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How to Learn NoSQL: Best Online NoSQL Courses



NoSQL database systems are a flexible way of storing and managing data. Companies like Amazon, Google, Yahoo, and Facebook have to learn NoSQL to make up for the limitations of SQL databases. 

Let’s look at the different types of NoSQL databases, what they are used for, and the courses you should take to get started. You’ll be storing your information in these simple databases before you know it.

What Is NoSQL?

NoSQL databases, or not only SQL databases, are non-tabular, meaning that they don’t store data in regular tables. The main types of NoSQL databases are key-value, document, wide-column, and graph. These forms of data storage all provide greater flexibility, scalability, and data consistency, making them easier for developers to use.

The difference between NoSQL and SQL databases is that NoSQL can horizontally scale through thousands of servers. SQL databases are organized vertically, meaning that you can only increase the capacity of the server by increasing components like CPU, RAM, or SSD.

What Is NoSQL Used For?

NoSQL is used for distributed data stores, which means it is capable of storing big data. NoSQL databases can store information using programming languages such as JSON instead of relying on the data management language SQL, which is based on columns and rows. To become a data scientist or developer, you need to know how to use NoSQL to organize vast amounts of data so that you can analyze it later.

Below are some of the specific uses of NoSQL.

Data Storage

NoSQL is perfect for working with big data and real-time web applications. Big data consists of enormous data sets that can be analyzed to reveal patterns and trends in human behavior. NoSQL is essential to companies such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google, which analyze huge amounts of data every day.

Data Management

The data models used in NoSQL databases can improve data management because they allow data to be organized by key-values, JSON documents, and graphs. This flexibility means the databases are able to adapt to meet the demands of modern businesses.

Dealing with Unstructured Data

The information you store in a NoSQL database doesn’t need to be predefined as it would be in an SQL database. If your data requirements are unstructured, NoSQL is the perfect tool. It uses object-based APIs so that app developers can store and retrieve multiple types of data structures.

Learn NoSQL: Step-by-Step

If you are still unsure of how to start learning NoSQL databases, follow this guide for beginners. You should start by learning the basics of database storage and the different types of storage, as we’ll explain below.

1. Study NoSQL Basics

The ACID (atomic, consistent, isolated, and durable) model is the basis for SQL databases, meaning that the database is expected to meet these four criteria. Once you understand this, you will see how NoSQL databases offer more freedom in terms of how they are structured.

Now you can learn the different types of NoSQL database platforms. The most popular are MongoDB, CouchBase, CouchDB, Apache Cassandra, HBase, Redis, Riak, Neo4J. It’s important to learn what each of these databases is used for before you take a course in one of them so that you don’t waste your time studying a database that is not relevant to your work.

2. Learn About Key-Value Stores

Key-value stores allow application developers to store schema-less data, which is the term for data that does not fit within the database’s structure. Key-value databases are used in gaming, ad technology, and the Internet of Things. Key-value data replaces the need for a fixed data model and its less rigid format makes it easier for developers to use the stored data.

3. Research Document Databases

Document databases are flexible, and they allow for increased productivity because data can be accessed quickly. Document-oriented databases are among the most popular alternatives to SQL relational databases.

4. Get Familiar With Columnar Storage

Columnar storage can optimize analytic query performance by reducing the amount of data that needs to be loaded from the disk. The data blocks in columnar storage can hold three times as much data as row-based storage, so it is more efficient.

5. Understand Graph Databases

A graph database highlights the relationships between data, rather than displaying data independently. It has no predefined model as the previous databases do, and this flexibility allows you to see how each data point is connected to the rest.

The Best NoSQL Courses

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With NoSQL, you can learn to store and manage big data.



Grasping the concepts of NoSQL is easy if you take a course. We have compiled a list of courses for all learning levels, whether you just heard about these databases or have studied them previously.

Welcome to SQL

Khan Academy is a free online school aimed at students who want to learn to code for free, including SQL beginners. This nine-lesson series is a good foundation for learning NoSQL.

Understanding NoSQL

Pluralsight’s three-hour course covers the basics of NoSQL. You’ll study the four subcategories of NoSQL, learn when to use NoSQL and when to use relational databases, and get familiar with using NoSQL with Microsoft programs.

Learning NoSQL Databases

This hour-long course by LinkedIn Learning is great for beginners or intermediate-level learners. In it, you will study how to build a web application with CouchDB, and how to query with JavaScript and create views. The price varies depending on whether you want to get a certificate at the end to attach to your LinkedIn profile.

Building Enterprise Solutions with MongoDB Training

This training from Learning Tree will teach you how to apply NoSQL with MongoDB. Students will learn how to build efficient MongoDB data models, use indexing, and use MapReduce. To qualify for this course, students are required to have experience with databases, SQL, and Java programming.

Data Wrangling with MongoDB

This free two-month Udacity course offers training in data wrangling for intermediates. Students will learn how to extract data from a range of data formats, and will learn how to assess, clean, and store data. They will also study the MongoDB query language and its aggregation framework.

MongoDB Courses

Students can learn about Mongo for free, straight from the source in this MongoDB University course. It features a range of courses from beginner-friendly to advanced. Choose from classes on MongoDB basics, data modeling, or how to use MongoDB with a variety of programming languages.

The basics course lasts eight hours and requires a basic understanding of programming, shell commands, command line, functions, variables, and boolean operators.

NoSQL Database Cloud Training & Certification

Oracle University goes in-depth into the versatile NoSQL database on Oracle Cloud. Learn about cloud computing as you navigate Oracle Cloud’s document, columnar, and key-value database models. The entry-level training is free, but the prices vary for certification courses.

Building Apache Cassandra Databases Training

This Learning Tree course covers the Cassandra Database, which offers wide-column storage. This class will teach you to engineer Cassandra databases and manage data using the Cassandra Query Language and Java. You will also learn to use Cassandra with Hadoop, Pig, and Hive.

Online Neo4j Training

Learn Neo4j in these free courses straight from the Neo4j GraphAcademy. The courses vary in length, with the online introductory course taking just two days.


In this course, students will learn the fundamentals of graph databases and the Neo4j applications, features, and instances. They will also get access to the desktop and browser versions of Neo4j to use during the course.

Is Learning NoSQL Right for You?

If you want to learn how NoSQL databases can help you better apply your data, then it is right for you. Since NoSQL is flexible, it can be used in many fields, from data science to programming to business analysis.

The ability to easily locate insightful data can help a company gain useful information to improve their business and customer relationships. If you are unsure if NoSQL is for you, we suggest that you try one of the free courses listed above.

For more resources on the wonders of data and computer science, check out our rundown of the best tech jobs and our guide to learning data mining.

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