Code Review: Look Back on What We Learned in 2023

7 minutes

Data has the power to tell an impactful story. Sometimes data sheds light on an important but ignored phenomenon, while other times the data dazzles with its sheer impressiveness. Take this year, for example — the movie Barbie broke box office records, ChatGPT reached 100 million weekly users, and the escalating global temperatures marked 2023 as virtually the hottest year in recorded history.

Before the year wraps up, we wanted to look back at some data from our courses and learners to reveal the defining trends in tech, the job market, and of course, AI. Welcome to Code Review 2023! Read on to see how many times people submitted code this year, the most popular time of day to code, the most-visited courses, minutes spent learning Python, and more.

We hope this entertaining exploration into Codecademy’s year in data makes you feel proud of everything you’ve accomplished and learned, plus energizes you to keep coding and set ambitious goals for 2024. Be sure to check out the rest of Code Review on the blog and follow us on social media as we unpack our findings.

Total code submits

Writing code and pressing “Run” is a thrilling feeling whether you’re taking your first JavaScript course or completing a project for your professional portfolio. Learners got to experience that code submit adrenaline rush 368,182,263 times in 2023. That’s about 16 times the number of views that Troye Sivan’s viral 2023 music video for the song “Rush” has on YouTube.

Never written a line of code? If you enroll in any of our courses and paths, you’ll get to start writing and running code right away. Take our programming personality quiz to discover which language or framework you should begin with based on your goals.

Longest daily streak

Back in 2015, astrophysicist and PhD candidate George Bell started learning to code with Codecademy. Every single morning since then, George has logged on to Codecademy to learn HTML/CSS, Python, SQL, and more. Today, he’s maintained the longest daily streak of 3,106 days. To put that in perspective, George has been learning with Codecademy every day for roughly 8 years straight! Read this blog to learn more about George’s journey, the tips that helped him turn learning into a habit, and how coding is used in astrophysics.

Consistency is key when you’re picking up programming concepts, and 131 of our learners have maintained a daily streak of 365 days or more. These learners haven’t missed a single day of logging on and learning something new, and we’re so impressed! Did you know you can adjust your weekly learning target to keep yourself accountable to your goals? A year from now, you might have a 365-day streak to show off, too.

Most active time of day

Hearing the creative ways that our learners find time in their busy lives to learn how to code is always motivating. This year, we found that Codecademy learners were the most active from 10am to 4pm. Productivity peaked right around lunchtime, with 2pm ringing in as the most active hour of the day. Not everyone is a daytime developer, though — 7% of our learners were the most active between 12am and 6am.

Our learners are proof that it doesn’t matter if you have 20 minutes on Sunday mornings or five hours a day to learn how to code. With our self-guided courses and paths, you can achieve your coding goals at a pace that works for you.

Most active day of week

There’s no universal schedule that works for everyone who’s learning to code (because, let’s face it, one size fits none). But when we cracked the code on your coding habits and looked at the days of the week when people tend to work on our courses and paths, some amusing trends and patterns emerged.

Turns out our learners were the most active on Tuesdays. That tracks with other surveys that suggest Tuesday tends to be the most productive day of the workweek, because Mondays we’re all playing catch-up from the weekend. Tuesdays also tend to be the most popular in-office day for employees who have hybrid offices and can choose their IRL days.

Are our learners using downtime at work to squeeze in a few lessons or plot a career change from their cubicle? We’d never tell! Although, if you are learning while on the clock so you can grow in your current role, you might want to consider asking your employer to pay for your courses. As for the day of the week when learners are the least active, it’s Saturdays. We respect the hustle and #NoDaysOff energy, but we equally endorse getting away from the computer screen to recharge and pursue hobbies that have nothing to do with code.

Favorite language

The core languages used in web development are HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. If you imagine that those three languages are the members of the musical group Destiny’s Child, JavaScript is essentially the Beyoncé of the trio. JavaScript helped architect the internet of the 90s and 00s, and it remains massively popular and well-respected in 2023. HTML and CSS are still relevant and integral to programming, even though they get less attention these days. (Some might say the same for the other two former members of Destiny’s Child.)

Anyways, learners spent the most time learning JavaScript, making it the favorite language of 2023. JavaScript’s popularity as a beginner programming language is due to its flexibility and power. Alongside HTML and CSS, JavaScript is a core component of web technology that makes web pages interactive and engaging. People who are just starting out with code often learn HTML/CSS and JavaScript first to master the basics of web development.

Take a look at our JavaScript course offerings, starting from free courses for absolute beginners to technical interview prep resources for aspiring JavaScript pros.

The Python hype remains strong. Learn Python 3 was our most popular course this year, meaning it’s the course that learners enrolled in and visited the most in our catalog. Learners searched for “Python” the most this year, as they discovered our 130-plus Python courses, Docs, and tutorials.  

So why is Python so iconic and beloved, year after year? Well, Python is a natural choice for beginners choosing a first programming language because it has a simple, easy-to-understand way of writing code that’s almost like typing in regular English.

Python is also extremely versatile — it’s not used for just one job. You can use Python for working with data, making smart machines, building websites, handling servers, and more. And with Python’s library of ready-to-use frameworks and third-party modules, you can write code and create programs much quicker than you could with other languages.

Time spent learning Python

Time flies when you’re programming with Python. Collectively, learners spent 146,391,401 minutes learning Python in 2023. That’s about as long as it’d take you to play through the game The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom a whopping 20,988 times.

In addition to our catalog of Python courses and paths for all levels, we have projects in Python that you can use for practice or your professional portfolio, as well as entertaining case studies that’ll introduce you to new ways to use this versatile language.

There’s no denying that it was a huge year for AI innovations, and we added lots of new AI courses and case studies to our catalog. Our most popular new course released in 2023 was Intro to ChatGPT, a beginner-friendly overview of ChatGPT, one of the most commonly used text-based generative AIs. The second most popular course was Intro to Generative AI, which covers different types of AI and how to ethically apply AI concepts to everyday life.

Ultimately, the generative AI boom taught us that AI tools can make us more productive and creative programmers and solidified the fact that even the most advanced AI systems can’t replace human developers. Whether you want to explore OpenAI’s API or enlist generative AI tools to optimize your code, we have courses, paths, and case studies that will teach you how to harness AI’s full potential.

Docs is our coding documentation hub that’s powered by our community of learners. This year, the Doc entry that learners visited the most was about markdown tables. Considering that markdown tables are used for everything from comparing datasets to formatting README files, it makes sense that our learners kept coming back to this Doc.

We have thousands of Docs on popular programming languages and frameworks that are always there for you to reference as you dive into new languages or tackle more complex projects throughout your coding journey.

Docs is open to anyone who wants to explore the entries, suggest an edit, or make a new entry. The Docs repo lives on GitHub, and for many learners, Docs serves as their gateway into the realm of open-source software. Want to get involved with Docs? Read this step-by-step guide to Docs contributions, and start building your own technical portfolio today.

What a year it’s been! As you reflect on your own personal growth, you should feel proud of all your achievements and newfound knowledge. Make sure to explore the remaining Code Review content on the blog and stay updated with us on social media as we share more insights.

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