Visual Studio and C#
The easiest way to obtain Microsoft Visual Studio is by downloading the latest Visual Studio Express via the Microsoft VS Express download page. There you are presented with a number of Visual Studio products. We want Visual C# 20xx (which should be presented in a green box). The installer requires an internet connection to download necessary components. In addition to a new development environment, Visual C# brings with it (what may be) a new language. Don't worry: it's pretty similar to a few languages you've already seen.
C# is often compared with Java and for good reason: they are both C-style, managed languages built for object-oriented programming. Like Java, C# has garbage collection, so there is less memory-related housekeeping to worry about. Also like Java, C# code runs on a managed runtime, so one has to jump through some hoops to access memory natively.
Probably more important, though, is how C# is different. While there are many ways, I will go over a few that are more immediate.
If you foresee a new development environment and language being a major hurdle to tackling the projects, I would recommend the following:
Visual C# is a powerful (and extensive) IDE. This is a great resource for learning more about it.
Through your BYU account you can also go to the Safari books online and there are some great free online books reviewing C# and .NET. For example “Learning C# 3.0” which is an easy beginner book, and “C# 4.0 in a nutshell” which gives more coverage of the .NET framework.