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General Assembly vs App Academy

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General Assembly and App Academy both provide online and campus-based coding bootcamp options. App Academy has locations in New York City and San Francisco and offers App Academy Open which allows those interested in coding to try it for free. General Assembly has over 30 locations in six countries and provides graduates with alumni and professional partnership networks. App Academy offers courses in three programming languages: JavaScript, Ruby on Rails, and React/Redux. General Assembly has courses in JavaScript, HTML, JavaScript, Python, SQL, C#, C++, PHP, and Ruby on Rails. App Academy's bootcamps last 16-24 weeks, while General Assembly’s last 10–13 weeks. Both programs offer an income share agreement.

General Assembly App Academy
Overall Rating
Courses Software Engineering Immersive, Software Engineering Immersive - Flex, User Experience Design Immersive, Data Science Immersive, Data Analytics, Data Science Part Time, Digital Marketing, +6 more.
Front-End Web Development, Product Management, Python Programming, React Development, User Experience Design Part Time, Visual Design
Bootcamp Prep, Software Engineer Track: In-Person, Software Engineer Track: Online, +-4 more.
Software Engineer Track: Online
Cost $2,800 - $15,950 $2,999-$20,000
Location(s) Online, Austin, Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, Melbourne, Providence, New York, San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Monica, Seattle, Sydney, Detroit, Houston, Miami, Minneapolis, Raleigh, Paris, Toronto, Denver, Singapore, Orlando, Scottsdale Online, San Francisco, New York City

General Assembly

What is General Assembly?

General Assembly provides part-time and full-time classes with both online or campus-based options. With locations around the globe, students have access to an international network. General Assembly provides students with current skills and programs for in-demand careers like data science, software engineering, UX design, and more.

Highlights: Online courses are designed to accommodate a student's schedule, with classes lasting 10-13 weeks. With 30 different campuses and online options, General Assembly supports international networking through an alumni network, connecting graduates across the globe with potential tech careers by working with 19,000+ hiring partners. Course offerings are designed to fulfill best practices and meet market demand. The curriculum is designed by a large team of instructional designers, subject matter experts, and education product managers.

Financing/scholarship options: General Assembly aims to offer payment programs for every type of student. They offer financing options such as installment plans, loans, and a deferred tuition option, and their Social Impact team works with veterans and underrepresented populations to identify potential funding sources and scholarship opportunities.

What makes General Assembly unique?

In addition to coursework, General Assembly offers many networking opportunities such as workshops and events with industry leaders. Big companies that have hired General Assembly graduates include Google, Microsoft, and IBM.

Go to General Assembly's full page

App Academy

What is App Academy?

App Academy offers both on-campus and online programs. The curriculum is developed with industry leaders from top tech companies, so students learn skills that are valued in the job market. Prospective students can explore coding and if it's right for them through the free resource, App Academy Open.

Highlights: Students may enroll in either a 24-week full-time Software Engineering track online or a 16-week Software Engineering track on campus. Subjects include Ruby on Rails, JavaScript, and React/Redux. As these courses are full-time and cohort-based, accepted students are discouraged from having a job while completing App Academy's program.

Financing/scholarship assistance: App Academy is committed to increasing diversity in the tech industry, so their tuition model is based on income. Graduates are not required to pay tuition until they are hired. Additionally, some candidates from underrepresented populations may be awarded deposit assistance; those who opt for the deferred tuition option are still obligated to pay a deposit upfront.

What makes App Academy unique?

Individuals interested in applying are not required to have previous programming experience. While App Academy requires applicants to pass a coding challenge to be accepted, they also offer a two-week course called JumpStart to help candidates prepare.

Go to App Academy's full page

General Assembly Reviews

    11/26/2020
  • Anonymous
  • Software Engineering Immersive
  • Graduated: 2020

Overall

Curriculum

Job Support

"I could never recommend GA."

TLDR,
The bottom line is I could never recommend GA or their software engineering immersive because the course for me was just teachers and all running around like chickens with there heads cut off.

Pros,
- You meet other classmates doing the same thing... Read More

Cons,
- Very little support
- No real hiring potential by going through GA vs anywhere else (Like other students got a job at said company and the employers thought it was a great hire and would love to hire more GA graduates, thats not really much of a thing)
- Teachers don't answers questions. (big one in my opinion because I joined the bootcamp to learn and understand what's going on not just be some attack dog that can only do what's in front of them)
- Recordings of the class were all deleted two months after the course when they explicitly said they would up for 6 months.
- All the teachers are burnouts from other parts of the industry and it's not a good atmosphere
- Constant surveys you have to fill out for them, 2-3+ a day sometimes.
- The class is only really 9 weeks long because 3 of those weeks are taken off to work on your own and make a project, were you get almost no help.
- Costs 15k
- Job support is pretty much non existent unless your have a specific question
- They say they don't do grades, but they do. They grade all your stuff like 9 out of 10 etc. and even one day in class a girl was having loads of problems with what we were going over so she asked for help and the teacher was just like na I have to go grade projects.
- Also the teachers are late a lot, have babies in class etc. (this was almost an everyday thing and maybe they're just not paying there employees enough if they can't afford babysitters?) and it just makes everything so much more stressful then it needs to be.

