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About Devschool

Please note: This school is closed and is no longer accepting students. The SwitchUp team no longer monitors this page for updates, but historical information is available for reference.

Please note: Devschool has closed and is no longer accepting students.

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Devschool Reviews

Average Ratings (All Programs)

Overall
Curriculum
Job Support

3.41/5

(11 reviews)
    10/2/2016
  • Anonymous
  • Software Engineering

Overall Score

Curriculum

Job Support

"Scammed"

I had been a student for a few months, and Jim has vanished. We have no one. The program is essentially dead, though the website is still up. He took our money and left. Stay away everyone. I feel sorry for all the students affected.

Comment
    9/19/2016
  • Former Student
  • Full Stack Web Developer Bootcamp Program
  • Graduated: 2016

Overall Score

Curriculum

Job Support

"Needs Improving"

**They removed "Course Report" from their reviews section on the website and replaced it with Codementor, where the reviews have nothing to do with the current school**

I was a former student at Devschool who dropped out because of incompatibilities with... Read More

school structure

I think the single driving force behind most of Devschool's problems is the lack of instructors. They always say "us" or "our instructors" while describing the program intricacies, but they only really have 1 - 2 active instructors - including the founder. During the time I was enrolled at Devschool, it had around 21 students. There was quite some drama during my time there. An instructor went crazy and was fired, while another instructor was told to stop teaching and observe sessions to learn how to teach. I also saw a few instructor candidates come and leave the Slack channel, most likely never reaching an agreement with the school.

Due to the lack of instructors, the program suddenly shifted the way it operated. It reduced all student sessions from 2 to 3 times a week, down to 1 time a week. This was frustrating, mainly due to the fact that this change was purely due to a lack of teachers - which to me, seemed like the school did not have its act together at all. The only instructor able to teach was the founder, as they had lost most of ther teachers.

So now, I was trying to put up with only having 1 session a week, when I wanted (and was promised on the website) to have at least 2 or 3 sessions a week. These sessions were an hour long, with the rest of your week completely empty. You were told to continue to with the work done in your sessions, as well as watching a few Frontend Masters and/or Egghead videos. For the rest of the week. This is their curriculum.

The group sessions were a nice touch, but they were very disorganized. Every group session seemed to be a completely new topic that students voted on. They were also painfully long, about two hour to three to even four hours at times. Very inefficient, as most students seem to zone out by the end.

My time at Devschool was 1 hour long session once a week, with a few two - four hour long group sessions sprinkled throughout. All done by the founder. He was exhausted.

curriculum

This is Devschool's most advertised feature. A none-structured curriculum. This is the reason why I was drawn to the school. As a student however, it's not really all that conductive to the learning process.

First, there is in fact a semi-curriculum. While I was a student, we had to build a blog as our first project. Then for some reason, the blog assignment was scrapped, and we were told to build a text game using Javascript. It came out of no where, it was quite advanced for some of the beginner students (jumping straight into OOP), when some of the beginners didn't even know the different types of loops yet.

The problem with Devschool's promise to "crafting your own curriculum" is that most beginners have no clue what technologies are important and in demand. That's why they are relying on schools to teach them in the first place. A completely open ended curriculum is only appropriate for advanced beginners and up, who actually have had at least several months of programming knowledge.

Finally, there is no structured student-to-student pair programming. You can reach out to students, but that's about it. The varying levels of students and time zones make it a bit difficult.

track structure

This is something I am a bit concerned about for the current students. Devschool has radically changed their course tracks over the past 6 months at least three times. In fact, the current tracks on Course Report (and while I was enrolled), no longer exist at all.

Devschool originally had a track of "Ruby Web Development" and a track for "Javascript Web Development". Then, when I enrolled, it had a track of "Full Stack Web Development", and a track for "Software Engineering". They recently (as of this review), changed their tracks again, this time offering "Modern Front End Developer" and "Modern Fullstack Developer".

support

Due to the shortage of instructors, my weekly sessions were reduced to 1 a week, with the rest of my time working alone on assignments, group sessions, and the occasional video from their MOOC memberships.

There was zero support outside of your hour long session. Group session content was reserved for whatever was being shown during that session. You could PM the instructor on Slack, but they would be swamped with other student's sessions, unable to focus their energy on you. There were no office hours - once again, lack of instructors to facilitate such systems. You could ask in the Student Slack channel - but should that really be touted as a plus? There are tons of free programming slack channels as well.

outcome

I'm glad that students in 2015 were able to find jobs. I'd be curious to see an update in 2016. They say that you are in the program as long as you want until you get a job. The only benefit there are the group sessions - which again, might have nothing to do with helping you get a job. Personalized support? With the lack of instructors or even job specialists/recruiters, you can expect almost no job support after your personal sessions have been used up.

value

How does Devschool stand amongst its online peers? I've listed out the major contenders in the online bootcamp world. I'm ignoring the contents of their curriculum - because the way in which they deliver this content is far more important.

