Course Syllabus

Welcome to PRDV410: Introduction to Java and Object-Oriented Programming

Specific information about this course and its requirements can be found below. For more general information about taking Saylor Academy courses, including information about Community and Academic Codes of Conduct, please read the Student Handbook.


Course Description

Learn the basics of object-oriented (OO) programming, a paradigm that uses objects that contain data in the form of instance variables and methods that control the behavior of the objects. This course is suitable for anyone and uses Java to demonstrate key OO concepts.


Course Introduction

We will begin this course with an introduction to the difference between traditional structural program design and object-oriented (OO) programming. This course will explore the unique, dynamic approach that OO offers, and discuss why it is an effective and flexible paradigm. We then move into the essential concepts that are part of all OO programming, including inheritance, polymorphism, abstract classes, encapsulation, and coupling.

There are many benefits to learning OO programming, and especially its modularity. Modularity lets you break your code into smaller parts. This makes it easier to troubleshoot, gives you the powerful ability to reuse your code elsewhere, and makes your code adaptive and flexible. Although this course uses Java to introduce OO programming, it should prepare you to explore other languages since you can apply these concepts to nearly any other OO programming language.

This course includes the following units:

  • Unit 1: Fundamental Concepts of OO Programming
  • Unit 2: Using Java for OO Programming


Course Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • discuss the differences between object-oriented and procedural languages;
  • explain the difference between classes and objects; and
  • explain object-oriented concepts such as inheritance, encapsulation, and polymorphism.

Throughout this course, you will also see learning outcomes in each unit. You can use those learning outcomes to help organize your studies and gauge your progress.


Course Materials

The primary learning materials for this course are articles, lectures, and videos.

All course materials are free to access and can be found in each unit of the course. Pay close attention to the notes that accompany these course materials, as they will tell you what to focus on in each resource, and will help you to understand how the learning materials fit into the course as a whole. You can also see a list of all the learning materials in this course by clicking on Resources in the navigation bar.


Evaluation and Minimum Passing Score

Only the final exam is considered when awarding you a grade for this course. In order to pass this course, you will need to earn a 70% or higher on the final exam. Your score on the exam will be calculated as soon as you complete it. If you do not pass the exam on your first try, you may take it again as many times as you want, with a 7-day waiting period between each attempt. Once you have successfully passed the final exam you will be awarded a free Course Completion Certificate.

There are also end-of-unit assessments in this course. These are designed to help you study, and do not factor into your final course grade. You can take these as many times as you want until you understand the concepts and material covered. You can see all of these assessments by clicking on Quizzes in the course's navigation bar.


Tips for Success

PRDV410: Introduction to Java and Object-Oriented Programming is a self-paced course, which means that you can decide when you will start and when you will complete the course. There is no instructor or an assigned schedule to follow. We estimate that the "average" student will take 6 hours to complete this course. We recommend that you work through the course at a pace that is comfortable for you and allows you to make regular progress. It's a good idea to also schedule your study time in advance and try as best as you can to stick to that schedule.

Learning new material can be challenging, so we've compiled a few study strategies to help you succeed:

  • Take notes on the various terms, practices, and theories that you come across. This can help you put each concept into context, and will create a refresher that you can use as you study later on.
  • As you work through the materials, take some time to test yourself on what you remember and how well you understand the concepts. Reflecting on what you've learned is important for your long-term memory, and will make you more likely to retain information over time.


Technical Requirements

This course is delivered entirely online. You will be required to have access to a computer or web-capable mobile device and have consistent access to the internet to either view or download the necessary course resources and to attempt any auto-graded course assessments and the final exam.

  • To access the full course including assessments and the final exam, you will need to be logged into your Saylor Academy account and enrolled in the course. If you do not already have an account, you may create one for free here. Although you can access some of the course without logging in to your account, you should log in to maximize your course experience. For example, you cannot take assessments or track your progress unless you are logged in.

For additional guidance, check out Saylor Academy's FAQ.



This course is entirely free to enroll in and to access. Everything linked in the course, including textbooks, videos, webpages, and activities, is available for no charge. This course also contains a free final exam and course completion certificate.

Last modified: Monday, September 25, 2023, 4:40 PM