Choosing the right coding education is a big decision. After all, your future career in tech depends on it. You want to make sure you’ve chosen a tech and coding school that will actually prepare you to do the work, not just memorize code. But, you also want to choose a program that will be a good fit for your current schedule and lifestyle needs. Like we said, it’s a tough decision.
Before you stress yourself out while weighing all the options, take a look at our guide to get an idea of what kind of program will be right for you. Here’s the tea on full-time coding schools vs. part-time bootcamps.
The Pros & Cons of Full-Time Schools
Full-time coding schools can vary in length but are generally between 3 to 12 months. These programs sometimes offer the option of on-campus or online classes, which make them appealing to a variety of learners.
Full-time coding programs like our 12-month Software Engineering course offer an in-depth, collaborative learning experience. Students are encouraged to move beyond code memorization and instead truly grasp the material through project-based learning. In addition to offering a deeper educational experience, since students spend more time in the classroom in full-time programs, they’re able to develop and build upon their skills quickly.
Full-time programs also usually come with career development curriculum and a network of hiring partners, so students already have job support and industry connections even before they graduate. The 40-hour weekly time commitment also allows for deeper connection and more fulfilling and effective collaboration between classmates.
Unfortunately for some, full-time programs require a greater time commitment than part-time programs. They’re also usually more expensive (though we think the investment is worth it). Our full-time programs at Kenzie run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday so it truly is a big commitment — one which can’t simultaneously accommodate a full-time job.
The Pros & Cons of Part-Time Bootcamps
Part-time coding bootcamps can also vary in length but generally fall between 6-34 weeks. These programs often offer the option of flexible scheduling, which make them a great option for disciplined learners with busy schedules.
Part-time bootcamps can be an excellent choice for those who are just interested in coding as a hobby. They’re also great for those who want to learn the basics but don’t have much time to dedicate to a full-time program just yet. And of course, one of the best things about part-time programs is you’ll still have time to dedicate to a full-time job, which means cash won’t be an issue for you over the course of your program.
Many part-time programs just aren’t immersive enough to give you the knowledge you’ll need to kickstart a tech career. They can encourage code memorization, instead of inspiring deeper learning in students. If you end up in a part-time program like this, you will have wasted time and money on a piece of paper and a limited toolkit. And, you’ll likely struggle to find a job if your skills can’t translate or you don’t have a window to the workforce to network effectively. Of course, there are a bevy of amazing part-time programs, so just be sure to do your research and read alumni reviews before you pick one.
Ultimately, the choice is yours when it comes to choosing the right program for you. After all, you know you best. Those who aren’t quite ready to take on a big commitment may want to play with some free coding programs before making a decision.