Learning To Code Online

Examining Some Benefits of an Online, Mentor Driven Bootcamp

Online coding bootcamps often receive criticism; Bootcoder points out some of the benefits of an online coding bootcamp, with some input from Jack Stanley of The Tech Academy, a coding bootcamp with an online mentor-driven component.

Online Coding with Mentor

Coding bootcamps are some of the most innovative ways to learn, and are helping address the tech crunch that is being experienced all over the world. In the world of coding bootcamps there are three types of bootcamp worth mentioning: the in-person, the online, and the hybrid (a combination of online and in-person). Each model offers its own benefits; this article will discuss some of the benefits of an online coding bootcamp. This article is not intended to say that online or in-person coding bootcamps are better, but rather to point out the benefits of the online bootcamp.

One big critique of online coding courses is that you don't have a teacher. Having a mentor when you are learning to code is perhaps the single most useful way to learn efficiently. A mentor, whether it is a friend who looks over your code every now and then, or a professional developer who is part of a training program, can teach you best practices, help you debug quickly, point out common mistakes, and keep you motivated.

The Tech Academy, based in Portland, OR is a coding bootcamp that focuses on teaching .NET, JavaScript, C#, Python, HTML/CSS, and SQL. The Tech Academy offers both an online and and in-person track; the online course is mentor driven. We asked Jack Stanley, Co-Founder at The Tech Academy, how mentoring plays a role in his coding bootcamp.

Jack responded that “Mentoring is absolutely essential to The Tech Academy's teaching model.” Of course there is a difference between an in-person and an online coding bootcamp, but the gap is closed when the online mentors function in a similar way to the in-person teachers. The Tech Academy “have Instructors on the floor to help in-person students through. The same care is taken for our online students. We have a fully dedicated team of staff to service remote students.” Thus, if the mentors are there to help students online, it can speed up their learning process dramatically.

Another large benefit for some people when seeking to attend a coding bootcamp is that they don't have to move. The Tech Academy has students all over the world, and for many relocation is nearly impossible. For these students, attending a bootcamp online is a way to avoid having to pay relocation expenses such as flight, housing, visa, etc. Also, if a student doesn't have to relocate, he or she is able to keep the same friends and family nearby.

Furthermore, many online coding bootcamps offer a flexible structure, since they are not confined by classroom space. For example, the Tech Academy offers part-time and full-time options, so students are able to go at their own pace. Many have held a job while attending the bootcamp part-time virtually. This allows people who already have a good stream of income to continue earning while learning.

There are many benefits to attending a coding bootcamp, such as increased salary, increased speed of hiring, and greater job satisfaction. Online bootcamps are just one way of learning to code, but if the structure of an online coding bootcamp fits your lifestyle, perhaps you should consider attending one!