Software developer for non-CS graduates

Dear members,

Can I become a software developer even if I don’t have CS degree.
I am from a commerce background and not good with maths.

What is it require to become a software developer/engineer.

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Can I become a software developer even if I don’t have CS degree.

Yes, a lot of people do it, including me. There will be some jobs for which you will not qualify, but there will also be many for which you will.

Can I become a software developer even if I don’t have CS degree.

You need math to be a developer, but you don’t really need advanced math. You need very basic number theory. You need understand some basic geometric reasoning and simple algebra. (I mean like "y = 5 and x = y * 4 - 3 solve for x" kind of stuff.) There may be subfields (data science, anything involving statistics, etc.) where you need more advanced math, but most 6th graders have been exposed to as much math as you’re likely to need - at least for the basic stuff. I think people worry too much about this.

Well, that is a big, big question. Most generally, you need to know how to build stuff and you need some examples of stuff you’ve built. I wrote a doc here with some advice and the user P1xt used to haunt these halls and she wrote up and excellent series of guides here. My approach is more “how do I get my first job” and hers is more “how do I prepare myself to excel in this field”.


Hi Kushwaha,

There are a lot of companies that would disregard the piece of paper, but they’re not going to ignore the expertise shortages.

Many men, with or without a degree in CS, can’t be employed in a good company with less than 2 years or so of intensive study (by learning I don’t mean reading books, but by focusing on improving your skills).

What kind of programs have you set up? Were they enough advanced to be seen as evidence that you know how to deal with large and complicated codebases written mostly by many people?

One way to prove this is by contributing to a wide-open source project. Open-source initiatives (at least well-run ones) are usually meritocratic and are “ruled” by the most qualified participants. It’s often a lot less manipulative than in corporations, where rewards rely on many other factors.

The first thing I’d do is try to understand the “big picture” idea. What are the main components and how they work together? Then try fixing minor glitches and maybe introducing small features to further boost the codebase awareness. Finally, you want to make a larger difference.

If you’re able to make any major contributions to a massive open source project, you won’t have a problem finding a job.