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49 of The Best Places to Learn to Code For Free

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If you’re brand new to the world of coding and web development, it makes sense to start by teaching yourself using all the free resources online.

That way, you can discover what you like and don’t like before investing money into a certain coding language or set of courses.

However, there are so many free resources and classes and books to choose from. Here are 49 of the best.

To make things easier, I broke them down based on topic. Use the table of contents below to jump around.

Disclosure: I’m a proud Udemy affiliate. If you buy a Udemy course through my links on this page, I may get a small commission for referring you. Thanks!

Table of Contents

Please note: all information, topics taught, etc., have been taken at time of updating (November 2017) and are definitely subject to change. Thanks!

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1. Codecademy
Codecademy is where most people who are new to coding get their start, and its reputation is well-deserved. The platform revolves around interactive learning; that is, you read a little, type your code right into the browser, and see results immediately.


Image taken from their Facebook page.

Topics taught: HTML & CSS, JavaScript, PHP, Python, Ruby, Angularjs, The Command Line, and more

2. freeCodeCamp
Teaches coding first through an established curriculum (approx. 800 hours total), then by giving you hands-on experience working on projects for nonprofits. Perfect for learners who want practical, hands-on experience that will do some good and look impressive on a resume.

Topics taught: HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Databases, DevTools, Node.js, and Angular.js

3. Coursera
Large online course library, where classes are taught by real university professors. All courses are free of charge, but you have the option to pay for a “Coursera Verified Certificate” to prove course completion. These cost between $30 and $100 depending on the course, and sometimes paying for a certificate grants access to content not available in the free courses. They also offer “Specializations,” which are collections of courses on a specific topic, typically with a capstone project at the end.


Image taken from their Facebook page.


Image taken from their Facebook page.

Topics taught: Many (far beyond your basic coding/computer science)

4. edX
An open-source higher education program governed by MIT and Harvard. Offers 107 courses under the “computer science” category, teaching various coding languages.

Topics taught: Java, C#, Python, and many more

5. Codewars
Codewars offers a fun way to learn coding. With a martial-arts theme, the program is based on challenges called “kata.” Complete them to earn honor and progress to higher ranks.

Topics taught: CoffeeScript, JavaScript, Python, Ruby, Java, Clojure, and Haskell

6. GA Dash.
General Assembly’s free online learning platform. Entirely project-based. You build a “project” with each walkthrough.They are one of the very few options that have a course on how to build a Tumblr theme from scratch. Read my review of it here.


Image taken from the GA Dash dashboard.

Topics taught: HTML, CSS, JavaScript, responsive design

7. Khan Academy
Tons of subjects (as their front page says, “You can learn anything”), including many on computer programming. A few courses are offered for younger kids, too.


Image taken from their Facebook page.

Topics taught: JS, HTML/CSS, SQL, much more

8. MIT OpenCourseware
Competition to get into MIT may be stiff, but accessing their course material online has no tuition or minimum SAT score.

They maintain an online library of every subject they teach, with no account required for access; just browse for a course and start reviewing the material.


Image taken from their Facebook page.

Topics taught: Many

9. The Odin Project
Made by the creators of Viking Code School—a premiere online coding bootcamp. The Odin Project is their free, open-source version. Check in for support from other students using the online chat group!

Topics taught: HTML, CSS, JavaScript & jQuery, Ruby programming, Ruby on Rails

10. Udacity
Offers individual courses, as well as “nanodegrees” that train you for specific careers like front-end web developer or data analyst. Course materials are free, but nanodegrees require a tuition fee.

Topics taught: Many

11. SoloLearn
SoloLearn is a social platform where anyone can learn to code. It's different to other course providers because it's mobile-based – learn on the go, on any device. With bite-sized lessons, achievements to unlock and interactive quizzes, it's fun to learn and free to download.

Topics taught: Many

12. The Code Player
A compilation of video tutorials to help you walk through a process from start to finish. Good for learning “smaller” projects/tasks one at a time.

Topics taught: HTML5, CSS3, Javascript, Regex, JQuery

13. Bento.io
Their mission is to inspire people to become programmers by making code accessible, affordable and fun. With over 200 topics, anything you've been thinking about learning, you can find here.

Topics taught: Many

14. Udemy
Paid and free courses. Courses can be created by anyone, so make sure to read reviews. Coupons can also be easily found, too. Check out their development courses here.


Image taken from Udemy blog.

Topics taught: Many

15. Code.org
Code.org provides learning materials specifically dedicated to increasing the rates of female and minority students entering computer science careers. Their courses are designed for K-12 students, but can be useful to all ages. Start out with their quick Hour of Code tutorials, or build projects in lab courses.

Topics taught: HTML, CSS, JavaScript, block programming

16. Scotch.io
Covers lots of topics related to web development and workflow. The platform features short courses, tutorials, guides, blog posts, and videos.

Topics taught: Angular, node.js, laravel, Sublime Text, and more.

Head back to the table of contents ≫

YouTube Channels

17. LearnCode.academy
My personal favorite. Web-development-focused videos made by Will Stern. There are a ton of tutorials on JavaScript and other languages, plus videos about the various tools developers use.

Topics taught: Sublime Text, Responsive Design, Node.js, Angular.js, Backbone.js, Deployment Strategies, and more
Subscribers: 399,411

18. thenewboston
Over 4,000 videos on a range of programming, game development, and design topics. One of the more popular channels, with almost two million subscribers.

