Best Programming Bootcamps 2023

Considering a programming bootcamp but don't know how to choose which one? Start your search with our guide to the best computer programming bootcamps.
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You know laptops, tablets, and smartphones are computers. Maybe you've realized that your thermostat, dishwasher, and microwave are computer powered too.

But did you know researchers have created smart highways that allow railings and paint strips to communicate traffic patterns? And Nike and Adidas are researching shoe inserts that transmit performance data directly to an athlete's smartphone.

With more items powered by computers every year, computer programming skills are in demand. Curriculums at colleges and universities haven't caught up to that demand yet. Enter the programming bootcamp.

A programming bootcamp teaches the fundamentals of computer programming in a short but intense course. Some bootcamps are as short as 12 weeks, while others run 24 weeks.

Bootcamps strive to convert professionals into savvy programmers with more job opportunities and higher salaries in the tech field. With that in mind, they offer job search and career guidance as well as coding instruction.

To help your search, we've rounded up some of the best programming bootcamps out there.

What Is Computer Programming?

At its core, computer programming is a set of instructions a machine can follow. Those instructions can be basic, adding one plus one, or highly complex, such as those for virtual reality games.

Writing code is how programmers create software and tell the computer, or machine, what to do. Different coding languages work best for different styles of programming. Some of the most common coding languages include C++, Java, JavaScript, Python, R, and SQL.

Since many aspects of our lives rely on computers, computer programmers work in a variety of industries, including insurance, education, banking and finance, and management services.

Programming vs. Coding

Programming and coding are related, but not the same. Coding lives under the umbrella of programming. Code is the language a machine speaks while programming is everything else that helps it function, including web development and other skills.

Programming Bootcamps for You

Methodology

Bootcamp Ranking Guidelines

At BestColleges, we believe the best bootcamp is the one that fits your schedule, your learning needs, and your career aspirations. That's why we often present our recommendations in alphabetical order -- because the real best bootcamp is the bootcamp that's best for you.

Our Methodology

The Bootcamp Team at BestColleges has collected data for over 150 bootcamps to help you find the best bootcamp.

At BestColleges, we believe the best bootcamp is the one that fits your schedule, your learning needs, and your career aspirations. That's why we often present our recommendations in alphabetical order -- because the real best bootcamp is the bootcamp that's best for you.

At this time, our recommendation round-ups feature only immersive bootcamps designed to prepare students for job placement upon graduation.

To be included on our lists, bootcamps must meet the following criteria:

  • Must offer at least one bootcamp in the United States.
  • Must offer at least one bootcamp that is a minimum of 4 weeks long.
  • Must require at least 15 hours of work per week if the bootcamp is part time.
  • Must encourage at least 10 hours of work per week if the bootcamp is self-paced.

Pricing disclosure: The prices listed were collected from product websites in 2022. However, given the dynamic, fast-paced nature of the tech space, prices are subject to change throughout the year. To get the most up-to-date information about pricing, contact providers directly.

Methodology for Recommending Cheap Bootcamps:

  • The bootcamp must meet all of the general criteria listed above.
  • The bootcamp must cost less than $8,000 if it is offered full time, and less than $5,000 if it is offered part time. These numbers were chosen based on data collected by BestColleges in 2020 that determined the average cost of a coding bootcamp is $13,580.

Best Programming Bootcamps

Actualize

  • Location: Remote, Chicago
  • Program Cost Starting At: $15,900
  • Learning Format: In Person, Online
  • Time Commitment: Full-Time, Part-Time
  • Briefcase
    Career Services
  • Calendar
    Evening & Weekend Options

Actualize's coding bootcamp includes five weeks of pre-work, 12 weeks of live training, and post-graduation career support. If you don't live in the Chicago area, you can enroll in the online bootcamp with a day or night schedule. Online courses are held in real-time, with instructors and students virtually present.

Actualize hires expert programmers who are also qualified educators. It has also created a book on programming curriculums.

Visit Actualize Bootcamp . External link

App Academy

  • Location: Remote, New York, San Francisco
  • Program Cost Starting At: $16,000
  • Learning Format: In Person, Online
  • Time Commitment: Full-Time, Part-Time
  • Briefcase
    Career Services
  • Calendar
    Evening & Weekend Options
  • Cash
    Money-Back Guarantee
  • Cash
    Start For Free

App Academy is a popular coding bootcamp that offers in-person and online courses. In addition to their full-time software engineering program, they offer a prep course to introduce fundamentals.

This computer programming bootcamp covers many languages and tools, including JavaScript, Python, HTML, SQL, React, Node, and more.

