Learning PHP Difficulty Checked (Easy vs Hard)

PHP is an essential language if you want a career in backend web development. However, you may have heard from different sources that learning a programming language is quite demanding and you may wonder if the same applies to PHP.

So, is PHP hard to learn? PHP is relatively easy for beginners to learn because there are many resources on the internet and in bookstores for basic and complex tasks. Depending on your ability to grasp concepts, you can learn PHP in three to six months. The key is to be dedicated and put in the work because it is a dynamic skill. However, you may need prior knowledge of other tools like HTML and understand how PHP integrates with different backend and frontend languages.

Before you decide to learn a language, it is best to understand what you are signing up for first. It helps you prepare for any eventualities along the way and prepare adequately. If you are curious but undecided about PHP, there are some things you should know.

Beginners hail PHP as one of the most straightforward languages to learn and master. It is excellent for you as a beginner since there are many resources at your disposal. If you cannot sign up for classes, there is a wealth of information on the internet to get you started. You can find books, videos, and any other relevant information to kick start your journey.

The only setback for newbies is a mindset that the language is challenging to learn. However, it won’t be too challenging if you have a programming background, but if not, you can still work hard and keep practicing, and it will pay off in the end.

PHP is a lucrative tool that developers widely use in more than 70% of websites, including your favorites like Facebook and Wikipedia. One issue with some newcomers in web development is that they want to get straight to earning. However, as with other programming languages, you have to put in the work to learn PHP. It may be relatively easy to understand, but only if you are committed and dedicated because it all depends on your approach.

Fortunately, there are many resources at your disposal, and if you work hard, you can learn PHP in less than three months. There are some reasons why PHP seems too complex to grasp. For instance, many people spread the notion that it is too complicated, making others shy away.

The truth is, it is pretty simple if you go into it with the right mindset and are prepared with confidence and hard work. Secondly, some beginners are often concerned that some part of its code borrows from JavaScript and HTML.

Therefore, it may be easier if you have a background in other languages. Otherwise, you will have to read the syntax for the other tools because they are usually tied to PHP. Another reason for the belief is that the official documentation from PHP sites may seem too complicated for first-timers. The issue may be that the document is not written by writers but coders.

One way to avoid getting more confused is by turning to other sites where coders are more accommodative to beginners and try to make coding easier for anyone. Lastly, some learners find it challenging to pick the right place to start, given several options available. There are books, blogs, tutorials, videos, and many other resources you need from libraries and the internet. The key is to settle on the mode you prefer and follow it until you grasp the concepts.

Is PHP Easy To Learn?

There are numerous scripting languages in web development to improve user experience. PHP is one of the most common backend programming languages used in most sites, which explains why many want to learn how to implement it, but is it easy to understand?

Compared to .NET, NodeJS and Java, PHP is among the easiest programming languages to learn depending on your approach. There are many resources to use as a beginner or a programmer wanting to sharpen your skills. Besides, individuals with prior basic knowledge in programming have the upper hand in acquiring PHP scripting skills. Depending on your dedication and hard work, you can comprehend the basics and complexities of PHP in about three to six months. However, with a prior understanding of other coding systems, you may take even less time.

The syntax used in PHP programming is user-friendly, making learning more straightforward even without background knowledge in scripting. Given that it is an open-source programming language, there are also tons of resources on the internet to help you learn backend coding.

You can even start with online resources for basic information before you go to more in-depth levels. Most first-timers opt for tutorials and then progress to manuals as they advance. You will realize that studying PHP is relatively simplified since it is also a course in many universities and colleges.

Besides, there are several step-by-step tutorials on the internet at your disposal. Therefore, it is more convenient to study because you can engage with experts in the field if you have any concerns. Furthermore, PHP also has online forums with very active members that may assist in answering your questions. There are professionals on these platforms that will come to your aid to give immediate feedback to your queries.

Lastly, you can find books at your nearest bookshop to read further on PHP coding and applications if you prefer hard-copy resources. Once you are confident with your skills, you will be ready to put your knowledge to the necessary use.

Generally, you can implement the codes in website creation, graphics development, and many other fields. Notably, programming languages are a never-ending experience, meaning that new information will always emerge. Therefore, you will keep on advancing your skills even after employment.

Is Learning PHP Worth it?

Hypertext Processor has been in the market for almost three decades, competing favorably with other programming languages. However, I aim to determine whether learning is worth your time and resources.

You will never regret learning PHP today or in the future because its versions constantly improve to keep up with the ever-changing technological world. This programming language is also one of the most widely used in most website creations covering more than 70% of sites in the world.

Given the impressive statistics, PHP is here to stay, and gaining the skill will etch a place for you in the programming world. It also has loyal consumers and a vast developer base since it’s easy to learn. It is also pretty affordable, works fast, and supports numerous frameworks and databases for enhanced functionality.