    11/23/2020
  • Juliane Rossi | Product Owner
  • Product Management
  • Graduated: 2020

Overall

Curriculum

Job Support

"Great material, awesome instructors!"

General Assembly created a very easy-to-follow workflow for the classes. It was a very 'hands-on' approach, where we could put into practice all we learned. A very good comprehensive course, yet easy to follow. The instructors were phenomenal! Since they... Read More

App Academy Reviews

    11/12/2020
  • Anonymous | Software Engineer
  • Software Engineer Track: In-Person
  • Graduated: 2020

Overall

Curriculum

Job Support

"Tech is a second gold rush, and these folks sell shovels"

I attended App Academy after graduating college with a degree in Ecology and working in the US Forest Service for three years. Basically, I had no technical experience whatsoever outside of playing video games and experimenting with basic coding in the... Read More

App Academy has a pretty solid curriculum, and while you could conceivably learn it all on your own it's much more efficient to do it through them. While most of the TA's are recent A/a grads, the cohort leads are usually experienced engineers and can answer your in-depth technical questions. I'm pleased to say there is a decent focus on true CS concepts rather than just how to use the trending tools of the industry, which is really what counts in the job search. Specific languages and tools go out of style rapidly, but if you can internalize the core concepts of CS and learn how to pick up new things on the fly, you will be able to apply to a wide range of jobs and have a chance of passing the interviews.

Pair programming is one of the most infuriating experiences imaginable, but I will say that it is the secret sauce that makes this bootcamp work. Left to you own devices you will likely not be motivated or focused enough to work through the whole curriculum on your own, but when paired with another person all day it makes sure that both partners are on task and making good progress. I will say I love pair programming when two people can just freeform work on the project together and throw out the driver/navigator roles, and I encourage you to suggest this to your partners if both of you are on board.

I would also say that while the A/a model works really well right now, it is definitely a crapshoot whether or not it will work for you or in the future. Right now tech is a bloated whale of high paying coding jobs that could be conceivably had with just 4-6 months of rigorous training, but I suspect that like the gold rush this will come to an end. Most of these jobs are for startups which are not profitable and are funded by VC cash. While I'm not an economist, I have heard from people who are that the tech industry is likely overvalued and may crash in the same way that finance did in 2008. Just be wary, and have realistic expectations. At the time of this review I would 100% recommend App Academy as a viable option to a tech career, but if you are reading this a year or later down the line I would do my research into the state of the industry and bootcamp placements before registering. If you are older (say, 35+) or lack a degree you may also struggle to find a job as many companies will automatically weed you out for not having a degree or discriminate against you for being an older candidate. Ditto if you are not a citizen or green card holder. While I and many of my friends found jobs within 3-6 months of finishing the program (some even sooner), I also met many people who fit into the above categories who ended up searching for upwards of a year.

The one place where App Academy really shines is the job search. This to me is where 90% of the value comes from. Anyone can learn how to code on their own, but I can honestly say without my dedicated and talented coaches I would have been dead in the water. They teach you things that you can't easily learn off the internet, things you wouldn't even think to google, and the job search formula works, at least in this current economy. Indeed, I did App Academy because I didn't think I could find a job in my old field (ecology), but after going through the job search curriculum I realize I total could have if I knew what I know now about job searching. Lastly, I'd like to mention that my first coach was a dud and pretty useless, but after he "left" App Academy I was assigned to two new coaches who were total rockstars. My point is your milage may vary, but for the most part I would say the coaching staff is solid.

Finally, read the fine print. The ISA money-back guarentee only applies if you finish the program and don't find a job after a year, and even then you will more than likely have to sign a job search extension adding extra months before you are eligible to get your money back. This is due to the fact that your projects and job search materials will likely not be done by the time you graduate and you will need to spend additional time working on these, during which time you are not technically job searching. Make sure that you are able to support yourself being fully unemployed for a period of 17ish months (4 months curriculum + 13 months for the search) before you start the program if you want to be safe. Of course you could just send it anyway, but you are running a risk as if you run out of money and have to go back to work you will still owe A/a $28K. Also, plan on moving to a tech hub city (most likely SF or NY) if you do not already live in one, these are the places where companies will hire bootcampers. I was lucky enough to score a remote job, but that is also mostly due to COVID. You may also be able to do so but again it is a crapshoot.

Overall, I would recommend App Academy but only in an artifically inflated and booming tech economy.

    11/11/2020
  • Jourdan Ooi | Software Engineer
  • Software Engineer Track: In-Person
  • Graduated: 2020

Overall

Curriculum

Job Support

"Strenuous and at times annoying but in the end worth it."

Pros:
-Great curriculum taught by competent and (mostly) empathetic instructors who want you to succeed.
-If you can pass the curriculum as well as are giving a true "best of yourself" effort then you will learn to program.
-Resources are plentiful during... Read More

Cons:
- During job search technical resources are very much limited and watered down compared to help you received during curriculum.
- Although there are few, I did encounter instructors that I felt were chosen for their ability to program rather than their ability to teach and program.
- Terrible system of conduct and accountability. There has to be a better way to handle plagiarism. Everyone who programs grabs info from stackoverflow etc.

Person thinking

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