Is It Necessary To Learn C++ Before Java? Why You Can Learn Java Without C++

So, you want to know if it is necessary to learn C++ before Java? Well, the answer is a definite no. You do not need to learn C++ before Java. In fact, you can learn Java without any C++ knowledge at all. The two languages follow slightly different paradigms, have a different syntax and are used in different types of software development.

However, in this article, we are going to outline some of the reasons why you may, or may not, want to learn C++ before Java. Let’s get to it!

Why You Can Learn Java Without C++

You can learn Java without learning C++ simply because they are completely seperate languages. If you understand Java, you can code in Java, simple as that.

Java is essentially a language aimed at improving the headaches that came along with C++, such as the use of pointers and being executable on any device more easily.

Although the language may be an enhancement to C++, that doesn’t mean you need to learn both.

Pros of Learning C++ Before Java

So why might people say its necessary to learn C++ before Java?

Well, in a previous article I outlined the difference between high level and low level programming languages. Within that article, I mention that languages like Java are really an abstracted language that uses C under the hood. For that reason, it can be really beneficial to pick up C++ because you will have a deeper understanding of how Java works.

In addition to this, C++ is a much harder language to learn. The syntax is much more complex and there is a lot more you need to understand to work with the language, such as garbage collection. Transitioning to a language like Java will be much easier after spending some time working with C++.

In fact, if you learn C++, you will have learned one of the most challenging modern programming languages. Making it much easier to pick up any other popular language afterwards, such as C, C#, Java, PHP, Python, Ruby or JavaScript. It might even make it easier to understand esoteric programming languages!

Another benefit of learning C++ first is that it will give you a better understanding of programming language design. Knowing that Java was built to improve some of the design flaws of C++, and having worked with those design flaws, will ultimately make you a better programmer.

Cons of Learning C++ Before Java

The main drawback to learning C++ before learning Java is that it can be much more time consuming to study two programming languages if you don’t need to. Especially if one of those languages is a challenging one like C++.

So if you are in a rush or are trying to study in order to get a job quickly, it may not be necessary to learning C++ before Java. Even if it will help you learn other languages in the future.

The second reason it may not be beneficial to pick up C++ is because the languages is much more difficult than Java. If you are new to programming, it might make more sense to start by learning an easier programming language like Java and then later transitioning to C++ later if you wish to do so.

Many people learn Java as their first language. So don’t feel like it’s necessary to learn C++ for this reason.


So, is it necessary to learn C++ before Java? No, you can learn Java without knowing C++. While it may make your life easier moving forward to have knowledge of C++, it is not mandatory. In fact it may be easier to start with a language like Java and later learn C++.

Looking for more programming knowledge? Check out my article on the most famous hackathons in the world!

If you are new to programming check out my review on these coding resources: codewars review hackerrank review.

Happy coding!

Grant Darling

Grant is a full-stack / frontend software developer passionate about writing & coding. He has many years experience working in the tech industry both as a freelancer and as an employee.

The Code Bytes is all about providing people with honest information about programming. To learn more about Grant, read his about page!

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