PHP coding system isn’t dying yet. Instead, it remains one of the fastest-growing languages in backend web development, thanks to continuous improvements. It has, over the years, amassed popularity among budding developers, and more programmers are learning the skills to code using the scripting language.

Additionally, developers release new versions that perform better than their predecessors. Therefore, gradually, PHP keeps up with the trend, ensuring that the developers with the skills will always stay relevant in the market. Besides being an open-source coding language, you can find its contents free and begin your journey to becoming a website development expert.

Today, people design many projects, and with reliable, fast, and easy-to-use software like PHP, you are sure to finish and submit your designs on time. You will also find it a viable option to challenge your competitors as it comes in handy for marketing by making it more convenient to reach usual and prospective clients.

Furthermore, it isn’t tasking to find a professional PHP website developer to help handle your tasks instantly. Lastly, many companies incorporate PHP in their daily tasks; therefore, you will always have a position to fill as an expert.

The best part is learning PHP becomes less demanding if you have background knowledge in other languages like HTML. The skills in different backend and frontend languages will also give you an added advantage over other developers. With additional skills, you can build a fully functioning and attractive website. You can also blend PHP with other frameworks such as Symfony or databases like Oracle DB, DB++, Paradox, Mongo, and more.

How To Learn PHP

Before you learn a programming language, it is essential to plan how you will go about it. Since many beginners shy away from PHP, I will present you with the simplest and fastest ways to learn it.

The first step is to ensure that PHP is the language you are willing to spend your time and resources to learn. When you are confident, you can do anything and tackle any challenges you find along the way. Secondly, it is best to be keen on the basics first, including the PHP vocabulary, and ensure that you have a background in HTML.

The next step is always to have your projects in mind while learning and being very active in all your classes. Lastly, be wary of your syntax, remember to make readable codes, and solve your problems personally before asking for professional help.

To get you started on this journey, I have compiled a stepwise list to help guide you.

  • Be Certain

One problem with first-timers is indecisiveness. Given the many languages to learn, it may be tasking to settle on one. Before you start learning PHP, it is advisable to consider your aspirations; or else, it will cause problems for you in the future when you have to learn a relevant language first.

PHP is best if you want a career in web development, mainly backend because it is a server-side tool. If you feel that you are more passionate about building applications like gaming platforms, you would instead learn languages like Java and C++.

  • HTML Background

Although PHP is an essential tool in web development, you still need to have at least a background knowledge in HTML, or better yet, learn HTML first before getting to PHP. HTML is an essential skill before writing any code for a website, as it is a markup.

Luckily it is relatively easier to learn, and it will go a long way to make your web creation more dynamic. Besides, tutors may assume that you already have a background in HTML; therefore, learning it will prevent getting mixed up in the process.

  • Technical Language

As with other programming languages, PHP also has its jargon, and you will meet them severally during your training. As you learn the basics, you also have to be attentive to the terms because as you progress, the instructions will also involve the jargon.

It will help you understand what they mean because you will always hear or read about them, starting from simple concepts such as variables and functions.

  • Stay Motivated

You will find it easier to handle any complex task coming your way if you stay motivated. One way is always to remember your projects because they will always give you the push you need to work harder since whenever you learn something new, you will always tie it to your projects. Also, as you advance, you can always modify your projects to make them more technical.

  • Active Learning

Programming is all about practice and hands-on experience. Although the information is also essential, there is more to learning PHP than only reading passively. Instead of watching and listening to videos and tutorials, you will find it more effective to engage in the process actively. By writing the codes, you will never forget the process and find it easier to solve your problems.

  • Syntax Accuracy and Readability

PHP is usually punctuation sensitive, such that the system will always notice errors in your syntax. An issue as simple as a forgotten semicolon can lead to a syntax error or alter your task altogether. Therefore, it is best to be careful with your spelling and be attentive to details such as punctuation marks.

Besides syntax accuracy, some beginners aren’t very cautious about their code’s readability. Presentation matters a lot if you want to show other people how your code works. Therefore, you can consider spacing and even inserting comments which will come in handy if you are part of a team in the future or want to refer to your code later on.

Parting Shot

Unlike popular belief, it isn’t hard to learn a backend language like PHP. All it takes is motivation, hard work, and dedication, and in a few months, you will be a professional web developer. However, it depends on your prior knowledge and your ability to code and implement it to run programs.

Fortunately, there are many resources on the internet and in libraries to get you started. You will also have the upper hand if you can code in other languages, particularly HTML. The key is to be active in your learning and constantly push and challenge yourself to be better at it every day.

Bal Kang

Bal Kang is a technology expert based in the UK, with experience across a number of technology areas from phones, tablets, computers to gaming.

Recent Posts