A Deep Dive Into App Academy’s 24-Week Software Engineering Immersive Bootcamp

The tech industry is, by and large, the fastest growing industry in the world. If working in tech is a career goal of yours, consider a bootcamp to help you get there. 

Not just any bootcamp, though — the most respected bootcamp in the industry.

This is App Academy’s 24-week software engineering immersive program. In 6 months, you’ll build a foundational knowledge of industry-recognized programming languages then use them to create stunning portfolio pieces that will land you a job as a web developer.

Not only can you learn an entire new trade and enter the workforce for a job in coding within 6 months, but it will cost you nothing until you’re hired (and earning over $50,000).

That’s right. $0. 

App Academy pioneered the income share agreement, or ISA, in the bootcamp industry and has been offering it since 2012. An ISA means that rather than charge you upfront, we only charge a percentage of your salary after you’re hired. This model means a lot to us not only because we believe that everyone should have access to a world-class education, but we believe schools should be held accountable to the outcomes of their students. We’ll get more into that later.

All that to say, there’s tons of opportunity for students who want to build beautiful, dynamic web pages and apps. App Academy’s 24-week immersive program takes you from having zero experience in coding to being competitive in the tech job market within 6 months.

Half a year to a new career? We’re serious about it. Our alumni can back us there.

Let’s dive a little deeper into what you can expect from App Academy, your cohort, your instructors, and your fellow alumni upon course completion.

The growing tech industry

Our world is officially tech-forward. That means tech companies — and the jobs within them — are only going to continue to grow. In 2019 alone, web developers ranked as the third-highest paying job in the U.S. across major cities like New York, Boston, Seattle, and San Francisco. The average salary for entry-level jobs clocked in at just over $100,000.

Not all of our students reside in big cities though (we’ve had students from all 50 states), but the average first job offer for our online graduates is usually somewhere around $85,000. Bear in mind that this takes into account location, prior experience, and the size of the company.

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Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/louiscolumbus/2019/04/10/the-highest-paying-entry-level-jobs-in-tech-this-year/?sh=4db859a23fbc 

Available to all students remotely

Our 24-week immersive program is available to all students, regardless of location. 

The program runs Monday through Friday, 8am – 5pm PST, making this class accessible to students in all U.S. time zones. Find the next available course dates here.

Program tuition and payment options

We understand that cost is a huge factor in determining the type of education you pursue. Coding bootcamps are significantly cheaper than four-year collegiate programs or other forms of technical education and they tend to get you into the job market much faster.

Source: https://www.lifehacker.com.au/2015/04/will-a-programming-boot-camp-help-me-get-a-coding-job/ 

Another way that App Academy is different from more traditional education models is that we don’t charge you any tuition until you’re hired. Our success is dependent on you landing a job, so that goal drives every decision we make and how we design the program to ensure your own success. This includes everything from how we structure our curriculum to the support you get throughout your App Academy experience, to the types of companies we partner with. 

In pairing tuition with outcomes, both App Academy and our students are aligned on incentives. Other coding bootcamps or colleges bring students in knowing that this course material can be difficult to train successfully, and students struggle both with the subject matter and finding a lucrative job after graduation but they’re still charged tuition for their studies. We recognize this at App Academy, so our Income Share Agreement (ISA) program was designed to combat this.

We know that immersive programming courses — ours included — can feel like big financial and personal risks. By sharing that risk with you, App Academy ensures that your commitment is met with ours because our success is not mutually exclusive.

Something else that’s important to us is that not only do we help you land your first job, but that you succeed in that job over the long term. Based on our alumni surveys, graduates can expect that their earnings will increase over time (significantly). Most of our alumni note making a net gain in their first year of employment, and they continue to enjoy salary increases and promotions within three years because of the opportunity to move up as an engineer within organizations. Other forms of education like traditional four-year universities often require students to take out hefty loans that take years to pay off. Going through App Academy’s 24-week immersive program, on the other hand, actually makes you money within one year.

Simply put, we want you to succeed. It’s our goal to strip away the barriers that the modern system puts around quality, relevant education that can place you in a new career quickly. These are our tuition plans and options for paying them:

ISA (Income Share Agreement): You don’t pay any money to start the program — that means $0 down and $0 in tuition. Once you graduate, earn a job, and begin earning an annual salary of at least $50,000, you’ll begin paying back that tuition in monthly installments equal to 15% of your monthly income. You’ll continue making these payments for 36 months or until you reach the ISA maximum of $31,000 (whichever comes first).

To be eligible for ISA tuition, you must be at least 20 years of age or have a bachelor’s degree, reside in the US, and have permanent work authorization via citizenship or green card.

You will also be responsible for supporting yourself during the duration of the program and the subsequent job search after graduation up to 12 months without working.

Upfront: $20,000 upfront but with no income-based repayment: You’ll pay $5,000 within 7 days of being accepted and $15,000 at least one week prior to your start date.

Applicable skills you’ll learn in the 24-week course

In 24 weeks, you’ll have a working foundation of applicable coding skills used industry-wide and you’ll use them to build a portfolio that will attract top companies.

Your day-to-day will include hands-on coursework, applicable lesson plans, and collaborations with classmates and mentors. It’s important to us to regularly update curriculum, too, so you’re getting the most relevant topics and technology available. In fact, everything we teach in the virtual classroom is determined by the job market and what the latest teaching methods and coursework should be to help our students land their dream jobs.

From fundamental coding practices to data management, you’ll know everything you need to start a fruitful career in coding after just 24 weeks. So what do these skills look like and how will you use them? Here’s what we teach (and why):

Python.

Python is an object-oriented programming language, meaning it’s a code language that organizes software design around data (or “objects”) over function or logic. Pros really like Python’s easy-to-learn syntax because it reduces the cost of routine maintenance.

