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4 posts

Wannabe Geek


Topic # 140832 21-Feb-2014 13:56 Send private message

Hey guys, so I need some help on study options.

I'm approaching my mid 20s currently in a job I hate. I've always loved technology and computing (pretty much spent my life on the computer as I'm sure most of you have!), and I'm very confident I want a career in programming/software development.

The problem is I'm not really at a point in my life where 3+ years of full time study at uni is practical and/or something that I'm interested in doing. Something that's perhaps full time for a year+/- would be more for me. I'm not so much worried in learning how to code in them as I am in getting some kind of qualification, I can self study easily enough as I am doing right now with python. Last year I started with writing small programs in autohotkey, mostly to automate certain things on my PC. Was great to start off with, simple and fun, and taught me some basic programming concepts.

Someone once suggested to me a while a go that I just do some cheap course on computing and then focus my time self studying on the field I want to be in, and going through industry certs (such as MS certs). Or maybe some polytechnic or institute focusing more on what I want to learn may be better? Would also prefer something that wasn't incredibly expensive.

Kinda disappointed in myself for waiting this long to finally do something, I know it's what I wanted to do for a long time - it was just easier to stick to building (it's not any more :p).

Appreciate any advice guys!

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740 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 991831 21-Feb-2014 14:26 Send private message

If you want to program the how about being a games developer? Media Design School do a course in Game Development with both programming and art streams.  However they recently changed a lot of their programs, and whilst they used to offer a 18 month diploma, it might now be 3 years for a degree (it seems to be in a state of flux at the moment).  And they don't do part time.

This was an option I looked at a few years ago however I moved into Business Intelligence instead.  Games development does also sound really cool!



4 posts

Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 991840 21-Feb-2014 14:42 Send private message

timbosan: If you want to program the how about being a games developer? Media Design School do a course in Game Development with both programming and art streams.  However they recently changed a lot of their programs, and whilst they used to offer a 18 month diploma, it might now be 3 years for a degree (it seems to be in a state of flux at the moment).  And they don't do part time.

This was an option I looked at a few years ago however I moved into Business Intelligence instead.  Games development does also sound really cool!


Actually, game development is the aspect I'm most interested in. While that place looks great and I'd be directly studying what I'm most interested in, It's the time factor that's a problem. Cheers.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 991855 21-Feb-2014 15:03 Send private message

Good luck getting a good qualification with part time study.
You're either in for the full 3 years or you don't really want to do IT.
IT is a long term commitment and if you want an awesome job you gotta put in the hard yards.

If you're good at IT you won't even need to show up to all your classes so you can work and whatnot.




Regards
Stefan Andres Charsley

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  Reply # 991913 21-Feb-2014 17:35 Send private message

charsleysa: ...

If you're good at IT you won't even need to show up to all your classes so you can work and whatnot.


No. Definitely not this. Treat classes like a job, and show up every day unless you're sick or something that would cause you to take a day off work (not annual leave ><).

So many people in my course (Bachelor of Computing Systems) have missed every other lesson basically and they failed miserably. You won't understand assignments, or miss something new that you didn't know would be taught.

Next thing you know, you're doing a 4 year degree. 







2013 MacBook Air (4GB/1.3GHz i5/128GB SSD) - HP DV6 (8GB/2.8GHz i7/120GB SSD + 750GB HDD)
iPhone 5 (16GB/White/Telecom NZ) - Xperia Z C6603 (16GB/Purple/Telecom NZ)

Sam, Auckland 
Skype: tardtasticx

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 991917 21-Feb-2014 17:43 Send private message

tardtasticx:
charsleysa: ...

If you're good at IT you won't even need to show up to all your classes so you can work and whatnot.


No. Definitely not this. Treat classes like a job, and show up every day unless you're sick or something that would cause you to take a day off work (not annual leave ><).

So many people in my course (Bachelor of Computing Systems) have missed every other lesson basically and they failed miserably. You won't understand assignments, or miss something new that you didn't know would be taught.