Topics taught: Android development, C programming, MySQL, Python, and more
Subscribers: 1,758,433

19. Derek Banas
Banas' specialty is condensing information about coding languages into a single video per language. Good for viewers who like longer but more thorough videos instead of bite-sized chunks, or want to watch overview videos of languages before diving into courses/curriculums.

Topics taught: Java, Ruby, PHP, C++, HTML, Android, Python, Assembly language, and more
Subscribers: 701,618

20. ProgrammingKnowledge
A channel perfect for absolute beginners. Step-by-step tutorial playlists cover various languages without assuming prior knowledge.

Topics taught: Java, Python, C, JavaFX, Android programming, Bootstrap, and more.
Subscribers: 484,189

Head back to the table of contents ≫


21. David Walsh
Run by David Walsh (a senior developer at Mozilla), although there are others who write on the site, too. Tutorials, how-tos, demos, and more.

22. Softwarehow
All about using software tools to solve common problems you encounter in tech. Tips, guides, and specific software reviews.

23. SitePoint
They have lots of writers and publish often. Topics range from HTML and CSS to entrepreneurship. Also have paid books and courses on their child site Learnable. Make sure to check out their newer “collections” – which includes tutorials on topics like WordPress security, React.JS, and Swift. (And new ones are added daily!)

24. Tuts+
Tons of free tutorials, as well as paid options like actual courses. Has over 570 expertly-instructed video courses (on all topics, not just computer-related). Also publishes eBooks.

Head back to the table of contents ≫

25. A List Apart
Lots of authors. They write books, have events, and run a great development/design blog. See all code topics here.

26. CSS-Tricks
Goes very thoroughly into CSS with their big, bad CSS almanac. However, the blog now goes beyond just CSS and talks about other things like Sass, JavaScript, PHP, and more. Explore tons of resources and check out their code snippets.

The Command Line

27. Learn Command Line the Hard Way
Free online book by Zed Shaw. (My personal favorite command line resource.)

28. Command Line Power User
Free video series created by Wes Bos. More at an intermediate level, so not for total newbies.

29. Conquering the Command Line
Free online book by Mark Bates. Very in-depth. Can purchase hard copy and screencasts.

Head back to the table of contents ≫

Git and GitHub

30. Git Immersion
A guided tour to teach you the basics of Git. Set preferences and create your own projects.

31. Try Git
An interactive series of challenges to learn about and experiment with Git. Created by Code School.

Head back to the table of contents ≫


32. HTML5 Dog
HTML beginner tutorial here. (They also offer intermediate and advanced HTML tutorials.) CSS tutorials are here.

33. Marksheet.io
For beginners. Broken down into four chapters: The web, HTML5, CSS3, and Sass. It’s like an online ebook, but under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. So you can adapt it for your needs.

34. Mozilla Developer Network
Free documentation on HTML and CSS (also JavaScript). Has tutorials for people of different levels, introductory to advanced.

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Head back to the table of contents ≫


35. JavaScript for Cats
It’s like a single-webpage book broken down into sections. Created by programmer Max Ogden. Filled with non-cat gifs but has cat pics at the end. Just because. Lol.

36. NodeSchool
Has in-person workshops and events all over the world, as well as an active web presence. See online tutorials here.

37. Learn JS
Go through lessons, type in the window at the bottom. Created by the same folks who make learnpython.org.

38. Eloquent Javascript
Another online book, longer than most. it has big-tech financial backers like Mozilla and Hack Reactor (“the Harvard of coding bootcamps”).

39. Javascript.com
Created by Code School. Quick and perfect for absolute beginners. (Warning: JS in real life is a lot tougher.) 9 mini-lessons. At the end, it points you to more in-depth JS learning materials.

Head back to the table of contents ≫


40. WordPress.tv
Recordings of live WordCamp lectures around the world. Created by Automattic.

41. WPBeginner
Website for beginner WP users. Great WP glossary of terms, plus coupon deals, video tutorials, and a blog which publishes useful articles by different authors.

Head back to the table of contents ≫


42. A Byte of Python
Free online book for beginners. Can choose to download as a PDF or spend money for a hard copy.

43. LearnPython.org
Interactive online tutorial to learn Python coding. Has a little window at the bottom where you can write your code as you go through the lessons.

44. Learn Python The Hard Way (Website)
The book costs money, but the website is free. Written by Zed Shaw. (I used the book when I first started learning.)

Head back to the table of contents ≫


45. Learn Ruby the Hard Way
Free HTML version of the book online. Buying the hard copy also gets you access to videos. Another book written by Zed Shaw.

46. Rails For Zombies
An interactive way to learn Ruby on Rails right in your browser. (This is a better choice for people who know some Ruby already.) Created by Code School.

47. Rails Tutorial
12-chapter book by Michael Hartl. Can purchase ebooks, screencasts from author, and more. Or just read it for free online.

48. RubyMonk
Entirely free, though you have the option to donate. Based on interactive tutorials, where you read a lesson and type in code. Lastly, “run” it.


Taken from a RubyMonk lesson.

RubyMonk has one beginner course option, two intermediate, and one advanced.

49. Try Ruby
Also created by Code School, this is a better option for beginners. Type into an in-browser prompt window as you go through the exercises.

Head back to the table of contents ≫


Taking advantage of all the free resources out there is definitely the way to go when you’re just starting out. However, they only get you so far.

So once you have the basics down, you’ll want to start exploring paid options. Check out some of my favorite paid platforms, tools, and resources here.

Did I miss any awesome free coding courses/books? Let me know in the comments below!