Students typically obtain a four-year degree before pursuing a software engineering career, but there is another option. Students who attend a software engineering bootcamp can shorten the length of time required to become a software engineer, beginning their new careers in a matter of months rather than years. These coding bootcamps are becoming more and more common.

84% of the employers surveyed thought that bootcamp grads were as well prepared or better prepared than computer science graduates

But how do bootcamp graduates fare in the employment world? According to Indeed, bootcamp graduates are highly regarded by employers. In fact, 84% of the employers surveyed thought that bootcamp grads were as well prepared or better prepared than computer science graduates to tackle work-related challenges.

In this guide, you can learn about the most popular software engineering bootcamps and what to expect if you enroll. You can also learn about software engineer career paths and how much money you can expect to make as a software engineer.

Best Software Engineering Bootcamps

How do you decide which coding bootcamps are the best? We've put together this guide to help you compare popular programs so you can see which bootcamp best suits your needs.

Note: The bootcamp provider information below lists default locations and learning formats for each program. COVID-19 may have impacted the location and learning format of many bootcamps, with in-person programs moving online. Please contact the bootcamp provider or visit their website for more information on current program availability and future program formats once health and safety precautions are no longer in effect.

App Academy
  • Locations: Remote, New York City, San Francisco
  • Programs Starting At: $17,000
  • Learning Format: Online, In Person
  • Time Commitment: Full Time

Job Placement Assistance

Start for Free

App Academy turns students with no coding experience into software engineers in 16-24 weeks. App Academy reports that graduates of its online program earn an average starting salary of about $85,000. Online students can select an income share agreement plan, getting started with zero money down. They then pay a percentage of their income for three years after landing a job where they make at least $50,000 a year.

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Boise CodeWorks
  • Locations: Boise
  • Programs Starting At: $7,800
  • Learning Format: In Person
  • Time Commitment: Full Time

Accepts GI Bill®

Job Placement Assistance

Boise CodeWorks' full-stack software development bootcamp lasts 13 weeks. Students gain problem-solving experience as they work in teams to address real-world coding problems. Students receive job placement assistance, such as help building their professional portfolio. Boise CodeWorks claims its students have an 85% employment rate within 180 days of graduation, with graduates employed at over 40 local businesses.

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Claim Academy
  • Locations: Remote
  • Programs Starting At: $13,998
  • Learning Format: Online
  • Time Commitment: Full Time, Part Time

Accepts GI Bill®

Evening & Weekend Options

Job Placement Assistance

Start for Free

At Claim Academy, students learn the coding skills necessary to become software engineers in just 12 weeks. Students can choose to focus on front-end JavaScript software development, full-stack C#/.Net software development, or full-stack Java software development. Former students work for companies such as Bayer, FedEx, Wells Fargo, Mastercard, Boeing, and IBM.

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Coding Dojo
  • Locations: Remote, Arlington, Boise, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Oakland, Orange County, Silicon Valley, Tulsa
  • Programs Starting At: $6,995
  • Learning Format: Online, In Person
  • Time Commitment: Full Time, Part Time

Accepts GI Bill®

Evening & Weekend Options

Job Placement Assistance

Coding Dojo offers software development bootcamps lasting 14-28 weeks, depending on the program's time commitment and pace. The bootcamp teaches full-stack development, including instruction in Python and Java. Graduates work for companies such as Google, Facebook, Amazon, Cisco, HP, Microsoft, Apple, Uber, and IBM.

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Flatiron School
  • Locations: Remote, Atlanta, Austin, Chicago, Denver, Houston, New York City, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington D.C.
  • Programs Starting At: $17,000
  • Learning Format: Online, In Person
  • Time Commitment: Full Time, Part Time, Self-Paced

Evening & Weekend Options

Job Placement Assistance

The software engineer bootcamp offered by Flatiron School teaches full-stack development using JavaScript and Ruby on Rails. Bootcamp students complete multiple group and individual projects over the course of the bootcamp. Students also receive interview preparation help, resume reviews, and other job placement assistance.

