Programming certificates are one way to get into a career in programming. Programming plays a vital role in developing technology as it’s the language a computer or laptop understands to perform tasks.
Entry-level programmers can take an undergraduate programming college certificate to boost their knowledge of a popular programming language. The right programming certificates can open channels to increase your chances of a successful career path in the tech industry.
This is an in-depth guide to computer programming certificate programs and where you can find them. There are a wide variety of programs, whether you need basic knowledge of programming or an expert level to boost your career growth. We also tell you the difference between a programming certificate and a professional certification in programming and why you need it.
What Is a Programming Certificate College Program?
A programming certificate college program is a stand-alone program that consists of 18 credits. It covers topics like database development and programming languages like Java and Python. This certificate program gives students in-depth knowledge on how to create web applications. A programming certificate program will broaden your ability to achieve your career goals.
What’s the Difference Between a College Programming Certificate and Professional Certification in Programming?
The main difference between a college programming certificate and a professional certification in programming is experience. A professional certification typically requires a specific number of hours performing your expertise.
On the other hand, a programming college certificate requires no experience and is usually taken by newcomers or those just starting as programmers. Certification programs may also require you to pass an exam and pay a fee.
Programming College Certificate vs Programming Certification: Key Differences
|Programming Certificate||Programming Certification|
|Provided by colleges, universities, or educational institutions||Provided by internationally recognized bodies like Adobe|
|No expiration||Usually needs to be renewed after a specific number of years|
|Coursework determined by an academic process||Standard recognized by an industry-wide process|
How Long Does It Take To Get a Programming Certificate at College?
It takes less than a year to get a programming certificate at college, but it depends on how many courses you take. Some programming certificates have a minimum of 18 credits, while others have 22 credits.
Best Programming Certificate Undergraduate Programs
|Champlain College||Web Programming||$318/credit|
|Colorado State University Global||Certificate In
|DeVry University||Programming Essentials||$514/credit|
|Fairleigh Dickinson University||Computer Programming||$967/credit|
|Montgomery College||Computer Programming Certificate||$201/credit|
|North Carolina State University||Computer Programming||$272/credit|
|Santa Fe College||Computer Programmer, Certificate||$107/credit|
|St. Petersburg College||Computer Programmer Certificate||$112/credit|
|Temple University||Fundamentals of Programming Certificate||$571/credit|
|University of Missouri–St. Louis||Certificate in Computer Programming||$396/credit|
Best Undergraduate Programming Certificate Programs: Explained
The best undergraduate programming certificate programs are available online and in person. These certificates help students understand programming concepts from basic to expert level.
Students learn about flow control, access control, Python, and Java programming languages. If you want to boost your professional career, acquiring a programming certificate is your first step.
Programming College Certificate Program vs Programming Associate Degree
The difference between a programming college certificate program and a programming associate degree is the coursework. Certificate programs are more specific in programming topics, while an associate degree includes computer programming and general education courses.
- Program length. You can complete a programming college certificate in less than a year, whereas an associate degree usually takes a minimum of two years.
- Coursework. An associate degree requires students to take core courses, general education courses, and electives. On the other hand, a certificate is more specific and covers particular topics under programming.
- Admission requirements. Some certificate programs might require students to have already completed a bachelor’s degree. An associate degree requires only a high school diploma.
- Number of credits. Programming certificates only require about 18 to 22 credits. An associate degree requires between 60 to 70 credits.
- Continuing education. A programming college certificate allows students to transfer a few credits towards a bachelor’s degree. With an associate degree, students have already earned half the credits needed for a bachelor’s degree.
Best Online Associate Degrees
Best Associate Degrees
Is an Undergraduate Programming Certificate Worth It?
Yes, an undergraduate programming certificate is worth it because it equips you with a basic understanding and concepts needed for web or software development. A certificate also gives you an understanding of other important concepts in programming like data types, structures, and debugging. A programming certificate can also help you land entry-level jobs if you show expertise and experience.
Best Programming Certificate Graduate Programs
|Drexel University||Online Graduate Certificate In Computer Science||$1,342/credit|
|Fairleigh Dickinson University||Advanced Computer Programming||$883/credit|
|Harvard Extension School||Programming Graduate Certificate||$745/credit|
|Northeastern University||Computer Science||$1,626/credit|
|Stanford University Online||Introductory Programming Graduate Program||$1,352/credit|
|Temple University||Computer Science Graduate Certificate||$1,205/credit|
|University of Delaware||Computer Science||$1250/credit|
|University of Denver||Software Design and Programming||$766/credit|
|University of Massachusetts||Computer Science Graduate Certificate||$533/credit|
|University of Washington-Tacoma||Software Development Engineering||$16,500/program|
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Best Graduate Programming Certificate Programs Explained
Colleges and universities provide the best graduate programming certificates for expert-level programmers who want to develop their knowledge. However, there are also graduate certificate programs for bachelor’s degree graduates who wish to learn to program.
