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October 13, 2021 - 6 minutes

Is a Coding Bootcamp Worth It?

Discover exactly what a coding bootcamp can do for you.

Juliette Carreiro - Tech Writer

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As our world becomes more intertwined with technology, many people are considering a career change to the tech sector because of its in-demand job market and for many, technology is an enticing field because you can start without previous experience and it’s a flexible market where diverse experiences and skills are valued. 

However, for those thinking of changing careers, enrolling in a university to complete a degree related to a computer science, software development, UI/UX design or any other tech field might not be an option; taking the traditional university route into tech can be cumbersome for some people who don’t have the time or financial means. As an alternative, many people wonder if joining a coding bootcamp is worth their time to transition careers. And regardless of where you are in your research, it's important to consider all your options. 

We’re here to answer your burning question: are coding bootcamps worth it? Take the time to read below and let us know what you think. 

Changing Careers

The first question you should ask yourself is if you really want to dedicate yourself to the tech field:

No matter what tech subjects you’re into, it’s important to fully understand why you want a full-time profession in tech. So before taking the leap, we recommend doing some low-cost or free online courses before enrolling in a program and making a long-term investment of time or money. You can explore topics in tech and learn on platforms like Udemy, Domestika, or Freecodecamp. 

How do I choose a career in technology?

Whether you want to learn how to design and code a website, build digital wireframes, the nitty gritty of data analytics, or learn about cybersecurity, the best way to know what subject area fits you best is to seek guidance. How? Let’s explore: 

  • You can use LinkedIn to connect with people who are in the fields you’re interested in, search in-demand job listings, and take notes on what skills they require. 

  • Remember to look for the salary ranges in your country based on different roles, to see what the return on investment will be when making the career change. 

  • Don’t be afraid to ask someone you know that’s in tech for advice! Talking to someone who is familiar with the industry or has completed the program you want to enroll in will help you get insights on what to expect on your new career journey.

There are over 10,000 Ironhack grads on LinkedIn that have shifted from careers as bartenders, marketers, artists, project managers, and more to become developers, UX/UI designers, data analysts or cybersecurity experts. 

What is a Tech Bootcamp Like?

In just 10 weeks (full-time) or 24 weeks (part-time), tech bootcamps are a quick way to make a career change, but you must have the time, dedication, and the right mindset to complete them; bootcamps are accelerated and intensive courses filled with hands-on projects. 

On the other hand, if you’re looking to learn theoretical topics in tech or you have several years to dedicate to your training, you can consider traditional university studies. But for the many people who don’t have the time to dedicate four years to a degree or the financial means, enrolling in a bootcamp is the most viable option.

What are bootcamp career services? 

Whether you choose an accelerated bootcamp or the theoretical university route, we encourage you to ask if they offer career assistance:

  • Some questions to consider asking bootcamps are “what is your job placement rate for graduates?” and “what kind of career support do students have once the course has finished?” 

  • Their answers will help you determine whether the return on investment will translate into the time and quality of employment opportunities. 

  • You can also ask about where their former students are working and get an idea of ​​how long it will take you to search–and find–work. 

  • Unlike university career departments, Ironhack career coaches give you dedicated 1-on-1 time, interview support, and job hunt assistance for up to one year post graduation.

  • Instead of mentoring thousands of students at once, Ironhack career coaches are mentoring approximately 30 at a time, making your career change a priority. 

What is the starting salary of a bootcamp grad?

The average salary for an Ironhack bootcamp graduate is around $55,000 and our students can usually find a job in about 6 months. And after 2-3 years of work experience, a bootcamp grad can expect a salary between $65,000 - $80,000, depending on your city and cost of living. Eventually, after more years and hard work, bootcamp grads can get into the six figure salary range pretty easily. 

How much does a bootcamp cost?

The price of a masters degree, undergraduate university education, and bootcamp varies between school and the type of training you are looking for. Generally, a Master's degree can range between $30,000 and $150,000 and a public undergraduate university degree can cost around $25,000. This price of traditional university education has left many students with massive student loan debt and no support after graduation. That is why there are many people who choose to study at a bootcamp instead of doing a master's degree or going to a university for four years. 

Since bootcamps cost around $12,500, it is a worthwhile investment in terms of both saved time and immediate access to the job market. In addition to knowing the tuition, you should also ask about the financing options made available by the different schools to meet the cost of your education. For example, at Ironhack, we offer a variety of payment options so students can finance their course, apply for scholarships, or take advantage of income share agreements. 

This is not your traditional education loan with compounding interest; these are options that don’t always exist in traditional education.

If you are looking to make a career change and are weighing your education options, the main variables to take into consideration are your time, financial investment, job market demand and your commitment to transitioning into a career in tech. 

At Ironhack, we offer intensive bootcamps in UX/UI Design, Web Development, Artificial Intelligence Engineering, Data Science and Machine Learning, DevOps and Cloud Computing, Data Analytics, and Cybersecurity. We also offer job support before, during, and after the bootcamp.

If you would like to learn more about our courses and how we can help you jumpstart a career in tech, explore our bootcamps and AI School offerings and see which interests you most. Then take your first step towards a tech career. 

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