What’s the Difference Between Coding and Scripting?


Scott Campbell

What’s the Difference Between Coding and Scripting?

When it comes to computer programming, you may come across the terms “coding” and “scripting” quite often. While they are closely related, there are subtle differences between the two.

In this article, we will explore these differences and help you gain a clear understanding of what sets them apart.

The Basics

To begin with, coding and scripting are both methods used to instruct computers to perform specific tasks. They involve writing sets of instructions using programming languages.

However, the key distinction lies in their purpose and execution.


Coding refers to the process of writing a series of instructions (code) in a programming language such as Java, C++, Python, or Ruby. This code is then compiled or interpreted into machine-readable binary instructions that can be executed by a computer’s processor.

Coding is typically used for developing complex software applications or systems. It involves planning, designing, and implementing solutions for various problems.

This process often requires a deeper understanding of algorithms, data structures, and software architecture.

Key characteristics of coding:

  • Write code using programming languages.
  • Compile or interpret code into machine-readable format.
  • Develop complex software applications or systems.
  • Requires knowledge of algorithms, data structures, and software architecture.


On the other hand, scripting involves writing scripts that are interpreted at runtime by specific environments or programs. Scripting languages like JavaScript, PHP, Perl, or Bash are used for this purpose.

These scripts are typically shorter and less complex than full-fledged code.

Scripts are often used to automate tasks, customize software behavior, or add functionalities to existing programs. They are commonly employed in web development, system administration, and other areas where quick and flexible solutions are required.

Key characteristics of scripting:

  • Write scripts using scripting languages.
  • Scripts are interpreted at runtime.
  • Automate tasks or customize software behavior.
  • Commonly used in web development and system administration.

Similarities and Overlaps

Although coding and scripting have distinct purposes, it’s important to note that there is also a significant overlap between the two. Many programming languages can be used for both coding and scripting, depending on the context and requirements of the task at hand.

For example, while JavaScript is often considered a scripting language for web development, it can also be used for more complex coding tasks. Similarly, Python is widely used both as a scripting language and for coding applications with extensive functionality.


In summary, coding and scripting are closely related methods of giving instructions to computers. Coding involves writing code in a programming language to develop complex software applications or systems.

Scripting focuses on writing scripts using scripting languages to automate tasks or customize software behavior.

While their objectives differ, there is an undeniable overlap between coding and scripting. The choice between them depends on the specific requirements of the task at hand and the capabilities of the programming language being used.

Now that you understand the differences between coding and scripting, you can use this knowledge to choose the appropriate approach for your projects!

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