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How to Learn SQL Fast

Updated on 11th Oct 2023.

Are you in a rush to boost your data analysis capabilities? Dive into our comprehensive guide and learn SQL fast!

You work with data every day, but you've had enough of how long it takes to process your giant table in Excel. The time has come for a much better tool: SQL! But how long does it take to learn SQL? In this article, I'll show you how to learn SQL fast and become the Vin Diesel of data – how to become the "Fast and Querious".

Step into the world of SQL with the easy-to-follow SQL from A to Z learning track from Perfect for beginners with no IT background, this interactive series offers 7 hands-on courses where you learn by doing. Earn certificates for each course you complete and join a supportive community of learners. All you need is a web browser and an internet connection to start your SQL journey today!

What Is SQL?

Let's start from the very beginning: What exactly is SQL? SQL stands for “Structured Query Language”. It was developed in the 1970s by IBM employees Raymond Boyce and Donald Chamberlin to manage data stored in relational databases.

SQL has become the standard for communication with relational database servers. Many modern relational database systems use SQL to communicate with users, which is why it is often said that using relational databases is SQL.

One of SQL’s biggest advantages is that it has been standardized. Since 1986/87, SQL has been supported by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the American National Institute for Standardization (ANSI).

In 1992 and 2003, this standard was expanded to include additional functions. However, SQL still retained its structure. This means that when you learn SQL, you can be sure that everyone in the world uses the same programming language. The knowledge you’ve acquired will not go out of use.

You can learn more about SQL from our YouTube channel, We Learn SQL. Remember to click ‘subscribe’!

How Popular Is SQL?

Is this 50-year-old query language still popular? Well, look at the independent Stack Overflow Developer Survey 2023. In the rankings – which are based on the responses of professional developers – SQL came third. This puts it, ahead of Python, Java, C, C#, PHP, and others. Only HTML/CSS and JavaScript are more popular.

Most Popular Technologies

We can safely assume that SQL will be among the most popular languages for years and will not disappear from the market.

Furthermore, proficiency in SQL is a highly coveted skill in today's data-driven marketplace, making it a substantial asset in the eyes of potential employers in a wide array of industries.

For analysts, marketers, and accountants, SQL is a pivotal tool. It has essentially become the 'main language' for data analysis and reporting. It enables these professionals to sift through large datasets efficiently, derive actionable insights, and make data-backed decisions. All of this adds significant value to their roles.

On the other hand, programmers, system developers, and administrators find SQL a powerful ally in enhancing their IT skill set. It not only facilitates smoother database management and optimization, but it also aids in developing robust applications and systems that can handle complex data operations seamlessly. By integrating SQL into their repertoire, these professionals can work more effectively, solving problems with greater precision and innovating with a data-centric approach.

In essence, learning SQL opens up a world of opportunities, allowing individuals to excel in their respective fields by leveraging the power of data to drive informed decisions and create solutions that are both efficient and innovative.

Show Me the Money!

How much will I earn? The answer to this question can determine which programming language you learn. The same Stack Overflow study makes it clear: it's definitely worth learning SQL. Knowing SQL and working in the United States as an analyst or database administrator (DBA) can bring in an annual income of up to $110,000. That's a pretty reasonable salary! Imagine yourself writing database queries and getting a fat sum of money every month. Not bad! You can learn more about SQL jobs, roles, and salaries in Types of Database Jobs: Choose One of Them and Start Being Awesome.

Woman showing money

How Hard Is It to Learn SQL?

Is learning SQL difficult? If you've ever tried to learn any programming language (even C, Python, or Java), you know you have to deal with difficult commands and functions. SQL is much simpler.

SQL is based primarily on logical sentences called queries. Instead of wondering how to extract data from a database, you just specify exactly what data you need and SQL will find it. This language uses natural words like SELECT and FROM. To start writing efficient queries, all you need are some SQL basics.

Plus, learning SQL is not as hard as you might think. It's designed to be easy to understand, even if you're new to coding. You don't need to memorize tough commands or get lost in complicated codes. SQL uses simple, everyday words to help you talk to databases and get the information you need. It's a straightforward way to ask database questions and get clear answers in return.

As you start learning SQL, you'll begin with the easy stuff first, slowly working your way up to the tricky topics. This means you won't feel overwhelmed as you learn. You'll find that you can start making simple SQL queries in no time, giving you quick wins and boosting your confidence from the start. And the cool part? Once you know the basics, a whole world of data skills opens up to you, setting you up for many exciting opportunities in today's data-heavy world.

So, How Can I Learn SQL Fast?

