The COBOL programing language first appeared over 60 years ago. Today it still powers much of the world economy.

COBOL is often used to process the most critical data. It is one of the main languages that powers large mainframe computers. Because of its age and the mission-critical nature of its applications, it is efficient, reliable, and secure.

You may have heard about COBOL in the news lately, since it powers the core business logic of many large enterprises. And yet, many experienced COBOL developers are reaching retirement age.

To help people interested in learning COBOL, freeCodeCamp has published a COBOL course for beginners that will teach you how to program with the language, right inside VS Code.

This introductory COBOL course developed by IBM will help you learn the structure of  COBOL programs, data types & variable handling, intrinsic functions, branching logic and more.

The goal of the course is to enable you to write basic COBOL programs. It also includes a lot of labs and supplemental material to help you practice what you learn. So get ready to dive into some actual COBOL and get your hands dirty.

Here are the topics covered in this course:

  • VS Code and Extensions
  • Basic COBOL Syntax
  • COBOL Divisions
  • COBOL Variables
  • Data Division
  • File Handling
  • Procedure Division
  • Program Structure
  • Paragraphs
  • Program Linkage
  • File Output and Reports
  • Conditional Expressions
  • Arithmetic Expressions
  • Data Types
  • Intrinsic Functions

Watch the full course on the YouTube channel (80-minute watch).