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5 Tips to help you become a software developer

By | Business, Career guidance, Coding, Computer Science, Programming | No Comments
[vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][vc_row_inner column_margin=”default” text_align=”left”][vc_column_inner column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”2/3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][vc_column_text]Software development jobs are amongst the fastest growing jobs globally and a lot of people who have realized this have decided to pursue or switch careers in this direction.

If you are one of these people, we have a few tips which we believe can help in your journey to becoming a developer.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner boxed=”true” column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” centered_text=”true” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”]

[/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][vc_column_text]1. Develop a passion for solving problems

The fundamental skill that you are valued for as a developer is your problem-solving skills and then your ability to translate your solutions into code. It would be worthwhile to train yourself to tackle challenging problems that you come across on a day to day basis.

2. Learn more than one programming language

The famous ‘law of the instrument’ by Maslow states “ To a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail”. If all you have in your programming toolbox is Python, you will want to solve every problem using python even when it is not the best option. The advantage of knowing more than one language is that it makes the task of deciding which tool is best suited for a particular problem much easier.

A good platform to achieve this is codewars.com which gives you the option of solving the same problem in multiple languages.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][vc_row_inner column_margin=”default” text_align=”left”][vc_column_inner boxed=”true” column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” centered_text=”true” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”]

[/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”2/3″ column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][vc_column_text]3. Be constantly learning and up-skilling.     

Because the tech/software developing industry is an ever evolving field, constant development of one’s skill will be essential. This can be done in the form of reading books or attending seminars to help refine your expertise.

4. Work on as many projects as you can.

The best way to complement your qualification is with a large collection of projects that you have worked on. These projects mean more to a potential employer as they help gauge your level of expertise.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_position=”bottom”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid”][vc_column_text]5. Finally, Find a mentor. 

Find someone with experience that’s already doing the kind of work you’d like to do that can help review your work and help you become a better developer. You can also join online peer review platforms where more seasoned developers can look at work and advise you on how you can improve.

There’s a whole lot more one can do to get started as a developer but we trust the few points stated above are a good start.

If you are wondering what courses would be best take to start your journey to become a software developer, we have a few recommendations for you. You can click on the link below and we will either call/email to provide some advice – Contact us

Or – you can visit our Microsoft Beginners Programming course – and become a Microsoft certified programmer

 

#programming #Microsoft #coding #C-language #HTML #Javascript[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Maths Diagnostics can uncover gaps

By | Career guidance, Maths, Tutoring | No Comments

Too often we meet with parents who lament that their child was an A-student in Grade 7, only to receive a 30% score on their maths test in Grade 8. They don’t believe the teachers. They complain that the high school is not teaching their kids properly. Or they simply feel helpless and at a loss to understand how this could happen. It’s incredibly frustrating for our parents.

Every year we see the same thing. It’s not the teachers, or the high school (at least not the ones we work with :-)). We have tested over 15,000 Grade 8 and 9 learners using our maths diagnostic assessments which have been designed to test three grades back and the results clearly demonstrate that basic fundamentals in maths are not properly mastered in primary school. An easy multiplication question 6×4 – Grade 3 level – scored an average of 44.5% across the learners tested. Our theory is that learners managed to pass in primary school through rote learning, memorising the answers without properly understanding the concepts.

But high school maths requires that you fully master the basics without needing to memorise them again. High school Grade 8 teachers don’t have time in the curriculum to teach learners their times tables, or what a fraction is. This should have been done from Grade 4 onwards.

And if a grade 8 learner doesn’t identify those gaps early on, ideally in Term 1 already, it becomes progressively harder to catch up as time passes. By the time September of Grade 9 comes along it’s far too late and most likely their and their parent’s dreams for their career as a doctor or engineer will be dashed as they’re forced to select Maths Literacy in Grade 10.

The value in diagnosing your maths gaps early on in the year doesn’t just apply to Grade 8, although it’s absolutely crucial in Grade 8 given the jump from primary to high schools. Every year teachers will cover more complicated maths concepts and so uncovering the gaps in specific maths topics from prior years and prior terms is valuable so that learners can target their efforts and find support options on the maths topics they need it most. This is even more true in the Covid-19 environment we are in today.

The Brighter Futures Maths Diagnostic Assessments are FREE and available for Grade 8-12. These are 1-1.5hr assessments that cover the maths concepts covered over the last few grades. Once completed, learners receive a detailed report in minutes via email that breaks down every maths section assessed with a corresponding percentage score. Parents, teachers and learners themselves can use this report to target their interventions and ensure no child falls behind.

For any questions about the Maths Diagnostic Assessments – please email us at info@brighterfuture.co.za

Good luck to our Maths learners this year – we are here to support you.

The Future of Work – Alan Hosking of HR Future Magazine

By | Business, Career guidance, Coding, Computer Science, Programming, Tutoring | 3 Comments

ADDRESSING THE ICT SKILLS SCARCITY, UNEMPLOYMENT AND JOB REDUNDANCIES NOW AND IN THE FUTURE – EDUCATION IMPERATIVES FOR 2020

According to the World Bank Report on Digital Skills in Sub Saharan Africa, the demand for ICT skills is expected to grow in the region at a faster rate than other global markets. They further cite socio-behavioural skills as a priority for a future workforce.

