Is Formal Education Important for Software Developers?


Just a few decades ago, kids were advised that the only way to maximize their chances of landing a well-paying job is by studying hard in the formal education system and obtaining a college degree. Nevertheless, the world has changed. People have shifted their paradigms. There are increasingly many software and web developers who do not have a college degree. College dropouts making it huge in Silicon Valley are becoming ever more common. Critics of the formal education system are pondering the value of getting a college degree, the plummeting rates of student loan debts, and whether the entire education system is just obsolete.

Presently, extremely young kids are getting lessons on how to code, build websites and applications. Perceptibly, these kids grow up intending to pursue a career in development. A majority of these aspiring developers are self-taught using resources such as Google for learning. Therefore, it is completely understandable for this generation of kids to question the value of a college education or even the entire formal education system when they can learn everything by themselves.
This article explores all the reasons why an aspiring developer doesn’t need to go to the formal education route.

Presently, Increasingly More Software Developers Are Self-Taught
Statistics show that up to ninety percent of individuals working as software, app, or website developers are self-taught in some way. That being said, developers can be broadly categorized into two groups: those who hold degrees in various disciplines but made a career switch to software development, or the programmers who chose not to go the route of “formal education.” Each of the cases mentioned above is unique in their own way, but statistically, the developers with no formal education are more skilled in their craft.
Attending college can be extremely tedious. Even more, students are necessitated to learn bulk material that is outdated. It is not uncommon to hear cases of students going through burn-outs due to the back-breaking amount of work that they are required to handle.

Therefore, it is completely understandable when students opt to go online with questions such as “Professional writing services that can complete an essay for you.” These services help students to complete their essays and thus relieving them some of their stress.
That being said, these tasks that students are required to add little or no value in preparing them for their careers. This explains why software developers are encouraged not to waste time and finances to pursue a college degree.

Getting a College Degree Is Paying for What One Doesn’t Need
As aforementioned, it is not necessary for developers to obtain a college degree. Nevertheless, those who choose to go the route of obtaining a Computer Science or Software Engineering degree often end up paying for what they won’t need in their career. For instance, Software Engineering undergraduates are required to take classes in Physics, 3-dimensional Math, Calculus, Persian Literature, Religious Studies, and even family planning. These subjects are of no relevance or importance to the development and advancement of one’s career as a developer. Additionally, students are forced to pay for these subjects that they do not require for the advancement of their careers.

Lack of Quality Education in Institutions of Higher Learning
While obtaining a college degree is still respectable and revered in many industries, the deteriorating quality of education in institutions of higher learning is threatening this status quo. Over the past few decades, the quality of college education has declined immensely and thus affecting the way the public and employers view college education.
For individuals who aspire to pursue careers as academicians such as professors or lecturers, obtaining a college degree is absolutely necessary. Actually, the higher the level of formal education attained and credentials obtained, the higher the likelihood of getting a well-paying job as an educator in institutions of higher learning.

This, however, cannot be said for individuals looking to pursue careers that largely depend on one’s skills rather than their credentials. Individuals looking to pursue careers in professions such as software development should count more on their skills than just credentials.

With that being said, it is important to note that obtaining a college education is not altogether a horrible idea. In some cases, such as pursuing a career as an academician, one is required to obtain a college degree. Nevertheless, for developers, obtaining a college degree adds very little value to one’s career endeavors. As such, prospective developers must make the right choices and decisions about what’s best for their careers.


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