Getting started with BTech (Computer Science)

Getting started with BTech (Computer Science)


9 min read

With a remarkable milestone of getting your schooling completed, here I welcome you: The Talented Youth of The Nation(Yess I'm talking about you!) who is set to embark on your engineering life. With rigorous training in discipline and that not-so-pleasant uniform, Cheers to your upcoming college life. However, a disclaimer: This article is not going to teach you how to become an actor by getting into engineering! It's going to tell you the in and out, the crux of Computer Science & Engineering so that you get an insight about what you would want to achieve in your 4 year long journey of BTech.

Why Computer Science Degree?

Now since you have chosen the Computer Science degree, there can be two factors of doing so. They maybe one of the below mentioned:

  1. Computers are your passion & you love making sounds through your keyboard day in and out & have if not advanced, then mediocre level of understanding. (Okay basic will do good too!)

  2. The second reason is very common to state the answer to the question as to why most of the students are getting into Computer Science Engineering: Jobs of course!(Else how am I going to buy those damn fictious novels ๐Ÿ˜ช) Even though one would know recession (Decline of economy, thus affecting jobs) is going on, the trend these days is to take up CSE & then learn a bit of it and settle with a package of atleast 5-6 lakhs per annum.

BTech: Must know ideologies

Now since you are already into BTech, I won't recommend you to not follow your passion which may lie outside the domain of Computers. That's definitely your call and maybe you'd end up becoming a content writer like me! However, this article is for all those students who wish to learn the fundamentals in the fields they like, be it Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Blockchain or Data Science, perhaps too heavy words for a newbie engineer right! I know! But I suggest you watching ads on YouTube. They do give an insight about the term & it's meaning before presenting their advertisement product or course!

Now before we proceed on with the roadmap, here's a lesson that you might want to know for the rest of the 4 years.

Endless number of people will suggest you endless number of ways according to their feasibility but, at the end it's you who has to decide what's best for you! Because noone else would know that better.

Now why this quote? This is because over my BTech years I have seen multiple people & perhaps somewhere down the line, even I too have gone that way of blindly following others advices & not doing what fits best for me. Never ever do that! I repeat never! Listen to everyone, interact with everyone, communicate about your passion & goals and try to follow the advices of all. But never stick to an advice just because it was given by a Microsoft Placed Engineer! Their lives got better as they did what they liked, but if you like something else & are doing some other thing just for the sake of doing it, better than doing this I'd suggest you do nothing!

This is the first & last learning of BTech that teaches us the basic crux of it, to follow other's advices, maybe even try it out, but if you feel that's not working out, do not hesitate to switch domains.

Must know things before BTech (CSE)

Here are a few things I have realised lately, but as they say Better Late than Never! The following are just some notions by me, but it may change depending on other person's preferences. So again, do not blindly follow these, but of course you could learn from them & analyze the reasons on your own.

  1. Academics

    From a Tier 1, Tier 2 college? Then probably you could devote time to your academics. But when it's Tier 3, better be prepared for your mind to go for a toss in lectures & come home to just upskill yourself. This is the Mantra for Tier 3 academics! Plus, do not forget to get your assignments done by GPT since no one ever checks them!

  2. Extra-curricular

    This is probably the best time to devote time to what you had been willing to learn during your JEE Preparation. Singing, Dance, Fashion, Playing Guitar or a Keyboard, Football, Cricket, Anchoring, Content Writing, Vlogging, Blogging & the list is endless. Pick up any one hobby of your choice & start to learn it. Thoroughly you'll enjoy the process. And well, it's essential to have a side kickass hobby because even Albert Einstien said:

I learnt playing violin at the age of 6 because my mother wanted me to have a skill or a hobby beside my career goals.

~ Albert Einstien

  1. Technical Skills

    Ofcourse BTech in CSE & no technical skills? Sounds like a Masterchef who does not know the recipe of Biryani! Lmao!

    Technical skills are the most essential aspect of BTech in Computer Science, but hey, only pursue a background in coding or development if you like it. Don't go by the saying that only Computer Science will fetch you a job. There are multiple other ways too & probably better ones but if computers are your thing, do not get afraid of pursuing a career in it. Because jobs will be endless for skilled people!

