Photo of a review of Treehouse as a tech online resource

A review of Treehouse as a tech online resource

Hi, I’m Elle! I work as a product designer at Getaround and as an industry mentor here at Pathrise, where I help our fellows land great jobs in product design through technical workshops and 1-on-1s.

What does Treehouse do?

Treehouse is an online learning platform with over 300 courses in software engineering and UX design. Users can take individual courses on programming languages, including C# and CSS, as well as on other, more broad, topics, such as iOS for Android, website design, visual design for UX, object-oriented PHP, and much more. In addition, Treehouse offers 3 in-depth tracks through their techdegree program: front-end web development, full-stack JavaScript, and user experience design.

Users choose from 3 self-paced options: basic, pro, and techdegree. The basic option includes access to the self-guided courses, interactive practice sessions, and access to the online discussion board. Those who pay for the pro plan receive everything from the basic plan, as well as bonus content, access to new features, and the ability to download videos for offline learning. For users in the techdegree track, the focus is on creating a job-ready portfolio. Besides having access to everything from the basic and pro plans, users participate in an in-depth curriculum, which includes hands-on projects, personalized feedback, and real-time support from Treehouse staff and fellow techdegree students via the course Slack channel. 

Photo of Treehouse as a resource to learn software engineering and UX design

Those enrolled in the techdegree track should expect to work about 3 hours per day to finish the program in 3-5 months on average, but they can take as long as they need. Users can only submit 1 project per week, which means that they cannot finish the techdegree early. Their weekly projects are reviewed by fellow Treehouse students, so users should be prepared to use a rubric to grade their peers’ projects as well. After completing all of the projects in the techdegree program, users take the 1-hour final exam, which is composed of multiple-choice questions. If they pass, users receive a certificate, which they can add to their LinkedIn. If they do not pass, students can study and retake the exam.

Photo of Treehouse certificate program

Who is Treehouse for?

People who are looking to develop the necessary skills to land a job as a software engineer, web developer, or UX designer from scratch can benefit from the techdegree program offered by Treehouse. The basic and pro options can be helpful for those looking to brush up on the basics or advance their current skills. 

What does Treehouse cost? How much work is involved?

Treehouse uses a subscription-based model and offers 3 payment options: basic, pro, and techdegree. While the basic and pro options cost $25 and $49 per month respectively, users enrolled in the techdegree track pay $199 per month. 

To create an account, users register with their email address. All users receive a 7-day free trial. After that, users make their initial monthly payment via credit card. 

Ratings and reviews

In general, most online reviews of Treehouse are positive and recommend the online learning platform as a resource for those who are new to software engineering, web development, and UX design. UX Planet, for instance, consistently includes Treehouse in their best online courses for learning UX design

Many users benefited from the course Slack channel and the peer reviews, which are required for the techdegree programs. According to a Medium blogger who took the front-end web development techdegree program, “I was constantly replying to other students–reviewing their projects or helping them debug their code. This helped me retain things that I might have forgotten or haven’t even learned yet.”

One SwitchUp reviewer said that his experience with Treehouse was on par with top-rated courses he had taken through Udemy, freeCodeCamp, edX, Coursera, and Pluralsight. He said that Treehouse will “give you the skills to get a job tomorrow, not to continue your studies on to a PhD.” 

Other grads felt that the courses were cost effective and a great introduction to the tech world. One Reddit user said, “I used Treehouse when I was first starting out, it helped me a lot.” Another said that “Treehouse is great for newbies,” but “for anything seriously advanced or developing a full fledged web application or otherwise, it would probably be better to go somewhere else.” 

While most users benefited from Treehouse, some G2 reviewers felt that the curriculum for the basic and pro options could have been improved. One reviewer said that “some of the videos felt a little too gimmicky” and that the “production value didn’t actually help enhance the course.” The reviewer also points out that “a common downfall with code courses is teaching by rote memorization or repetition instead of explaining what’s going on under the heard.” 

Alternatives to Treehouse

If you are looking for alternative courses and resources to learn product design, web development, or software engineering, check out the following list.  

  • 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 and UX design, as well as data science, digital marketing, product management, and more. Read more about General Assembly in our review.
  • Like Treehouse, Kenzie Academy offers courses in software engineering and UX design. Learn more about Kenzie Academy in our review.
  • Aspiring designers can consider GrowthX Academy, which is an online bootcamp with courses in UX design as well as growth marketing and sales and business development. Learn more about GrowthX Academy in our review of the program.
  • You can also check out 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 interested in taking online self-guided or instructor-led product design courses should look into DesignerUp. Learn more about DesignerUp in our review.
  • Actualize offers a full-time software engineering bootcamp that can be taken in-person or live online so remote students can follow along with their classmates.
  • Similarly, App Academy and Hack Reactor offer in-person and online courses for aspiring software engineers.
  • In addition to full-time offerings, Covalence and Galvanize have part-time software engineering courses for those who need a smaller time commitment. 
  • Those who are interested in using an ISA to finance their software engineering bootcamp tuition can enroll in Lambda School or Holberton School
  • Tech bootcamps and resources, Thinkful, Flatiron School, and Pluralsight offer courses in software engineering, UX design, and other topics.
  • You can also check out Udacity and Springboard, which are online learning tools 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.
  • You can also consider the design resources offered by Skillcrush, Learn UX, Bloc, Coursera, Interaction Design Foundation, and Udemy.
  • 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 Treehouse compare to Pathrise?

Treehouse is an online resource with classes and in-depth tracks in UX design, web development, and software engineering for beginners or students looking to further their knowledge in a specific topic, such as conducting user interviews or creating a basic PHP website. Those in the techdegree program receive assistance with some aspects of the job search, such as portfolio building, but not others, such as resume and LinkedIn optimization and interview prep.

Pathrise is a full-service organization that helps our fellows land the best job possible. Our mentors work 1-on-1 with fellows on every stage of the job search, including resume and portfolio building, behavioral and technical interview prep, cold emailing and reverse recruiting strategies, salary negotiation, and more. The program is personalized to fit each individual’s specific background and goals. Workshops and 1-on-1 sessions are weekly and additional 1-on-1s can be scheduled as needed by fellows.  

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 are interested in optimizing your job search by working with a mentor, become a Pathrise fellow. 

Apply today.

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