Let's consider learning the PHP language for a complete beginner, I personally follow 10 steps, & I most likely focus on learning for free that is why I always head to youtube. this is a question asked in the tronictalk.com PHP forum.
- do some research on youtube about PHP
- write down the key points that most courses are explaining to be able to build a learning skeleton
- Go through some courses that explain everything at least check 10 courses & evaluate them. then pick the top 3 best courses.
- Pick one unique course that you think answers all you key points that you already wrote down.
- when you go through the course allow some time for yourself to rest.
- best practice 6 hours every day (2h for learning 4h for practicing).
- when you face something not clear try to look for answers in other courses (here come the other 2 courses that you choose in step 3)
- at the end of the course, you'll understand the concept of PHP programming in general.
- create a project to practice & test yourself. then evaluate yourself again.
- then make your decision either to take another course or just keep practicing.