Scripting Languages vs Programming Languages: Key Differences Between Them

Scripting Languages vs Programming Languages

You probably heard that all scripting languages are programming languages. But not all programming languages are scripting languages. Many people often don’t know the difference between  scripting languages vs programming languages. So, they get confused listening to those lines. The main difference between them is their execution process. Whereas the Scripting language is interpreted based and programming languages are compiled based. 

Back in the day, programmers used programming languages to build software.  Like Microsoft Powerpoint, Microsoft Excel, Internet Explorer, and many more. Still, as time passed, more functions were required to cover up everything the Scripting language came into existence.

Let us now discuss Scripting languages vs Programming languages in detail before moving to some critical differences between them.

What is Scripting Language? 

Scripting languages are mostly interpretation based. The scripting language is specially designed for runtime environments. On the other hand, these languages are used in Web development, Games, and creating plugins and extensions. 

Primarily, Scripting languages are supported by every platform, as a result, it doesn’t need any software to run and is an open-source language. HTML, CSS, PHP, Python, and Ruby are some of the examples.

Types of a Scripting language:

Client-Side Scripting language: 

Client-Side Scripting languages create the script that runs on your browser side. Therefore all the front-end-based languages are client-side scripting languages. Like HTML, JQuery, CSS, and JavaScript programming.

Server Side Scripting language 

Server Side Scripting languages are used to build dynamic and data-driven web applications. As a result, all the back-end-based languages are server-side scripting languages. Some of the primary server-side languages are PHP, Python, Ruby, Pearl etc.

Features of a Scripting language

 Easy to learn

They offer an excellent start for those who want to get into development. If you specifically want to get into web development, then Javascript for the front and PHP for the backend is one of the easiest scripting languages.


 Being an open-source, there is no limit on who can utilise scripting language. As a result, you can easily download it from any search engine.

Portable and Cross-platform

Another feature of scripting languages is that they are portable and cross-platform. This means they do not require any specific software to run and Scripting language can be used with any operating system.

Safe and secure 

More security features added in Scripting language. Therefore, it does not allow any illegal operation to be performed from the script. So, no third person can’t access any personal information.

Low memory requirement

 The memory requirement is significantly less. So scripting languages requires low memory from the system.


You can add certain features you want when you require them. So that is why scripting languages are highly extensible.

What is Programming Language? 

To accomplish the given output a set of instructions is used. A programming language is use to interact with computers to build specific software. Like, games, desktop apps and websites. However, C, C++, Java programming, Swift and Pascal are some examples of programming languages.

Types of Programming language based on Generation

First Generation Programming Language ( Machine language)

Second Generation Programming Language ( Assembly language)

Third Generation Programming Language (High-Level language ) 

Fourth Generation Programming Language ( SQL ( Structured Query Language) ) 

Fifth Generation Programming Language ( Artificial Intelligence language )

Features of Programming language


From a programming language, we can build complete software from scratch. However, there are many programming languages available in the market like Java, Swift, C, C++, and many more.


Most modern programming languages are simple. Therefore, in programming, there is usually a tradeoff between simplicity and speed.


Portability means that you can transfer your data from one computer to another computer quickly. So with that said, Programming languages are Portable.


It means the ability to hide complicated content which might not be helpful for the users. As a result, it is one of the most crucial features of a programming language.


All programming languages follow a predefined structure. Like syntax, a set of rules and proper semantics that help the developer to better understand what they are doing.

15 Unique Difference Between Scripting languages vs Programming languages

Let’s now move to the critical difference between Scripting languages vs Programming languages. The table given below contains some contrasting features between these languages.

Scripting languagesProgramming languages
A Scripting or Script language is a programming language used to automate specific tasks within a software.The Programming language is the set of instructions that a programmer gives to accomplish various kinds of output.
Scripting languages generally prefer high-level languages.Generally, Programming languages are based on low-level language. 
Scripting languages are generally faster than programming languages because script execution takes less time. But the programming languages are compiled based. So the execution takes more time.
Scripting languages are generally run under the parent program.
It is used to control the behaviour of the program. The Scripting language is generally used to enhance the existing project.
Programming languages run independently. Programming language is generally used to make new programs and software from scratch.
All Scripting languages are programming languages.But not all the Programming languages are scripting languages.
Scripting languages always require a host. Because scripting languages demand line by line conversion.On the other hand, Programming languages do not require a host because they are self-executable.

Scripting languages take less time to code. 
Whereas, Programming languages take a lot of time to code. Because you have to start from scratch, you do not get pre-written codes in the programming language. 
The primary purpose of the Scripting language is to assist the programming language and make code easy.Unlike scripting languages, to make fully functional software, programming languages are used. 
Scripting language does not generate a .exe file.Whereas, programming languages do create a .exe file.
Low maintenance cost.High maintenance cost as compared to Scripting language. 
To make coding faster and easier, we use script language.On the other hand, the Programming language is designed to give full language usage.
Scripting languages are very easy to use. Programming languages are a bit more complex as compared to scripting languages.
Types of a Scripting language.
There are only two types of scripting language
Client-Side Scripting languageServer Side Scripting language 
Types of Programming languages based on Generations.Whereas in Programming language, there is five
 1st Generation, i.e. Machine language 2nd Generation, i.e. Assembly language 3rd Generation, i.e. High-Level language  4th Generation, i.e. Very High-Level language  5th Generation, i.e. Artificial Intelligence language
Examples of Scripting language are:PHP, Pearl, JavaScript and HTML language.Examples of Programming languages are:Python, Ruby, Java, C, C++.

6 Detailed key differences between Scripting languages vs Programming languages

  1. Programming languages firstly use a compiler to convert high-level language to machine level language in one go. Whereas Scripting languages do not use a compiler. They use an interpreter for the execution process.
  1. The primary function of a Programming language is to build applications. On the other hand, the Scripting language is used in web development.
  1. The time taken to write code in a Programming language is comparatively more than Scripting language. Because Scripting language is used to assist the programming language.
  1. Programming language is used to create and build the software from scratch. On the other hand, the scripting language is used to perform any specific task and can easily be combined with existing tasks.
  1. Programming is fully written code, whereas, scripting is just a piece of code. 
  1. Programming languages are divided into five parts. Whereas there are two types of scripting language.

In Conclusion

The main aim is to bring the critical difference between Scripting languages vs Programming languages. This article explains both the languages. That is  Scripting languages and Programming languages, along with brief introductions, features and their crucial difference in tabular form. 

So now you know the difference between both the languages. From this, you all know that Scripting is a subset of programming. But, every language has its advantages and disadvantages . So, choosing between scripting or programming languages depends on your needs and what you need to accomplish.

Lastly, we provide you with some FAQs that you might like, and you might get an answer to your questions.

Hope you like this blog!

Also read this..

Perl vs PHP: Which scripting language is right for your website?

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Is scripting language harder than Programming language?

No, the scripting language is not harder than the programming language. It is easier in many aspects like easy to use, has shorter code, low maintenance cost and many more.

Q2. Which scripting language is easy?

Almost all the Scripting languages are easy to learn and understand, But the most used Scripting language is PHP and JavaScript.