A review of BrainStation as a tech bootcamp

BrainStation Review a tech bootcamp – 2023 update

Hi, I’m Patrick, I write about the job search. After graduating from Cornell, I became a content lead at UBS where I helped professionals at Fortune 500 companies understand their stock options, salary, and benefits. When I’m not writing about the hiring process, I write novels for teens. Check out our BrainStation review to learn more about their courses, costs, and student reviews.

Updated in 2023

BrainStation review graphic with the BrainStation logo

What does BrainStation do?

BrainStation is a tech bootcamp that teaches people the necessary skills to launch a career in tech. They claim a job placement rate above 90%, earning them a place amongst the best online coding bootcamps. In addition to bootcamps, they offer a variety of diploma programs, certificate courses, and other trainings. Career tracks include data science, UX/UI design, development, marketing, and product management. While BrainStation focuses on helping people pivot into a new career, they also offer advanced courses for more established professionals looking to sharpen their tech skills.

BrainStation offers both in-person and remote courses. In-person campuses include Miami, , NYC, Chicago, Seattle, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, Toronto, Vancouver, and London. For students interested in more flexible remote learning, BrainStation offers part-time online courses.. Through “Online Live” courses, students attend live lectures, network with their peers, and ask for feedback from the instructor in real-time.

Both in-person courses and 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 lectures, 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.

BrainStation claims a 90% job placement rate in 180 days

Who is BrainStation for?

BrainStation is for people looking to make a career change, or tech professionals seeking to advance their career by building skills in data science, design, development, marketing, and product management.

BrainStation’s curriculum is notorious for its rigor and demanding pace– potential applicants should be prepared for a major time commitment, even for part-time courses.

BrainStation bootcamp offerings on software engineering, UX design, data science, web development, cybersecurity, and digital marketing

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

Any BrainStation bootcamp costs $16,500 upfront. Students may also choose to pay via monthly for 24 months–installments start at about $747 monthly. Bootcamps are all the same price, whether full-time, part-time, in-person, or remote.

Shorter courses and certifications range from $950 to over $3,950. Prices vary depending on the 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 applicants should plan ahead and apply early.

BrainStation's bootcamp costs $16,500 each

BrainStation offers a variety of scholarships to help with the cost of tuition. While the precise number of scholarships available per cohort is unknown, there are 6 different types: A Women in Technology Scholarship, a Veterans Scholarship, an Entrepreneurship Scholarship for entrepreneurs, a Diversity and Inclusion Scholarship for underrepresented groups, a Not-For-Profit Scholarship for professionals working in the non-profit sector, and a University and College Scholarship for students and recent grads. All scholarships must be approved and applied prior to enrollment in a BrainStation course or program.

How do you get into BrainStation? How hard is the interview?

To apply to BrainStation, visit their website and set up an appointment to speak with a learning advisor. Candidates submit an initial online application (including educational credentials) that may include personal statements. Next, they complete a live interview with the admissions team. According to a BrainStation grad on YouTube, interview questions include “Why do you want to join the program?”, “Why do you think you’ll be a good fit for the program?”, and other simple behavioral questions. If English is not their first language, applicants must submit proof of English language proficiency.

If applicants pass the interview, they participate in the digital admissions challenge (which gauges their knowledge of the subject matter). In a 2021 BrainStation review, three BrainStation grads agreed that the technical challenge focused on front-end development, assessing applicants’ skills in HTML, CSS, and basic JavaScript. One BrainStation grad recalled being asked to develop a website for a restaurant that takes orders.

BrainStation has an average review of 4.7 stars online


Are BrainStation reviews on Reddit positive?

While BrainStation reviews are generally positive, reviews on Reddit were mixed. One grad on Reddit felt the bootcamp “provided me lots of valuable knowledge in landing my first Product Manager role” and several other reviews praise the instructors. But others Redditors felt their “experience was sub-optimal, even calling it “terrible.” Multiple BrainStation reviews on Reddit warned that BrainStation’s program maintains a “fast pace.”

A BrainStation review on Quora from an art student in the part-time digital marketing course said the instructor and students “really dive into all the questions we have.” 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 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.”

BrainStation reviews on Switchup notes that the curriculum was 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.”

Overall, BrainStation reviews are positive–grads were impressed by the personal support and satisfied curriculum. But the bootcamp can be intense, and somewhat lacking in career support.

BrainStation reviews and graduate outcomes

In a BrainStation review on Youtube, three grads of the coding bootcamp appeared on the Don the Developer podcast to share their experiences– their reviews of BrainStation were positive. The three grads had a positive experience with the application process, appreciating the 1-on-1 support. Grads notes that the bootcamp emphasized front-end development over back-end development. The grads raved about the instructors, impressed by their personal support and enthusiasm. BrainStation instructors call on students even if they didn’t raise their hand, which grads found a little intimidating, but ultimately still helpful. Post-grad job assistance was mostly access to a career success manager.

Another grad, UX designer Emile Mazurek, published a BrainStation review on Youtube that detailed her experience in the BrainStation UX design bootcamp. She was impressed with the staff and curriculum. However, she was deeply disappointed in the Demo Day. As a remote learner, she had to give her demo remotely and never heard back from any employers. While she didn’t feel career services were proactive, she found them extremely helpful, though it is up to the grad to reach out and stay in touch. It can feel like “you’re on your own” after graduation.

Emile was also critical of BrainStation’s 96% job placement rate–of the 42 grads surveyed in her cohort, about 30 landed product or design jobs, making the placement rate closer to 71%. Only 24 actually landed jobs as UX designers. Overall, Emile was satisfied with the bootcamp. It helped her impress employers and land a job–she was so driven that in addition to being a full-time UX designer, she mentors aspiring designers. However, she was not confident that the average student would have had an equally positive experience with the bootcamp.

A quote from a BrainStation review

Alternatives to BrainStation

If BrainStation is not the right fit for your goals, consider one of these alternative programs:.

  • 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
  • NYC Data Science Academy is another highly regarded option, though you should have some basic experience before applying.
  • GrowthX Academy is an online bootcamp with courses in growth marketing, UX design, and sales and business development.
  • Similarly, Bloc, Skillcrush, OpenClassrooms, Interaction Design Foundation, Helio Training, V School, and InternStreet are online bootcamps and resources with tracks in web development and design. Gymnasium is a free resource with courses in those subjects.
  • Current and aspiring project managers can benefit from taking the product management bootcamp at Product School or the courses at Product Academia.
  • Those looking to advance their product management skills and network with a community of peers can check out membership and classes at Product Gym.
  • Similarly, experienced product managers looking for community and courses can check out Mind the Product.
  • Students can also check out Thinkful, One Month, allWomen Academy, and Knowledge Officer, which have courses in product management, marketing, and more.
  • edX is one of the largest online learning platforms. They have courses from top universities like Harvard and MIT as well as big tech companies like Microsoft. Learn more about edX in our review.
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 Learn@Forbes offer a wide variety of courses and tracks, including programs from accredited universities.
  • UX Pro Academy, Avocademy, 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.

Pathrise logo


Patrick Bohan

Hi, I'm Patrick, I write about the job search. After graduating from Cornell, I became a content lead at UBS where I helped professionals at Fortune 500 companies understand their stock options, salary, and benefits. When I'm not writing about the hiring process, I write novels for teens.

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