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Galvanize
  • Locations: Remote, Austin, Boulder, Denver, Los Angeles, New York City, Phoenix, San Francisco, Seattle
  • Programs Starting At: $17,980
  • Learning Format: Online, In Person
  • Time Commitment: Full Time, Part Time

Accepts GI Bill®

CIRR Verified

In 2018, Galvanize acquired bootcamp provider Hack Reactor, which offers a software engineering bootcamp that teaches full-stack JavaScript. Software engineering bootcamp graduates have been hired by Adobe, PayPal, Uber, Apple, Amazon, and Google. Students can take advantage of an income share agreement: after paying a $2,000 deposit, students do not have to pay tuition until they graduate from the bootcamp and secure a job where they make at least $60,000 a year.

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Hack Reactor
  • Locations: Remote, Austin, Boulder, Denver, Los Angeles, New York City, Phoenix, San Francisco, Seattle
  • Programs Starting At: $17,980
  • Learning Format: Online, In Person
  • Time Commitment: Full Time, Part Time

CIRR Verified

Evening & Weekend Options

Job Placement Assistance

Hack Reactor's software engineering bootcamp teaches computer science fundamentals and covers full-stack JavaScript, blockchain technology, and React.

According to data reported to the Council on Integrity in Results Reporting, about 73% of the graduates from Hack Reactor's 2019 online full-time software engineering bootcamp found employment within 180 days of completing the program. These professionals reported a median annual salary of $80,000.

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Momentum
  • Location: Remote
  • Programs Starting At: $18,200
  • Learning Format: Online
  • Time Commitment: Full Time

Job Placement Assistance

Money-Back Guarantee

Momentum offers an immersive software development bootcamp with a money-back guarantee. If you do not get a job within nine months of graduation, your tuition is refunded. Graduates are employed at Duke University, IBM, SciMed Solutions, and more. Momentum reports that 90% of its students receive a job offer, and that graduates earn an average salary of $65,700.

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Springboard
  • Location: Remote
  • Programs Starting At: $6,900
  • Learning Format: Online
  • Time Commitment: Self-Paced

Evening & Weekend Options

Job Placement Assistance

Money-Back Guarantee

Springboard's nine-month software engineering bootcamp teaches students to build web apps using Python, Flask, SQL, Express, Node, and React. Springboard offers a deferred tuition program in which students provide a low initial deposit and then pay off the rest of their tuition in set, monthly installments once they gain employment in a tech job.

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Thinkful
  • Location: Remote
  • Programs Starting At: $9,500
  • Learning Format: Online
  • Time Commitment: Full Time, Part Time

CIRR Verified

Evening & Weekend Options

Job Placement Assistance

Money-Back Guarantee

Start for Free

Thinkful's software engineering bootcamp offers project-based learning with professional support and mentorship opportunities. The program details front- and back-end development, covering JavaScript, React, and Node.

According to data reported to the Council on Integrity in Results Reporting, about 86% of graduates from Thinkful's 2019 online full-time software engineering bootcamp found employment within 180 days of completing the program. These professionals reported a median annual salary of $60,000.

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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.

CIRR Verified

Student outcomes are verified with the Council on Integrity in Results Reporting. Learn more at cirr.org.

Evening & Weekend Options

Bootcamps are offered during convenient evening and weekend hours.

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.

Job Guarantee

Employment is guaranteed as soon as you finish your bootcamp.

Job Placement Assistance

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

Start for Free

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

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.

Other Notable Software Engineering Bootcamps

Here are other notable software engineering bootcamps to consider.

Provider Name Programs starting at
4Geeks Academy $9,499
Alchemy Code Lab $24,000
Arkansas Coding Academy $5,000
Austin Community College $6,498
Burlington Code Academy $3,950
CodeStack Academy $5,000
Codesmith $18,800
DeltaV Code School $12,000
devCodeCamp $15,800
Eleven Fifty Academy $13,500
Grand Circus $11,750
Hackbright Academy $16,895
Holberton School $85,000
Kenzie Academy $20,000
Launch Academy $17,500
Microverse $15,000
Montana Code School $4,950
Noble Desktop $3,195
Prime Digital Academy $16,000
Project Shift $7,900
Redwood Code Academy $13,500

What Is Software Engineering?

