With the pervasiveness of technology in our culture, it is becoming more and more common to start learning coding at a younger age. Students around the country are gaining technical skills through online courses, summer coding bootcamps, and independent study. There are numerous coding programs for high school students filled with hands-on activities to make learning engaging.
Whether your child goes on to become a tech industry giant or simply finds a love for computers in their free time, coding is a vital skill and is only getting more important. This article will list a variety of coding classes for high school students, as well as coding bootcamps and summer programs.
Best Free Online Coding Classes for High Schoolers
There are many online coding bootcamps and courses to choose from. Here are four of the best free coding classes for high school students. These sites and programs take vital aspects of coding and present them in a fun and engaging way.
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1. Scratch by MIT
Scratch is an online platform with free coding programs for high school students, as well as younger kids. Users can create, program, and share interactive media such as games, stories, and animations. While specifically designed for children ages 8-16, people of all ages can use this platform as a creative and user-friendly approach to coding.
Among its impressive library of tutorials and courses for people of all ages, Code.org offers an accelerated self-paced intro to computer science course. It’s designed for students ages 10 to 18 and covers core programming concepts like algorithms, functions, and conditions.
Code.org engages users with project-based content featuring popular cartoons and games. The website is sectioned off by school grade, which makes finding the right activity for you easier than ever. It is one of the most popular free coding resources for high school students because of how easy it is to use.
Brought to you by Microsoft, MakeCode is a platform that features free coding tutorials that cater to younger people and their interests. You will find free coding classes for high school students interested in programming their own Minecraft mods, and tutorials designed to help you make retro arcade games.
Codecadmey is a popular programming educational platform for adults and kids alike. Codecademy shows you how to write real code in a variety of programming languages, and it is the perfect choice for students ready to move beyond basic tutorials. The program offers both free and paid options. For example, you can learn Python basics in the 25-hour free introductory course.
Coding Bootcamps for High School Students
Many universities and programming schools offer in–person and online coding bootcamps for high school students eager to advance their tech skills. Many of these programs aim to help students prepare for college applications in addition to providing a tech education. Below are the best coding bootcamps for high school students.
Python Level 1 | Juni Learning
This bootcamp includes four courses where students dive into programming concepts used to make video games in Python. It is designed for learners from the age of 11 to 18 and each course costs $160. At the end of the program, students complete a master project to practice skills like debugging code and improving code readability.
Intro to Data Science Academy | Georgetown University
This coding bootcamp for high school students dives into statistical analysis and programming in R. You will learn how to identify data sources, clean and analyze data, and what to expect as a data science professional. The online course lasts one week and costs around $1,895.
Coding: Learn to Code | Syracuse University Summer College
This is an in-person coding bootcamp for high school students interested in mastering the Python programming language. Some of the topics covered include procedural programming, data structures, Pandas, control structures, and visualization tools. Students receive a certificate of completion to add to their college applications.
Coding 101 | Tufts University Pre-College Programs
This two-week coding bootcamp is offered at the Tufts University campus. Students start off learning basic programming concepts in Python before moving on to data visualization, machine learning, and cryptography. In the afternoons, guest speakers from major tech companies provide students with insight into the coding world and how they can succeed in their future careers.
Web Development | Code Galaxy
Code Galaxy offers a variety of online two-day bootcamp programs designed for high school students passionate about tech careers. The web development course covers HTML and trains students to create their own static websites and debug their own code. Upon completion, students get a bootcamp certificate to add to their resume.
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Online Coding Classes for High Schoolers
Most online coding classes for high school students are designed to be as hands-on as possible, filled with creative projects to help students practice their new skills. The following classes are shorter than the average bootcamp program, but will still provide an engaging curriculum to help students master in-demand skills.
High School Computer Science and Programming Intro Workshop | Udemy
This course costs $29.99 and contains almost nine hours of on-demand video and 30 downloadable resources. Students will learn the essential fundamentals they need to successfully move on to more complex programming languages. Some topics include data structures, artificial intelligence, networks, and object oriented programming.
Joy of Coding | University of Michigan
This online course runs during the summer months and is designed for high schoolers without prior programming experience. Students will study Python and how it is used by popular apps like Snapchat and Tik Tok, as well as code their own Snapchat lenses.
This is one of the best coding courses for high school students because it is taught by University of Michigan professors and students receive a certificate of accomplishment to bolster their college applications.
