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Anonymous The Pros Coding boot camps are, relative to universities, much cheaper. App Academy is actually free to participate in (although there is a $5,000 deposit you can get back upon course completion, as well as an 18% cut of your first-year salary that App Academy takes), while Dev Bootcamp costs around $14,000 for the whole course. Hack Reactor, which is one of the most expensive ones, is $17,780 for its 12-week program. Compared to the UC schools, which can cost around $30,000 per year, or private schools like Harvard, which can cost over $50,000 a year, coding boot camps have a serious financial edge. In this sense, coding boot camps also provide great second chances for people looking to move into different careers or better support themselves and their families. In addition, boot camps keep the entire experience relevant to the subject. Those who solely want to focus on programming can do just that, because that’s what the entire course is about. There are no general education requirements that you’d have to spend your time with, no extraneous courses to pull your focus away from programming like there are in college – in coding bootcamps, it’s all programming, all the time. Such an intense focus on the subject will surely help drill it into your head. The average college student probably barely remembers what they learn in a semester when finals come around because they’re cramming all different kinds of subjects into their head, but if you’re just working on one thing all the time, at some point, it might just imprint itself into your head for good. The intensity of coding bootcamps is also unrivaled. Many bootcamps structure their programs like demanding full-time jobs, asking students to spend at least 40 hours a week in class and studying. Dev Bootcamp takes this approach a couple further, calling for its students to spend 12 hours a day, six days a week, on learning how to program. That’s a cumulative 72 hours spent every week on coding for a bootcamp that’s 9-12 weeks long, with very specialized, direct attention and instruction from teachers in relatively small classes. Compare that to universities, which can have class sizes spanning in the hundreds, a disinterested lecturer clicking through PowerPoint slides, and classes only a couple hours per week, and you can see just how intensely coding bootcamps drill their instructions into their students. The Cons It seems like many of the people drawn to bootcamps are those who either have a little bit of programming experience but did not get a degree in computer science, or those who have found their majors unemployable and want a shot at bettering their lives in a booming industry. However, can you truly become a good programmer in three months? There’s a reason why universities as we know them haven’t changed much: they’re a tried-and-true system. Coding bootcamps love to talk about getting their students into prestigious Silicon Valley or Bay Area tech companies, but the majority of people who work for them are graduates of four-year colleges. Can coding bootcamps like Dev Bootcamp truly emulate the excellence of the programs at MIT, Stanford, or Berkeley? Do they faithfully compress and replicate the experience of hundreds of hours slaving away in labs, working on side projects and group projects, and enrolling in a variety of courses that expand your palette as a programmer? Furthermore, even if coding bootcamps were objectively of the same quality as four-year computer science programs, but just shorter, the significantly decreased timespan should be a serious warning flag to those who aren’t absolutely committed to becoming programmers. Programming can be a difficult, bumpy ride even stretched over four years, so squishing it into three months, or even a year, can result in some serious burnout or exhaustion to say the least. Finally, if you don’t really want to learn web development, bootcamps probably aren’t for you. Going through this comprehensive list of coding bootcamps, you’ll find that the bootcamps seem to be almost entirely oriented towards web dev, with some bootcamps teaching you how to do mobile development. If you’d rather be a software engineer, or work on things like operating systems and network security, then you should probably turn elsewhere.