Photo of a review of Fullstack Academy as a software engineering bootcamp

Fullstack Academy review as a software engineering bootcamp

Hi, I’m Brian, a former senior software engineer and now industry mentor at Pathrise. I have helped hundreds of software engineers land their dream jobs in tech. Check out my review of Fullstack Academy.

What does Fullstack Academy do?

Fullstack Academy is a bootcamp for people looking to develop the necessary skills to land a job as a software engineer. They offer full-time and part-time programs in New York City and Chicago. In the near future, Fullstack Academy plans to launch an online software engineering bootcamp as well.

Before starting the bootcamp, students must complete 15-30 hours of self-paced, online pre-work. During this time, students study HTML, CSS, and JavaScript (including scoping, prototypal inheritance, recursion, and more). In addition, they learn the foundations of front-end & back-end development. To accomplish this goal, the curriculum features recorded lectures, workshops, projects, and a class discussion forum. 

Full-time bootcamp

The 13-week full-time bootcamp meets Monday-Friday from 9:30am-6:30pm. Alternatively, those in the 24-week part-time program meet in-person on Mondays & Wednesdays or Tuesdays & Thursdays from 6:40pm-9:40pm, as well as online on Saturdays from 9am-9pm. All students participate in lectures, workshops, programming challenges, pair programming exercises, and other hands-on projects. Lectures are not recorded. So, attendance is necessary. The curriculum teaches students how to build front-end and back-end applications using HTML5, CSS, React, JavaScript, Node.js, and APIs. In addition, they work with databases and learn how to use tools such as SQL and Postgres.

In the final weeks of the program, students work on teams of 3-4 to build a variety of products. First, students create an e-commerce site, then a personal project (which can be a web or mobile application), and finally, a capstone project. By the end of the program, students will have 3-4 projects uploaded to their GitHub profile. During this time, students also meet with career coaches. Together, they work on portfolio building, LinkedIn and resume optimization, and interview preparation. 

Photo of Fullstack Academy as a software engineering bootcamp

Who is Fullstack Academy for?

People who have no experience in coding and are looking to develop the necessary skills to land a job as a software engineer or a cybersecurity analyst could benefit from the Fullstack Academy bootcamp. Moreover, the program is especially helpful for people who are based in New York City or Chicago. 

What does Fullstack Academy cost? How much work is involved?

Tuition for Fullstack Academy depends on the program and location. Those who take the full-time program in New York City pay $17,910, while Chicago-based students pay $15,910. Similarly, people who enroll in the part-time program in New York City and Chicago pay $15,980 and $13,980 respectively. The full-time and part-time cybersecurity bootcamps (based in New York City) cost $17,910 and $15,980 as well. 

Students can finance their tuition through Skills Fund, a lending service that offers a variety of loan options and repayment plans. Interest rates and loan terms depend on an applicant’s previous credit history. In addition, veterans and women are eligible for $1,000 scholarships.

Before applying, candidates should familiarize themselves with key computer science concepts such as variables, loops, conditionals, functions, and recursion. Then, they must complete an online application, which takes about 30-45 minutes.

After successfully submitting their application, candidates take a 75-minute assessment, which includes 5 coding challenges. Those who successfully pass the exam participate in a technical challenge, as well as a behavioral interview. For their technical challenge, students participate in a 75-minute Skype pair programming session. Fullstack Academy graduates and instructors conduct the behavioral interviews.

Ratings and reviews

In general, Fullstack Academy graduates praised the program for its curriculum and instruction, but had mixed feelings about the cost and job placement program.  

Most students benefited from the up-to-date curriculum and job placement services. According to a reviewer on CourseReport, “the instructors are working to teach the most up-to-date and effective stack to their students.” The reviewer also noted that the career coaches were “instrumental in helping me find a job. The career success team is there to provide resources and real advice on how to pursue work, negotiate a salary offer, and build a network in the tech industry.” 

