visit mainstream job websites like Glassdoor or Indeed to check the skills and tools you should become proficient in. Only after such research, you’ll be able to set your tactical goals and create a plan tailored to your needs. Ideally, your roadmap ought to include all the essential Java topics and add-ons required for your "future career." Below, we’re going to share with you some tips that helped our graduates become successful Java developers in less than a year.
Get a hang of APIs and libraries. You should definitely include learning APIs and libraries in your plan. Actually, numerous APIs and libraries in Java play an important role in making a full-fledged ecosystem. That’s why strong knowledge of third-party APIs and JDK is one of the tricks to becoming a successful Java developer. Of course, you won’t be able to learn all of them at once but trying to become familiar with the most popular ones is a good idea.
Include DevOps in your plan. Since more and more companies are adapting DevOps nowadays, it’s very important to study DevOps at the early stages of your learning path. Plus, this knowledge will not only set you above Java rookies like you but broaden your programming horizon as well.
Play with the codes. When you get down to practicing, don’t be afraid to play with the code. By choosing a trial-and-error method, you’ll automatically start to get the hang of things. You may even try to participate in open projects online once you feel you’re ready for that.
Pay close attention to the basics. All the aforementioned skills are great, but don’t rush into learning them until you hone Core Java. A lot of programmers make the mistake of skipping the basics at the beginning of their learning path, thinking it doesn’t worth much attention. It’s a big “no-no” as building a strong foundation is the key. Make sure you have a strong understanding of the fundamentals of Java, such as variables, loops, data types, and control structures. These concepts are actually the building blocks that can help you learn Java faster. Also, don’t neglect to focus on concepts and how they are applied to solve problems.
What not to do?Many beginners just Google “how to learn Java quickly” and start watching YouTube tutorials mindlessly. It’s a big mistake which eventually leads to a loss of energy, passion,and motivation. By the way, burying yourself in numerous textbooks may kill the vibe as well. The right theory/practice balance is the only way to success.
Think of an Effective Schedule for YourselfThe truth is that you won't be able to follow your plan without an effective schedule. As you’re likely to face an overwhelming amount of useful information, especially at the beginning, you need to be structured as much as possible. Therefore, you may try different time-management techniques to distribute your time wisely throughout the day. Ideally, you should start your day with theory and then devote the rest of the day to practice — a 20%/80% theory-to-practice balance is considered to be the best. Having said that, try not to overburden yourself and try not to forget about your personal life. That’s why when creating a schedule, keep in mind your hobbies and family life.
Don’t Neglect Additional ResourcesDon’t be limited to CodeGym only. Our experienced students suggest using additional Java resources regularly to stay up-to-date and discover different approaches to learning. You may try “fresh” books, videos, articles… whatever you prefer. By doing so, you will be able to stay apprised of all the current happenings.
Join a CommunityAnother way to stay up to date about the trends is to connect with fellow coders like you online. You may join one of the numerous forums and communities to seek news and support. Luckily, the Internet is full of different Java communities like StackOverflow, Coderanch, and GitHub where coders all over the world share their experience and help beginners solve tricky issues. For sure, you can learn a lot from profis and, after a while, help those who’re just starting out.
General TipsAmong other things that can help you achieve your goals faster, you may stick to the following ones:
Be consistent. Even if you can’t spend more than 3-4 hours coding, practice daily! Start small and move on to more complicated tasks gradually. Don’t take breaks. Consistency is critical when learning to code.
Focus on one topic at a time. Don't mix things up, jumping from one topic to another.
Don't put a deadline. Keep in mind that everyone should have a different, customized schedule and study at a comfortable pace so as not to end up overwhelmed. Don't compare yourself to others.