Photo of a review of General Assembly as a tech educational tool

A review of General Assembly as a tech educational tool

What does General Assembly do?

General Assembly teaches technical skills for a variety of topics. Students can attend on campus or online. Their campuses are across the US, including tech hubs like San Francisco, New York City, Austin, and Seattle, as well as other large cities like Dallas, Los Angeles, D.C., Denver, Detroit, and Miami. There are also campuses in London, Paris, Melbourne, Sydney, and Singapore. For all of their locations, see their page.

They offer part-time, full-time, and 1-day courses on software engineering, UX design, data science, digital marketing, and product management, as well as more specific aspects of these topics, like front-end development, data analytics, Python programming, and more. Students can choose between full-time immersive or part-time courses and all are offered online.

Students learn the skills needed to work in the industry as well as work on projects that they can add to their resumes and portfolios to help with their job applications. Those in the full-time immersive programs also have the opportunity to work with a career coach as they get closer to starting their job search.

Immersive programs run 9am-5pm Monday – Friday, while part time programs run two days a week, for 2-3 hours each class session.

Who is General Assembly for?

For those with little background in a specific topic or people who want to transition into a software engineering, data science, product design, or product management role and do not have a background in the subject, General Assembly can be a good option. Those with no prior study in the topics must do some self-study before applying in order to be accepted.

What does General Assembly cost? How much work is involved?

General Assembly offers a few options on payment. The full-time courses costs $15,950 or $15,500 if students pay upfront. Students can also pay in up-to-4 installments or by taking out loans. Students can also choose to enroll in their income share agreement (ISA) and pay the tuition back after they begin working.

Part-time courses cost $3,950 and students can choose to pay this upfront (with a $250 discount) or with loans. The General Assembly ISA is not available as an option for part-time courses.

After submitting an application, prospective students are connected with a General Assembly admissions rep, who determines whether or not the course is a fit for their experience and goals. For the full-time immersive courses, prospective students are required to complete an admissions assessment to ensure they are prepared. After they have been accepted, students must pay a downpayment to secure their spot in the program.

Ratings and reviews

Like most bootcamps, the reviews online are mixed. They are on the SwitchUp list of best bootcamps in 2020. There are a lot of grads who have found success with General Assembly and are now working in roles directly related to what they learned in the course. You can see this on their outcomes report.

On CourseReport, students rated the school highly, but some students had issues with the speed of the curriculum as well as frustrations surrounding frequently changing and inexperienced instructors. The general consensus is that GA works best for self-starters who are motivated and willing to put in the work.

Alternatives to General Assembly

As an educational program, there are a fair number of alternatives to General Assembly.

  • 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.
  • If you are interested in taking online self-guided or instructor-led product design courses, you can check out DesignerUp. Learn more about DesignerUp in our review.
  • Lambda School is probably the most well known. A full-time bootcamp, Lambda offers programs in software engineering, UX design, data science, and iOS development.
  • 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.
  • Similarly, edX is a popular online education tools with college courses.
  • 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, and Data Science Dojo are also options for current and aspiring data scientists. They offer individual courses, as well as in-depth tracks.
  • People who are more interested in software engineering can look to Codeacademy, which teaches courses in computer science and coding for free and also offers membership that are around $20-$40 per month.
  • 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.
  • If you are looking for a free online digital marketing resource, check out the short courses offered by SEMrush Academy, QuickSprout, Facebook Blueprint, or HubSpot Academy.
  • 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, and product management.
  • They can also check out Hack Reactor, which is a software engineering bootcamp, which has online and onsite options.
  • Similarly, there is Coursera, which provides free and low-cost college courses from $29 all the way to $25,000.
  • Udemy, Skillshare, Pluralsight, Learn UX, Treehouse, egghead, and Learn@Forbes are online learning platform with thousands of video courses in a wide variety of topics.
  • Free online resources, SoloLearn and the Mode tutorials have tracks in SQL, as well as other programming languages.
  • For people who want a bootcamp, Flatiron School, App Academy, Designation, and Coding Dojo offer online and in-person courses.
  • The Tech Academy and Galvanize are online and onsite bootcamps that help people learn the technical skills necessary to land a job as a (junior) software developer or data scientist.
  • 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, Bloc, Skillcrush, OpenClassrooms, Interaction Design Foundation, and InternStreet are online bootcamps with tracks in web development and design.
  • 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 General Assembly compare to Pathrise?

General Assembly is a bootcamp, with courses for people who are interested in learning a completely new skill, like UX design or software engineering. 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 job-seekers 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. Our program 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. Job-seekers in Pathrise find a job, on average, within 3-5 months of joining the program. The Pathrise income share agreement is just 9% of their first year’s salary.

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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