Top Tips To Get Better at Programming

Top Tips To Get Better at Programming

Are you a beginner in programming or do you have some experience? Nevertheless, we always have room to improve and get better at what we achieve every day. Here are 5 tips on how to get better at programming.

Here are the top tips to get better at programming

Tip 1 — Don’t memorise

Give a man the code, he suffers for a day. Teach the man to code, he suffers for a lifetime. xD

I have noticed that new programmers tend to memorize the solution and produce it. This is the worst habit one can develop. Unfortunately, in some educational systems, this method of rote learning is still prevalent for logical subjects such as Math and Computer Science. Instead, try and understand every line that you write.

When I was learning CSS programming, I watched many tutorials on advanced techniques. I coded elements with beautiful transitions and animations that had complex CSS code. While doing so, I realised that I didn’t understand how does the position: relative or position: absolute work exactly. I was having trouble understanding how this rule affect the entire project. That’s when I specifically search for this term and spent about an hour practicing the different use cases of the position attribute.

Tip 2 — Read others’ code

You will see this programming tip everywhere but not everyone can do so. A couple of questions come to mind:

  1. What code do I read?
  2. How do I understand if the difficulty level is high?
  3. How will reading others’ code benefit me?

I, too, initially had some trouble understanding others’ code; however, as time progressed, I slowly got the hang of it.

Reading others’ code will help you gain an insight as how the more experienced programmers think and how they implement their logic in programming code. It provides you the freedom to inherit the code style that they use.

To start reading others’ code, you must try the following:

  1. Find and research basic code on GitHub in your area of expertise.
  2. Ignore the complex code and try to gain as much as you can.
  3. Implement the code that you read so that you understand.

Tip 3 — Don’t copy, write

Everybody gets stuck. Everybody looks on the internet for answers. Everybody refers to StackOverflow. But not everybody copies the code from there.

Do you just hit a CTRL-C and a CTRL-V when you need help from the internet? Stop doing that! This tip is an amalgamation of the previous two.

  1. When you need to refer to some code from the internet, you are essentially reading someone else’s code, which points to my Tip #1.
  2. While doing so, you need to understand every line and not blindly copy, which points to my Tip #0.

When you find an answer to a bug that you’re facing, write the lines down to your project instead of copy-pasting. As you are writing, your brain is getting more time to register what you’re doing. This helps you understand and remember the solution the next time you face an issue. Programming is not just developing projects, but also a mental practice of logical problem-solving.

Tip 4 — Learn to Google

Programmers are just professional googlers.

This tip is mainly directed to those programmers who haven’t self-learned their material — those who took online/in-person courses. While that is OK, you need to remember that your best friend is Google.

Say it’s 1 am, and you have a project deadline by the morning. You are just finishing the project but one test fails at the last moment. It’s a relatively difficult issue and you cannot seem to understand how to fix it. Normally, you would go to your professor and they’ll help; but that is not possible at that hour. You still google the issue, but you couldn’t find the answer. Well, maybe the issue is difficult to debug. Or maybe you didn’t use the right terms to google.

Practice Googling errors. There are tons of resources on the internet and a couple of “hidden tricks” that Google has in the search bar, which can help you narrow your search.

Tip 5 — Follow the Conventions

Don’t write code that the machine can understand. Write code that other humans can understand.

Programming is a field that was born over three decades ago. Like everything on earth, it matured and grew complex. However, we can’t continue to write the same way we did years back. Spaghetti programming code is not appreciated in times like this. We need to follow certain unsaid rules that make our code readable and allow others the opportunity to understand and work on it.

  1. Don’t use a single function to execute more than one task.
  2. Maintain the naming conventions in your project and language.
  3. Don’t fear long variable names if required.
  4. Indent your code.
  5. Separate the concerns (UI, Models, Backend, etc.) in your codebase.

Understanding the different conventions again comes with practice and reading others’ code.


Most of the world has turned to computer science as a viable career path. In a world where the number of programmers is increasing at an exponential rate, you need to stand out. Skillset is one thing, but if you are unable to debug or write clean code, you may not be the best fit in the industry.

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