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Study technique for becoming a self-taught engineer/developer

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Study technique for becoming a self-taught engineer/developer

Hooman Pegahmehr's photo
Hooman Pegahmehr
·Jan 23, 2023·

3 min read

Hello visitors :) In this writing, I want to share with you a powerful technique that has helped many to learn a new technical topic. Many folks have given up on academic learning as the gap between what the industry demands and what typical degree programs offer in terms of learning are seriously huge. I am not sure what kind of jobs are awaiting those who pursued a degree in philosophy, journalism or English literature(nothing against these topics, I am just using them for the sake of example).

Academic failure led to the birth of today's coding bootcamps. The common approach is to get you code 14 hours days for 2 months with the promise of teaching you enough to land an entry-level software engineering role. Probably the biggest challenge is that how intense these programs are. Yes, they need to take your money and get you to graduate so they can repeat this cycle. You'll probably have to learn a bunch of technologies without having enough time to fully digest the information. On the other hand, they'll just scratch the surface and never get in-depth with any of these topics. You'll barely learn enough to create a replica of what they've shown you and you'll get stuck if you get asked to create something new.

I understand that academic learning is filled with nonsense, but condensing the learning material of a bunch of technologies and teaching during a short period is not an appealing alternative. For example, most of these schools teach you JavaScript. It's a single language that could be used for both backend and front-end development. In being very honest with you, it'll take you at least two to six months just to learn and appreciate Vanilla JavaScript. With no consideration for mastery learning, these bootcamps give you a week of JavaScript and then they move you to learn ReactJS. How can you appreciate the state management of a library without having to manage the state in a couple of Vanilla JavaScript applications? Now apply this failure/bad approach to learning the entire stack. Mastery learning maintains that students must achieve a level of mastery in prerequisite knowledge before moving forward to learn subsequent information.

Learning a new technical topic is a journey that doesn't happen overnight. The failure of these coding bootcamps has led to folks choosing the self-taught route. With enough free material available on the Internet, why would you pay 20K to get your brain fried very little outcome? The self-taught route is a journey that requires you to be persistent and have decent discipline. An hour a day is a magical number. It adds up to more than 300 hours per year and you don't have to worry about possible burnout. It's a good start and once you build enough stamina you could increase it slowly.

In the following video, I share with you a very powerful technique that's based on an hour-per-day study philosophy. I'll give you many tips on how to choose and get through your study material as well as what to do if you get off the track.

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