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#1 MyJavaTrainer  Icon User is offline

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What to do after learning Core Java?

Posted 01 January 2017 - 07:59 AM

(This question was asked to me by my student)

Basically, I am looking for what are the options for a fresher after completing a course on Core Java?

Do I absolutely needs to learn Advanced Java? Or Can I move into learning Scala or Android?

Basically I am clueless, I have attended classes for a month or so and I am confident but I don't know what to do next.

What should be my next step from career point-of-view?

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Replies To: What to do after learning Core Java?

#2 modi123_1  Icon User is online

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Re: What to do after learning Core Java?

Posted 01 January 2017 - 10:56 AM

Depends on how you break down "core" and "advanced"... Typically I go with - can you successfully take a small project from concept to completion?

You attended a java class for a month and believe you are ok to move on in your career? Ahhh.. okay. Maybe dial back on the java training for others in the meantime. :/
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#3 andrewsw  Icon User is offline

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Re: What to do after learning Core Java?

Posted 01 January 2017 - 01:37 PM

You are a Java Trainer and this is a question asked by one of your students? It seems odd that you haven't been asked this question before and have no response to it(?).

As indicated, a month is not enough time to master a language, nor even to be able to write non-trivial programs unaided. (I also suspect that what your student might be considering as Advanced Java will include a number of fundamental, but slightly more advanced, topics.)

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Or Can I move into learning Scala or Android?

I wouldn't, personally, encourage moving to Scala until the student has covered more of the fundamentals of Java (can write non-trivial programs). I would also want the student to understand what Scala provides, and what benefits it may offer.

Android is a different question. If the student's main interest is in mobile development then - again if they have covered Java fundamentals - they might move to this, as it will hopefully continue their Java education, just with a different focus. That is, providing that they use good tutorials.
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#4 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: What to do after learning Core Java?

Posted 01 January 2017 - 02:20 PM

One of the key characteristics that marks a shovel-ready developer is an effective curiosity. By this I mean that a person who's ready to hire has to understand that there's more to know, they have to have a pretty good idea of what their next things to know are, and they have to be willing and able to pursue those avenues of inquiry. If you don't have that, you're not going to be able to work as an independent and productive member of a team - you might be able to generate code, but you're going to require a lot of hand-holding to get around problems that you haven't solved before. I'm not interested in people who can solve problems that they've already solved, I want people who can take on new things.
So I would say that the person who asks the "what next" question without having some specific alternatives in mind is not ready to move on in their career - not even a little bit. Even for an internship, I want you to show some sort of drive, which is very different from a willingness to be led.

Therefore, I would prescribe for this student some courses of inquiry that would hopefully awaken that drive, light up that burning curiosity, since that's the next thing they need. Some alternatives might be:

1) If they haven't taken a course in algorithms and data structures, that's probably the next thing they should do. This will expose them to a lot of useful ideas, including (very importantly) the fact that a lot of math underlies everything you do as a programmer. This is a critical step for anyone planning on doing serious work as a programmer (by which I mean, getting past the front-end trap) so it's the one I'd most strongly recommend.
2) If they're interested in a language like Scala, I'd suggest that they try to get familiar with the fundamentals of functional programming first. I would start with Friedman and Felleisen's The Little Schemer, which develops the underlying notions of recursion up to and including the Y combinator. From there, there are a number of options, but Michaels' Functional Programming Through Lambda Calculus would not be a bad next step. Learning Scheme and other lisps will not directly help with understanding Scala (which takes a lot more ideas from ML than from Lisp) but the core ideas of functional programming are essential - there's no point at all in learning Scala if they're just going to use it to write Java.
3) If they want to become a better practical programmer, they should start learning about software engineering. For this I would suggest that they get in the habit of writing programs, and also that they read books about engineering and management of engineers. An initial reading list would include The Mythical Man-Month, Joel on Software, The Cathedral and the Bazaar, Clean Code, The Art of Unix Programming, The Pragmatic Programmer, etc. (these are just the ones that come to mind without looking at my shelf) If they're going to work as a programmer, they need to be thinking about what it means to be a working programmer, and that's a lot more than just understanding the basic Java libraries. For the hands-on programming, I always suggest that a beginner take a look at David Ahl's BASIC Computer Games (available from the Atari archives, just a quick search away). This is a great idea pump - they should use it as inspiration, and start trying to produce programs that play these games. Doing this will give the beginning programmer a lot of useful opportunities to get the beginner mistakes out of the way, and prepare them for important books like Refactoring and Design Patterns, which should NOT be approached by the beginner who has not written a lot of programs.
4) For daily skills work, I would direct them to sites like the Euler Project, rosalind.info, and codeeval.com. These provide graded exercises and will test their solutions for them. Making these problems part of their daily routine will quickly bring them up against problems that they don't know how to solve, which is where they need to be now
5) For any working programmer, I always recommend that they become familiar with the linux environment and one or both of the standard code editing tools (emacs and vi). There are windows shops out there, but not being familiar with the linux shell in 2017 is just silly.
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#5 macosxnerd101  Icon User is online

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Re: What to do after learning Core Java?

Posted 01 January 2017 - 09:46 PM

Getting Better at Programming Java is an excellent resource thread!
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#6 MyJavaTrainer  Icon User is offline

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Re: What to do after learning Core Java?

Posted 02 January 2017 - 04:47 AM

In other words,
- What are the avenues for a programmer after having mastered Core Java (which includes Swing, JDBC, Multithreading, Applets, all 4 principles of OOP and their implementation, Collections and Exception Handling). The one month is a tough indicative period, please don't take it so seriously. I am writing a blog that will direct my students and website readers. That's my target

This post has been edited by andrewsw: 02 January 2017 - 04:55 AM
Reason for edit:: Removed previous quote, just press REPLY

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#7 andrewsw  Icon User is offline

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Re: What to do after learning Core Java?

Posted 02 January 2017 - 04:55 AM

Note that it is not necessary to quote a previous post, use the Reply button further down, or the Fast Reply box.
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#8 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: What to do after learning Core Java?

Posted 02 January 2017 - 08:08 AM

Applets? People still do that?
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