Photo of a review of Bloc as a design and web development bootcamp

A review of Bloc as a design and web dev bootcamp

Hi, I’m Elle! I work as a product designer at Getaround and as an industry mentor here at Pathrise, where I help our fellows land great jobs in product design through technical workshops and 1-on-1s.

What does Bloc do?

Bloc is an online bootcamp that helps people learn the technical skills necessary to land a job as a web developer or a designer. The courses are designed for beginners to learn the fundamentals of the subject so that they can land a job as that role.

The bootcamps are self-paced, but students are expected to dedicate approximately 720 active hours (15-20 hours per week) to finish the web developer track and 864 hours (20-25 hours per week) to finish the designer track in 8 months. Students read and watch curriculum available on the Bloc platform, though they may be required to complete exercises from other sites. Students in the web developer track learn HTML, CSS, JavaScript for front-end and back-end dev, APIs, React, and jQuery. Designers learn the fundamentals of UX, visuals, and front-end. In both bootcamps, students participate in projects that they can add to their portfolios. 

Photo of Bloc platform

They offer career coaching alongside the technical training. Students in the program meet with their mentor once a week and if they have questions beyond that, the mentor can take 1-3 days to respond. If Bloc alumni do not receive a job within 6 months of graduating from the program, they get their money back.

Who is Bloc for?

Since the program is meant for beginners to learn the fundamentals, people who have no experience in design or web development but are looking to move into this career path could benefit from Bloc. 

What does Bloc cost? How much work is involved?

The web developer track costs $8,500 for 8 months. If students choose to pay upfront, they can save $1,000. The designer track costs $9,600, but students who choose the upfront option will pay $8,500 for 8 months. For students who take longer than 8 months to finish the program, extensions are $1,200 per month.

There is no application process for Bloc. Students can enroll anytime and cohorts start every Monday. After students enroll, they go through an orientation where they learn about expectations of the program. The first few modules of the program are done before the first 1-on-1 with their mentor.

Ratings and reviews

The reviews online of Bloc are mixed. They are on SwitchUp’s list of best bootcamps and they received an 84% on overall experience from 22 reviewers on Career Karma.

But, students reviewing on CourseReport felt frustrated by the number of graders and mentors they interacted with throughout the program. Rather than be matched with just one, they were changed frequently, making it difficult for the mentor to follow the student’s progress.

Many students in the program did not finish within 8 months, which means they had to pay extra tuition to cover the additional months. In addition, people felt that the curriculum was more of an outline and that they needed to supplement more on their own. A lot of the other reviews online are from 3-4 years ago, in which students report having difficulty with the administrative side of the program or dropping out because the mentorship and curriculum were subpar.

Alternatives to Bloc

As a bootcamp with a focus on software engineering and design, there are a fair number of alternatives to Bloc.

  • Students interested in taking online self-guided or instructor-led product design courses can check out DesignerUp. Learn more about DesignerUp in our review.
  • One of the most well known bootcamps is General Assembly, which offers full-time, part-time, and 1-day courses on a variety of topics like software engineering, data science, UX design, digital marketing, product management, and more. Read more about General Assembly in our review.
  • If you are looking for a subscription-based online learning tool, you can try Learn UX, which has courses on a variety of topics under the UX/UI umbrella.
  • GrowthX Academy is an online bootcamp with courses in growth marketing, UX design, and sales and business development. Learn more about GrowthX Academy in our review of the program.
  • Aspiring designers can consider Designlab, an online bootcamp that teaches the necessary skills to land a job as a UX designer. Read more about Designlab in our review.
  • Similarly, Skillcrush, CareerFoundry, Interaction Design Foundation, and InternStreet are online bootcamps and resources with tracks in web development and design.
  • HackDesign is a free design newsletter that offers lessons and tools that aspiring and current designers can benefit from.
  • If you are more interested in bootcamps, Flatiron School and Designation offer online and in-person design courses on the same campus.
  • You can check out Udacity and Springboard, which are online educational platforms that students can use to brush up on the basics or advance their current tech skills. Read more about Udacity and Springboard in our reviews.

How does Bloc compare to Pathrise?

Bloc is a bootcamp, with courses for people who are interested in learning the skills needed to become a developer or designer from scratch. At Pathrise, job-seekers in our program should already have a background in the field they are interested in so that they can participate in and fully benefit from our technical workshops, where we provide a more specific curriculum based on what they will see in their interviews.

All of our workshops and sessions at Pathrise are live, as well as recorded, so that fellows in our program can review them afterwards and continue learning. Our program is flexible, with only 4 hours of group sessions per week and 1-on-1 sessions that can be scheduled whenever job-seekers need them and our curriculum is personalized to work on the specific skills that people struggle with the most.

Specifically, Pathrise focuses on technical and behavioral interviewing as well as resume and LinkedIn optimization, portfolio building and strengthening, cold email and reverse recruiting lessons, and negotiation templates and guidance. Fellows in Pathrise find a job, on average, within 3-5 months of joining the program. The Pathrise income share agreement is 9% of their first year’s salary and we never require upfront payments or deposits.

Pathrise is a career accelerator that works with students and professionals 1-on-1 so they can land their dream job in tech. If you want to work with any of our mentors to get help with your technical and behavioral interviews or with any other aspect of the job search, join Pathrise.

Apply today.

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