Glossary of Java Terminology: A Beginner’s Guide

Every developer needs to have a good understanding of Java terminology if they want to excel in their field. Java currently runs on more than three billion mobile devices, making it one of the most popular programming languages ​​in the world. As a Java developer, familiarizing yourself with our list of Java terms will help you communicate and collaborate more efficiently with colleagues, colleagues, and customers.

Our glossary of Java terminology covers some basic terms that you will often encounter. This will help any budding developer get a head start. Our cheat sheet will explore more advanced terms that you won’t use every day, but are essential if you want to become a professional developer.

What is Java?

Java is an object-oriented programming language developed by Sun Microsystems in 1995. Developers prefer Java over other languages ​​because it is a general purpose language and has fewer implementation dependencies. It is flexible and can work on different operating systems such as Windows, macOS and Linux.

Java is used as the server-side language in a variety of backend projects, including mobile applications, web applications, cloud computing, big data analytics, and gaming.

Who Uses Java Terminology?

Java terminology is most commonly used by software engineers, programmers, and developers. However, due to the versatility of Java, Java terminology can be used in many different industries. Well-known examples are software developers, game developers, data analysts, network administrators and cloud engineers.

List of Java Terms: Things Every Java Developer Should Know

  1. Application Programming Interface:
  2. Bytecode Compiler
  3. Class files
  4. Control structure
  5. data type
  6. Waste collection algorithm
  7. Integrated development environment
  8. Java archive
  9. Java development kit
  10. Java exception
  11. Java native interface
  12. Java operator
  13. Java Platform Editions
  14. Object Oriented Programming
  15. Parallel programming
  16. Return type:
  17. Runtime type:
  18. source file
  19. Call statement subroutine
  20. Variable

Glossary of Java Terminology: 5 Common Java Terms

Read on as we explore five basic terms Java developers use every day. This glossary of Java terminology will help you jump-start your career as a Java developer.

abstract class

An abstract class is a class declared as abstract by a keyword in Java. This means that the class cannot be instantiated and it is impossible to create an object. Instead, it is inherited by other classes.

Why Java Developers Need to Know About Abstract Class

Java developers use abstract classes for data abstraction. They prevent users from viewing the complex block of code and only show them the necessary information. Developers need to understand how to use Java keywords to use abstract methods effectively.

data type

A data type is a specification that determines the value size and type that can be contained in a variable. There are two main data types, primitive types and non-primitive types. Examples of primitive types are float, character, integer, and boolean. Interfaces, arrays, and classes are examples of non-primitive types.

Why Java Developers Need to Know About Data Types

Java is a strongly typed language. Therefore, a good understanding of data types as a Java developer will result in strong type checking. This prevents errors and makes your code more reliable.

Java operators

Java operators are special symbols used to perform specific functions on variables and values. Java operators include arithmetic operators, logical operators, complement operators, binary operators, relational operators, and bitwise operators.

Why Java Developers Need to Know About Java Operators

Java operators are an integral part of Java programming as they define the value and amount of variables. Java developers need to learn operators to perform logical and arithmetic operations in our programs.

Object Oriented Programming

Object-Oriented Programming (OOP) is a programming model that uses the concept of classes and models. OOP emphasizes the objects the developer creates rather than the logic and function to manipulate them. The four principles of object-oriented programming are inheritance, encapsulation, abstraction, and polymorphism.

Why Java Developers Need to Know About Object Oriented Programming

Object-oriented programming is a basic programming paradigm that every developer should know because it reduces complex code blocks to simple structures. This makes it easier to debug and makes it possible to use object types in different programs. JavaScript, Python, and C++ are examples of other OOP languages.


A variable is a placeholder for data values. It has a variable data type that determines the type and amount of value it can take later. It also serves as a memory location name for the data. There are three types of variables in Java which are local variables, instance variables and class variables.

Why Java Developers Need to Know About Variables

Variables are an essential program part of Java. Moreover, they are a basic requirement in any programming language. Developers need to know how to declare and initialize type variables to code in Java.