Visit App Academy Bootcamp . External link

Epicodus

  • Location: Remote, Portland
  • Program Cost Starting At: $9,800
  • Learning Format: In Person, Online
  • Time Commitment: Full-Time, Part-Time
  • Briefcase
    Career Services
  • Calendar
    Evening & Weekend Options

The web and mobile development track at Epicodus begins with an introduction to programming followed by coursework in JavaScript, C#/.NET, and React. The bootcamp does not focus specifically on iOS or Android app-building tools.

Courses are structured around pair programming and hands-on coding activities rather than lectures. Epicodus also offers an internship program so that graduates can gain practical experience in the field.

Visit Epicodus Bootcamp . External link

Fullstack Academy

  • Location: Remote
  • Program Cost Starting At: $19,910
  • Learning Format: Online
  • Time Commitment: Full-Time, Part-Time
  • Briefcase
    Career Services
  • Calendar
    Evening & Weekend Options

In the 16- or 28-week software engineering program, Fullstack students learn CSS, HTML, JavaScript, React, SQL, and several other coding languages. Instructors at Fullstack come from the tech industry and have a passion for sharing their knowledge.

Graduates of the program have gone on to work at a wide variety of companies, including Google, Etsy, BlackRock, and American Express.

Visit Fullstack Academy Bootcamp . External link

General Assembly

  • Location: Remote, London, New York City, Paris, Singapore, Sydney
  • Program Cost Starting At: $16,450
  • Learning Format: In Person, Online
  • Time Commitment: Full-Time, Part-Time
  • Flag
    Accepts GI BillĀ®
  • Briefcase
    Career Services
  • Calendar
    Evening & Weekend Options

General Assembly strives to provide a well-rounded and practical experience for students. To that end, students in the software engineering bootcamp work in groups creating full-stack projects which create a basic portfolio for job interviews at the end of the course.

Instructors work in the field in addition to teaching classes. Beyond that, General Assembly sets up guest lectures, panels, and studio tours with professional partners across industries.

Visit General Assembly Bootcamp . External link

Launch School

  • Location: Remote
  • Program Cost Starting At: $199/month
  • Learning Format: Online
  • Time Commitment: Full-Time, Self-Paced
  • Briefcase
    Career Services

A defining characteristic of Launch School is its mastery-based learning curriculum. With this model, students move on to the next unit only when they can demonstrate mastery of the current unit's concepts.

The core curriculum is self-paced and includes two track options: Ruby and JavaScript. After completing the core curriculum, admitted students can enroll in the 16-week, full-time capstone program. The entire Launch School program takes 1-2 years to complete.

Visit Launch School Bootcamp . External link

Tech Academy

  • Location: Remote, Portland
  • Program Cost Starting At: $11,660
  • Learning Format: In Person, Online
  • Time Commitment: Full-Time, Part-Time, Self-Paced
  • Check Circle
    CIRR Member
  • Calendar
    Evening & Weekend Options

Tech Academy states that its software developer bootcamp provides the most thorough overview of programming out of all its bootcamps. The curriculum includes relevant coding languages such as Python, C#, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, and SQL.

According to 2021 data reported to the Council on Integrity in Results Reporting (CIRR), 63% of graduates obtained programming-related jobs within 180 days, with a median salary of $57,000.

Visit Tech Academy Bootcamp . External link

Tech Elevator

  • Location: Remote, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Columbus, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh
  • Program Cost Starting At: $16,500
  • Learning Format: In Person, Online
  • Time Commitment: Full-Time, Part-Time
  • Flag
    Accepts GI BillĀ®
  • Briefcase
    Career Services
  • Check Circle
    CIRR Member
  • Calendar
    Evening & Weekend Options

Instructors at Tech Elevator have an average of 20 years industry experience as software developers. The curriculum at the programming bootcamp reflects this industry knowledge by including tracks in C# and Java.

One of the benefits of Tech Elevator's on-campus programs is the local network. Tech Elevator strives to connect students with industry leaders in their area.

According to data reported to the CIRR, 83.1% of the 2022 remote cohort secured in-field employment within 180 days of graduating, with a median salary of $61,200.

Visit Tech Elevator Bootcamp . External link

Thinkful

  • Location: Remote
  • Program Cost Starting At: $9,975
  • Learning Format: Online
  • Time Commitment: Full-Time, Self-Paced
  • Briefcase
    Career Services
  • Cash
    Money-Back Guarantee
  • Cash
    Start For Free

Thinkful's software engineering bootcamp has a cohort-based and self-paced option. In addition to receiving support from their instructor, students are matched with a working professional mentor.

Students also meet with a career advisor throughout the program to prepare for their job search. Thinkful grads have gone on to work at large companies like IBM, Amazon, and Google, among others.