Next thing you know, you're doing a 4 year degree. 




Maybe the people in your course are stupid?

It's perfectly fine if you're doing well to miss a few classes.
I know people who do it all the time, myself included, and maintain good grades. As I said, if you're good at IT then you're fine.

And you might want to check that "treat it like a job" because in IT you get the luxury of not having to show up and work remotely or at times that are more convenient for you.




Regards
Stefan Andres Charsley

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  Reply # 991918 21-Feb-2014 17:48 Send private message

charsleysa:
tardtasticx:
charsleysa: ...

If you're good at IT you won't even need to show up to all your classes so you can work and whatnot.


No. Definitely not this. Treat classes like a job, and show up every day unless you're sick or something that would cause you to take a day off work (not annual leave ><).

So many people in my course (Bachelor of Computing Systems) have missed every other lesson basically and they failed miserably. You won't understand assignments, or miss something new that you didn't know would be taught.

Next thing you know, you're doing a 4 year degree. 




Maybe the people in your course are stupid?

It's perfectly fine if you're doing well to miss a few classes.
I know people who do it all the time, myself included, and maintain good grades. As I said, if you're good at IT then you're fine.

And you might want to check that "treat it like a job" because in IT you get the luxury of not having to show up and work remotely or at times that are more convenient for you.


They might well be stupid, because they weren't there to learn the material in the class. The requirements change every year, why would you risk failing just to save a few hours a week of class?
 
You might wanna check your idea of IT too, because IT is such a broad range of jobs. While your job might let you work at home as you please, a lot of jobs will require you to be on site/field for your shift, that most definitely would be the standard, and most people will not land a job light that straight after graduating without prior experience. 





2013 MacBook Air (4GB/1.3GHz i5/128GB SSD) - HP DV6 (8GB/2.8GHz i7/120GB SSD + 750GB HDD)
iPhone 5 (16GB/White/Telecom NZ) - Xperia Z C6603 (16GB/Purple/Telecom NZ)

Sam, Auckland 
Skype: tardtasticx

519 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 991922 21-Feb-2014 17:59 Send private message

tardtasticx:
charsleysa:
tardtasticx:
charsleysa: ...

If you're good at IT you won't even need to show up to all your classes so you can work and whatnot.


No. Definitely not this. Treat classes like a job, and show up every day unless you're sick or something that would cause you to take a day off work (not annual leave ><).

So many people in my course (Bachelor of Computing Systems) have missed every other lesson basically and they failed miserably. You won't understand assignments, or miss something new that you didn't know would be taught.

Next thing you know, you're doing a 4 year degree. 




Maybe the people in your course are stupid?

It's perfectly fine if you're doing well to miss a few classes.
I know people who do it all the time, myself included, and maintain good grades. As I said, if you're good at IT then you're fine.

And you might want to check that "treat it like a job" because in IT you get the luxury of not having to show up and work remotely or at times that are more convenient for you.


They might well be stupid, because they weren't there to learn the material in the class. The requirements change every year, why would you risk failing just to save a few hours a week of class?
 
You might wanna check your idea of IT too, because IT is such a broad range of jobs. While your job might let you work at home as you please, a lot of jobs will require you to be on site/field for your shift, that most definitely would be the standard, and most people will not land a job light that straight after graduating without prior experience. 


Yes that is true that IT has a broad spectrum of jobs.

if you fail because you missed a few hours of class then you must not be very bright because it's quite difficult to fail, especially with all the information available on the Internet and on the tertiary provider intranet.




Regards
Stefan Andres Charsley

2307 posts

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  Reply # 991958 21-Feb-2014 19:36 Send private message

charsleysa:
tardtasticx:
charsleysa:
tardtasticx:
charsleysa: ...

If you're good at IT you won't even need to show up to all your classes so you can work and whatnot.


