TIOBE Index for April 2020

Scratch claws its way up into top 20 programming languages

Sarah Schlothauer
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A new surprising entry to the TIOBE Index cracks the top 20. Scratch, an introductory programming language helping children learn programming fundamentals enters the chart. See where other languages rank and how Scratch helps anyone code.

The TIOBE Index updates its programming language ranking monthly, using results from search engine queries. Often, there isn’t too much of a change in ranking, with no falls or gains, and only some reshuffling between the top languages. However, sometimes a new contender bumps up the charts and shakes things up a bit.

The April update saw Scratch rise into the top 20 with a change of +0.28%.

SEE ALSO: Get your children programming while playing with these resources on coding for kids

Coding for kids with Scratch

First thing’s first: what is Scratch? You may not have heard of this programming language since it is primarily designed for a younger audience.

Scratch helps children learn the basics of coding through hands-on game and story creation. (Of course, people of all ages can have fun with Scratch!) Using Scratch, young programmers create games, interactive stories, and animations.

From the Index’s April 2020 update:

Graphical block-based programming language Scratch has entered the TIOBE index top 20. At first sight this might seem a bit strange for a programming language that is designed to teach children how to program. But if you take into account that there are in total more than 50 million projects “written” in Scratch and each month 1 million new Scratch projects are added, it can’t be denied any more that Scratch is popular. Since computers are getting more and more an integral part of life, it is actually quite logical that languages to teach children programming are getting popular. Some years ago there was competition between Scratch and Alice which language would become the new “Logo” programming language of the modern ages. Alice is now at position #90 of the TIOBE index so it seems clear who has won. Possible reasons why this happened is that Scratch is easier to learn (a critical success factor in this field) and Scratch is sponsored by companies such as Google and Intel.

Paul Jansen CEO TIOBE Software

Teaching critical skills

Part of Scratch’s success is its active community. After creating a project, users can share it with others, create remixes of existing projects, and comment on creations.

The community not only introduces children to teamwork, creative problem solving, logical thinking, and collaboration, but it also introduces concepts such as open source communities and code review. They will learn concepts that might later become useful in Agile software development and DevOps.

Why not give it a try? Even seasoned programmers who have decades of experience can have fun creating their own games with Scratch. Sometimes a change of pace is what you need to think creatively!

SEE ALSO: The trendy five: March 2020 open source faves from GitHub

April 2020 language rankings

Any other changes in the TIOBE Index for April 2020?


Top 10 programming languages in April 2020. Source.

The top languages shuffle around a bit, losing and gaining small percentages here and there. For the most part, the top ten programming languages remain fairly consistent, with few surprises or unexpected entries.

Java is still number one, followed by C, Python, and C++. This month, Python, C#, and PHP saw a small amount of growth.

Assembly language, Objective-C, and MATLAB all received a small hit to their popularity but did not move down the charts in any significant way.

Sarah Schlothauer

Sarah Schlothauer

All Posts by Sarah Schlothauer

Sarah Schlothauer is the editor for She received her Bachelor's degree from Monmouth University, West Long Branch, New Jersey. She currently lives in Frankfurt, Germany with her husband and cat where she enjoys reading, writing, and medieval reenactment. She is also the editor for Conditio Humana, an online magazine about ethics, AI, and technology.

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