These programs teach students more about database development and other advanced software applications. Unlike an entry-level certification, these graduate certificate programs might have specific admission requirements.
Programming Graduate Certificate Program vs Programming Master’s Degree
A programming graduate certificate program and a programming master’s degree have significant differences. The main difference is the coursework and scope of topics. Other differences include cost, job opportunities, and academic awards.
- Program cost. Programming certificate programs require fewer credits than a master’s degree. Most certificates require between nine and 20 credits, while a master’s degree requires a minimum of 30 credits.
- Program length. A programming college certificate for graduates may take a few months to a year and a half to complete. A master’s degree takes two years for a full-time student to complete.
- Job opportunities. A master’s degree gives a broader scope of job opportunities than a certificate. Master’s degrees include training for leadership positions in an organization.
- Academic award. A master’s degree is a higher academic award, whereas a graduate certificate is for non-academic purposes. However, a graduate certificate can lead to a master’s degree if it allows students to transfer credits.
- Areas of study. A graduate certificate gives students skills in a specific area of study. A master’s degree program provides a platform for deep study in a few areas.
Best Online Master’s Degrees
Best Master’s Degrees
Is a Graduate Programming Certificate Worth It?
Yes, a graduate programming certificate is worth it because it gives you more profound knowledge about essential programming concepts. An affordable certificate program for graduates will provide the professional experience you need to land a job with a high annual salary.
Programming Certificate Program Coursework
There may be differences between schools regarding programming certificate program coursework. Below are short descriptions of a few courses usually included in programming certificate programs.
Students learn to solve programming problems through coding programs that process and input data and then generate output. The course helps students understand how to use repetition structures, decision structures, and custom functions to solve programming problems.
Data Structures and Algorithms
This course covers data types, branching, and linear data structures. It includes queues, heaps, hash tables, graphs, and stacks. Students acquire techniques to analyze algorithms and study data structures.
Major topics included in this course are system configurations, disk and file management, menu-driven processing, and graphical user interfaces. This course gives students experience in microcomputer operating systems.
Software Development Fundamentals
The software development course includes many technical concepts like composition, finite state machines, linear data structures, and recursion. Students also learn how to implement, design, and test high-quality software.
Database Management Systems
Students learn about the structures and principles of database management and Structured Query Language (SQL). Students gain skills in creating tables and manipulating data through SQL queries. They’ll also learn how to query joined tables and manage data in tables.
Best Online College Courses for Credit
What Can You Do With a Programming Certificate from College?
With a programming certificate, you can do web development and computer programming and developing. You can earn between $77,200 to $128,356, depending on your level of education. You’ll be able to write code for new computer programs and mobile applications.
Best Programming Jobs and Careers With a Certificate
|Job Role||Average Salary|
Best Programming Certificate Jobs and Careers: Explained
The best programming certificate jobs and careers start with enrolling in a school with a high-quality curriculum. Programming college certificates give you enough education to apply for higher-paying in-demand jobs.
Should I Also Get a Programming Certification?
Yes, you should also get a programming certification as there is a high demand for knowledgeable programmers. Internationally recognized institutions award certifications by testing professional skills and knowledge to meet industry standards.
Below are online programming certifications to help boost your resume and your career prospects. All certifications are taken through the Pearson VUE testing center or an online proctored exam.
Best Programming Certifications
- AWS Certified Developer Associate. This exam fee is $150 and takes 130 minutes to finish. This certification is for programmers and developers with more than a year of experience maintaining an AWS-based application. This will prove your in-depth knowledge of at least one high-level programming language.
- C++ Certified Associate Programmer. The C++ institute gives this certification. It tests knowledge of universal concepts of computer programming. It will also verify understanding and knowledge of the syntax and semantics of computer programming. The exam fee for this certification is $295.
- Certified Associate in Python Programming. The Python Institute awards this $295 certification to professionals who are already experts in using the Python language. The certification also tests skills in designing, executing, debugging, and developing multi-module programs.
Best Professional Certifications
Is a College Certificate for Programming Worth It?
Yes, a college certificate for programming is worth it because it teaches you important concepts and foundations in programming. You’ll receive training from experts in the field who keep up to date with current trends.
Programming Certificates FAQ
No, you can’t get a certification for free since the certifications are standardized tests that verify professional knowledge and skills. Although certifications are not for free and the cost varies, they are worth having. Advanced certificates prove your competency.
Yes, there are undergraduate and graduate certificates online. These online programming college certificates are flexible and convenient, especially for those who are working while studying.
Yes, you can become a programmer with a programming certificate. A programming certificate program teaches the foundations and basic concepts you need for software to run successfully. However, the chances of being employed depend on the requirements and qualifications set by the company.
No, an undergraduate programming certificate is not better than a graduate programming certificate. Both programming certificates are important since they contribute to learning and careers.
A programming undergraduate certificate will be enough if you are aiming for an entry-level job. If you have a bachelor’s degree and professional experience, a graduate programming certificate will help your skills levels and boost your resume.
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