No. Definitely not this. Treat classes like a job, and show up every day unless you're sick or something that would cause you to take a day off work (not annual leave ><).

So many people in my course (Bachelor of Computing Systems) have missed every other lesson basically and they failed miserably. You won't understand assignments, or miss something new that you didn't know would be taught.

Next thing you know, you're doing a 4 year degree. 




Maybe the people in your course are stupid?

It's perfectly fine if you're doing well to miss a few classes.
I know people who do it all the time, myself included, and maintain good grades. As I said, if you're good at IT then you're fine.

And you might want to check that "treat it like a job" because in IT you get the luxury of not having to show up and work remotely or at times that are more convenient for you.


They might well be stupid, because they weren't there to learn the material in the class. The requirements change every year, why would you risk failing just to save a few hours a week of class?
 
You might wanna check your idea of IT too, because IT is such a broad range of jobs. While your job might let you work at home as you please, a lot of jobs will require you to be on site/field for your shift, that most definitely would be the standard, and most people will not land a job light that straight after graduating without prior experience. 


Yes that is true that IT has a broad spectrum of jobs.

if you fail because you missed a few hours of class then you must not be very bright because it's quite difficult to fail, especially with all the information available on the Internet and on the tertiary provider intranet.


Obviosuly a few hours won't make that much of a difference as thats one or 2 classes, but even still a lot happens in those classes so missing them without reason is still a disadvantage. 

Slightly off topic now but like previous responses, OP, you'll have to spend more than a year or so of part time study to get anything useful I'd say. Its hard enough already for people to get jobs. 





2013 MacBook Air (4GB/1.3GHz i5/128GB SSD) - HP DV6 (8GB/2.8GHz i7/120GB SSD + 750GB HDD)
iPhone 5 (16GB/White/Telecom NZ) - Xperia Z C6603 (16GB/Purple/Telecom NZ)

Sam, Auckland 
Skype: tardtasticx

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  Reply # 991962 21-Feb-2014 19:45 Send private message

charsleysa:
tardtasticx:
charsleysa: ...

If you're good at IT you won't even need to show up to all your classes so you can work and whatnot.


No. Definitely not this. Treat classes like a job, and show up every day unless you're sick or something that would cause you to take a day off work (not annual leave ><).

So many people in my course (Bachelor of Computing Systems) have missed every other lesson basically and they failed miserably. You won't understand assignments, or miss something new that you didn't know would be taught.

Next thing you know, you're doing a 4 year degree. 




Maybe the people in your course are stupid?

It's perfectly fine if you're doing well to miss a few classes.
I know people who do it all the time, myself included, and maintain good grades. As I said, if you're good at IT then you're fine.

And you might want to check that "treat it like a job" because in IT you get the luxury of not having to show up and work remotely or at times that are more convenient for you.


theres 3 types of trainee programmers -- the ones that don't really know what they want to do and end up dropping out due to lack of interest or too hard....  the other are the non-geeks who treat learning to program as hard-work with an end in sight.  The third are the true geeks who love programming/tech stuff and they will do learn this stuff regardless .... although, they tend not to follow the structured learning program and will either excel or go so far off tangent they fail. 


519 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 991965 21-Feb-2014 19:50 Send private message

surfisup1000:
charsleysa:
tardtasticx:
charsleysa: ...

If you're good at IT you won't even need to show up to all your classes so you can work and whatnot.


No. Definitely not this. Treat classes like a job, and show up every day unless you're sick or something that would cause you to take a day off work (not annual leave ><).

So many people in my course (Bachelor of Computing Systems) have missed every other lesson basically and they failed miserably. You won't understand assignments, or miss something new that you didn't know would be taught.

Next thing you know, you're doing a 4 year degree. 




Maybe the people in your course are stupid?

It's perfectly fine if you're doing well to miss a few classes.
I know people who do it all the time, myself included, and maintain good grades. As I said, if you're good at IT then you're fine.

