5 Ways to Get Paid to Learn Code

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A woman sitting on her couch learning how to code

Coding is an incredibly valuable skill that is becoming more valuable with each passing year. Because of this, more and more people want to start coding. However, in many cases, people must juggle their desire to learn coding with the necessity of earning a living. 

The solution to this problem is to find a way to get paid to learn how to code. While this sounds too good to be true, there are actually a variety of different ways in which this is possible! Keep reading to find out how!

Related: What Are the Highest Paying Software Engineering Jobs of 2023?

1. Paid Internships

A paid internship is the most traditional and straightforward way to get paid to learn code. An internship is designed to be an opportunity to learn practical, job-related skills from a company in exchange for doing work for them. So, a paid internship related to coding will include coding as one of these skills. 

A paid internship has the added bonus of potentially leading to a new job. Companies often hire their interns directly, with some companies reporting that around 40% of their new hires come from their internship programs. This is particularly true when it comes to paid internships, as companies are more likely to hire one of their paid interns than one of their unpaid interns. 

In addition to this, paid internships are often widely available and are available for many different types of jobs and positions. A single company may offer a few different paid internships, each focusing on something different. This gives you plenty of options to choose from when making your decision. 

2. Paid Assistantships

While internships are the most straightforward approach to gaining coding knowledge on the job, there are also less structured options out there. One of these is to learn through a paid assistantship. 

Assistantships are exactly what the name implies. They involve working as an assistant for someone in the world of coding. This could mean working for a large company, where you work directly under a coding team, or it could mean working for a single person, potentially as part of a small business or startup. In any case, you would be given basic coding tasks alongside other work. 

This is a little less structured than an internship because teaching isn’t the main goal. However, there is still plenty of learning involved. The person or persons you work for want you to do your job well because it directly affects their job. So, they will ensure you have the knowledge and experience to do this. 

Sometimes, this will result from directly teaching you what to do. For example, someone involved in machine learning may help you learn about the best coding languages for machine learning. Then, they will expect you to use this knowledge to help them with whatever they are working on. 

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Person looking at three computer screens with code

3. Jobs Involving Learning

One of the more unique ways to learn how to code while you earn money is to do so on the job. Some jobs will hire you with minimal coding experience, expecting you to gain more coding experience while working for them. 

How this happens will vary depending on the job. Some will expect you to gain coding skills and knowledge as you do your job. Others will have a dedicated program to teach you coding alongside your other responsibilities. In either case, you gain both practical experience and coding knowledge at the same time. 

The only disadvantage here is that these jobs often pay less than a real job in coding. However, the fact that you are learning for free helps offset this downside. Plus, after a while, you can leverage your new knowledge to get a raise or a better position. 

Related: How to Start Coding in 2023, New to Programming?

4. Basic Freelance Work

Freelance work is on the rise. Some studies have indicated that more than half of all post-grad workers have done freelance work. This is an increase over previous years. 

This is particularly true when it comes to coding. There are plenty of freelance coding jobs out there for anyone interested in looking for them. These range from extremely complex jobs requiring years of experience to jobs you can do with basic coding knowledge. 

This presents a unique opportunity for anyone who wants to work on their coding abilities while making money. By taking basic coding freelance jobs, you will have a chance to put your basic coding knowledge to work. These jobs will test and reinforce these entry-level skills. Meanwhile, as you encounter problems that go beyond your capabilities, you can use online resources to learn these new skills. Over time, taking on jobs like these will bolster your coding fundamentals while encouraging you to learn more. 

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5. Coding Bootcamps

Unfortunately, most of the items on this list require some coding experience. The best way to gain this experience while earning money is through a coding bootcamp. 

Coding bootcamps are teaching programs designed to teach you a lot about coding in a short period of time. They effectively give you the skills that college courses would give you but do so in a far more flexible format. 

This format allows you to take a coding bootcamp alongside any job. You can have a job outside the coding world and still have time to learn coding through a bootcamp. Then, once the bootcamp is complete, you can start looking for a job in coding. 

Coding bootcamps are also available for any skill level. You can enter one without knowing anything about coding and gain all of the relevant skills. Or, you can enter one with coding experience and gain more advanced skills. The first option allows you to get a decent job right off the bat, while the second option allows you to get an even better job. 

Person at a desk with code on a computer screen

Getting Paid to Learn Code

You can get paid while learning how to code in plenty of different ways. If you have the right motivation, you can make any of these options work out for you. Then, with coding knowledge under your belt, you are ready to make an even bigger impression on the tech world. 

Related: What Should an Entry-Level Software Engineering Resume Look Like?