The first step in this journey is figuring out which are the best ways to learn technical analysis. In this guide, we will explore the different ways of learning technical analysis, alongside their pros and cons, to ease you in finding the best one for you.
The journey to mastering technical analysis often appears challenging and exhausting, especially at the start. However, this shouldn’t be the case. In fact, learning technical analysis can be an enjoyable and exciting activity if you have a structured learning plan, a clear goal, and professional guidance on how to achieve it.
Which Are the Best Ways to Learn Technical Analysis
To find out the best ways to learn technical analysis, it is essential to understand what it is and what skills and competencies it requires.
Technical analysis is more than just chart patterns and indicators. It also covers various academic disciplines, such as risk management, behavioral economics, etc. The broader a trader’s understanding of these matters is, the more successful he will be.
Mastering technical analysis requires a set of specific personality traits, including discipline, the ability to control your emotions, remaining calm under pressure, and more.
All those factors and variables mean technical analysis is more of a game of probabilities rather than an exact science. Uncertainty is always around the corner, and the better prepared you are for it, the bigger the chance to succeed.
So, with that in mind, we can get back to the main question – what is the best way to learn technical analysis?
To find the answer, it is essential to define a set of requirements covering all of the points mentioned above and find out whether the particular technical analysis learning methodology addresses them. Here are a few questions to start with when evaluating the different ways to learn technical analysis:
Does it provide a structured learning experience?
Does it offer professional guidance that you can lean on if needed?
What disciplines does it cover?
How deep in detail does it dive?
Is it limited only to theory, or it also provides practical experience?
Are there any after-learning opportunities?
What value-for-money can you expect?
The more of these questions you can answer positively, the bigger the chance to have found the best way to learn technical analysis.
Now, let’s apply this set of questions to three possible ways of learning technical analysis and see which one is the best.
If you have good research and organizational skills and you can keep yourself motivated and accountable, you can try learning technical analysis on your own.
The first step is to design your own learning plan that covers the most critical topics of technical analysis. Check out the curriculums of structured programs and courses for reference.
Next, you will have to find resources that dive into each topic. Fortunately, today free educational materials are abundant. Many of those resources are free.
For example, you can browse Youtube videos from popular technical analysis traders, recordings from trading seminars, free courses, specialized websites, and blogs (while you are here, check our blog, where you can find hundreds of guides and videos dedicated to technical analysis and trading). Even trading communities on forums like Reddit can be of help since they usually are a gold mine for learning resources, trading ideas, or simply exchanging know-how with fellow TA enthusiasts.
However, these alone won’t be enough, and it is advisable to turn your focus on the countless books written on the topic. Note that most of the technical trading indicators were first introduced in their authors’ books decades ago. This makes them the single, most accurate, and unbiased source of information. Furthermore, those concepts have withstood the test of time (since some were published more than 50 years ago) and are among the most reliable learning resources you can find.
The last step is going through all the resources, one topic at a time, and following a gradual learning curve. Once you gather sufficient theoretical knowledge, you should start applying it in practice. For this purpose, you should find a broker or a trading platform that offers free paper trading accounts. There you can backtest and fine-tune your trading plan.
Free and easily accessible
Ability to learn at your pace
An infinite amount of content
Requires sufficient research to find out the best and most credible learning resources
Backtesting software or paper trading platform might be paid or require an account at a broker
You are responsible for creating a structured learning plan
Requires strong dedication and persistence to stick to your learning schedule
Lacks the “mentor” factor where you can lean on someone to help you
Some books can be very expensive or hard to find
Paid Courses and Learning Programs
Paid courses and learning programs are an excellent way to ensure you have a structured learning plan created by professionals. Here, you have many options, including online or on-site experience, short and specialized courses or long and very detail-oriented programs, paid or free options, and more.
If you prefer to learn from the comfort of your home and at your own pace, you can go with a course from a reputable course platform (here is a good list from Investopedia to get you started). Most of the time, you can even earn a certificate.
If you want an academic-like experience where you learn alongside fellow students in a classroom, there are on-site course options as well. They are great alternatives for people struggling to keep themselves motivated and adhering to a schedule.
There are plenty of options to choose from in terms of duration as well – from short online courses to academic-like programs lasting several months or more. The same goes for the price – there are $10 courses that usually cover only cover one or two specific topics (e.g., how to trade with a particular indicator). Also, there are learning programs at institutes or online academies that can cost north of $1,000 and cover all the topics a beginner needs to know. Make sure to find the course that gives you the best value for money and, most importantly – one provided by a credible source.
Make sure to avoid all of the courses that promise to give you the technical analysis setup that “is winning 98% of the time”, “generates 10x returns”, or “is the key to technical analysis.” Bear in mind that there are plenty of “trading gurus” hiring copywriters specialized in creating sales pages with promotional messages to capture your attention. Such offerings usually have several things in common, including a money-back guarantee, great reviews from satisfied customers that can’t be verified, promises for unrealistic returns, and videos of the overly-excited lecturer. When you are just starting, this is the last thing you need. Make sure to focus on technical analysis fundamentals taught by credible course platforms.
Certificate upon completion
Freedom to learn at your pace (with online courses)
Academic-like experience (with on-site programs)
Professional guidance from experts
Might be expensive
The practical experience might be limited
Requires significant research to find the best course programs
Funded Trader Programs
Funded trader programs are perfect for those looking for a structured learning experience combining theoretical knowledge and practical experience.
Earn2Trade’s funded trader programs, for example, prepare participants for a professional trading career through a thorough educational program based on hours of videos, educational materials, and guides from trading veterans. Furthermore, participants gain access to a demo account where they can put theory into practice. There are quizzes and exams to help future traders gain a fair reflection of their skills and highlight where they can improve further.
Upon successful completion, funded trader programs provide the opportunity to kick-start your trading career at a professional prop trading firm with guaranteed funding of up to $200,000. What’s more, once you have successfully joined the pro-leagues, you can trade with the prop trading firm’s capital and retain up to 80% of the profits for you.
Another thing that makes these programs a great choice is getting access to a trading community of like-minded individuals. The social element of trading is very important since learning technical analysis and becoming a professional is often a long-lasting journey where one might need support on every step. These communities embody this idea and are willing to help you collectively elevate your game.
You can enroll in a funded trader program for a monthly fee of as little as $150. Once enrolled, you can learn at your own pace, and there won’t be pressure to fulfill the program within a specific time frame. If you are a quick learner and want to conclude it as soon as possible, you can leap from a student to an offer from a prop trading firm in less than a month.
Professional structured content
Can get you funding and a professional career
Combine theory and practice
Freedom to learn at your own pace
Have a monthly fee
Verdict: the Best Way to Learn Technical Analysis
Which is the best way to learn technical analysis depends on your needs and goals.
For example, if you want to familiarize yourself with the matter and have lots of time, but don’t have professional aspirations, then you can try self-guided learning.
You can consider enrolling for a paid course if you want structured content that dives into more than just the basics. However, for a similar price, you can consider funded trader programs since they will also potentially open the door to a professional career. Those who want the best of both worlds and are set on mastering technical analysis and becoming professional traders should look no further than funded trader programs. They provide a structured learning experience based on theory and practice alongside a shortcut to a professional trading career.