Main image of article What Sources Do Developers Use to Learn Coding?

If you’re a software developer or engineer, mastering code is critical. While many developers opt for formal instruction (often at a two- or four-year institution) in the intricacies of coding, others are self-taught. What sources are the latter using to educate themselves?

According to Stack Overflow’s latest Developer Survey, which queried 89,184 developers from 185 countries, many engineers and developers go right to the source: technical documentation. Sizable percentages also use Stack Overflow, blogs, and how-to videos. Take a look at the full breakdown:

Many developers rely on a variety of methods, the survey added: “Well-written documentation, an active community providing solutions, and regular posts are the trifecta of enabling people to teach themselves about a technology.”

Fortunately, many programming languages feature extensive documentation and tutorials, especially the more popular ones. If you’re learning Python, for instance, you can visit for its handy beginner’s guide. For those who prefer visual learning, Microsoft’s video series, “Python for Beginners,” features dozens of short lessons (most under five minutes in length; none longer than 13 minutes) in the various aspects of Python. And that’s in addition to tutorials from the likes of Datacamp (whose Introduction to Python course includes 11 videos and 57 exercises), Udemy (which offers a variety of free introduction courses, including one for “absolute beginners”), and Codecademy.

It’s a similar story with more complicated technologies such as artificial intelligence (A.I.) and machine learning: you can find all kinds of courses online that will boost your learning, but one of the most surefire ways to learn a technology’s basic tenets is to visit the website of its creator. In the case of A.I., for example, OpenAI offers an extensive breakdown of how its popular ChatGPT chatbot actually works.

Whatever educational routes you choose, mixing your sources is always a good idea if you want to comprehensively master a language or technology. And don’t be afraid to ask questions as you progress on your learning journey.