A review of Jigsaw Labs as a data engineering bootcamp

Hi, I’m Olga! I have years of experience in data engineering, most recently at eBay and now I work as an industry mentor at Pathrise, helping data engineers land a great role through technical workshops and 1-on-1s. Check out my review of Jigsaw Labs.  

What does Jigsaw Labs do?

Jigsaw Labs offers part-time tech bootcamps that teach people the skills they need to launch a new career as a data engineer. The program is completely remote. Class sizes are still small, with only 8 students and lots of personalized support. Students participate in live lectures, interactive readings, lab exercises, and 1-on-1 coaching.

The flagship program runs for 24 weeks. Classes meet Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 6:30pm to 9:30 pm ET, plus a
Sunday class from 12:30pm to 9:30 pm ET. Jigsaw labs bases their curriculum on the most in-demand data engineering skills, meaning the syllabus is flexible and subject to change with the industry. However, the curriculum is currently divided into 2 modules: analytics engineering and data engineering. In the 12-week analytics engineering module, students learn coding fundamentals in Python and SQL as they begin building data pipelines.

Weeks 13 to 24 cover data engineering. Students dive deep into Python and SQL skills as they build APIs in Flask. The curriculum also covers cloud computing and data orchestration, as well as how to ace technical interviews. Halfway through the program, students are paired with companies for internships that provide real-world data engineering experience. Students spend about 6 hours per week working at their internship.

After completing the program, grads get 6 months of intensive job support. Grads meet weekly with mentors to optimize their LinkedIn profiles, strengthen their resumes, and continue upskilling. The course even offers a job guarantee. If data engineering grads don’t get a data science job within 6 months, they get a full refund.

Free interactive courses are also available to learn core skills. Topics include Python for data, Docker, Spark, machine learning, and Neural Networks with Pytorch. Prospective students can use these free courses to prepare for the interview for the full program. Free data workshops are also available to get a taste of the live instruction.

Who is Jigsaw Labs for?

People with little to no tech experience who are looking to launch a new data engineering career could benefit from Jigsaw Labs’ bootcamps. The data engineering program is especially helpful for people seeking a comprehensive yet in-depth data curriculum with small class sizes and a flexible online format. Students seeking fairly extensive career services with a job guarantee could also be a good match for the data engineering course. 

What does Jigsaw Labs cost? How much work is involved?

Tuition for the 20-week data engineering bootcamp is $9,500, with $4,750 paid before each of the two semesters. Students who choose the deferred payment option pay $1,000 per month while learning. After getting hired, they pay $833 over 15 monthly payments, bringing the total cost of the deferred tuition option to $13,500.

Jigsaw Labs offers a job guarantee, meaning students don’t pay unless they land a data job that pays at least $70,000. To enroll, prospective students first schedule a zoom call to learn more about the bootcamp. Candidates then move on to a technical interview that assesses their Python skills.  The interview covers the Python material in the first ten lessons of our free Python for data course, meaning prospective students can prepare with Jigsaw Lab’s free material.

Ratings and reviews

While Jigsaw Labs does not have too many online reviews, so far the reception has been mostly positive. They hold a perfect 5 star rating on Course Report based on only 8 reviews. One grad described the program as “a great place to start” since “the curriculum is an intro to all the basics in programming” that is “needed to get started in this field.” Although the grad warned that “the pace is very fast”, he was confident that the “engaging” instructors supported students throughout all the intensive parts of the course. 

Another grad raved that his instructor “cares so much about each student’s progress” and liked that “smaller class size allows for a more personalized learning experience.” Although the student was concerned that the bootcamp was “covering a lot of topics at a quick pace” he felt that the “curriculum builds a really solid understanding of the fundamentals” so students are prepared when the course starts moving faster. 

Reviews on Career Karma praised the “small class size” and extensive 1-on-1 support. While students were overwhelmingly impressed with the teaching style and staff, some felt the course can “become overwhelming quickly” with a lot of “work outside of class.” Overall, most grads seemed satisfied with the supportive environment and in-demand curriculum, though some may have preferred a slightly slower pace.

