Short and Sweet: Basic Programming Concepts in 2 Hours

Learn the basic structure that underlies almost ALL programming languages. No coding background required + full support
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  • Lectures 18
  • Length 2 hours
  • Skill Level Beginner Level
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion
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About This Course

Published 1/2015 English

Course Description

Have you ever tried to learn programming, or thought about learning programming? Are you a non-technical co-founder wanting better understanding of what your technical co-founder does, or a parent or teacher wanting to help your child or students maximize their own learning?

First understand the basic concepts that you need to build almost anything in code.

Build a strong foundation that will make it easier to learn any programming language in the future.

  • Sublime Text Free Installation
  • If-Else Statements and Loops
  • Variables and Arrays
  • Program Structure
  • Refactoring

An Amazing Creative Skill That Opens Doors

Programming languages are extremely powerful tools, unlocking your ability to create new innovations, launch independent side projects or start a new career. They come with a steep learning curve, but this course provides an on-ramp by explaining programming concepts in real-life language. All of these concepts are things you already use in real life all the time.

In less than 2 hours, this "Short & Sweet" course covers the essential ideas you need to move forward, without a lot of filler. At the end of the course, you'll be able to learn any programming language more easily, understand the basic concepts required to build almost anything, and be able to explain programming concepts in plain English.

Content and Overview

This course is suitable for you if:

  • You're brand-new to programming and want to take additional courses or tackle a bootcamp in the future.
  • You've tried to learn programming before and failed.
  • You're struggling in your intro CS classes.
  • You're a non-technical co-founder wanting a better understanding of what your technical co-founder does.
  • You're a parent or teacher who wants to use ideas from the course to help your child or students learn programming.

This course avoids teaching a specific programming language in favor of teaching core concepts that are transferable across many languages. Within a couple of hours, you'll be much better equipped to take your next step, whether it's Ruby, JavaScript or C.

Note that if your primary goal is to learn HTML or CSS, you don't need this course because those are mark-up languages, not programming languages.

What's in it for me?

  • A "Short & Sweet" core curriculum taking less than 2 hours to complete
  • Packed with essential concepts that provide you with a running start
  • Access to bonus content that will be added on a continual basis
  • Access to the instructor to help you over any roadblocks
  • The experience of knowing you can do it

What if I still have questions after taking the course?

My goal is to make this course the easiest-ever explanation of programming. Please let me know if anything in the course could be clearer, and I'll be happy to help you. It also will help me improve the course. Udemy offers a 30-day guarantee, so there's no risk to you.

If you're ready to learn more and sign up for the course, go ahead and hit that Enroll button, or take a test drive by using the Free Preview feature.

What are the requirements?

  • Bring your curiosity and an open mind. We'll be explaining programming in real-life language like, "If I am out of milk, then go to the grocery store. Otherwise, if I am low on milk, add milk to the grocery list. Otherwise, if I still have milk, congratulate myself for good planning."
  • Bring your persistence. Programming is hard for everyone. Remember that when you hit a wall, it's not a dead end: It's a climbing wall. I really want you to master this material, and I'm here to support you if you have any questions.

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Learn any programming language more easily.
  • Understand the basic concepts required to build almost anything.
  • Explain programming concepts in real-life language.

Who is the target audience?

  • This course is for anyone who wants to learn programming, even if you've tried before and failed. No prior programming knowledge is needed, and it's a low-stakes way to find out if you enjoy programming.
  • The course is designed to provide a running start for students who want to take additional programming courses or bootcamps.
  • This course is great for non-technical co-founders who want a better understanding of what their technical co-founder does.
  • This course is also great for parents and primary-school teachers who want to use ideas from the course to maximize their children's or students' understanding of basic programming concepts.
  • This course is probably not for you if you aleady know at least one programming language and are comfortable with how to use if-else statements, loops, arrays and refactoring.

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.


Section 1: Introduction and Setup

This lecture introduces the course and sets expectations


This lecture provides a link to download Sublime Text, a powerful yet simple text editor for programming in many languages. It's the tool I use in the course videos to demonstrate concepts in pseudocode. After completing this lecture, you'll be equipped to work alongside me for the rest of the course.


This lecture explores choices in programming, in the form of "if-else statements." After completing this lecture, you'll start to understand how computers make decisions.

Section 2: Core Curriculum

This lecture explores if-else statements in more depth, giving several real-world examples. After completing this lecture, you'll be able to write your own if-else statements in pseudocode.


This lecture explores a type of loop called a "while loop" -- how to do things over, and over, and over, and over.... After completing this lecture, you'll understand how to create and use a while loop.


This lecture explores what can go wrong when using loops. After completing this lecture, you'll understand how to avoid one of the most legendary programming bugs.


This lecture explores a type of loop called a "for loop," using the example of "99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall!" After completing this lecture, you'll understand how to create and use a for loop.


This lecture explores variables -- what they are and the different types of values they can represent. After completing this lecture, you'll understand how to create, name, and use variables.


This lecture explores comments. After completing this lecture, you'll understand how to add comments to your code as a form of in-line documentation.


This lecture explores arrays, which are collections of things. After completing this lecture, you'll understand how to add and remove items from arrays.

Section 3: Putting It All Together

This lecture explores how to structure a simple program, using all of the concepts we've learned so far. After completing this lecture, you'll begin to understand how the pieces fit together.


This lecture transforms our pseudocode calendar program into a specific programming language, Objective-C, and demonstrates that it works. After completing this lecture, you'll understand how the concepts we've learned are applicable to almost any programming language.


This lecture explores the concept of refactoring -- making your own code more reusable and efficient. After completing this lecture, you'll understand the purpose of functions, function arguments, and local variables.

Section 4: Conclusion and Wrap-Up

This lecture wraps up the core curriculum. After completing this course, you'll be able to learn any programming language more easily, and you'll understand the basic concepts required to build almost anything.

2 pages

Congratulations on finishing the core curriculum! If you're wondering what's next, this guide provides a jumping-off point for various resources you may find helpful.

Section 5: Bonus Curriculum

This bonus lecture focuses on object-oriented programming. After completing this lecture, you'll understand what an object is, how to use objects in code, and how to create and configure object properties.


This bonus lecture explores methods, which are like functions for objects - and then we use them to make a dragon object breathe fire!


This bonus lecture takes a technical deep-dive into how object-oriented programs work in computer memory. Memory is organized in two very different ways: the stack and the heap.

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Instructor Biography

Stephanie Losi, Tech Consultant and Trainer at 219 Labs, Inc.

Stephanie is a software developer, IT risk management expert and former journalist who loves learning. After several false starts, she taught herself to program in 2012 and wants to teach programming the way she wishes it had been explained to her. In addition to delivering online training courses through 219 Labs, her projects include developing a software tool that allows you to program in plain English. She has a master's degree in information security policy and management from Carnegie Mellon University, a bachelor's degree in journalism from Northwestern University, and attended Recurse Center (formerly Hacker School) in 2014. Her interests include organic food, art, travel and doing good work.

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