Software engineering involves applying engineering principles to software design. For example, anytime you interact with a web-based application, you are seeing the results of software engineering. Software engineers build everything from operating systems to mobile games. They create and test computer programs and develop the documentation that is required to operate and maintain them.

Software Engineering vs. Web Development

The difference between software engineering and web development lies in specialization. Software engineers design all kinds of software, but web developers specialize in designing web applications. That often includes software that runs from a website.

For example, a web developer might write a program that captures users' email addresses and adds them to a list. Or they may create a game that can be played directly on the website.

A software engineer might write programs that run directly on Windows or other operating systems, as well as writing web-based programs and applications.

What Will I Learn in a Software Engineering Bootcamp?

Most software engineering bootcamps teach students front- and back-end web development skills. That means students learn how to design the front end of a website (the part users see) as well as the back end (the programs that run in the background).

Languages and technologies commonly taught in these bootcamps include HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Python, Node, React, Blockchain, and Ruby on Rails. The specific skills taught in each bootcamp vary, so be sure to read the syllabus carefully so you know exactly what technologies are covered.

Software Engineering Career Paths

Entry-level software engineering jobs typically require a two- or four-year degree or completion of a coding bootcamp. After gaining experience, successful software engineers can advance to positions as managers, software architects, team leaders, senior developers, or even senior management.

What Does a Software Engineer Do?

Software engineers often apply engineering principles to the stages of software development. That includes considering how the most important functions will work before beginning to code. Software engineers must keep the end user in mind and think about how users will interact with the program. Software engineers work with designers and developers to determine how the final program will function and write the code needed to power the software.

Software Engineering Jobs

A software engineering bootcamp can prepare students for several different job titles. Some of the most common job titles are software engineer, web developer, and software developer.

Software Engineer

A software engineer uses engineering principles to design software for computer operating systems, mobile operating systems, or web applications. They usually work with designers and developers as part of a team to come up with the final software design. They are included at all stages of the software development process, from planning through testing, and often manage the development process. According to PayScale, software engineers earn an average income of $86,440 per year.

Web Developer

A web developer codes websites. Web developers can focus on front-end development, back-end development, or full-stack development. Web developers often work with user experience designers and project managers in the planning stage of a web project. In addition to writing code, they often find and fix errors (known as "debugging") and test the code to make sure it works properly. PayScale lists the average salary for a web developer as $59,890.

Software Developer

A software developer creates software and applications for computers, smart phones, and other devices. Some software developers specialize in developing a specific type of software. A software developer is similar to a software engineer. In some cases, the roles may be the same. Other times, hiring managers for software development positions may not expect applicants to have a formal engineering degree or background in engineering. PayScale lists the average salary for a software developer as $71,770.

Frequently Asked Questions About Software Engineering Bootcamps

Are software engineering bootcamps worth it?

If you compare the cost of a software engineer bootcamp to the cost of a four-year degree, bootcamps are often the less expensive option. Software engineering bootcamps often have high employment rates for their graduates, as well.

However, if you want to advance in a software engineering career, it may be a good idea to get your bachelor's degree at some point. A postsecondary degree is often a requirement for supervisory positions.

Are there online software engineering bootcamps?

Yes. Many bootcamp providers offer online software engineering bootcamps, and some also offer hybrid programs. In most cases, the online content is designed to provide a similar educational experience as an in-person bootcamp.

How is software engineering different from web development?

Software engineering encompasses the design and creation of any type of software, including software that runs on computer operating systems like Windows or macOS. Compare to web developers, on the other hand, specialize in developing websites.

Is software engineering hard?

Most students find software engineering challenging but rewarding. This profession involves a lot of problem-solving and is great for people who enjoy a good puzzle. Software won't always work on the first try, so programmers need to do a lot of troubleshooting to figure out what is wrong. If you get easily frustrated when things don't run smoothly, software engineering may not be the best choice for you.

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