What differentiates an average computer programmer from an outstanding one? One thing that tends to make up a large part of this difference is the number of programming languages that a programmer has mastered. With that said it can be assumed that it is relatively important to be able to learn these languages speedily. What is the best way to go about accomplishing this? Some programmers find that a simple five step process can help almost anyone to learn a computer programming language in a reliably short period of time. The five steps are as follows: collect an abundance of fruitful material, skim it quickly for the main points, allow the information to set in, perform some trial projects, and finally review all that you have done.
The first step in this process, gathering information, is by far the easiest step in the process. Buy 3-5 books on the computer language and / or some tutorials. It is better to buy your sources as opposed to renting them since you are likely to return to them in the future for information or for reference.
Once you have obtained the material you are comfortable with, begin to actively absorb the material. Set aside some time specifically for this in which you can fully dedicate yourself to studying. Read the material as fast as possible. Do not try to memorize details. Instead ask yourself questions. The main purpose of this step is to become overloaded with information without paying close attention to details. This can be done in a few hours. Once this happens then beginning scanning the material for examples and take note of anything that pulls your attention. Look for items in the book that you are having trouble grasping. Note them and look up more information. As you study the material, do it actively. Ask yourself questions. Allow yourself to explore the pros and cons of the new programming language. Join an online community where the use of the language is being discussed. Ask and answer questions.
The next and possibly most important step is to test your knowledge by getting some hands on experience. Get on the computer and start programming with the new language. Begin with a simple project that will allow you to utilize every aspect of the language. Working with a project will let you get a practical feel for the language and you will not ever forget something you have actually done.
One more thing you can do to enhance your knowledge of the new programming language is to take the quizzes that appear at the end of the chapters of the books you are studying or take tests from local or online testing companies.