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Learning programming languages before entering CS

sentfromthebinsentfromthebin 1 replies3 threads New Member
I'm sorry if this has already been posted before but I was curious about the CS program for this school specifically as it may differ from other universities. In highschool, I've done a bit of programming through some Visual Basic online course at my local community college and I have passed AP Computer Science Principles with a 5, but I do not know any specific language of programming. In my highschool there were students who were fluent in multiple languages including Python, C++, and Java and I couldn't help but feel so behind.

I could understand all of the logic behind the programming I did, but I have yet to actually learn and work with programming languages apart from the basic ones I've worked with before. I seem to hold onto the concepts and logic behind the programming I've done previously rather than the actual languages themselves. Overall I feel like I'm at a weird grey area between not knowing how to program at all and being able to program.

How may this affect my experience as an undergraduate CS student? I may be overreacting a little bit but all the people who have gone into computer science at my school are fluent in at least one language and I can't help but feel awful about my lack of knowledge. Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated greatly!
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Replies to: Learning programming languages before entering CS

  • GumbymomGumbymom Forum Champion UC 30516 replies417 threads Forum Champion
    Having a background in a CS language or CS in general would be helpful, but for the beginning CS courses, it is not necessary.
    To get a heads up on CS languages and programming, my son did some on-line courses during the summer prior to attending college (not UCD). I think this is the easiest way to get up to speed and allow you some exposure to programming/coding since some intended CS majors change their mind about pursuing the major once they have some experience.

    Coursera, edX, Udacity some on-line course providers that are recommended.
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  • desideratumdesideratum 410 replies26 threads Member
    hi! current cs major (well, in the making -- i'm planning to transfer into it). i had no previous knowledge of other programming languages besides an if/else statement in python before starting college, and i've more than passed all my cs courses. there's a little bit of a tough learning curve, but as long as you ask for help RIGHT WHEN YOU NEED IT (lol i've made the mistake of waiting, it's not a good idea) you should be fine. keep an eye out for porquet & hanford as cs teachers, too -- they're great. butner's not too shabby either.

    if you have any other questions, feel free to pm me! i felt the same re: not knowing programming languages. i opted not to take a programming class in hs b/c i was too embarrassed at my lack of knowledge compared to the other kids. it's intimidating at first, but it does get easier.
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  • RobNWINRobNWIN 11 replies8 threads Junior Member
    If you want to get into the Realm of everything Computer Science, you WILL need a CS degree, however when starting off you do not need any experience whatsoever. But as you progress at your college, you should self-teach yourself a minimum of 4 languages as you learn from your classes to supplement your overall knowledge. But do not just learn programming languages to learn them, learn to really solve problems and overcome challenging obstacles to create a great product.
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