GCI Students New to Drupal

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This lesson will give you a starting point if you're a Google Code-In student new to Drupal.

Drupal is an open source content management platform that is used by millions of apps, and through the Google Code-In, you can become a part of the process that makes it happen.


All you need is to be a student registered in the Google Code-In. To register, visit the contest homepage.

If you have no idea how the GCI works, review this lesson first.

Getting Started

As a student, you will be looking to complete some of the many tasks found on Melange. Firstly, it is important to pick tasks that you want to do because this will improve your experience as a whole. It is also important that you create an account on drupal.org (preferably with the same username as the one you use for the GCI) because this will allow your mentors to track your progress; however, you still must post all your work on Melange.

The problem with trying to work with big organizations like Drupal for the first time is that it's nearly impossible to find a place to start. Luckily, you have many great mentors who would love to help. In order to get in touch with them, you can talk to them through Melange. Alternatively, if you'd like to have a quicker, real-time conversation, it's best to hop onto IRC, on the channel #drupal-google. Remember that when you get stuck, your mentors are there to help. Don't be afraid to ask for help.

Developer Resources

The Issue Queue

The issue queue can be fairly intimidating at a first glance, but it's there to make life easier. It's a place where every bug report, feature request, or anything you can imagine Drupal-related is located. It lets everyone work together from anywhere around the world, at anytime. You will need to get acquainted with it for most tasks, so it would be a good idea to complete a lesson on getting accustomed to the issue queue. You can also check this out for more information.


These are some tools that will help improve and speed up your development process.

Git is a necessity in development for Drupal. Much like Subversion, Git is a version control system that allows users to manage work much easier. This system is used in Drupal's issue queues and is key to development. Complete this lesson ladder to learn how to use Git with Drupal.

Dreditor, which stands for Drupal editor, is a tool to help review patches on Drupal.org. It is highly recommended to use Dreditor.

Drush is a command line tool that allows users to interact with Drupal code from the command line and is extremely useful in many circumstances. This is also a tool that is highly recommended due to its ease of use once you get used to it.

More Resources

By now, you should have a basic understanding of the Google Code-In, and the tools needed to start your first task, but here are some more resources if you find yourself in need of more help.

This is a guide for students that was written specifically for this competition. It contains a detailed overview of how to get started.

The Drupal Core Ladder is a sequence of lessons that were made to help to allow new Drupal developers to start contributing to core. It's a perfect place to start.

The GCI Student Ladder is a sequence of lessons made for GCI students by GCI students and is intended to give a starting point to new students entered in the competition who are contributing to Drupal.

This getting involved guide is a guide to help jumpstart your Drupal development experience.

Drupal's documentation can help you understand any part of Drupal that you want. It contains a wide array of resources that are open to your disposal.

Drupal's coding standards and UI standards are extremely important to keep in mind when creating and reviewing patches, so they are very good to review.


This lesson has taught you the basics of what it means to be a GCI student. Not only has it introduced you to Drupal and the Google Code-In, but it also gave you many resources to indulge that can help serve as a starting point for your Drupal-contribution experience. All in all, remember that your mentors are there for you when you get stuck and they will do their best to help. This goal of this competition is to learn as much as you can about Drupal, and they are some of the many that can make it easier to attain this goal.

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