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31 Aug 2020
Tip: Build on your skills after completing a course

Tip: Build on your skills after completing a course

Hopefully, this small post will benefit just a single person and help make their learning journey just that little bit easier.

I know this is a super apparent topic however over the years, I've seen many developers acquiring new skills by doing fantastic courses and then doing nothing more with their new knowledge.

Now because I'm drinking some right now, I'm going to attempt to make it relate to making a good cup of tea.

Let's talk about the Tea making for a second

Let's imagine you've never made a cup of tea - if you haven't though, don't worry. Hopefully, you will still see my point.

So, before starting anything, you jump onto an online course. Sorted! Here comes awesome 5-star tea... you'll never drink anything different again!

You start watching an expert tea brewer make that perfect cup of tea with such precision, passion and love. The instructor walks through each step in intricate detail, allowing taking notes and understanding each stage. At the end of the 4 hour course, you have a comprehensive understanding of how to make that perfect cup of tea; feeling certain to do it for the first time.

Heading to the kettle, you're enthusiastic about getting the perfect result... 10 minutes later, PERFECTION! You have that perfect 'cuppa'.

"Kyran, what are you on about? Show me the code!" - Hang in there, we're getting to the good part!

2 weeks pass and you fancy a hot caffeinated drink, hmmm, what could you have? TEA! You know how to make a tea, perfectly now. You'd overlooked a good 'cuppa' until now.

You go ahead and start sipping, wait, there's something not quite right. You've messed it up. You didn't leave the teabag in long enough, you added extra milk and for some crazy reason, you added some coffee granules.

Why? You did this because for the last 2 weeks your mind has been elsewhere, you've overlooked some minor details, and crossed wires with the course you did earlier in the week on making a coffee.

Forget Tea! How does this associate with code?

You can probably see from the highly exaggerated example above where I'm going with this.

When learning it's so important to build upon the skills that you have learned and keep them fresh until they're embedded and you know the material like the back of your hand.

Just doing a course and then assuming that is it, is going to be a wasted investment, even if you're taking detailed notes.

There are fine details that can be easily missed, not only the how's but the why's and the when's. These are just as necessary. As time goes by, details will fade and eventually, all the time that you spent, has been a waste.


When learning something new, don't just do an online course and think that there's nothing more to do.

After finishing the course, build on your skills and try them out.

Make sure you have good knowledge of the topic and revisit until you're comfortable and feel confident.