Should You Get A Degree To Become A Programmer?

Computer programmer

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

There are times when it does make more sense to go for practical experience that pays right away over getting into debt to get a degree. And when it comes to a career in programming, it is easier than most fields to break into without needing a degree. Experience and results count for a lot in the programming field. Before you get that college application sent out you need to think about things a bit.

Should you skip college and go right into the job hunt? It is not a cut-and-dry question to answer. There are times when you need to have a degree and others when it isn’t necessary. In this article, we will go over some things to think about if you are wondering which direction to take to become a programmer.

What Would a Degree Do For You?

There are quite a few types of programmers that really do need to get a degree. Sure, you can learn a language to code in but in many areas, this is not enough to know. For instance, for a job as a data scientist, you definitely need a degree since you have to understand theory.

And other types of tech jobs that go beyond just sitting at a desk and writing lines of code all day are harder to come by. So you’ll need to find resources like Going Ivy to find the right college and right degree to be able to compete for those jobs.

Also, when you go to college, you end up creating a large network of people who will help you along the way. You may get lucky and stumble into your dream job simply by applying when you see a listing. But, you are more likely to find it through the people you know.

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When You Don’t Need a Degree

When you’ve kind of zeroed in on what type of a job you are looking for, check out some of the forums online and see what people are saying about those jobs. You may find out quickly that a degree is not necessary.

This doesn’t mean that you can learn a language and then start sending out CVs though. You’ll need to be able to show that you know what you are doing. Taking a few bootcamps is one of the best ways to land a job as a programmer without a degree. You learn a lot of on-the-job skills that you don’t learn in a classroom setting.

You should also seek out certifications even if you are already a capable programmer. This shows that you know how to do the job and understand the theory. Employers are more willing to overlook a lack of degree if you have specialized certification.