    Over the years you can make yourself proficient enough by doing courses offered by Google or CourseEra, OpenAI on multiple domains such as Prompt Engineering, Artificial Intelligence, Data Science etc. Now there are two major things of Computer Science apart from domain specific studies. They are explained in the next two points.

  2. Data Structures & Algorithms

    Ever heard of the term DSA? Ever heard "Do DSA & your ready to get hired at Microsoft!". Well it does sound that easy and is even easier to do that, given you put in the amounts of hardwork & consistency in it. If you are willing to start with DSA in the first year, I'd recommend to take part in Competitive Programming more often where you compete with coders worldwide and get a rank.

    People often consider Competitive Programming (CP) as a mandatory task to get into jobs. However, this is not the thing. CP is more of a sport which you must do only if you enjoy doing so. This field is highly recommended to those who love Mathematical concepts & can deduce the solutions to several programming questions. For instance, how can you remove all 0s from a data structure & further replace it with 1 and append the number of zeroes removed at the end of the data structure?

    If this sounds interesting to you, deep dive into Data Structures & Algorithms & start with basic questions on platforms such as HackerRank or GeeksForGeeks. You can give weekly contests on GeeksForGeeks & also maintain a streak for the problem of the day, where exciting goodies like T-shirts & bags await you. After like 2-3 months, you can switch to Leetcode & maintain a consistency over there.

  3. Development

    The most intriguing and exciting part for me has always been Development. Creating new visualizations, designing them, applying their functionalities & what not. Development can be of two types: Website Development & Mobile Development.

    Website Development consists of the roadmap: HTML, CSS, JavaScript & then a framework probably, React.js, Angular etc. And then you can move to even more beautiful things like Next.js to learn animated versions.

    Android Development can be started by learning Java or Kotlin, Android Studio, understanding components like Activities and Fragments, then UI design with XML layouts.

    Once you get started with one of the above specified, there is no looking back if you are willing to learn.

  4. Open Source Contribution

    Now once you've learnt some basic concepts of development, it's time you know about Open Source. There are several websites who's code is publicly available on platforms like GitHub(Research more about this as it will help you in your Development journey). You can go and try to look out for issues in the website or the features that can be improved & further improving them will make you a contributor.

    Yess.. Welcome to Open Source! You can search for different organizations that conduct it every year or on a frequent basis too, like GSoC - Google Summer of Code, CNCF - Cloud Native Computing Foundation etc. And what are the perks? You get stipends!! Yess money!!๐Ÿค‘

  5. Content Writing

    The best hobby you could ever try! Content Writing also has many benefits such as improving writing skills, earning money yet again & gaining insights about every topic before writing. It will not only help you academically but also provide an overview about a varied set of topics. Plus you can also write blogs to help others.

  6. Soft Skills

    This is the best time to enhance your personality. Believe me, I have seen people change from a timid & shy personality to that of a bold & courageous one. If you have the zeal & passion to stand out of the crowd, you need to be fluent enough when you speak & must know the art of communication. You can ace the interview with your coding skills but what about how to communicate it to the client? The interviewer would want you to be communicative & outspoken enough to do so and that you can improve by grooming your intellectual personality in college.

  7. Artificial Intelligence

    Now AI is not only about Gemini or ChatGPT. Though they can be used for most of the things but there are multiple other tasks for which we would require a set of AI Tools available for free on the internet. Again google when you need them, like an Image Generator, PPT Generator such as Gamma. They are very helpful when you need a handful of internal marks but do not have long hours to invest in making a PPT.

  8. Enjoy

    These four years are the most precious moments of your life & you won't get them back. Remember, eat well, sleep well, study well, but do not forget to bunk classes (not all dumbo), create memories, capture funny moments, parties, friendships and what not. Because when you'll succeed in your life & look back at those memories 10 years later, it will give the best possible feeling in the world!

That's all you would want to know before starting your BTech. I came to know about these terms a little too late and thus, wasted much of my time in first year. But this article would have definitely provided an overview about everything & rest you need to learn the art of Googling everything & then learning. This one art will benefit you to the atmost in your 4 years of BTech.

Happy Coding Guyzz!! ๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿคฉ