Yes, if you aren't experienced with electronics, it would be better to just ask the questions first before buying. Its not as straight-forward as some people think.
Do you know how I wire up my LED tape to my arduino to do this?
I know that somehow I need my LED tape to be connected to an arduino digital pin and the my LED tape also needs to be connected to 12v and ground (from external power supply driven by a driver) but how do I make my circuit?
Do I also need the drivers to power my LEDs? If so how does this fit into the circuit?
Do I need something to protect my arduino?
You are asking questions without giving necessary information to be able to help you. Don't worry, its natural. So here is what I need to know first:
1) How many connections are there to the LED tape and what are their labels? (I'm guessing a 12v led1, led2, led3?)
2) What Arduino are you using?
4) We'll figure that out later