17 answers

Should I learn Python or R or other programming language?

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I'm a college student in Economics and Finance. Right now I am quite good at Excel VBA and I want to learn one more programming language to give me an advantage in finding jobs. It seems to me that Python and R have their own strengths and weaknesses but I'm not too sure about it.
#job-search #finance #economics #programming #python #R

Python and R are both great language to learn, however Python may serve you better in terms of job searches. Since you seem to be focusing towards more of Business oriented field, Python is more easily learned and has the ability to be the most usable in that respected field. R on the other hand is more a language oriented towards those in Data Science. Python's resurgence to mainstream computing also makes it a favorite skill for companies to see in their applicants. Good luck with your choice, hope this helped! James M. Translate
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17 answers

Jorge’s Answer

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I definitely recommend Python. It has a very short learning curve and can be used for quick and dirty automation. If you ever want to pursue a career in software development, this language will make you marketable. R, on the other hand is more of a niche language for data science.

Jorge recommends the following next steps:

  • Learn Python
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Lei’s Answer

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As someone who's trying to learn both, I'd highly recommend Python: it is used for a lot more things than R is, but I feel like R is simpler to use and is more statistically-minded than Python is (or maybe that's just because I'm much better at R than Python!). So it's up to you!
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Bradley’s Answer

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I do web development now, mostly. I Never use Python nor R for web. You should try and learn Python first IMO. Python is a language for solving problems so by all means use it; R Ive never had to use, and dont know what it does. Matlab is important to know also

Python is so widely used, Matlab too that they are required, foundational. R depends on what problems one is trying to solve. I dont work in Economics/Finance. If you know VBA, thats visual basic so VB.net is the closest language, maybe the easiest to learn. anything vb.net can do (pretty much) C# can do. you can write vb code, run thru a converter and get c#
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Peter’s Answer

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Hi - if you can learn both that would be ideal. Python is more versatile and is used in multiple areas. R is mostly used for data science and data analysis use cases. If you would like to pursue a data science/data analytics career, then I would go with R. Otherwise, Python is a better option to start with. Hope this helps. Good luck! - Peter
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Samuel’s Answer

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I recommend python. I know very little R so i cannot really speak to it - but python has been able to launch me into learning a lot of other really useful tools for data science such as pyspark, pandas, tensorflow, etc
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Richard’s Answer

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Both great languages! My understanding is that most quant finance shops/HFs use Python and most advanced statisticians, especially in Academia, use R. If you're at all interested in Machine Learning, Python is probably the way to go. It's also better for data collection via web scraping, and easy to learn. I have no affiliation, but DataCamp is a fantastic way to learn both, and my son's university had a free subscription through the school. If you're also an econ person, please check out QuantEcon! It's entirely free and teaches python in the context of Econ.
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Mohamed Riaz’s Answer

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I would recommend Python. Python is the best programming language to learn for beginner. I have done my engineering in Instrumentation and later decided to shift my career to IT field as network engineer. I didn’t have much knowledge in any programming language and decided to learn a programming language. I decided to learn python. Python seems easy to me compared to other programming language as it is like writing in plain English. It is easy to learn and you can start learning right now from youtube itself. Python is one of the most commonly used programming languages today and it has got great scope.
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Sindhura’s Answer

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R is mainly used for statistical analysis while Python provides a more general approach to data science. I would recommend Python over R for a beginner because of its wide usage in today' s programming.
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Sreekanth’s Answer

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From my point of view you should go with python. Python is a high level programming language which is widely used for developing GUI applications, web applications and now a days widely used for automation. Also it allows you to focus more on core functionality of the application by taking care of common programming tasks and the simple syntax makes it easier for you to learn.
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Bharat’s Answer

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Firstly, which field you are looking to work.
Pyhton can be used for both data science and web development.
But R only can be use for DS
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Pushkaraj’s Answer

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While both Python and R have their own advantages, Python is used in many fields as opposed to R, which is mostly used in data sciences.

I would suggest to learn Python, it is very easy to learn and have multiple support groups available online, if you require any help/advice.
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Ashutosh’s Answer

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I would recommend to go with python. As I can see you are studying Economics and Finance , python has its own in-build libraries and one of them is math which are useful in calculation. Python is easy to learn and implement. Some of the common fields where python is widely accepted - data science, machine learning , AI etc.
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Jenny’s Answer

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From my experiences working in a Data Focus field within an insurance company. I would recommend learning Python, R is also a great resource however R is more focused on Data Science, specifically if you are trying to do statistical analysis. Python has the ability to do statistical analysis and much more. Based on your finance background both Python and R will be useful for you, however the benefit of learning Python is that it is more versatile, you can do a variety of different financial data manipulation with Python based on multiple analytics packages. Also, if say in the future you want to expand outside of the finance realm and you want to go into a more data or programming focus career Python gives you a stronger foundation to do more 'fancy' things and it will also be easier for you to learn other programming languages as well. There is also tons of free resources available for you to learn Python online for free as well.
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Christopher’s Answer

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R is for grad students. Learn python.
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John’s Answer

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Python is a fairly general language, and can be used for many different things. R is pretty specifically designed for statistical analysis.

So, the answer depends on what you're hoping to get out of it. If your only concern is employability in your specific field, it might make sense to look into the sorts of companies where you're hoping to work, and see which languages are used most commonly there. If you're concerned about employability more generally, Python would probably open more doors for you than R would, in a wider variety of companies and industries. If you want to learn some basic programming, Python will definitely give you a better sense of how software works, generally, and allow you to write a much wider variety of programs. If you specifically want to do statistical analysis, R is custom built for that task, and is probably the better choice.

If none of the above apply to you, or if you're just not sure about the answers, I would recommend Python. That language will be useful in the widest range of situations, and is something you might find valuable no matter what kind of job you eventually end up in. R is a much more specialized tool, and is only really useful for statistical analysis. Learning Python is like getting a hammer, and learning R is like getting one of those funny shaped screwdrivers. When you need that funny screwdriver, it's definitely the tool you want, but most people never need one. Everybody wants a hammer sometimes, though.
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Micah’s Answer

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Python is an incredibly easy language to pick up, and I've heard many people refer to Python as just a bunch of "psuedo-code" because of how intuitive the syntax can be. Sure, there is a ton of extra packages and modules within Python, but that is part of what makes it so useful. I'd recommend learning Python to anyone regardless of what their path in life is because of the skills you get.
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Swati’s Answer

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As you are a student in Economics and Finance, I would recommend you to go with python. Python supports all kinds of different data formats. You can play with comma-separated value documents (known as CSVs) or you can play with JSON sourced from the web. You can import SQL tables directly into your code.

Being a student of Economics and Finance, you will definitely need some useful tools for calculation and Python's built-in library math offers you that. The Python Math Library provides access to some common math functions and constants in Python, which can be used throughout the code for more complex mathematical computations.

R is mostly used in data sciences. In R, you’ll have to rely on third-party libraries for some heavier work.

I would also like to add that since both Python and R are pretty much related so when you master one language, then it will be easier to focus on the other one.
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