Automation is a major advancement in IT as it reduces the manual work of programmers by instructing a computer to handle common tasks. There are several tools used in automation, but it’s important to use the best programming language for the task at hand.
Python has proven to be one of the best tools for automation and the best option for QA testers in the industry. In this article, you will learn about why you should learn Python for automation, the typical duration for the learning path, and the libraries used in the field.
What Is Python?
Python is a multipurpose programming language that can be used for web development, machine learning, data analytics, language development, and software development. Python is an in-demand programming language because it is easy to read and can be used in a range of applications.
What Is Python Used for in Automation?
In automation, Python is used for email automation, file management, data mining, chatbot, currency conversion, Excel sheet updates, data compilation, report generation, web scraping, weather reports, downloads sorting, audiobook reading, data visualization, filling online forms, and web automation.
These are common system administration tasks that can be done manually but they would take up a lot of time and leave room for mistakes. Automation with Python reduces the amount of time spent on repetitive tasks, prevents errors, and frees up people to work on more complex tasks.
How Long Will It Take to Learn Python for Automation?
It will take six weeks to eight months to learn the basics of Python depending on the learner and the method of learning. There are several mediums that you can explore to learn Python including online courses and coding bootcamps. Online courses are typically self-paced, which means the duration that you spend learning depends on you and your dedication.
The best Python bootcamps typically take six weeks to one year depending on the bootcamp program. Your learning in a bootcamp will typically be conducted by up-to-date industry experts and offer career services or even job guarantees to help you get hired.
Why Should You Learn Python for Automation?
There are so many reasons why Python should be your go-to programming language. Python is a universal, multipurpose language with approachable syntax, that can be used for any project size and has a large community of programmers eager to share their knowledge. Find even more key reasons below.
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Easy to Read
Python is relatively easy to read and understand when compared to other programming languages. This makes it ideal for automation as automation engineers need to focus on other complex tasks and trying to understand a complicated programming language would be an obstacle. Python helps to ensure that this isn’t an issue when working on automation.
Python has a large library that you can use to your advantage. This helps you save precious time and effort that would originally be used to reinvent codes. Its popularity and ease of use mean there are plenty of resources available online for Python programming.
Python is a programming language that supports object-oriented programming and procedural philosophies. That means that you spend less time learning new environments for different languages and can transition to different paradigms to do multiparadigm programming. This will come in very handy during automation.
How Can I Learn Python for Automation?
There are different mediums to help you gain the knowledge and essential skills necessary to become an expert at Python automation. From bootcamps to books to certificate programs, there are many resources available to learn the skills required for Python automation.
Coding bootcamps are short-term intensive programs that are designed to equip students with the essential skills needed to start a career in the technology industry. They typically cost more and could have a longer duration than an online course.
A coding bootcamp is ideal for learning Python for automation as it provides extensive knowledge of the Python language and its application, as well as hands-on experience working on real-life projects. At the end of the program, you will have practical knowledge of Python programming and in-demand skills that will help you kickstart a rewarding career.
Online courses are another option you can explore, especially for those who want to learn at their own pace. There are numerous online platforms that offer Python for automation courses. You may also enroll in courses that offer hands-on experience and have a community that you can reach out to if you are stuck or have questions.
The courses are typically paid, however, you can also find free courses for those on a budget. While paid courses mostly offer a certificate of completion that you can add to your resume, free courses may not. Certificate programs are often desired by recruiters as they show a validated knowledge of programming in Python.
Books are a great way to gain Python knowledge. Regardless of what you want to learn, there is a book to help you and the same goes for programming languages. There are several books that are available for you to gain the knowledge you need to learn Python for simple automation.
A good book to learn Python for automation is Automate the Boring Stuff with Python: Practical Programming for Total Beginners by Al Sweigart.
Top Python for Automation Libraries
With Python being a universal language and one of the most popular programming languages, it is no surprise that it has a vast community with several libraries that you can use to your advantage. These libraries all serve different purposes and it is expected that you are familiar with them if you want to become a Python developer.
- Selenium. Selenium is one of the best test tools out there for testing engineers. It is used to automate web browsers with Python and is the best option when it comes to browser-based automation.
- Pytest. Pytest is another popular automation library and for good reason. It is very straightforward and focuses on tests. It is also designed to be reusable, scalable, and very powerful, making it one of the best Python automation libraries.
- Robot Framework. This is a Python-based framework that can also be used with other languages. It is an open-source framework that supports both test automation and robotic process automation.
- Pandas. This library is best for complex data operation and allows you to read data from multiple sources. It is also an open-source tool that is great for data manipulation and analysis. It is great with Python because it is also easy to understand and use.
- PyBuilder. PyBuilder is a Python-written automation tool that is focused on the Python ecosystem. It supports dependency-based programming and comes with plugin mechanisms like Apache Maven and Gradle.
How to Learn Python for Automation: A Step-by-Step Guide
To learn Python for automation, you need to follow these steps. This will make your learning journey easy and contain few obstacles. The following is a step-by-step guide to help you learn Python for automation.
Get an Education
Before starting out with anything, you need to first get an education. It could be through online courses, a coding bootcamp, or books. Whatever the choice is, it has to be something that will help you learn as much as you can in a way that suits your learning method best. The point is for you to be able to understand the language properly and work on projects on your own.
Work on Projects
If you join a coding bootcamp, you will likely work on hands-on projects to help you practice your learned skills and build your portfolio. However, if you take the self-learning path, you will have to work on projects on your own. You can conduct research on fun projects to practice Python for automation and try your hand at various machine learning projects until you become a pro.
Build a Portfolio
Your portfolio is just as important as getting educated. Without a portfolio, you will find it difficult to secure a good job. But beyond job hunting, a portfolio is also a great way to learn and practice. While working on your portfolio, you will apply the knowledge and skills that you have gathered over time and discover new things that will make you an even better programmer.
Practice Pair Programming
Pair programming is a good way to improve your programming skills and share ideas with other professionals. With this, you will be able to practice collaboration, a crucial skill in any technology job market. Pair programming involves two programmers working on a code together, with one writing the code and the other reviewing it.
Teach a Novice
Teaching is one of the best ways to perfect a skill. While teaching, you will also discover new things that could make you a better programmer. You can connect with a novice in the field and offer to teach them. You may even learn a thing or two from the novice through the questions that they ask and suggestions that they may bring.
Start Learning Python for Automation Today
Python for automation is one of the best things to learn as a developer. Python will continue to be an in-demand programming language by employers because of its ease of use, and its ability to automate repetitive tasks. By being relieved of common system administration tasks, programmers can focus on important innovations in their field. Check out these educational pathways to find out how you can learn in-demand skills in Python and begin a career in Python automation.
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