It’s also noted for how it increases productivity because the code can often be reused multiple times.

You’re familiar with Python-built apps if you use Instagram, Pinterest, Spotify, Dropbox, Uber, or Reddit!

Javascript.

Javascript has been around since 1995. It’s nearly as old as the Internet itself (at least, the Internet we know today).

Developers use Javascript to create dynamic web or app content. If something moves, scrolls, changes on your page, or if you have other interactive elements like autocomplete text or slideshows, it’s created using this language. Once you’ve coded the back-end framework of your app or website, Javascript is used on the front-end to jazz it up. It makes your project way more fun — and interesting to use.

Google, YouTube, Amazon, Facebook, and eBay all use Javascript, so we teach it because it’s highly unlikely that your app or website won’t have any sort of dynamic features. It really is a key part of the development process.

HTML & CSS.

You hear “front-end” and “back-end” in reference to the types of developers and the “side” of a website or app they work on. HTML and CSS are front-end elements that help you structure a page or an app — things like layout and formatting. Before you do anything cool with Javascript or implement user interface design, you’ll use HTML and CSS to build the foundation.

HTML (hypertext markup language) and CSS (cascading style sheets) are not actually programming languages, though, despite the name. They’re the foundation that allows you to implement programming languages within them (like Python).

Other notable skills.

Learning code and implementing your skills on course projects is just the beginning. These are some other crucial skills you’ll learn during your 24-week course that will be helpful when you enter the workforce:

  • Version control with Git to record changes to specific files overtime to see how they’ve changed
  • Use a database language like SQL to store, manage, and manipulate data within a database management system
  • Create two-way communication between a browser or user and a server using WebSocket
  • Front-end data management and user interface rendering with skills like React and Redux
  • Prep for interviews and know how to answer frequently asked questions about your experience and your portfolio

Day-to-day life

A combination of morning lectures, afternoon partner work, and built-in homework time makes up a typical day in this 24-week immersive program. Though this class is virtual and exists solely online, the experience is just as immersive as it would be in person. We use collaborative technology to ensure that you get as much face time as needed with the rest of your cohort and your instructors. 

Your day will typically start with a lecture that covers fundamental skills, new languages, and use cases to help you apply what you’re learning. You can actually follow the lecture at your own pace, but a live Q&A follows the session so you can ask questions and get clarification. After a lunch break, you’ll return and work on an in-class project with another student in your cohort, which will help you gain experience working with other developers. Plus, it’s important to network with other future alumni to make meaningful connections.

Finally, you’ll round out the day by reviewing your mini-projects as well as covering any questions you have from the lecture in a round-table setting so you can hear how other groups tackled their assignments and get insight from different folks. 

Graduation & employment

At the end of the course, you’ll spend most of your time dedicated to refining your portfolio, polishing your resume, crafting your pitch, and creating an online presence so recruiters will notice you. While you’ve received a stellar education, your goal is ultimately to get a job. 

Within that portfolio, you can expect to build at least one (if not multiple) of the following:

  • React Javascript project
  • Python project
  • Full stack Javascript/Python project
  • Full stack capstone project

App Academy is dedicated to supporting you throughout your job search by pairing you with a Career Coach. It’s a 1:1 relationship, so your Coach is only focused on helping you land a career. If you want to learn more about that process and how our coaches support our students, check out this article from Career Karma.

There are tons of opportunities for new programmers in all types of verticals, industries, and locations. Our focus is to help you land a full-time opportunity, not just an internship or part-time gig.

Once your portfolio and resume are packaged up nicely and you feel confident in speaking to them, your Coach will help you through mock interviews, negotiating your salary, and reviewing other projects so you can speak to them in a professional setting. This is helpful to understand where your strengths lie so you can continue to implement these skills and fine-tune others. At this point, you’ll be meeting with your Career Coach on a weekly basis.

One thing to note, however: Career Coaches are not recruiters. Rather, they’re educators, and their job is to help you understand what hiring managers for these types of roles like to see. It’s still the student’s responsibility to apply to jobs, take interviews, and continue to network in order to find a job proactively.

The best part of being an App Academy alumni is gaining access to our alumni network. It reaches far and wide, and most of our students find that making connections within the network actually helps them land jobs at top companies quicker than others. This is a resource you won’t find anywhere else, and all alumni (that remain in good standing) have access to this valuable group of people.

Other considerations about the 24-Week Immersive

Time commitment.

We want to set clear expectations ahead of time so all prospective students understand the commitment this 6-month course entails.

This class runs from 8am-5pm PST, Monday through Friday. It’s not possible to hold a traditional job during these hours. Select students may be eligible for a living stipend through our financial partner, Climb.

You can also expect to complete homework assignments after your daily classroom time, and weekend study may be necessary for those who need additional time.

On average, students spend between 60-100 hours per week in class and working on supplemental assignments.

We know that sounds like a lot, because it is! Keep in mind, though, that after just 24 weeks, you’ll have the foundation needed to launch a career in web development and software engineering with the portfolio to boot.

Conclusion

In just 24 short weeks (and trust us, the time flies), you’ll be ready to change your career and your life. It’s by far the most impactful program for developing new generations of engineers, and we’re excited at the prospect of you joining us. If you’re ready to get started, apply here. Check out our FAQ for more information about minimum requirements and expectations around campus culture & student experience.

Currently, our 16-week immersive program is also available to all remote students. Formerly, it was only available to students who could attend our campuses in New York or California, but with COVID precautions in place, we have extended it to student online. To learn more about that program, click here. For a quick overview on the similarities between the 16-week and 24-week programs, click here.

Don’t just take it from us, though: check out Course Report for honest, unfiltered reviews of our programs, teaching staff, and job placement capabilities.

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Written by Courtney Grace

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