Coding Bootcamp or Computer Science Degree: Decisions, decisions.

Laptop with hands typing code

Coding Bootcamp vs. bachelors degree: choosing the right one for you.

According to Course Report, The vast majority of graduates of coding boot camps are finding full-time employment, and most of the graduates surveyed say they’ve been employed in a job requiring the technical skills learned at boot camp, with an average salary increase of 50.5% or $23,724. The median salary of a boot camp grad is $70,698.

Coding boot camps are making web development jobs (dream jobs for many) more accessible than ever, making it within reach for people who thought a career in coding was never going to happen. Yes, coding boot camps, short programming/coding courses such as our Web Developer program, are structured to meet the needs of students who can’t take four years to finish a degree because they are already employed, have families, or simply want to get into the career of your dreams sooner rather than later.

If one or more of the following categories sound like you, choosing a Bootcamp may be the right choice for your future:

You are currently working and already have a degree

If you are thinking about making a career change after years of experience and studies, the idea of going back to school may seem unattractive. That may be the reason why coding schools offer programming suitable for adults rather than teenagers, yet they welcome in their classrooms a wide age range of students. Course Report states that the average bootcamper student is reaching 30, with a degree and a few years of work experience.

Student loans? No thanks!

Student debt is 1.5 trillion dollar industry and rising. The average graduate in 2017, left college with around $40,000 in debt, and this number continues to grow. The reason why more people these days are questioning is probably the way the system is set up and for some, taking large student loans is definitely out of the question.

For aspiring programmers who are already strapped with student loans from a former degree, taking out more debt for a second degree could understandably be a deterrent. For high school grads weighing whether to attend a formal degree program or go to coding school, the prospect of graduating sooner and with less debt than their peers could be a competitive edge.

Coding school comes at a fraction of the cost of a university degree, which makes financing a bootcamp education without loans much easier. While 70% of bachelor students graduate with debt, only about 25% of coding school grads do.

4 Years in school are out of the question.

Putting your life on pause for four years and dedicating yourself to full-time studies is simply not possible for everyone. For those who are parents, need to be working full-time to support themselves and/or others, or simply can’t spend four more years in school, coding schools may be the better fit.

With a lean curriculum and fast-paced learning environment, the majority of bootcampers graduate in about 6 months. That’s the equivalent of a single semester at a college or university!

Because coding schools are more flexible and accessible to diverse life situations, their student bodies also tend to be more diverse than your typical university CS department. Women made up only 14% of graduating CS majors in 2015 but 36% of boot camp grads. Similarly, other minorities made up only 10% of CS majors but 25% of boot camp grads.

 Codding Bootcamps vs. a degree in Computer Science.

Coding Bootcamp vs Computer Science Infographic

Coding Bootcamp vs Computer Science Infographic


Ultimately? It’s up to you. But do your research. 

When it comes to choosing a program that may be the key to changing (or improving) your career and your future, there are many factors that need to be weighed against the decision of coding school vs. a four year degree in computer science. In addition to considering the price, time commitment, and your own life situation, the quality of the program should be among the most important factors in your decision (whether is a boot camp program or not). Which coding languages you’d like to learn, which corner of the industry you’d like to end up in, and what kind of experience your instructors bring to the table should play a decisive role in the institution you choose.

Choosing the best option according to your career ambitions may be filled with uncertainties, but know one thing for sure. It’s important that you are going to enjoy the program, and live every second of that process where the bootcamp program is helping you get ahead on your career and helping you build a great portfolio. Inform yourself as much as you can, and don’t lose sight of your career goals. But whether you choose to go the traditional route and enroll in a college or university CS program, or you take intensive courses at a coding boot camp, one thing is clear: the future looks bright for boys and girls who can code. No matter what.

Special thanks to Alex from What The Host who created this cool infographic where he compares both worlds. Thank you for sharing his valuable information with us!

Web Developer Program at TechLaunch Miami

Our Web Developer program is designed to be finished in less than a year. By the end of the program, each student will have their own portfolio full of web applications, something which university graduates lack and employers desperately seek. Interested? Read more here

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