Career Insight

What Programming Language Should I Learn?

Lines of code in a particular programming language on the computer

Whether you’re looking for a career change, eager to build a web app, or wish to become an even better software programmer, there’s a multitude of languages to learn. We’re here to break down some of the easiest and most beneficial programming languages to learn and help point you in a direction best suited for you.

Programming Languages to Consider

Programming Languages and their Benefits

  • Python

    Put Python at the top of your list as it’s one of the best for beginners. Learning Python is a strong step toward landing tech-adjacent careers, such as IT support and computer management. Other science fields, such as mathematics and biology, use Python as well.

    For those interested in software engineering careers, Python programming introduces the entire experience of setting up languages, writing programs, and running your creation in the real world.

    A simple — yet elegant — general programming language, Python is easy-to-use, easy-to-establish, and reads like English. Senior developers will continue to use Python for easy one-off scripts that often replace tedious manual work. Because of this, Python is a must-have for software engineering resumes.

    Start-ups and mathematicians are flocking to Python as it’s used in several heavyweight applications — artificial intelligence being the stand-out example.


    Simple to pick up and learn

    Useful for all tech-adjacent jobs, such as IT, mathematics, and other sciences

    Will be used throughout software development careers

  • Ruby

    Many new programmers have issues learning the syntax of a programming language. Syntax of a computer language refers to the set of rules that defines the combinations of symbols and characters needed to make code run correctly. Fortunately, Ruby’s syntax is so closely aligned with the English language (just like Python). This makes it a great introductory language.

    Ruby differs from Python in that it can be used for web development. Plenty of companies, including Airbnb, Twitch, Github, Instacart, and Shopify used Ruby as their preferred programming language. You will see Ruby on Rails in many job postings for enterprise companies.


    Provides plenty of out-of-the-box features for web development

    Easy-to-read syntax

    Popular language choice for enterprise websites

  • JavaScript

    JavaScript is the frontrunner for modern web development and is critical for any programmer wanting to work in the frontend. Frontend is the term for any software that users directly interact with, such as websites and mobile applications. As an example, when you click a button on a webpage, JavaScript is used to implement the logic behind the popup.

    JavaScript can also be used to build backend applications. Backend is the term for programs that the customers don’t directly interact with, but do the heavy lifting like data storage and computation.

    Learning JavaScript will also prepare you for more complicated languages, such as Java. JavaScript is a jumping-off point for your career. Considering JavaScript has been a pillar of the programming language community for decades, opting for it as a first language is an excellent decision.

    There is an abundance of websites that rely on JavaScript daily, including Twitter, Spotify, eBay, and Uber. These are all websites that experience an immense amount of traffic at any given moment.


    Runs immediately within the web browser

    Necessary for almost any web development career

    Has countless online resources to learn from

    Introduces the key concepts to more complicated programming languages

  • Java

    Java paved the way for modern coding. Java’s robust stability and stringent rules make it a first-choice language for large programs at enterprise-level companies.

    Java is more challenging to learn when compared to Python or JavaScript, but rewards those who do. Masters of Java can quickly pick up any other language, because learning Java requires a thorough understanding of fundamental software principles.

    If your goal is to land a development-based job at a large corporation in the future, such as Instagram, Spotify, and Amazon, Java is a place to start. Additionally, Android mobile applications are written in Java, which opens the door to app development. There are opportunities abound in the world of Java.


    Popular choice for large companies

    Used for building Android applications

    Java programmers can learn new languages quickly due to a mastery of fundamentals

  • C#

    As a younger update to ancient, difficult programming languages, C# handles some of the pain points of its ancestors C and C++ . Its skill set includes programming for enterprise software, mobile applications, and (drumroll) video game development!

    C# and Java are used in similar ways by developers; the difference comes down to “where am I using my program?” C# excels in Windows environments, while Java is better suited for Unix-based systems (Mac and Linux). C# and Java developers will debate which language is better, but learning either will benefit you.

    In addition to Microsoft, C# is used by Stack Overflow, and Intuit, among others.


    C# programmers can easily learn C, C++, and Java

    Deeply integrated with Windows

    Choice for enterprise software

  • PHP

    Much like Python, PHP is considered a quick learn for beginners, even with no prior experience. PHP is a powerful tool specially suited for interactive web pages.

    Engineers who seriously specialize in web development and design need PHP on their resume. While fewer startups are choosing PHP, the language has been used to build some of the most important web applications today. PHP will be around forever and is a great choice for those interested in well-established organizations such as WordPress, Etsy, Wikipedia, Facebook, and Slack.


    Always hire-able, as web giants will always need developers

There is no right or wrong choice when deciding which programming language to learn. What matters most is choosing a language that fits your situation. You aren’t limited to learning only one language. In the universe of software programming and coding, the best habit you can have is to always be learning. 

Your First Steps

Starting a new career can feel like a daunting task — but it doesn’t have to be! Kenzie Academy offers programs to set you on a path toward becoming a master coder. Let us help you take hold and become the software developer you’ve always wanted to be. Apply today or request more information about our Software Engineering Program that teaches Javascript using the form below!


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