Unlike other education platforms, Pluralsight is technology-focused or doesn’t try to teach you every possible subject under the sun. Pluralsight, in fact, markets itself as The Technology Skills Platform’. Click the Courses’ menu button at the top left corner of the site’s home page and the course options that would drop down would be Software Development, IT Operations, Information & Cyber Security, etc.
Pluralsight courses have been designed to help you learn fresh tech skills or build on your existing technical expertise. But how good is Pluralsight when it comes to learning Python? That is the big question we’ll try to answer in this detailed write-up.
A Brief Intro to Python
Extremely simple, yet very powerful, Python is an open-source programming language that lets you write desktop GUI and web apps, scripts, etc. It can also be used to develop complex numeric and scientific applications. The language’s simple syntax rules make it easy to keep the code base readable and the apps maintainable. Python’s emphasis on code readability means you can use a lot more English words in the code. The language supports multiple programming paradigms and many operating systems. It also has a robust standard library that lets you choose modules from a varied range as per your precise requirements.
Pluralsight as an Online Learning Platform
Founded in 2004, Pluralsight has been doing the rounds within the online education circuit longer than most people would know. Besides the tech-focused learning experience that it offers, the unique thing about Pluralsight is Paths.
As a new Python learner, you may find it difficult to ascertain where and how to start your learning process. Paths addresses this situation by combining particular courses and kits into a single experience and teaching you Python or any other programming language or technical skill for that matter from beginning to end. The paths churned out are basically in line with your knowledge level, so that you could learn skills in the order that’s right for you.
For Python, Pluralsight has devised a path that puts you through 12 different Python courses at three different levels: beginner, intermediate, and advanced. You would start this 35-hour long path as a complete Python novice and finish the ride as an expert in Python. A solid blend of video, interactive, and project-based courses helps make this possible.
Top Python Courses on Pluralsight
Pluralsight has approximately 400 Python courses. The noteworthy feature of these courses is their comprehensive nature, which helps you learn the language in its entirety. In other words, if you are doing a beginner Python course on Pluralsight, you would have invariably learned everything there is to Python fundamentals.
Let’s take a look at the top Python courses Pluralsight offers at three different learner levels.
Pluralsight’s beginner Python courses are designed to help beginner programmers learn more. These courses would introduce you to object-oriented programming basics while helping you learn Python.
- Python: The Big Picture
This course would teach you the complete basics of Python, why Python matters, how is it different from other programming languages, how to start using Python, Python’s applications, etc. After having completed the course, you would have finished your groundwork in Python. This foundational knowledge would help you ascertain when should you be using Python while working as a software engineer or in any future programming tasks you may take up. Kindly note, you don’t require any prior Python experience to get rolling with this course.
- Python: Getting Started
This course would teach you Python syntax basics, functions, creating web and console apps, and distribution. You would also be taught how to create an installation wizard and executable files from your Python application. Besides Python, you would be using Pycharm and Flask as well. Though beginner-friendly, this course expects you to have some basic programming knowledge.
Pluralsight’s intermediate courses have been designed to enhance your code knowledge. These programs would help you learn more about debugging and unit testing, and also some of Python’s more advanced features.
- Python – Beyond the Basics
As the name suggests, this course intends to broaden and deepen your Python knowledge repository. This exhaustive, seven-hour long course directly builds on the foundations the Python Fundamentals course teaches (also available on Pluralsight). It explores concepts that would help create readable and robust apps of any size. Post course completion, you would have learned most of the Python constructs and techniques utilized in Python programs. The course also advises you on how and when to use the various Python tools to the desired effect and to maximize your code quality and productivity.
Pluralsight’s Advanced Python courses are all about putting the skills you developed at the beginner’ and intermediate’ levels to practice. These advanced’ courses would teach you full-stack web development, along with certain methods that would help with implementing advanced frameworks.
- Advanced Python
This course teaches you advanced Python concepts, which are designed to provide you an edge over other Python developers in the market. In the course, you would first explore gaining fine-grained command over attribute access. Then, you’ll learn class-object interception, which would be followed by lessons on the robust, yet subtle Python controls. After you complete the course, you would have learned enough Python to know the advanced methods used for implementing sophisticated frameworks, and lots more.
The aforementioned courses are purely for your consideration. Before enrolling for one, kindly peruse the exhaustive list of Python courses on Pluralsight so that you can be sure which course(s) fits your requirements the best.
The Good Thing About Learning Python on Pluralsight
Pluralsight offers Python courses for people with different skills and backgrounds. If you have never explored Python before, the platform’s beginner-focused courses would be a solid way to kick-start your Python journey. If you have some exposure or can boast good expertise in Python, the intermediate’ and advanced’ courses would suit your requirements better and offer a lot more value.
Another aspect worth mentioning is the sheer number of high-quality Python courses on the platform. These courses are deemed “high quality” not just for their solid production value but also because they are taught mostly by experts. Just check the instructor profiles of the different Python courses and you will find many renowned professionals offering their service on Pluralsight. The course authors are invariably globally renowned experts and public speakers, which shows in the delivery of their courses.
Pluralsight’s Python courses, like pretty much all its other courses, feed you a lot of video-based content. In other words, you can learn Python by just watching videos. This style of knowledge transfer helps when you are watching videos during commute and where it’s not possible to practice the codes while learning.
Pluralsight’s premium membership is subscription-based, which is categorized as personal’ and business’. A personal monthly subscription starts at $19, which lets you access the more than 5,000 courses on the platform, including Python programs. If you can, use the subscription to learn APIs, databases, and other technologies.
If you manage to finish all the Python courses on Pluralsight in a month, the $19 you spent on the subscription would end up becoming the best $19 you ever spent. On most other platforms, you are either paying more as subscription fees or buying courses individually. Moreover, an annual personal subscription on Pluralsight would cost you $159, which comes down to $13.25 per month.
Also, if you’re registering with Pluralsight for the first time, you can avail the 10-day trial before your premium subscription could start. This trial period is a solid way to check out Pluralsight’s Python courses or maybe finish a course or two for free. If you are not sure about putting your money on the table and want to know what’s actually on offer, this trial period would pretty much help you make that call. And if you end up not liking the content, you can always cancel your membership and leave without having spent any money.
The Not-So-Good Thing About Pluralsight Python Courses
Pluralsight’s less-interactive courses may not impress people who believe learning is not complete without getting your hands dirty. Also, some of the Python courses on the platform could be old and outdated since Pluralsight does not have any tradition of updating its courses to keep up with the changing industry trends. A major reason for this could be a large number of courses there are on the platform in general. Curating the more than 5000 courses to ensure they keep up with the times can be challenging and significantly time-consuming. However, a platform as big as Pluralsight cannot use “course quantity” as an excuse to not modernize its offerings.
If you have the necessary aptitude and are willing to invest the time and effort required to learn Python online, Pluralsight is arguably the most ideal Python learning platform. The holistic approach of Pluralsight to its Python and other courses makes us say that. Pluralsight Learning Paths is a nice touch. People who have scoured the web, YouTube and other education platforms only to end up disappointed by the haphazard content structuring would truly appreciate Paths.
Long story short, Pluralsight is arguably one of the best and most cost-effective platforms to learn Python. If you are on the fence about using Pluralsight to learn Python, you should not be.