How To Choose a University Coding Bootcamp

By The SwitchUp Team | Updated 11/22/2023

Coding bootcamps are often seen as a faster, more convenient alternative to pursuing a college degree, but you may be able to get the best of both worlds by opting for a university coding bootcamp. 

University bootcamp programs are often developed in conjunction with an independent bootcamp school, which means you get a university-backed education in a concentrated format. As with any type of bootcamp, however, you should understand how these bootcamps work and what advantages they have to offer before you enroll in a bootcamp program.

What Are University Coding Bootcamps?

University coding bootcamps are quite similar to the coding programs available from independent bootcamp providers. They usually last three to six months, and they come in many formats, including online or on-campus classes taken on full-time or part-time schedules.

Each university bootcamp is designed to help you master fundamentals that will equip you for an entry-level position in tech. Some of the most popular subjects to study include full-stack web development, data science, UX/UI design, cybersecurity, and fintech. 

Although these bootcamps are part of a university's educational offerings, they are standalone programs and not college courses. You won't receive college credit for completing a university bootcamp, and they're not associated with any type of degree, just a certificate of completion.

If you're looking for a more comprehensive education, you may want to weigh the pros and cons of returning to college for a degree in computer science.

University Bootcamp Partners

One of the reasons why university bootcamps have been so successful is that the universities often partner with other educational providers to develop their programs. These relationships create a powerful synergy that benefits students with a forward-thinking curriculum, proven teaching methods, and seamless delivery.

For example, many universities have partnered with the online education platforms edX and Emeritus. Thanks to these collaborations, you can take an online coding bootcamp at a prestigious university like MIT or UC Berkeley on a platform with a proven track record for delivering top-notch career training.

Other partnerships are based more on the design of the curriculum. Many universities have turned to companies such as Springboard, FullStack Academy,  and Quickstart to help them develop effective programs that help students develop valuable skills.

Why Choose University Bootcamps?

With so many coding bootcamps to choose from, you may wonder why you should consider a university coding bootcamp. These are a few of the benefits of enrolling in a university program:

Proven Curriculum

Program curriculum is one area where the combined expertise of the bootcamp and university is a huge value-add for students. If a university is partnering with an existing bootcamp, the university will often use the bootcamp's up-to-the-minute curriculum and provide extra guidance to make sure the course is relevant to the local job market.

Experienced Faculty

When universities and bootcamps partner on a program, both entities work together to find the best staff. The university bootcamp may employ professors from its academic program or working tech professionals.

Career Support

Many university bootcamp partnerships will work together to leverage both university and bootcamp career services, such as resume writing, interview coaching, and job search assistance. Both partners also have extensive alumni networks, and you can tap into these relationships as part of your job search.

Name Recognition

A big challenge for some independent bootcamps — and their graduates — is that, unlike top universities, they are often not immediately recognized. If you are planning to search for a job locally, having a respected regional university on your resume might be a huge help to getting your foot in the door or gaining the attention of local alumni.

Independent Bootcamps vs. University Bootcamps

University coding bootcamps and independent bootcamps each have their own advantages and drawbacks. This side-by-side comparison may help you decide which is the right kind of bootcamp for you depending on your priorities:

Discover which coding bootcamps have earned a place on our ranked list of the best coding bootcamps.

University Coding Bootcamps

The following universities offer various types of coding bootcamps that may interest you:

University Bootcamp FAQs

Do People Get Hired After University Coding Bootcamps?

Yes, people definitely get hired after completing university coding bootcamps. Some of the more common jobs are entry-level positions as software engineers, web developers, data scientists, and UX designers. One of the advantages of enrolling in a university bootcamp is that you'll be able to leverage both the university's career development center and the bootcamp provider's job placement services.

Do Coding Bootcamps Count as College Credit?

With few exceptions, university coding bootcamps do not count as college credit. However, you will receive a certificate of completion that you can add to your resume. The university's name may enhance your professional credentials, especially if it's a well-known school or if you're job hunting in the same region as the school's location.

Are Coding Bootcamps at Universities Cheap?

No, university bootcamps are not necessarily cheaper than private bootcamps. University coding bootcamp costs vary — just as private bootcamp costs do — based on several factors, including the length and type of the program. Also, when you're calculating the total cost of a bootcamp, you'll need to allow for additional expenses besides tuition, such as application fees, computer lab fees, software, and hardware.

When it comes to funding a university bootcamp, it's important to note that you cannot use federal financial aid to help pay for tuition. So, if you're concerned about cost, you may be better off going with an independent bootcamp provider. These schools have the flexibility to offer alternative payment plans, and some offer school-sponsored scholarships or accept GI Bill benefits. A few even feature free online bootcamps.

Are University Bootcamps Worth It?

Yes, university bootcamps are worth it if you're intent on starting a new career in technology or expanding your existing tech skillset. Like other types of coding programs, these bootcamps offer an accelerated path to high-paying jobs in the tech industry for a relatively small investment of time and money. A university bootcamp, however, also gives you a proven curriculum, the prestige of a university name, and the combined job search power of both the school and the bootcamp provider.

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at

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