Visit Thinkful Bootcamp . External link

University of California, Los Angeles

  • Location: Remote
  • Program Cost Starting At: $12,245
  • Learning Format: Online
  • Time Commitment: Full-Time, Part-Time
  • Briefcase
    Career Services
  • Calendar
    Evening & Weekend Options

UCLA Extension offers an online programming bootcamp in partnership with edX. The full-stack curriculum can be completed in 12 weeks (full-time) or 24 weeks (part-time).

Languages and tools covered in the bootcamp include JavaScript, HTML, CSS, Node, MySQL, React, and more. If it sounds overwhelming, don't worry! UCLA offers a variety of support options including tutoring, peer advising, student success support, and career coaching.

Visit University of California, Los Angeles Bootcamp . External link

Get the Qualities You Want in a Bootcamp

We use icons to make browsing bootcamps easy for you. Use this breakdown to quickly identify program qualities you are looking for.

Accepts GI Bill®

Accepts the GI Bill® as funding for tuition.

Also Available In Person

This online bootcamp also offers in-person options.

Career Services

Offers career services to help you land your dream job after graduation.

CIRR Member

This bootcamp is a current member of the Council on Integrity in Results Reporting. Learn more at cirr.org.

Evening & Weekend Options

Bootcamps are offered during convenient evening and weekend hours.

Job Guarantee

Employment is guaranteed as soon as you finish your bootcamp.

Money-Back Guarantee

Tuition is refunded if you don't land a job within a given time frame after graduation. Visit the bootcamp website for terms and conditions.

Start for Free

No deposit is required to get started. Begin your bootcamp for $0.

Other Notable Programming Bootcamps

What Will I Learn in a Programming Bootcamp?

Programming bootcamps teach the fundamentals of computer programming and prepare students for programming-focused careers. They may be referred to as software engineering, web development, or coding bootcamps, but the material and goals are generally the same.

The curriculum may cover a variety of in-demand programming languages, like JavaScript, Python, Java, C#, and Ruby, or focus primarily on just one.

Whether online or in person, computer programming bootcamps emphasize hands-on coding and feature team projects and/or pair programming. Most programmers and tech professionals work on a team, so collaboration skills are important.

You can expect some form of interview prep, career guidance, and networking support from a computer programming bootcamp. Each school approaches career guidance differently.

Programming Career Paths and Salaries

Many bootcamp courses will prepare you for a specific functional area, but you will learn basic skills that apply to many jobs. Here are some snapshots of three programming jobs.

Computer Programmer

Computer programmers write, test, and maintain computer code. There are a variety of coding languages to learn and specialize in. Generally, programmers work with a team to create code.

Unlike other fields in tech, computer programming jobs are projected to decline by 10% between 2021 and 2031, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). However, a programming job still pays respectably, with these professionals earning a median salary of $93,000 in 2021.

Software Developer

Software developers build the programs we use on our computer hardware (laptops, desktops, etc.). Like most tech jobs, software development is team driven.

Compared to other industries, there is huge growth in software development, with the BLS projecting a 26% increase in jobs in the next decade. Software developers earned a median salary of $120,730 in 2021.

Web Developer

You might have guessed it — a web developer designs, builds, and maintains websites. With people living much of their life online, this job is in high demand. The BLS projects a 30% growth in web developer jobs over the next decade.

Of the three jobs profiled here, web developers earn the lowest median salary. The median salary for web developers was $77,030 in 2021.

Frequently Asked Questions About Programming Bootcamps

Can I learn programming online?

Absolutely! The internet hosts free and paid platforms to learn coding and other tech skills. For example, you could enroll in a live online or self-paced bootcamp that teaches programming. You could also take shorter online courses on websites like Udacity, Udemy, and Coursera.

Can I learn programming for free?

Yes. Some bootcamp providers, like General Assembly, Bloom Institute of Technology, and Kenzie Academy, offer free coding courses or workshops. Codecademy, Udacity, and Udemy are other online platforms that offer free courses on specialized topics such as Python, SQL, HTML, and JavaScript.

Are programming bootcamps worth it?

Like most things, the more effort and focus you put into a computer programming bootcamp, the more you will get out of it. Compared to a four-year computer science degree, a bootcamp can often take you from beginner to job-ready in a fraction of the time at a fraction of the cost.

Is computer programming hard?

Whether programming is hard or easy depends on the learner and the language. Programming may initially seem hard or intimidating, but with dedication, memorization, and practice, anyone can learn how to do it. Many bootcamps are designed for beginners and cover the fundamentals before moving on to the more difficult concepts and languages.


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