Joanne Brink, CEO of Brighter Futures interviews Alan Hosking on the scarcity of ICT skills in the South African workplace. A tech-savvy ex-teacher, with decades of experience in the human capital industry, Alan sheds light on the way forward to bridge the skills gap which is crippling businesses, with opportunities to tackle existing youth unemployment, and importantly protect the jobs of people who have a likely consequence of redundancy given rapidly evolving AI technology.

JOANNE BRINK: IN 2019, PRESIDENT CYRIL RAMAPHOSA EXPRESSED AN URGENT NEED FOR PROGRAMMING TO BECOME COMPULSORY IN SCHOOLS. WILL THIS BE ADEQUATE TO ADDRESS THE SCARCITY OF SKILLS?

ALAN: As ICT industry commentator Adrian Schofield says, we have to fix the education system and provide education to build a foundation and open the eyes of the youth to the opportunities in the digital world. 

So, President Ramaphosa’s suggestion is indeed valid and a step in the right direction, but I predict the Department of Education’s solution will fall short of what industry really needs, and even if it addresses the gaps, it will take decades to implement across the system. Parents can therefore not afford to wait until government has a solution in place. They need to take responsibility for their children’s education by seeking out online and classroom tuition solutions that can give their children a head-start.

To address the existing problem in the workplace, companies should identify and “upskill” existing at-risk-employees who, with the emergence of AI and other technology, will very likely become redundant. Offering ICT skills to appropriately selected candidates can address the more pressing needs in the present as well as prepare employees for future career path shifts.

JOANNE BRINK: YOUTH UNEMPLOYMENT IS CURRENTLY PEGGED AT OVER 60% AND GROWING – HOW CAN YOUTH BE BEST ABSORBED INTO THE WORKPLACE, IN PARTICULAR THE ICT SECTOR?

ALAN: Generally speaking, there’s not so much a shortage of jobs in the ICT sector as there is a shortage of skills – hence the “war for talent” of which people speak. It is suggested that 5 000 immigrants are taking up jobs in the ICT sector in South Africa and companies are finding themselves with inhibited economic growth as a result of the ICT skills shortage. We need programmes like the Brighter Futures Coding Cafe to fast-track our youth into the growing number of un-filled programming jobs across the globe. In the US alone over one million coding jobs are unfilled.  

There is also a significant opportunity for unemployed young graduates to become part of the ICT education solution. With little investment in upskilling, they can become ICT tutors and teachers in schools. Imagine the kick-start this could give to ICT education!

Because of the rapid pace of innovation and disruption, learning from the past is no longer enough. We now also need to learn from the future. This presents a further opportunity for youth to contribute to a world in which our youth, along with innovators and global forerunners, are the best source of future trends. Companies should therefore deliberately engage with the youth to uncover infinite unexplored possibilities for their businesses in the future. I have been encouraging forward thinking companies to introduce co-mentoring where seasoned mentors are paired with younger co-mentors. This facilitates a mutual exchange of ideas and insights, which leads to futuristic thinking.

JOANNE BRINK: GIVEN YOUR PAST EXPERIENCE AS A TEACHER AND NOW A VOCAL ADVOCATE OF ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE, WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON ONLINE LEARNING VS CLASSROOM LEARNING?

ALAN: Online learning has a valuable role to play in terms of just-in-time, anywhere/anytime learning, but it is largely limited to providing information only. Classroom learning, however, particularly with regard to young people, offers much more in terms of an emotional connection between the learners and the facilitator. Collaboration, critical thinking, decision making, leadership, teamwork, reflection and problem solving are cited as critical skills for the future. These so-called “soft skills” cannot however be learned as effectively online. In addition, classroom tuition facilitates socialisation, which can be used to create focus and nurture collective consciousness. The same can be said for adult learning.

In conclusion; the eternal, universal methods of teaching children that have worked for thousands of years should not be abandoned in the quest to expedite ICT skills development, but what, how and when we learn has to evolve to the next level. The tragedy is that it is unlikely that the education system will get there early enough. 

Joanne Brink is the founder and CEO of Brighter Futures (www.brighterfuture.co.za). Together with university students & graduates employed as tutors and centre managers, Brighter Futures offers Microsoft certified programmes at their Coding Cafes in 25+ school centres in the Gauteng region with a growing footprint. The Coding Cafe offering has emerged as a result of their success in maths tuition, with parents, teachers and learners in awe of the difference they have made in the lives of those they have engaged with.

Alan Hosking is the Publisher of HR Future magazine (www.hrfuture.net), which prepares people and companies for the future of work. He is a leadership development expert who specialises in developing leaders of all ages to reboot their leadership skills for the future. His company, Osgard, is an authorised reseller for a world-first Artificial Intelligence technology that digitises human expertise. In 2018, Alan was named by US web site Disruptordaily.com as one of the “Top 25 Future of Work Influencers to Follow on Twitter”.  

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