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Ultimate Guide to Free Python Resources for Beginners

Learning to program with Python is both fun and challenging. For some, it could mark the beginning of a life-long journey of discovery and creation.

In many professions a knowledge of Python will give you a distinct advantage. We have covered some of the advantages of studying Computer Science in a previous article. Many of the benefits mentioned there apply to learning Python. To recap, these include:

  • empowering you to solve complex, challenging problems, enabling you to make a positive difference in the world.
  • enabling you to make a positive difference in the world.
  • earning a high salary.
  • Supporting you in a wide range of professions, from astronomy to financial analysis – not just in IT related jobs!
  • improving performance in other academic subjects.
  • being ready for new opportunities in the digital world as they arise

When setting out to learn Python programming, it is easy to be overwhelmed by the vast number of resources available. Also, since you are a beginner, it is extremely hard to evaluate what you find and know which resources are high-quality and suitable for your learning needs.

To help newcomers to Python programming chose resources which will ensure a great start to their learning, we have cherry-picked 5 of the best online resources available for Python beginners. These will give you a great starting point, and once you have worked thorough them, you will be much better placed to know what you need to do next to continue learning and improving your Python skills.

Hour of Python – Turtle Graphics

Ultimate Guide to Free Python Resources for Beginners = Python Trinkets

This an excellent resource providing a fun, colourful and solid grounding in some of the essentials of Python programming. The immediate visual feedback provided by using turtle graphics makes it a perfect way to understand the key concepts and syntax.

Topics covered include:

  • variables
  • sequence
  • selection
  • logical expressions
  • iteration
  • functions

NB The free version of Python Trinket uses Python 2 rather than Python 2, but for beginners this is not a serious drawback.

Codecademy Python Course

Ultimate Guide to Free Python Resources for Beginners = Codecademy

Codecademy provides an excellent introduction course for Python 2 or Python 3, with the Python 3 version being paid.

The course is well structured and students must complete exercises to move on to further lessons. Some of the lessons for the free course also have parts which require a paid membership, such as quizzes and mini-projects to practice what has been learned. The first module of the Python 2 course is all free though and covers:

  • Hello World!
  • Print Statements
  • Strings
  • Handling Errors
  • Variables
  • Arithmetic
  • Updating Variables
  • Comments
  • Numbers
  • Two Types of Division
  • Multi-line Strings
  • Booleans
  • ValueError
  • Review

introtopython.org

Ultimate Guide to Free Python Resources for Beginners = Intro to Python

This is an excellent syllabus which has been put together for Python beginners by @ehmatthes and is open source.

It covers all the basics, as listed below, and also contains plenty of exercises and challenges to get your Python teeth into.

  • Hello World!
  • Print Statements
  • Strings
  • Handling Errors
  • Variables
  • Arithmetic
  • Updating Variables
  • Comments
  • Numbers
  • Two Types of Division
  • Multi-line Strings
  • Booleans
  • ValueError
  • Review

Lightbot

Ultimate Guide to Free Python Resources for Beginners = Lightbot

Lightbot is an excellent way to practice computational thinking while having fun along the way. It is also excellent for learning about procedures which are a concept you will need in order to get far with Python. This game provides a great way to get an intuitive understanding of procedures (which are closely related to functions). Hurry though, Chrome are planning on removing support for flash in 2020 and the browser version of Lightbot needs it to run!

Coding Bat

Ultimate Guide to Free Python Resources for Beginners = Codingbat

To make use of the exercises at Coding Bat you will need to understand functions and function parameters. The exercises at codingbat make use of tests which you have to get your code to pass. There is a great range of exercises available from “almost-beginner” level to more advanced. Having spent some time on the previous resources will certainly help you with these exercises, so maybe leave this one until last.

  • Basics
  • Strings
  • Lists
  • Logic
  • and more..

So there it is, Compucademy’s Ultimate Guide to Free Python Resources for Beginners. Remember, the key to learning to program is practice, practice, practice, and then some practice for good measure!!


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