Java Terminology Cheatsheet: 5 Advanced Java Terms

Know advanced Java terminology makes you an expert developer.

Java developers need to be familiar with more advanced Java terminology if they want to succeed. While these additional terms may be difficult for novice programmers to understand, we’ve done the hard work for you. Read on as we break down five advanced Java terms.

Application Programming Interface:

An Application Programming Interface (API) is an interface that allows computers or computer programs to communicate with each other. It acts as an abstraction layer that handles data transfer between systems. When you send an instant message, tweet, or view Google maps on your mobile device, you’re using an API.

Why Java Developers Need to Know About Application Programming Interfaces

APIs are an important part of any developer’s toolset. As a Java developer, you use them to connect Java components to the same system. They also allow you to interact with code from other systems through API integration.

Integrated design environment

An integrated design environment (IDE) is an open-source software environment that provides all the basic tools needed to develop and test software. It contains all programming tasks in one application such as the code editor, debugger and compiler.

Why Java Developers Need to Know About Integrated Design Environments

IDEs make it easier to build and test your software. Without an IDE, you have to manage all the tools you need to develop your software separately. An IDE hosts all these tools on one platform, so you can work clearly. Common examples of Java IDEs include Eclipse, BlueJ, Apache NetBeans, and Xcode.

Java development kit

Java Development Kit (JDK) is one of the most important technology packages for developing Java applications. It provides a programming environment which consists of the Java Runtime Environment, Java Virtual Machine, interpreter, documentation generator, archiver and compiler.

Why Java Developers Need to Know About Java Development Kits

Developers need JDKs to develop applications and run Java programs. They provide a collection of tools, executables, and libraries that help convert the source code into a format that the Java Runtime Environment can understand and execute.

Java exceptions

A Java exception is any problem that occurs during program execution that can disrupt the flow of the program’s instructions. When this happens, the class method creates an exception object that contains the error message and details about the error. There are two types of java exceptions, unchecked exceptions and compile exceptions, also known as compile-time exceptions.

Why Java Developers Need To Know About Java Exception

Java exceptions occur due to many factors such as non-existent files, syntax errors, memory errors, and missing resource files. Developers need to learn more about Java exceptions so they can properly handle errors and write exception handler code to fix the underlying issues.

Java Platform Editions

Java platform editions are the programming environments in which Java applications run. They contain a Java virtual machine and an application programming interface that allows applications and programs to run. There are different types of Java platform editions and the most popular editions are Java 2 and Java 8.

Why Java Developers Need to Know About Java Platform Edition

Java developers should build their applications to be compatible with their preferred Java edition. In addition, developers should be familiar with the current versions of each edition. These include Java Platform Enterprise Edition (Java EE), Java Platform Micro Edition (Java ME), Java Platform Standard Edition (Java SE), and JavaFX. Future versions will be released every two years.

How can I learn Java terminology in 2022?

The best way to learn Java terminology in 2022 is to enroll in a Java boot camp. These coding boot camps offer short-term intensive courses that aim to equip students with in-demand technical skills to build successful careers. Alternatively, there are plenty of online Java courses available.

Java FAQ

What are some common terms used in Java?

Declaration, class variables, return type, type parameter, single block, garbage collector, and array type are some of the common terms used in the fundamental operations of Java. All terms mentioned in this article are important keywords in Java.

What do you mean by polymorphism in Java?

Polymorphism is the ability to perform the same task in many different ways. There are two types of polymorphism, run-time polymorphism and compile-time polymorphism.

How long does it take to learn Java terminology?

It can take up to two years to learn Java properly. During your studies you will pick up the most important terminology. That is why it is important not only to code every day, but also to constantly review Java terms. You can use our Java terminology cheat sheet and glossary to help you with this.

Are Java developers well paid?

Yes, as a Java developer you can expect an average salary of about $100,832 per year. Moreover, because Java is such a popular programming language, you have plenty of job opportunities available to you. Major tech companies like Uber, Netflix, and Google all employ Java developers.

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