I completed the Kickstart Coding backend programming module and in 8 weeks, we covered a lot. They have the most up-to-date full-stack curriculum (python and react-focused), comprehensive didactic structure, and impact-oriented mission of inclusivity,... Read More
The full-stack program is divided into two sequential modules: backend programming for 8 weeks and front-end programming for the next 8 weeks.
Prior to the actual lectures, Kickstart gave us a pre-work assignment to get familiarized with basic computer programming terminologies/concepts. We had to set-up accounts in various online channels such as github, heroku, stack overflow, mattermost, live syllabus, and other social media accounts. We conducted brief research on the job market for coders, principles behind open-source / free software, and basic coding concepts (i.e. html/css/python).
Curriculum for Backend Module:
The program provided a comprehensive foundation of backend web development and core programming concepts including Python, Django, Bootstrap, HTML, CSS, Object-Oriented Programming (OOP), Model-View-Controller Framework (MVC), Command Line Interface (CLI), Graphical User Interface (GUI), Application Programming Interface (API), Servers, Create-Read-Update-Delete (CRUD API), Pipenv, Virtualenv, Jinja2, Modules, Templating, Forms, Automated Testing, Postgresql, SQL, Git, Bash, Github, Heroku.
Live Lectures, Live Exercises, and individual Homework for Backend Module:
Once classes have begun, the pace became really fast and rigorous. For each class, there were assigned pre-class readings and activities to prepare us for the live lectures and live coding exercises. Each lecture is recorded and we have the opportunity to review them at our own time. Each week, there were individual homework projects and pop quiz. I learned so much when I applied the concepts and exercises into real homework projects utilizing various programming methods every week. I built both a static and dynamic responsive web apps using coding tools such as Python, Bash, HTML, CSS, Jinja2, Templating, and Bootstrap.
Capstone Group Project for Backend Module:
The capstone group project enabled us to employ new skills learned in backend programming. We utilized Python, Django, HTML, CSS, and identified appropriate APIs to collaboratively build an app from ground-up using GitHub and Heroku collaborative platforms.
The Kickstart Coding Team:
Kickstart Coding has a "lean-and-mean" and remarkable team composed of Michael, Mark, and Maddy. Most recently, they brought in Kevin as the academic success manager. They care about their students and are truly devoted to everyone's success.
Michael, the founder and lead instructor, is a Python guru with full of information. He's an open-source and free-software activist. He is very passionate about teaching and he came to class always prepared. He simplified the delivery of complicated computer science concepts and made the sessions lively and fun. He answered questions thrown at him with practical examples to make them more understandable. He always reminded us to never give up when a new concept gets tough as it is part of the learning process. I've learned so much from him in such a short time and he always made sure that everyone feels welcome regardless of anyone's background. He provided us with weekly review sheets enabling us to focus on the most important topics. His teammates, Mark and Maddy were always there to help us if there were blurry things that needed to be clarified. Mark, the associate instructor, was super patient and helped us tremendously during the review sessions. He gave us tips on how we can approach a problem to develop better solutions. Maddy, the Kickstart Coding teaching assistant, was always there to assist and help us to understand the project assignments.
The Kickstart Coding Team created an inclusive, accessible, diverse, and collaborative learning environment enabling us to push our capacity to learn new things. Aside from the technical training in backend programming, the key takeaways that I will remember are the methods and processes of developing solutions to coding problems and the ability to "learn how to learn" as a way of growing professionally in the tech industry. I am so glad that I took the leap to enroll at Kickstart Coding and I am grateful for the opportunities that this course has provided me. It is the most affordable, inclusive, and industry-attuned coding boot camp in the Bay Area. Thank you Kickstart Coding!