And you might want to check that "treat it like a job" because in IT you get the luxury of not having to show up and work remotely or at times that are more convenient for you.


theres 3 types of trainee programmers -- the ones that don't really know what they want to do and end up dropping out due to lack of interest or too hard....  the other are the non-geeks who treat learning to program as hard-work with an end in sight.  The third are the true geeks who love programming/tech stuff and they will do learn this stuff regardless .... although, they tend not to follow the structured learning program and will either excel or go so far off tangent they fail. 



That is quite an agreeable statement.
I would have to say I fit the third type, but with the exception that I both excel and go really far off tangent (though thats the advantage of having started programming at a very young age).




Regards
Stefan Andres Charsley



4 posts

Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 992036 21-Feb-2014 21:43 Send private message

I wasn't actually looking for part time.. I'm fine with full time. I also understand uni is probably the best option, but I'm asking if there are other shorter viable options which will give me a half decent qualification, if only to say I at least did something. I'm a firm believer in showing what you can do vs a piece of paper simply saying you can, which obviously at this point isn't very much, but I'm also a very fast learner when it's something I really enjoy. In saying that I also know that you do need some kind of paper saying you can do something in this day and age, hence why I asked for advice on options here.

Believe me when I say this is what I want to do and the "hard yards" are not something I'm opposed to. I build houses for 9/10 hours a day, then come home and study for 5. I am simply asking for the best shorter alternative to uni.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 992043 21-Feb-2014 21:49 Send private message

impact: I wasn't actually looking for part time.. I'm fine with full time. I also understand uni is obviously the best option, but I'm asking if there are other shorter viable options which will give me a half decent qualification, if only to say I at least did something. I'm a firm believer in showing what you can do vs a piece of paper simply saying you can, which obviously at this point isn't very much, but I'm also a very fast learner when it's something I really enjoy. In saying that I also know that you do need some kind of paper saying you can do something in this day and age, hence why I asked for advice on options here.

Believe me when I say this is what I want to do and the "hard yards" are not something I'm opposed to. I build houses for 9/10 hours a day, then come home and study for 5. I am simply asking for the best shorter alternative to uni.


Internship would be the only fast viable option but they are pretty competitive.

if you do well at uni during a 3 year course you may be lucky and get employed in a good company before you even graduate.

you should look into diploma courses that allow you to transition into bachelor courses with the first year already credited.




Regards
Stefan Andres Charsley

gzt

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  Reply # 992186 22-Feb-2014 09:18 Send private message

Couple of questions
1. where are you located?
2. why the need to restrict to 12 months?

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 992280 22-Feb-2014 12:30 Send private message

charsleysa: Good luck getting a good qualification with part time study.
You're either in for the full 3 years or you don't really want to do IT.
IT is a long term commitment and if you want an awesome job you gotta put in the hard yards.

If you're good at IT you won't even need to show up to all your classes so you can work and whatnot.


I would agree somewhat.

Basically Software development  (programming is only the basic part) is quite mentally tough - especially during a crunch phase (period during a phase delivery).  I think University isn't all about learning knowledge, its also about learning skills, like how to obtain information, communicate, working under pressure and commitment - these are basic things for software development.

The other thing is that I feel that Software development is one of those things where it takes 15-20 years to get to the professional level (like any profession it is a mix of knowledge, ongoing training and experience) - so one needs to be prepared to start at the bottom of the ladder sweeping floors and have a vision of where they want to be in the industry in 20 years time. 

b.t.w  IT is not software development, but the principal in the quote still applies I think - except cutting classes because one thinks one is good at something.  A class is a way of maximising learning from someone who has the skills one wants.  Ideally an individual would figure out a way of learning above and beyond what is needed by collaborating with the tutor - in the trade - we call people with the desire to go above and beyond 'star players'.

University is only one of the ways of getting into s/w development - people have mentioned other ways above, however my feeling is that it comes down to commitment, effort and professionalism at the end of the day. 




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