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Why Computer Science Graduates Often Lack Coding Skills?

Sigma School
24th April 2024


There are actually so many computer science majors that graduate without actually knowing how to code.

How come? 

In today's world, where tech is all around us, there's a huge demand for people who can write code and build software.

Sigma Guide: Careers in Coding: Full Stack vs Front End vs Back End Developers

But here's the thing – even though companies need these skills more than ever, many grads with computer science degrees don't seem to know how to code well. Statistically 47% of computer programmers globally in 2021 are self-taught or have no formal education in computer science. It's a real problem for teachers and bosses alike. They're left wondering: why are these grads falling short on the practical side of things, despite their fancy degrees? we will breakdown together why this happen, and solution for it.

Understanding the Gap:

You'd think that if someone studied computer science, they'd be a coding whiz, right? But it's not always the case. There are a bunch of reasons why grads with computer science degrees struggle with coding, even though that's what they're supposed to be good at. It's kind of weird, right? Computer science is all about programming, but sometimes graduates can't code to save their lives. Here's why:

1.    Theory vs Practice:

In computer science classes, they focus a lot on theory – like algorithms and stuff. But they don't always teach you how to actually write code. So, while you might understand the theory, you're clueless when it comes to putting it into practice.

2.    Not Enough Hands-On Stuff:

You spend a ton of time in lectures and doing assignments, but not enough time actually coding. It's like learning to swim by reading a book instead of jumping into the pool. Without real practice, you're never going to get good at it.

3.    Outdated Tech:

Sometimes schools teach old-school stuff that no one uses anymore. So, when you graduate, you're stuck coding in a language that nobody cares about. It's like learning to drive a horse and buggy in the age of self-driving cars – totally useless.

4.    No Real-World Experience:

In school, you're in a bubble. You don't deal with the same stuff real programmers do – like working on big projects with a team or fixing someone else's messy code. So, when you get a job, you're totally lost.

coding group discuss about coding problem

Fixing the Problem:

So, how do we fix this mess? Here are a few ideas:

 1.    Make Classes More Practical:

Schools need to teach coding, not just theory. Give students real projects to work on, so they can actually learn how to code.

2.    Try Bootcamps and Workshops:

Coding bootcamps and workshops are like crash courses in coding. They're intense and hands-on, so you learn fast. Plus, they focus on the stuff you need to know to get a job. Coding School like Sigma School even offers a money-back guarantee for you.

Learn More: What is a Coding Bootcamp

3.    Get Some Real-Life Experience:

Internships and co-op programs let you work with real programmers on real projects. It's like a sneak peek into the real world of coding. With this you can easily adapt in the future of working in a company.

4.    Keep Learning:

Tech changes fast, so you gotta keep up. Take online courses, read tech blogs, and play around with new stuff. The more you learn, the better you'll get.

man coding with laptop and use code hologram

And we can explore some exciting new tools that can help us level up our coding skills:


LangChain is an open-source framework that helps developers build applications using large language models (LLMs). LLMs are AI models that take text as input and generate new text as output. LangChain offers tools and abstractions to improve the accuracy, customization, and relevancy of the information the models generate. LangChain is available in Python- and Javascript-based libraries.

GitHub Co-Pilot:

GitHub Co-Pilot is an AI-powered coding assistant that helps you write code faster and smarter. It uses machine learning to suggest code snippets based on your context, making coding a breeze. With Co-Pilot by your side, you can tackle complex coding tasks with confidence.

Shopify Plugins:

If you're interested in web development, learning how to create Shopify plugins can be a valuable skill. Shopify is a popular e-commerce platform, and creating plugins allows you to customize and extend its functionality. With Shopify plugins, you can bring your coding skills to life by building real-world applications.


Next.js is a React framework for building server-side rendered and statically generated web applications. It simplifies the development process and offers features like automatic code splitting and hot module replacement. Learning Next.js can take your web development skills to the next level and make you a more versatile coder.


Roboflow is a platform for managing and preprocessing image data for machine learning projects. It simplifies the process of preparing image datasets by providing tools for tasks like resizing, augmenting, and labeling images. With Roboflow, you can dive into the exciting field of computer vision and machine learning.


Pinecone is a vector database optimized for similarity search. It allows you to store and query high-dimensional vector data efficiently, making it ideal for applications like recommendation systems and natural language processing. Learning Pinecone can open up new possibilities in the world of data science and artificial intelligence.


Rust is a systems programming language known for its safety, concurrency, and performance. It's gaining popularity for building fast and reliable software, particularly in areas like game development and operating systems. Learning Rust can enhance your programming skills and make you a more versatile developer.



In wrapping up, the gap between what computer science grads learn in theory and what they can do practically is a big deal that affects both schools and companies. To fix it, we need to rethink how we teach, give students more hands-on practice, and encourage everyone to keep learning even after they graduate.

Computer science grads not knowing how to code might seem crazy, but it's a real problem. When educators, employers, and students team up to tackle this issue, we can make sure that future computer science grads aren't just good at theory but also skilled at putting their ideas into action with code, pushing tech forward and making big things happen.

You don’t have to worry, Sigma School got you covered. Our coding bootcamp offers courses that can teach you everything you need to code. Our courses are fun and practical, and they're designed to get you ready for a job in this field.

So, if you're ready to start your journey in coding, come and join us at Sigma School. Let's make some amazing experiences together.


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