Python is an object-oriented programming language known for its elegant, easy-to-read syntax and extensibility to other programming languages like C or C++. It comes with a large library of standard modules and can be used to develop for the Web, GUI and various realms including science, education, and games or 3D graphics. Python is typically used for lighter applications and scripting and for cases when a quick turnaround is necessary.
Python is free and easy to learn, so for individuals new to programming it can be a good place to start. The official Python website offers step-by-step instructions for getting started, assuming you already know how to run a program on your computer. The developer community offers a wiki, conferences and other types of support.
Python training spans a range of topics, including these:
- Python string operations
- Lists and dictionaries
- Branching and scripting
- Input/output and modules
- Python objects
An introductory Python class covers the characteristics of the programming language and why it is chosen for certain applications and projects over other languages.
Types of Python training
The Python website itself offers numerous resources for learning the programming language, in a variety of formats. From the Beginner's Guide to Python page, an individual can link to these and other options:
- Beginner's Guide/Overview
- Guide for choosing which version of Python to use
- Tutorial options that include beginner's guides for both programmers and non-programmers
- Online Python documentation
- Library, language, module and application reference pages
Once an individual has gone through the basic documentation and reference guides on the Python website, it is a good idea to practice the principles of Python programming. From the website, programmers can link to different sites that offer Python exercises and skill-testing.
Depending on one's learning style, students can choose between online documentation and tutorials or live, instructor-led classroom training. An individual wanting to master this language under the guidance of an instructor should consider Python courses. A number of third-party options are available and cover similar topics as listed above. Whether one pursues formal or informal courses, a key element of Python training lies in programming practice.
Once a student is comfortable with the basics, it may be time to consider an advanced course. Here, Python programming skills are taken to the next level and students will explore:
- Thread programming
- Message passing
- Advanced I/O handling
- Generators and co-routines
Advanced Python courses can be challenging and are targeted for more experienced programmers who are already familiar with the core Python programming language.
For programmers that have truly mastered Python, there is no official certification; however, some schools offer their own version of certification upon the completion of Python courses.
Python training audience
Because Python is one of the more user-friendly of the programming languages, it can be learned by those with little to no programming experience. Students interested in learning a programming language that is best for lighter applications and projects would benefit from starting with Python training. This language is also easily accessible since it runs on a wide variety of platforms and operating systems.
For students wondering if computer programming is a good career match, Python training could give them a feel for what the job entails. Those considering this career can seek a range of employment options. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that as of May 2010, there were 333,620 computer programmers in the U.S. who earned mean annual wages of $74,900.