Devschool: Membership to Frontend Masters and Egghead, unlimited group sessions, open ended curriculum, access to group sessions until hired, 1 mentor session per week, job support during individual sessions, 6 months - 1 year duration.

Codementor: Choose your mentor, open ended curriculum, 1 - X mentor sessions a week, mentor pricing flexible, open ended duration

Hack Reactor Remote: structured curriculum, daily student pair programming, daily group sessions, office hours, job support, 3 months duration

Fullstack Remote: structured curriculum, daily student pair programming, daily group sessions, office hours, job support, saturday CS curriculum, 4 months duration

Viking Code School: structured curriculum, daily student pair programming, daily group sessions, office hours, personal job support, tuition is paid as 18% of first year's salary upon receiving a job, 3 months duration

The Firehose Project: structured curriculum, 1 mentor session per week, office hours, job support, apprenticeship program, 6 months duration

Thinkful: structured curriculum, daily student pair programming, daily group sessions, daily mentor session, 24/7 office hours, 4 month duration, personal job training pre and post graduation, 100% refund if not hired after 6 months

Bloc.io: structured curriculum, 1 - 3 mentor sessions a week, office hours, 6 month duration, personal job training post graduation, 100% refund if not hired after 6 months

conclusion

Devschool's heart is in the right place. I support their style of teaching an open, unstructured curriculum. It just needs a lot of fine tweaking, and the students may become collateral damage during those tweakings. Hopefully the school will grow with more instructors, so that more flexible options are given in terms of mentoring hours and session numbers, as well as the organization and comprehensiveness of the program. In the end however, with the state that the school was in when I enrolled, I had to leave and pursue a different program. I wish Devschool all the best.

Comment
    8/16/2016
  • Anonymous
  • Full Stack Web Developer Bootcamp Program

Overall Score

Curriculum

Job Support

"Personal Attacks!?"

I was doing research on this bootcamp when I came across a student that was threatened by doxxing from the lead instructor. This is absolutely beyond insane. How could you treat your students like this just because you are irritated? You've just lost... Read More

"I left some negative reviews about Devschool , and I don't know what lies he said to the websites and they just removed my comments. No wonder why there is so many good comments. He even send me email threaten me and told me he gonna post my personal information and my photos online, he also said he gonna try to prevent me from getting a job. All those happened just because I left negative reviews. That's really horrible. Stay away from this person."

Ladies and gentlemen, this is the darkside of coding bootcamps. This is why for every negative review, there are a bunch of individuals too scared to open out about this experience. This is incredibly unacceptable. Be wary of such personalities on instructors before applying to this program.

Comment
    8/10/2016
  • Aaron W.
  • Software Engineering

Overall Score

Curriculum

Job Support

"A school for your individual needs"

My experience with Devschool was nothing but awesome and accommodating. Jim is a great teacher with tons of experience and a lot of knowledge to give. Whatever your goals are Jim will do whatever he can to help you reach them. Jim would often ask his... Read More

Comment
    8/4/2016
  • Justin
  • Full Stack Web Developer Bootcamp Program
  • Graduated: 2016

Overall Score

Curriculum

Job Support

"Great Bootcamp for those who work hard and Self-Manage well"

I have been a student at Devschool for about 3 months. I am happy to say that after those 3 months of part-time study and round the clock hard work, I am coding my own apps. The camp is absolutely legit. BUT, you must be willing to work hard and really... Read More

If you are considering enrolling at Devschool, be sure you know what you are getting into. And be ready for a pretty steep learning curve. If you expect to be spoon-fed, try a different bootcamp. If you are an open-minded, self-starting individual, get ready for one of the greatest learning experiences of your life.

Comment
    8/3/2016
  • Anonymous
  • Full Stack Web Developer Bootcamp Program
  • Graduated: 2016

Overall Score

Curriculum

Job Support

"I got threatened by the owner of Devschool since I left negative reviews online"

I paid my tuition and joined Devschool on July, 2016. However, I only took one class and then dropped the program for 3 reasons:

1. The owner of Devschool, Jim Okelly, was very rude to me. He told me that this program was not for me and that I should... Read More

I chose Devschool because there were only good reviews online. Also, to make more people understand my situation, I left some negative reviews online to show my dis-satisfaction towards the program. After Devschool saw my negative reviews, Jim O’kelly immediately REVEALED MY PERSONAL INFORMATION online with very disrespectful words (I have screen shots for everything). And after one day, I received a THREATENING EMAIL from Jim O’kelly. The content is as follows:
“I am going to write a wonderful post about you and name you and put up your photo‏. Enjoy the shit storm you created you crackpot
I will make sure no one EVER accepts you into their school or gives you a job again you nutcase!
I will post everything.”

