Seven websites that help technical contractors learn programming skills for free

Many contractors enter IT from operations without a “formal IT qualification.” But ask Program managers or Technical Business Analysts if, when they entered their role through operations, they had an aptitude, rather than an official qualification in their field. Even those contractors with formal computer science skills often find they are cut out of formal training in companies they contract with. Yet they still need to maintain skills relevant to themselves. This can be costly, so any avenue that can help save you costs is appreciated.

Here are some sites that can help you advance your IT skills without requiring a monetary outlay.

  1. EDX – This is an on-line platform created by Harvard and MIT which provides courses in IT related areas. One course that stands out is: “An Introduction to Computer Science,” which you can take to increase your knowledge base or pay a small fee to receive certification.
  2. Coursera – This is another site with a lot of free access to course material. One that I like is “A Developer’s guide to the Internet,” where a lot of the material is accessible for free (although you have to pay if you want to upgrade your certification).
  3. GitHub – Need a reference book that explains a programming language or IT concept? Check out GitHub – hundreds of books covering dozens of languages and concepts. It’s a very useful IT library, easy to use and navigate. It’s also free. Of particular interest is the Hadoop section, “Hadoop explained”.
  4. KhanAcademy – This is a very interesting site, and it’s not just related to computing. It has information related to math, science etc. and is directed toward students and teachers.
  5. Another good course creating SQL databases for the adventurous new coder is: “An Introduction to HTML.”  It helps with creating web applications and websites.
  6. Data General Assembly – Simply put, this allows the beginner to upskill and code for the web in CSS, HTML or JavaScript.
  7. Android Training page – Here you will find all you need to know to develop a killer Android App – not much else to add really.

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