Screenshot of Codecademy web app
Screenshot of Codecademy web app

Codecademy is a browser-based tool for learning to write code through easy-to-understand, game-oriented lessons.

Whether you are a highschooler or a mid-career marketing professional, you can be a coding student with Codecademy. This groundbreaking start-up is just over a year old and already has millions of users who have completed more than 50 million lessons. The mission of Codecademy is simple–teach the world to code–and they are making a huge impact in the digital media realm.

Even NYC’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg has signed up for lessons! Through a series of interactive tracks, students can become fluent in many of the major programming languages like Javascript, HTML/CSS, Python, Ruby on Rails, and APIs. Codecademy is not just for students; teachers can contribute their own lessons and courses.

Codecademy gives everyone the opportunity to gain literacy in one of the most popular languages on the planet–computer programming code. This free web-based academy aims to turn “a world of tech consumers into one of empowered builders,” emphasizing that you don’t have to be a web professional to have a working knowledge of coding.

Keywords / Definitions


  • Scaffolding : Guiding students through levels of learning by building on what they already know

  • Application Programming Interface (API) : Coding language used to program apps and websites that interact with apps

  • CSS3 : Cascading Style Sheet, used to control the style and layout of a Web page

  • Webmaking : More than just coding, webmaking is the act of creating, understanding, and promoting content on the Web

  • Free-Range Learning : Self-directed by student in out-of-school and informal environments


Technology is radically changing every area of our society, from communication to government to how we do our jobs. Digital literacy is now a fundamental skill like reading and writing.
—Codecademy website

Beginning with the fundamentals, Codecademy takes students through levels of learning based on what skills they’ve mastered. This type of teaching, called scaffolding, is an extremely effective method for mastering new skills at any age. Learning code also provides important reasoning, logic, and communication skills. As a student completes tracks, they are rewarded with points and badges that are displayed on their profile.

Codecademy can be applied to a school’s computer science curriculum, but is also a great project for self-directed learners and free-range learners. For groups who want to build an in-person network of others who are interested in learning code, Codecademy offers an afterschool club resource “kit.” Codecademy has truly revolutionized how students, both young and old, learn code.

Codecademy was last modified: April 1st, 2014 by Matt Hannigan