Python Programming 1

Course Code: PYP1

Duration: 4 days


Python Programming 1 Course Overview

Python is an object oriented rapid development language deployed in many scenarios in the modern world.

This Python Programming 1 course is designed to give delegates the knowledge to develop and maintain Python scripts using the current version (V3) of Python.

There are many similarities between Python V2 and Python V3. The skills gained on this course will allow the delegate to develop their own skills further using Python V2 or V3 to support the development and maintenance of scripts.

The Python Programming 1 course comprises sessions dealing with syntax, variables and data types, operators and expressions, conditions and loops, functions, objects, collections, modules and packages, strings, pattern matching, exception handling, binary and text files, and databases.

Similarly, the course is targeted to closely follow the official Python Institute curriculum for certification.

Exercises and examples are used throughout the course to give practical hands-on experience with the techniques covered.

Course Objectives

This course aims to provide the delegate with the knowledge to be able to produce Python scripts and applications that exploit all core elements of the language including variables, expressions, selection and iteration, functions, objects, collections, strings, modules, pattern matching, exception handling, I/O, and classes.

Who will the Course Benefit?

The Python Programming 1 course is aimed at those who want to improve their Python programming skills, and for developers/engineers who want to migrate to Python from another language, particularly those with little or no object-oriented knowledge. For those wishing to learn Python and have no previous knowledge of programming, they should look to attend our foundation course Introduction to Programming - Python.

Skills Gained

The delegate will learn and acquire skills as follows:

  • Writing and testing simple scripts
  • Representing data using built-in and custom data types
  • Building expressions
  • Building conditional and iterative statements
  • Declaring and calling functions
  • Using objects
  • Creating and manipulating collections including lists, tuples, and dictionaries
  • Creating and manipulating strings
  • Creating modules and packages, and using third-party libraries
  • Pattern matching
  • Handling exceptions
  • Reading from and writing to files and databases
  • Coding in an OOP manner

Python Programming 1 Training Course

Course Introduction

  • Administration and Course Materials
  • Course Structure and Agenda
  • Delegate and Trainer Introductions


  • About Python
  • Python versions
  • Python documentation
  • Python runtimes
  • Installing Python
  • The REPL shell
  • Python editors


  • Script naming
  • Comments
  • Docstring
  • Statements
  • The backslash
  • Code blocks
  • Whitespace
  • Console IO (to enable the writing of simple programs)
  • A first Python program
  • Script execution


  • Literals
  • Identifiers
  • Assignment
  • Numbers (bool, int, float, complex)
  • Binary, octal, and hexadecimal numbers
  • Floating point accuracy
  • Collections (str, list, tuple, set, dict)
  • None
  • Implicit and explicit type conversion (casting)
  • The type function


  • Arithmetic Operators
  • Assignment Operators
  • Comparison Operators
  • Logical Operators
  • Membership Operators
  • Bitwise Operators
  • Identity Operators


  • Conditional statements (if, elif, else)
  • Nested conditional statements
  • Short hand if/if else
  • Python's alternative to the ternary operator
  • Iterative statements (while, for, else)
  • The range function
  • Iterating over a list
  • Break
  • Continue
  • Nested conditional/iterative statements

Python Programming 1 Training Course

Session 6: FUNCTIONS

  • Declaration
  • Invocation
  • Default values for parameters
  • Named arguments
  • args and kwargs
  • Returning multiple values
  • None returned
  • Variable scope
  • Masking and shadowing
  • The pass keyword
  • Recursive functions


  • About objects
  • Attributes and the dot notation
  • The dir function
  • Dunder attributes
  • Mutability
  • The id function
  • Pass by reference
  • Introduction to Classes
  • Class Declaration and Instantiation
  • Data attributes
  • Methods
  • Composition

Session 8: LISTS

  • About lists
  • List syntax including slicing
  • Getting and setting list elements
  • Iterating over a list
  • Checking for the presence of a value
  • The len function
  • List methods incl. append, insert, remove, pop, clear, copy, sort, reverse etc.
  • The del keyword
  • Appending to and combining lists
  • List comprehension

Session 9: TUPLES

  • About tuples
  • Tuple syntax
  • Getting tuple elements including unpacking
  • Iterating over a tuple
  • Checking for the presence of a value
  • The len function
  • Appending to and combining tuples

Session 10: SETS

  • About Sets
  • Dictionary syntax
  • Creating, adding and removing set elements
  • Iterating over a set
  • Membership Testing
  • Sorting
  • Copying
  • Set methods incl. union, intersection, difference, symmetric_difference etc.