It all depends on how motivated you are and which resources you plan to use. I recommend our courses. They are interactive and contain a lot of practical exercises. We believe that you can only learn SQL well by writing queries and practicing your acquired knowledge on real-life examples.

You can take various individual courses to start learning SQL. However, a much better idea is choosing the SQL Fundamentals track and then doing the SQL Practice track. Both contain the necessary basics and will get you writing SQL quickly.

SQL Fundamentals SQL Practice

Either way, make sure you start with the SQL Basics course. It teaches the basics of SQL syntax and quickly moves on to writing more complex queries. First, you’ll learn how to extract data from one table. Later, you’ll discover how to work with more than one table and group query results. All of this you can immediately apply in your everyday work (if you work with data, that is).

The SQL Basics course should take you a maximum of 10 hours to complete. During this time, you’ll see how to retrieve information from a database, build basic reports from scratch, and write complex WHERE conditions. You’ll also be able to combine multiple tables using JOIN, write simple subqueries, and group data using aggregate functions.

SQL Basics

Once you learn the basics, you'll be able to move on to more advanced topics. In the Standard SQL Functions course, you will learn how to utilize common SQL text and numeric functions, select and implement SQL date and time functions, and work with NULLs and advanced aggregate functions. You will get to practice your skills on 211 interactive exercises, which should take you about 18 hours.

The last course in the SQL Fundamentals track is How to INSERT, UPDATE, and DELETE Data in SQL. Here you will learn how to use those SQL commands to correctly perform CRUD (Create, Read, Update, and Delete) operations. You will discover how to deal with auto-filling values. You’ll also combine SQL data manipulation commands with IDENTITY, SEQUENCE, and NEWID() and see how to modify data using default column values. It should take you no more than 8 hours to finish the 52 exercises in this course.

Then it's time for the SQL Practice track. It opens with the SQL JOINs course, which should take about 10 hours. JOIN functions are one of the most commonly used features of the SQL language. Knowing how to query data from multiple tables is an absolute must for every SQL user.

Next, you’ll practice all your new knowledge in the SQL Practice Set. There are 10 hours of well-designed exercises so you can see how much you’ve learned. It’s quite a comprehensive review!

SQL Practice Set

If we add up the hours needed to do the above courses, we get 56 hours. That's all it takes to learn SQL. If you did everything without stopping, it would take two and a half days. Of course, no one can sit in front of the computer for that long! You have to sleep, eat, and do other things. So, plan your study schedule well.

Plan to Study SQL Daily

Let's assume that we decide to devote two hours a day to learning SQL on the above track. Learning SQL well enough to use it for complex tasks would take about 28 days. That’s not even a full month. This is all that separates you from using one of the most popular languages in the IT industry.

When you’re studying, be sure to manage your time. The most important thing is consistency. If you’re not sure how to schedule time every day for SQL, try an app. I use Google Calendar every day. It allows me to plan my day and reminds me of scheduled activities. There are many alternative applications for Android and iOS.

You can also check out, TimeTune, or Evernote. Most of these solutions can be used as browser add-ons. If you get distracted by the internet, you may want to explore some online distraction killers.

Motivation will also be important. Think about how your life will change as you learn SQL. Think about all that you can achieve. Each completed exercise will bring you closer to your goal.

Tell your family and friends that you are learning SQL. Such a public declaration will help you find the strength to continue. Others may support you and remind you of your purpose. It’s very helpful, especially if you start to doubt you’ll make it.

Why Use

Now you know how long it takes to learn SQL. is one of the best places for achieving your goal. People from all over the world use our courses. The trust given to us by many professionals and major companies speaks for itself. Our courses are carefully planned, logically arranged, and full of real-world tasks. Plus, our experts are here to answer your questions and provide help on difficult tasks. There is also our vibrant Facebook community, who support each other and share their experiences.

What more could you want to learn SQL fast? Don't wait any longer. Start your journey today.

Learn SQL Fast and Start Being Awesome!

There are numerous avenues to explore when it comes to learning SQL — some might suggest watching YouTube tutorials or delving into books on the subject. Yet, the true essence of mastering SQL lies in getting hands-on experience with writing SQL queries; it's where theory meets practice. offers you a rich learning environment where you can actively practice and hone your skills through interactive courses.

It's more than just learning; it's about gearing up to land your dream job and transforming your career trajectory. Remember, it's entirely possible to change your life through learning SQL — I am a testament to that, and I believe you can do it too!

What do you need to do next?

To make your learning even easier (and to keep you from running into roadblocks), we recommend reading Kamila’s article on 5 Reasons You Might Fail to Learn SQL.