On August 11th I received another email from Jim Okelly, in the email, he told me that if I didn’t delete all of my negative reviews, that he would sue me, and if he sued me, that would influence my student Visa.
At that point I didn’t know what I should do anymore, so I borrowed money from my friend and hired a lawyer to communicate with him. After he received my lawyer’s negotiation email, on August 18th, he sent an email to my lawyer, and told him that he was preparing a website using my name and will put my personal information on it. And also “Enjoy trying to sue a BVI company with 0 US shareholders and no assets in the USA.”

Yes he is right, it’s hard to sue a BVI company, it’s not only hard to me, but also hard to everyone. I think this is something you should consider before you join Devschool.
I had so much hopes when I first choose Devschool and gave them my money, now look at me, I got personally attacked, threatened, disrespected; my information got intentionally revealed; they are building a website just to reveal my information; and Jim O’kelly will try to stop me from getting a job------all because I left some negative reviews.

Comment
    5/20/2016
  • Glen
  • Full Stack Web Developer Bootcamp Program

Overall Score

Curriculum

Job Support

"One on one mentorship"

As a current student, I find Devschool to be a unique learning experience that puts the students in direct contact with teachers, allowing for more personalized and directed learning than you would get at a more classroom-oriented school. The format is... Read More

Comment
    5/20/2016
  • Jane
  • Full Stack Web Developer Bootcamp Program

Overall Score

Curriculum

Job Support

"Tailored To You"

It's true. If you want a bootcamp experience that actually teaches you what YOU want to know, then Devschool is the answer. I wish I'd found Jim and Devschool earlier, but I guess I had to go through some trial and error before finding what I really needed.... Read More

What's really valuable is that this isn't a one-size-fits-all approach to my learning, where I have to follow a structured curriculum that everyone who's enrolled goes through. I've been learning with Jim for about a month now, and I can say that I truly feel like I'm learning and not in a constant state of confusion. And what's amazing is that after our one-on-one, as well as group, sessions I'm not only left with a hundred more questions than when I started. I mean, yes, of course I have questions, but they're more about "what can I do next to improve on what I learned today" vs "what was I even looking at".

I truly appreciate Jim and his dedication to his students and that he's so enthusiastic about teaching us. Our group sessions are always incredibly informative, and it provides a sense of community in learning with others who have the same goal: to become amazing programmers. I highly recommend Devschool to anyone who's looking to switch careers or just get better at their craft. Here you'll learn the skills you really need to succeed; you won't regret it!

Comment
    3/23/2016
  • Anonymous
  • Full Stack Web Developer Bootcamp Program

Overall Score

Curriculum

Job Support

"Insanely Human Experience"

I enrolled in Devschool because of their positive image online in reviews and otherwise. Prior to this, I was enrolled in Bloc & Thinkful but sadly their curriculum was poorly formatted and far too structured to be useful to me. This is simply my opinion.... Read More

After months of searching I started reading about Devschool and how highly the school was recommended was from previous students who graduated the program. I spoke with Jim numerous times and he was always patient when it came to answering my questions and concerns, and I was impressed with how Devschool was not the typical “Big Box” outfit.

Unfortunately because of an unexpected personal life-crisis I had to drop out of the program before I was able to onboard due to my hectic schedule. And even though Devschool has a standard pro-rated refund minus some non-refundable portion, Jim made a personal execption for me due to my circumstances and refunded the full amount since I needed that money to get out of my crisis. He delivered on the school's promise for an "Insanely Human Experience" and then some!

When in the future I can enroll in an online coding school I will sign up for their program again, no hesitation. Devschool rocks!

Comment
    2/11/2016
  • Meghan Holden
  • Full Stack Web Developer Bootcamp Program

Overall Score

Curriculum

Job Support

"Great Course"

I was one of Jim's first official Devschool students back in April of 2015 after having been his customer for several months previously while I attended Dev Bootcamp in NYC. I found that even after 10 hours a day at school learning and hacking, I was... Read More

Through Codementor, I found Jim and made him my long term mentor through months 2-3 of Dev Bootcamp and I ended up getting a partial refund at DBC and joined the brand new (then) Devschool. I really liked how the curriculum wasn't written out ahead of time when what I wanted to build and learn was anything but static.

I would recommend Devschool to anyone who wants to cut through the cruft and really, really learn the skills they will need to build modern web applications.

Comment

Devschool's average rating is 3.41 out of 5.0 based on 11 review(s).

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