Get With The Program – Code Year Update!

It has been a few weeks since  we introduced Persephone to Code Year! Now that the program is in its fourth week, Codeacademy has made some changes to the program to hopefully make things a little easier.

Change 1: A New Look!

New look! And, yes. I know I am way behind.

Hallelujah! The lessons are organized in a more user-friendly way! Before, they were in one big column, and now they are grouped by focus. There is also a distinction between Lessons and Projects. Lessons cover rules of Javascripts and teach you how to implement commands. Projects, on the other hand, give you the opportunity to apply what you learned in your lessons.

This is a huge improvement from the original setup because it shows you the lesson plan and gives you more structure, so you have an idea of what you’ll be learning next. Also, if you ever want to brush up on some techniques or need a refresher on something specific, you can always go back to the Courses page and know exactly where to click to make that happen.

 

Lessons and Projects links on the same page

Change 2: Everything is More Accessible

There are links to both the Lessons section and the Projects section within each focus category. It allows you to move quickly to the projects to practice what you have learned in the lessons. I like this because, due to the super quick crash-course nature of the lessons, it can be easier than usual to forget what you’ve just learned. By moving along quickly to applying your new programming knowledge, you can retain what you’ve learned by immediately doing it.

 

The Q&A link is located between the Section and Scratch Pad buttons in the top right corner.

Change 3: The Q&A Section

I have been stuck and hopelessly confused on a few occasions. And, CodeAcademy doesn’t have the kind of courses where you can raise your hand or go to office hours for assistance. Thankfully, they launched the Q&A section a couple weeks ago!

Virtual tutoring from your virtual peers for your virtual class!

Each focus category has its own Q&A section where people can post their questions about individual exercises to be answered by other Code Year students. The Q&A section is very active, so your cries for help can be answered fairly quickly by other users.  Now, if you need a hint, you don’t have to rely on the not-so-helpful ones included in the exercise instructions. Also, the Code Year staff checks the Q&A boards to help answer questions, and respond to complaints of bugs and glitches.

One issue I still have with the courses is that they are written by different instructors of varying levels and teaching styles. I can breeze past certain lessons and have to muddle my way through other ones. The users in the Q&A section are a huge help because they can elaborate on certain concepts and typically give better explanations than the single paragraph instructions provided in each exercise. They can tell you exactly what is wrong with your answer and how you can fix it.

How is everyone doing with their Code Year experience? Updates? Triumphs? Questions? Stuck on something in particular?

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laurensmash

Writer, feminist, pop culture addict, and unabashed nerd living in Southern California. I'm enthusiastic about the Internet, and I enjoy smashing things.

2 thoughts on “Get With The Program – Code Year Update!”

  1. The biggest change I’ve noticed is the corrections within the exercises – whereas before it would just give you an ‘Oops try again’ code, it will now correct you if you’re missing a ; or { or whatever. Which is a lifesaver!

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