A review of BrainStation as a tech bootcamp – 2021 update

Check out our review of BrainStation to learn more about their courses, costs, and student reviews.

Updated in 2021

What does BrainStation do?

Offering a variety of diploma programs, certificate courses, and other training, BrainStation is for students who are looking to pivot into a new career in data science, UX/UI design, development, marketing, and product management. They also offer courses for more established people looking to hone their skills.

BrainStation offers in-person courses in New York City, Miami, Chicago, Seattle, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, Toronto, Vancouver, and London. They also take into account different learning styles and schedules by offering flexible, remote options, such as Online Live. Through Online Live, students attend live lectures, network with their peers, and ask for feedback from the instructor in real-time.

The part-time online and in-person courses last between 1 and 3 months. Part-time courses meet one day a week for 3 hours (for weeknight courses) or 6 hours (for weekend courses). For the full-time courses, students spend the morning in review, lecture, and code-alongs (9:30am-12pm). In the afternoons (1pm-5:30pm) students participate in lecture, code-alongs, labs, in-class project work, and 1-on-1 coaching sessions. Students are expected to review course material and complete unfinished assignments after class.

Who is BrainStation for? 

BrainStation is for people who are looking to either make a career change or advance their career by developing and honing new skills in data science, design, development, marketing, and product management. The program is notorious for its rigorous and demanding curriculum. So, potential applicants should note that both the full-time and part-time options are quite time consuming.

How much does BrainStation cost? How much work is involved?

Courses range from $950 to just over $15,000. Prices vary depending on length of the course, the type of course, and whether or not the course is taken online or at a campus.

BrainStation’s courses fill up quickly, so plan ahead. To apply, visit their website and set up an appointment to speak with a learning advisor. First, candidates submit an initial online application (including educational credentials). Then, they complete of a live interview with the admissions team. Finally, they participate in the digital admissions challenge (which gauges their knowledge of the subject matter). If English is not their first language, students also need to submit proof of English language proficiency. 

Ratings and reviews of BrainStation

BrainStation has received generally positive reviews. On CourseReport, students from a variety of backgrounds found the courses to be rigorous and helpful for landing their next job. A graduate of the UX/UI design full-time program notes that the “curriculum is and condensed, so expect a lot of work”. According to a graduate of the full-time program in data science, BrainStation “supports its students as much as possible”.

Reviews on Switchup found the curriculum to be excellent at preparing students for their next jobs, though some were disappointed with the lack of support for finding a job. Students on CourseCompare gave BrainStation excellent reviews, describing the service as “fantastic” and “awesome.”

One reviewer on Reddit warns that the program maintains a “fast pace”. A Quora review from an art student in the part-time course in digital marketing said the instructor and students “really dive into all the questions we have.”

Alternatives to BrainStation

If BrainStation is not the right fit for you, consider an alternative, like some of the programs listed here. 

  • 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.
  • Students interested in taking online self-guided or instructor-led product design courses can check out DesignerUp. Learn more about DesignerUp in our review.
  • 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.
  • Students can also consider Kenzie Academy, a full-time tech bootcamp that offers in-person and online courses in 2 tracks: software engineering & UX design and front-end engineering. Learn more about Kenzie Academy in our review.
  • Lambda School and Coding Dojo are both bootcamps that teach students the fundamentals of software engineering and data science.
  • For people with an interest in data science, Metis has part-time introduction courses as well as onsite and online bootcamp options. Learn more about Metis in our review.
  • DataCamp, Dataquest, Promotable, Divergence Academy, Zip Code Wilmington, and Data Science Dojo are also options for current and aspiring data scientists. They offer individual courses, as well as in-depth tracks.
  • If you are starting from scratch, you can consider the self-paced course at Data Science Dream Job or Menon Labs fellowship.
  • If you do not have any experience in data science, consider a full-time or part-time bootcamp at The Tech Academy or Pragmatic Institute, which also has product management courses.
More alternatives
Even more alternatives
  • 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.
  • Coursera, Skillshare, Pluralsight, Learn UX, University of Arizona Bootcamps, and [email protected] offer a wide variety of courses and tracks, including programs from accredited universities.
  • UX Pro AcademyAvocademy, and Memorisely have UX design courses for beginners as well as more experienced people.
  • Free online resources, SoloLearn and the Mode tutorials have tracks in SQL, as well as other programming languages.
  • Aspiring software engineers and web developers can also consider CodeX Academy, a self-paced coding bootcamp with mentorship opportunities. Learn more about CodeX Academy in our review.
  • Likewise, Tech Elevator is a software engineering bootcamp with online and on-campus options.
  • Codecademy is one of the most popular coding programs online. They provide free courses on many different programming languages. They also offer membership options ranging from $20 to $40. Learn more about Codecademy in our review.
  • Students located in the Bay Area or looking to work in Silicon Valley can check out Tradecraft, which has tracks in product design, growth marketing, engineering, and sales.

How does BrainStation compare to Pathrise?

BrainStation is a bootcamp with course offerings in data science, UX/UI design, web development, marketing, and product management. The courses are meant to help students from different backgrounds develop skills that will help them land jobs. At Pathrise, fellows should have some background in their field so that they can benefit from our personalized curriculum and workshops.

Pathrise helps fellows identify their strengths and weaknesses. Each week includes 2-4 hours of sessions. In addition, fellows can schedule 1-on-1 sessions as needed.  The Pathrise income share agreement means that fellows don’t have to pay until they begin working at a job they love. 

Pathrise aims to accelerate your career, which means that we provide 1-on-1 services to maximize your personal background, experiences, and skill sets. If you are interested in working with a mentor 1-on-1 to optimize your job search, become a Pathrise fellow.

Apply today.

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