Alternatives to Jigsaw Labs

If you decide not to enroll in a Jigsaw Labs course, there are many alternative bootcamps and resources that can help you land a job as a data engineer. 

  • Another beginner-friendly program is Coding Dojo. They offer data science courses that cover fundamental skills students need to land an entry level job as a data analyst. Like Jigsaw Labs, their classes are hands-on, often in-person, and don’t require prior experience.
  • The data science bootcamp Divergence Academy offers full-time and part-time courses in data science subjects. Their program is flexible and includes opportunities for 1-on-1 mentorship.
  • Metis has both introductory and more advanced data science courses with onsite & remote bootcamp options. Learn more about Metis in our review.
  • Aspiring data scientists seeking a hands-on curriculum with lots of personalized support can check out Springboard. Like Jigsaw Labs, they offer tracks in data science with mentoring and a 6-month job guarantee. Read more about Springboard in our review.
  • Students seeking a hands-on bootcamp with an income share agreement (ISA) can look into General Assembly. They teach full-time, part-time, and 1-day courses on a variety of topics like data science and analytics. The program features 19,000+ hiring partners, mentoring, and a job placement rate above 91.4%. Learn more about General Assembly in our review.
  • Another popular tech bootcamp with an ISA is Thinkful. They teach courses in data science, as well as software engineering and UX/UI design.
  • The online learning program Data Science Dream Job offers self-paced data science courses. Like Jigsaw Labs, their program features portfolio building, career assistance, and opportunities for mentoring. 
  • Another data science resource is DataCamp. They host 300+ courses on data science subjects that last about 4 hours each. DataCamp also has an active community forum for networking and Q&A.
  • For those looking for a data science community focused on project-learning, Kaggle can be a good choice. They host 19,000+ public datasets and 200,000+ public notebooks for people who are looking to get started or join a data science project to build up their skills and their portfolios.
  • The tech bootcamp BrainStation offers programs in data science and other tech topics. Like Jigsaw Labs, BrainStation has remote options as well as a campus in NYC for in-person learners.
  • Students seeking self-paced learning on a budget can check out Udemy. Their platform hosts thousands of affordable video courses on data science. Individual classes only cost around $10 each. 
  • Similarly, Codecademy offers free self-paced courses on data science and many programming languages, including Python. They also have membership options ranging from $20 to $40 per month for greater course options and extra support. Read more about Codecademy in our review.
  • Students seeking university courses on a budget can check out edX. Their platform hosts thousands of courses from top universities like Harvard and MIT, plus big tech companies like Microsoft. Students can choose to learn the fundamentals or dive deeper into specific topics, like Python for data science. Learn more about edX in our review
  • Another affordable online program with hands-on data courses is Udacity. Students in their nanodegree program build polished projects for their portfolios and work closely with technical and career mentors. Find out if Udacity is right for your goals in our review.

How does Jigsaw Labs compare to Pathrise?

Jigsaw Labs teaches the skills needed to land a job in data science or analytics. While the curriculum may veer into more advanced material, the courses are designed for complete beginners and focus on fundamental skill sets. Pathrise fellows should already have some background in their field of interest so they can fully benefit from our more advanced technical curriculum.

After completing the program, grads get 6 months of job support. Pathrise mentors help fellows in our program with all phases of the job search for as long as needed. Our experienced mentors have already helped 1,000+ people land their dream by working with fellows on their resumes & portfolios, reverse recruiting and cold emails, behavioral and technical interview preparation, salary negotiation, and more. 

The Pathrise program is flexible and tailored to the needs of each fellow. Fellows only have 2-4 hours of group sessions per week and can schedule 1-on-1 sessions as needed. With our guidance, fellows see their interview scores double and their application responses triple, lending jobs in only 3-5 months on average.

Like Jigsaw Labs, Pathrise fellows get access to an income share agreement ISA. Fellows only pay with 9% of their first-year salary after they land a great tech job. We never require any upfront payments or deposits.

Pathrise is a career accelerator that optimizes the job search through 1-on-1 mentorship and personalized training. If you are interested in working with one of our mentors to land your dream job, join Pathrise.

Apply today.

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