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Learn to Code…At Boot Camp

File this under “news to make law students cry:” a program called App Academy promises to teach its students programming in just nine weeks. Even better, it won’t charge you tuition until you’ve secured a job. Wired reports:

App Academy in San Francisco (and now New York) offers a 9-week, 90-hours-a-week boot camp to turn programming novices into code jockeys. They just graduated their second class last Friday. Of the fifteen students to graduate from the first class, fourteen have found jobs, co-founder Kush Patel says. Typical annual salary, he says: more than $80,000. […]

Though most students so far have been college graduates, they’re coming into the program with a range of life experience. The average age is 28, and the classes include many mid-career switchers as well as recent grads. Most of the first class was unemployed when they came in and, Patel says, couldn’t have afforded a big up-front tuition payment: They were “people who didn’t have enough capital to invest in themselves.” Finding a job for most after the class was over, Patel says, took an average of four weeks.

But this is no MOOC—it’s a competitive program accepting less than 10% of its applicants. Thankfully there are plenty of similar outfits out there.

Dev BootCamp has a nearly identical premise: nine weeks of intensive training to turn you into a web developer. offers a three month paid internship program and job placement assistance. And there are plenty of resources out there to help you get a handle on the basics of programming before applying to these kinds of hyper-competitive schools. Codeacademy teaches the basics for free, and does so interactively. Or you could find programming-for-dummies books at your local bookstore.

As the higher-ed bubble bursts, we’re seeing more non-conventional approaches to teaching real and in-demand skills. Grad schools watch out: You have some competition.

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