Why do Skills Matter More than Certificates?

There is always a debate between chasing the certificates or honing the skills. Provided that we are discussing about the programming domain, lets take a closer look at this question and delve deeper into the answer.


When we seek the answer to this question, what we essentially mean to ask is which one of the two will help us more in order to achieve our goal. So what exactly is the goal that we’re trying to attain here? For some of us, it might be to crack interviews and get into good companies and for some of us, it might be a different goal, for example initiating a start-up.

Nevertheless, the achievement of any of these goals would not only require good programming skills but also something that would prove the same. In order to do this, we have two ways, certificates and projects. Now the question is, which one of the two is more impactful?

What do recruiters look for?

When you go in for an interview the recruiter looks for evidence that you are capable of the job that you have come to apply for. This capability is not just measured by what you have learnt theoretically in life or in your courses at college, but also by how much feet you have applied in real life. For the former, a certificate would do really good.

But think about it, is a job in a programming Spotify portfolio about writing all the theory that you have learnt or is it about working on actual projects and implementing what you have learnt? Needless to say, it is the latter. And for that, without a doubt what we need to show is proof that you have actually gone beyond the horizon of text, content, books to actually explore what you can do with your own two hands. What better way is there other than projects to make this visible. Let us discuss in detail how this sentence is actually a fact.

How do I portray my skills?

Now that we know that skills are more important than certificates more often than not, we need to know in what units can we measure our skills.

1. Projects: If you are going in to get the profile of a web developer, what you need Is not just a certificate stating that you completed a course in web development but also a project that will show that you actually implemented what you learnt in the course. Thus, an actual website With a number of users and a clearly defined aim is what will shine bright in your resume.

For an android developer, an application that has already made it to the play store is what will impact your recruiter. In such a scenario, the recruiter would be interested to actually discuss with you, how you managed to achieve what you achieved. Thus making an extraordinary impact on your recruiter.

2. Internships: Another medium to portray your skills is internships. Our final goal in any way is to provide evidence of the fact that we are capable of implementing the knowledge we have and work on real-life projects. And well, what can be a more apt way to do that than internships. Internships give you the actual environment, actual projects, actual organisation that one would be in after entering the industry.

Thus, Internships really stand out in your resume and perfectly display your ability to apply knowledge and also to work in an environment that the industry would provide you. But now the question that may arise is how to get internships? For the answer to this question check out our article on how to get internships.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Are there any courses that provide certificates and also evidence of skills?

Yes, here at Coding Ninjas, we resonate with the idea that skills are more important than certificates and thus make our courses more skill-oriented. Every course has several projects that are evaluated by us and certificates of excellence are provided to good performers. Check out these courses on our website.

Can I get an internship in 1st or 2nd year of college?

Yes, you totally can get an internship during the first and second year of college. For a detailed roadmap, you can check out this blog.


To conclude, it would be right to say that skills are indeed more important than certificates. In order to appear as a perfect candidate for not just cracking interviews but also for other kinds of goals like initiating a start-up, it is important that we are able to show our tendency to apply what we learn in our textbooks. So, improve your skills because that is what is more important than blindly completing courses.

By Khushi Sharma