We know what you’re thinking – yes, it is still worth learning PHP for 2022. PHP still rules the server-side scripting world. Developers with strong PHP skills are still as competitive in the job market and can build better sites with improved user experiences. If you want to freshen up your PHP skills or get started with the language from scratch, you can check out the best PHP books and courses for 2022.
Best PHP Books, Courses and Tutorials in 2022
Before we look at books, let’s talk about the basics. If you have any experience with official documentation, you might not be excited to jump right into PHP’s manual. But it’s an excellent source for getting a handle on the finer points of PHP once you have the basics down.
The alphabet soup of this book’s title might seem a little outrageous, but the book doesn’t actually try to teach you six different languages. Instead, it focuses on how those tools interact, helping you code realistic, modern web pages. You’ll need to know a bit about web development before you jump into this book. That makes it a good fit for professional developers looking to expand their toolkit.
PHP Cookbook: Solutions and Examples for PHP Programmers
The PHP Cookbook is a must-have for any serious PHP programming. Because PHP is used for the same user interaction tasks on most websites, the cookbook can save you a bunch of time (and improve your security) by sharing the best way to program common features. This should be your second PHP book, right after your chosen introductory guide.
Head First PHP & MySQL
The Head First series is well-known in programming education circles, and there’s a good reason for that. While they use an informal, comical style, the Head First books are easy to digest and understand, with tons of visual aids. They don’t move too fast, which is huge for students that are learning their first or second programming language. If you already have a couple of languages under your belt, or you’re annoyed by playfulness, this book will probably progress too slowly for you.
The Joy of PHP: A Beginner’s Guide
This excellent PHP book will help you get started with writing interactive web applications. It focuses on the basics of PHP and MySQL, so if you’re not too familiar with the language, it’s a great place to start. It also includes a good repository of source code, so you can mess with the material used in the book yourself.
PHP Objects, Patterns, and Practice
This is an honest-to-goodness dull-as-dirt programming reference. And professional developers know exactly how invaluable books like that are when you’re getting paid to code something reliable. This guide tells you the most effective ways to apply the core knowledge you have to actual applications. It covers object-oriented programming, development practices, and design tools. If you considering a career in coding PHP, this book is a must-have.
The Art of Modern PHP 8: Learn how to write modern, performant, enterprise-ready code
The title may be a mouthful, but the book’s contents are sure to impress. If you already know the basics like the back of your hand, learning about the latest version is a good decision. It’s new and it’s advanced. The book not only covers all the best info about PHP 8, but it also teaches a great deal about how to develop modern code.
PHP in a day! The Ultimate Crash Course to Learning the Basics of PHP
The thing about people’s habits nowadays is wanting everything in an instant. This book promises that – learning (or relearning) PHP in just one day. Hailed as well-organized and easy to follow, it is a book preferred by both experts and beginners alike. If you have familiarity with the language and have a good handle on how it works – this book is great for you. If you are a beginner wanting to digest all PHP information you can in a flash, this book is also recommendable for you.
PHP for the Web: Visual QuickStart Guide
This picture-heavy guide hits all the basics of PHP, but it will require you to have a basic knowledge of HTML to be the most useful. The material covers the basics while hinting at advanced features, but doesn’t go into a ton of detail. The material gets incrementally more difficult, and it won’t recover too much ground for those that understand basic programming concepts. Beginning PHP coders will find it a useful textbook. It may just cover PHP 5 and 7, but there are lots of reviews online on how relevant and useful this book is. This book is a must-buy for sure.
Projects in PHP and MySQL – Udemy
This popular Udemy course doesn’t cover the basics of PHP and MySQL. Instead, it jumps right into practical applications, so it’s perfect for those looking to improve their existing PHP chops. You’ll learn by building websites and applications that you can use in professional applications. Learn how powerful and flexible PHP can really be!
Write PHP Like a Pro: Build a PHP MVC Framework From Scratch
You can use this Udemy course to take your PHP coding to the next level. With this course, you’ll learn the basic concepts of using a model-view-controller framework that will make your PHP projects faster, easier to write and maintain, and more secure. You’ll need to be familiar with HTML and PHP coding. If you know a little bit about server administration, that will help make the course the most useful.
Building Web Applications in PHP
A quick tutorial that is available on Coursera, this particular course has been visited by hundreds of thousands of students. It is an application course hosted by the University of Michigan.
PHP Track – Codecademy
Codecademy’s PHP course provides an excellent interactive vehicle for getting started with PHP. It covers everything, from the very beginning of PHP to some basic, practical applications. It’s a short course—only four hours—but the interactive elements help make the information stick. A great quick dip into the language.
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First published in 2017; updated March 2022
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