Python Programming 1 Training Course


  • About dictionaries
  • Dictionary syntax
  • Getting and setting dictionary elements
  • Iterating over a dictionary (keys, values, and items)
  • Checking for the presence of a key
  • The len function
  • Dictionary methods incl. keys, values, items, get, pop, popitem, clear etc.
  • The del keyword
  • Dictionary comprehension

Session 12: STRINGS

  • About strings
  • String syntax including slicing
  • Escape characters
  • Triple-quoted strings
  • Concatenation
  • Placeholders
  • The format method
  • Other methods e.g. endswith, find, join, lower, replace, split, startswith, strip, upper etc.
  • A string as a list of bytes


  • About modules
  • Inbuilt modules math, random and platform
  • the dir() and help() functions
  • Creating and using modules
  • the __pycache__ and the .pyc files
  • The module search path
  • Importing modules
  • Namespaces
  • Importing module objects
  • The import wildcard
  • Aliases
  • Importing within a function
  • Executable modules
  • Reloading a module
  • About packages
  • Importing packaged modules
  • Importing packaged module objects
  • Package initialisation
  • Subpackages
  • Referencing objects in sibling packages
  • The Standard Library
  • Installing modules and packages using pip


  • About regular expressions
  • Regular expression special characters
  • Raw strings
  • About the re module
  • re module functions incl. match, search, findall, full match, split, sub

Python Programming 1 Training Course


  • About exceptions and exception handling
  • Handling exceptions (try, except, else, finally)
  • Exception types
  • The exception object
  • Raising exceptions
  • Custom exception types
  • Built-in exceptions hierarchy


  • The open function
  • Methods for seeking (seekable, seek)
  • Methods for reading from a file (readable, read, readline, readlines)
  • Iterating over a file
  • Methods for writing to a file (writable, write, writelines)
  • Introduction to context managers
  • Text encoding schemes, codepoints, codespace
  • ASCII and UNICODE (UTF schemes)
  • UTF-8, binary and hexadecimal representations
  • The ord() and chr() functions
  • Binary files, bytes and bytearray
  • I/O layered abstraction.
  • About the os module
  • os module functions incl. getcwd, listdir, mkdir, chdir, remove, rmdir etc.
  • OSError numbers and the errno module

Session 17: DATABASES

  • The DB-API
  • DP-API implementations
  • Establishing a connection
  • Creating a cursor
  • Executing a query
  • Fetching results
  • Transactions
  • Inserting, updating, and deleting records
  • Course technical content is subject to change without notice.
  • Course content is structured as sessions, this does not strictly map to course timings. Concepts, content and practicals often span sessions.


This Python Programming 1 course is an excellent choice for delegates preparing to take the following Python Institute exam:

  • Certified Entry-Level Python Programmer: PCEP

This course together with the Python Programming 2 course is an excellent choice for delegates preparing to take the following Python Institute exam:

  • Certified Associate in Python Programming: PCAP

Attending these courses and studying the associated reference materials can form part of the preparation to achieve certification. Experience, practice, self-study and aptitude are also key requirements for exam success.

Before taking any exam, ensure you have the recommended experience. The Python Institute website lists all exam requirements and these are updated regularly.

Exams are not included as part of the course.


Delegates attending this course should have some previous programming experience and be able to define general programming concepts including: compilation, execution, variables, arrays, sequence, selection, iteration, functions, objects, and classes. Moreover delegates should be able to navigate the filesystem (on the command line ideally), edit and save text files and browse the web. This knowledge can be obtained by attendance on the pre-requisite Introduction to Programming - Python course.

Pre-Requisite Courses

Course Reviews

I found this course very useful. I feel much more enabled to more ahead with some of the coding projects I had in mind after attending this course. Special mention for the instructor who in my opinion made this course more than the sum of its individual parts.

Keith - Finance - May 2024

Stuart is a great lecturer, he is very engaging, goes at the right pace and easily adjusts to the needs of the group. I like the format of the course in that Stuart didn't use slides and coded everything directly, it was easier to follow and remain engaged the entire duration of the course. Exercises were fun and helpful and overall I really enjoyed every aspect of the course.

Roona - Government - January 2024

The course is spot on for those who've maybe utilised python many moons ago and need a refresher, or for someone who's given Python a go and is now ready to "Look under the bonnet" a bit more. I've found it to be a fantastic refresher on training I received over 10 years ago.

Matthew - Government - November 2023

The course was great, at the right level for me and I learnt a lot. Stuart was a great teacher; he explained everything clearly and was always happy to answer questions and show further examples.

Molly - foundation scientific software engineer - Environmental - November 2023

Excellent training for Musie, good space and very good interactive session which gives hands on experience as well.

Pragneshkumar - Government - September 2023

Incredible learning experience. The course material was well structured and the instructor's teaching style made even complex topics easy to understand

Susana - Sre/ DevOps apprenticeship - Government

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