Echoing this, one Quora reviewer said that “the job placement team is equally on point” and that “without their help, I would have had a great job at a medium-sized company; with their help, I got my dream job as a frontend engineer at Amazon.” On a similar note, a Reddit reviewer said that they “graduated Fullstack’s part-time program in June and started as a developer in September.” 

But, some students on SwitchUp wished that Fullstack Academy provided more structure for their job placement services. As one reviewer pointed out, “Students could request individual assistance (which was difficult to ascertain) but there was no structured curriculum for job hunting.” 

Other SwitchUp grads felt that the program was on the expensive side. According to one alumnus, “If you are just starting out, or have less than a month of experience, be prepared to work Monday through Sunday, almost every waking hour to fully comprehend everything to make the cost worth it.”

Alternatives to Fullstack Academy 

If you decide not to enroll in Fullstack Academy, there are a number of alternative bootcamps and online resources that can help aspiring software engineers. 

  • 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.
  • Actualize is a full-time bootcamp that can be taken in-person at their Chicago campus or live online so remote students can follow along with their in-person classmates. 
  • Students can also consider Kenzie Academy, a full-time tech bootcamp that offers in-person and online courses in software engineering & UX design and front-end engineering. Learn more about Kenzie Academy in our review.
  • Similarly, Prime Digital Academy has full-time and part-time courses in UX design and software engineering.
  • Those looking for additional in-person or online software engineering bootcamp options can also check out Nucamp, App Academy, Hack Reactor, Turing, Launch Academy, and Flatiron School.
  • Covalence, Codeworks, Code Fellows, devCodeCamp, and Galvanize offer full-time courses, as well as part-time options, for aspiring software engineers.
  • 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.
  • Another option is Grand Circus, which teaches courses on Java, front-end, and C# .NET. Their campuses are in Michigan, but they also offer online options.
  • Likewise, Tech Elevator, Redwood Code Academy, Epicodus, and Eleven Fifty Academy are software engineering bootcamps with online and on-campus options.
  • Full-time bootcamps, Lambda School, Thinkful, Zip Code Wilmington, Byte Academy, and Pluralsight offer programs in software engineering, as well as data science and other topics.
More alternatives
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • SoloLearn, freeCodeCamp, and W3Schools are free online learning tools with tracks in Ruby on Rails, as well as other languages.
  • You can also check out Bubble no-code bootcamps to learn how to make products without coding. Learn more about Bubble in our review.
  • Or, consider Kal Academy, which works with women and underrepresented groups on software engineering, web dev, and data.
  • You can also check out Udemy, Ruby Koans, egghead, and Coursera, which offer thousands of online videos in a wide range of topics.
  • 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.

How does Fullstack Academy compare to Pathrise?

Fullstack Academy is a bootcamp for people who are interested in learning how to become a software engineer from scratch. At Pathrise, job-seekers in our program should already have a background in their field. This way they can participate in our workshops and pair programming sessions.  

Pathrise is a full service organization that helps software engineers land the best job possible. Our mentors have experience on both sides of the hiring table. We work with fellows on each step of their job search, including resume & LinkedIn optimization, portfolio building, behavioral interview preparation, salary negotiation, and more. We personalize our curriculum to match each fellow’s specific needs. 

Our program is flexible. There are only 2-4 hours of sessions per week and fellows can schedule 1-on-1 sessions as needed. All of our sessions are live, as well as recorded, so fellows can review previous material and keep learning. The Pathrise income share agreement (ISA) means that fellows don’t pay anything until they start working at a new job they love. We never require upfront payments or deposits.

Pathrise is a career accelerator that helps people land their dream job in tech through 1-on-1 mentorship. If you are interested in working with any of our mentors to get help with your technical and behavioral interviews or any other aspect of the job search, join Pathrise. 

Apply today.

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Brian Wong

Brian Wong is an experienced senior software engineer and has worked at top bay area startups and organizations. In his free time, Brian works with Pathrise SWE fellows to help them land their dream job and learn insider tips on how to ace technical interviews.

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