Hi, I’m Olga! I have years of experience in data science, most recently at eBay. Now I work as an industry mentor at Pathrise, helping data scientists land great jobs through technical workshops and 1-on-1s. Check out my article with the best resources to learn SQL.
Current and aspiring data scientists should have a strong grasp on SQL (Structured Query Language), the standard programming language used to communicate with databases. Because SQL is one of the most common tools used in the tech industry, there are a large number of resources online for data scientists who are looking to advance their current skills. But, with so many choices, finding the right resource can be a challenge.
With that in mind, we have compiled a list of well known online resources and courses to learn SQL. Take a look to find the program that best matches their skill level and career goals.
- Mode tutorials
With free and paid courses, Codecademy is an online tool that offers courses in a number of programming languages, including SQL. Their SQL tutorial is free, interactive, and takes about 7 hours to complete. In addition to the free introduction, they have paid SQL courses on more advanced topics, including table transformations, working with multiple data sets, and analyzing business metrics.
Coursera is an online learning platform with courses that teach SQL, as well as many other topics. UC Davis, IBM, Duke, University of Michigan, and other institutions offer introductory courses that focus on using SQL for data science. For intermediate courses, users can check out “Data Wrangling, Analysis and AB Testing with SQL” (also offered by UC Davis), as well as courses that cover using SQL for business analytics. Users can audit the courses for free. But, they need to pay a fee if they want to earn a certificate of completion.
With over 100,000 offerings, Udemy offers quite a few courses that teach SQL, including their popular “Introduction to Databases and SQL Querying” course. Those looking for an in-depth SQL course can enroll in one of their SQL bootcamps. Their most popular SQL bootcamp comes with 7.5 hours of video lectures, 16 articles, and a certificate of completion. Another popular course is “MySQL for Data Analytics and Business Intelligence”. It is a good option for those looking to understand how to use SQL in real-world scenarios. If these are not good matches, users can pick and choose from other courses that range from beginner to advanced. For instance, their “IT Fundamentals for Business Professionals” course covers SQL, as well as other languages.
edX is a massive online open course (MOOC) with offerings in computer science and data science. Their introduction to computer science course series, as well as their data analysis essentials courses, teach the fundamentals of SQL, as well as other languages. Those with some background in SQL can take “Querying Data with Transact SQL”. This free course focuses on querying and modifying in SQL Server, Azure SQL, Transact-SQL, and more. These courses are free, but edX allows users to pay a fee to earn a certificate of completion.
A tech education tool, Udacity offers free and paid courses that teach SQL, including 2 of their most popular free courses, “Intro to Relational Databases” and “SQL for Data Analysis.” People who are interested in learning how to use SQL alongside other programming languages commonly used in data science, such as Python and R, can consider the in-depth nanodegree program in data science with Python. This is a paid track that comes with additional benefits. For example, students get project reviews, mentorship, job-seeking assistance, and a certificate of completion. Learn more about Udacity in our review.
A free Wiki, SQLZoo offer tutorials for beginners with no prior experience working with SQL, as well as references and resources for intermediate and advanced data scientists looking to refresh their skills. Beginners can work through 9 primary lessons, which takes about 20 hours to complete. Users learn through videos, short readings, reference, and assessments. After finishing the lessons, users will have the tools to write queries and work with databases. In addition, SQLZoo offers several SQL engines, sample databases, and additional exercises. These resources are useful for data scientists at any level.
7. Mode tutorials
Mode, a data analytics company, offers free tutorials for those who want to learn SQL, as well as Python. Users learn the ropes through code walkthroughs (with illustrations), readings, and hands-on projects. The tutorials, which are conducted on the free Mode platform, teach users how to analyze real-world data in business scenarios by using SQL. In addition to covering the basics, the tutorials teach users how to write SQL queries in order to investigate user engagement, understand search functionality, validate A/B test results, and other advanced topics. They can pick and choose which lessons to take, which allows them to focus on specific topics and skip over others.
A common software engineering interview prep tool, freeCodeCamp also offers free tutorials for those interested in programming languages used by data scientists, including SQL. Their tutorials cover topics such as SQL and databases for total beginners, as well as others, including basic SQL commands, SQL with Azure, MySQL, and more. Students learn through code walkthrough, readings, and recorded lectures. In addition, they have access to the freeCodeCamp online forum, where they can ask questions and discuss coding challenges.
A data science resource, DataCamp has 26 free courses that focus exclusively on teaching SQL. Besides their fundamentals course, students can study SQL server, intermediate SQL, relational databases, exploratory data analysis, database design, Oracle SQL, and much more. Each course takes about 4 hours to complete and includes video lessons and exercises. Those interested in pursuing an in-depth program can enroll in the SQL fundamentals skill track, a paid option that takes 21 hours to complete.
People looking to brush up on the basics can check out SoloLearn. Their SQL track teaches the fundamentals and can be accessed on the SoloLearn mobile application. The quiz questions are multiple choice, which makes SoloLearn an effective tool for learning on the go. Because users do not write their own SQL queries, they should consider using SoloLearn alongside a more hands-on learning platform to advance their SQL skills.
W3Schools is a free online resource with tutorials and reference materials on 14 programming languages, including SQL. Users post sample SQL queries on the open-access platform, so others can learn new techniques from experienced data scientists. W3Schools has a certification exam in SQL, as well as other languages. Those who pass the exam can share their certificate on their LinkedIn profile.
Another data science resource, Dataquest offers a free introduction to SQL course, as well as more specialized options for intermediate and advanced data scientists. As for paid options, intermediate users can enroll in “SQL Fundamentals for Data Science” and “SQL and Databases for Data Science.” Dataquest has courses on more specialized topics as well, such as “SQL Intermediate for R Users.” The curriculum, which uses readings, recorded lectures, and guided assignments. Users can also check out the Dataquest blog, which offers additional hints and tips to learn SQL.
Pathrise is a career accelerator that provides 1-on-1 support to students and professionals on every step of the job search, including resume and portfolio building, technical and behavioral interview prep, salary negotiation, and more.
If you are looking to work with a mentor to optimize your job search and help you land a job in data science, join Pathrise.