Introduction to Python | Intelligent Racing
Intelligent Racing is a platform that provides programming, machine learning, and robotics courses designed to help students build and race their own AI-driven cars. With project-based learning, the platform hopes to inspire future STEM innovators.
Inspirit AI: Live Online
This 25-hour program is taught by graduate students from universities like Stanford and MIT. It includes ten sessions that introduce high school students to basic AI concepts. Students receive personalized attention as they develop their final project.
This coding program for high school students also includes college preparation workshops where participants practice communicating about their technical experiences and prepare to write successful Stanford admission essays.
Summer Coding Programs for High School Students
If you are looking for a summer coding bootcamp to pick up new skills, or even prepare for college in the fall, you are in luck. There are a wide range of coding summer camps for high school students focusing on various aspects of the tech industry.
ID Tech Coding Camp
ID Tech offers some of the best summer programs for high school students, including in-person coding courses at over 150 university campuses across the United States. Students are welcome in a variety of courses, in everything from game development to artificial intelligence.
All-girls and coed classes are available, and students can opt to learn online. ID Tech classes feature no more than ten students per instructor. Some students who completed ID Tech summer coding bootcamps launched careers at tech giants like Google, Microsoft, EA Entertainment, and Warner Brothers.
NYU Coding for Game Design
NYU offers various programs for high school students, including a two-week coding for game design course. You can attend the course online or in-person and master technologies like C# and Unity scripting. This is one of the top summer programs for high school students interested in starting a career in the gaming industry, especially making 3D games.
The curriculum is taught through a mix of lectures, individual projects, and group activities, and is designed to prepare students for college-level courses. To keep up with the course content, it’s a good idea to have a basic understanding of coding before applying.
Penn Arts & Sciences Coding Camps
Penn Arts & Sciences offers three summer coding programs for high school students, covering Python and machine learning, C++ for artificial intelligence, and C# for apps and games. All three online courses last three weeks and are available to students from 13 to 18.
Regardless of which course you choose, you will get a chance to develop your analytical and abstract thinking while learning the skills you need to solve programmatic problems. If you pass the course, you’ll receive a certificate of completion. Tuition for a Penn Arts & Sciences summer coding bootcamp is $2,500.
Luddy School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering Pre College Summer Program
If you are looking for in-person coding summer camps for high school students, this might be the course for you. It is a residential program on the Indiana University campus from June 19-25th. No experience is required, as all students get the support they need and are grouped according to their skill level.
The curriculum covers a range of topics, including Python programming, cryptocurrencies, cyber security, smart homes and automation, collecting scientific data using robots, and 3D modeling and photogrammetry. You must be entering grades 9-12 to enroll, and the program fee is $750.
Kode With Klossy
Kode with Klossy is a summer coding camp designed for girls, gender nonconforming, and transgender students from 13-18 years old. You don’t need to have any coding experience, so long as you are curious, open-minded, and enthusiastic about learning. The two-week camps are held throughout the summer and are available online and in-person.
Why Should High School Students Learn Coding Skills?
Coding programs for high school students can do more than help you learn technical skills. Learning to program helps you develop problem-solving skills, creativity, and abstract thinking. Even a basic understanding of computer science can be essential as our society grows more reliant on technology.
Enrolling in a coding bootcamp can also help you discover a passion for programming that can lead straight to a full-time job. Careers in the tech industry provide impressive benefits and above-average salaries. With so many accessible and engaging courses and tutorials available, there is no reason not to give coding a try.
Coding Programs for High School Students FAQ
Can you learn coding in high school?
The best way to learn coding for high school students is generally through interactive online tutorials. These project-based classes are designed to be engaging and simple to follow. Once you understand the basics, you can enroll in online classes to further your education.
Are there coding bootcamps for high school students?
Yes, there are coding bootcamps for high school students. Many colleges and universities offer summer programs designed specifically for high school students, but you can also enroll in self-paced bootcamp programs throughout the year.
What classes should I take for coding in high school?
The best high school computer classes, other than computer science, include mathematics, statistics, and physics. All of these skills will come in handy if you choose to study coding at university. If your school doesn’t offer computer science classes, you can also take coding classes online.
Will a summer coding bootcamp help me get into college?
Yes, a summer coding bootcamp can help you get into college. Most pre college coding courses for high school students provide a certificate of completion if you pass the classes. This will show your chosen university that you are passionate about learning and are capable of keeping up with the coursework in a computer science program.