Photo of best free coding bootcamps to learn software engineering skills

Best free coding bootcamps to learn software engineering skills

Hi, I’m Brian, a former senior software engineer and now software engineering mentor at Pathrise. I have worked with hundreds of software engineers to help them land their dream job. Check out our list of the best free coding bootcamps.

People who are looking to learn the necessary skills to become a software engineer from scratch often begin their careers by enrolling in a coding bootcamp. Bootcamps range in time commitment and price, from free all the way to $85,000, the tuition of Holberton School. To help get you started, we have compiled a list of free coding bootcamps so that you can find a program that teaches you the basics or advances your current tech skills without paying tuition. 

While many programs and websites offer resources for aspiring software engineers, the following list includes free coding courses from well known bootcamps and established online learning platforms so that you can choose the one that meets your specific needs. 

1. General Assembly

Instead of enrolling in General Assembly’s full-time bootcamps, students can take GA Dash, a free online bootcamp that teaches students how to create websites. Studying the fundamentals of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, students learn the basics of navigation, mobile responsive design, and more. The self-paced program, which uses videos, step-by-step coding guides, and projects, does not grant students access to instructors or peers.

technical results from general assembly

While not completely free, discounts and scholarships are also available for General Assembly bootcamps. Through our partnership with general assembly, you can get access to a series of exclusive program offerings, including $1500 off any of their bootcamps or short-courses. If you’re interested in launching a career in tech, schedule a call with the GA Admissions team and ask them for the free workshops, events, and discounts. You can read more about General Assembly in our review.

2. App Academy

Known for their full-time courses in New York City and San Francisco, App Academy also offers a free online program called App Academy Open, which grants students access to the program’s entire in-person full-stack curriculum. The curriculum provides 1,500 hours of learning material, including readings, videos, and projects, as well as an interactive coding environment where students can chat and network with their peers. This self-guided curriculum covers everything full-stack, including JavaScript and Ruby on Rails. 

3. Flatiron School

Flatiron School has free online coding bootcamps in topics such as HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and Ruby. Students collaborate with their peers, instructors, and technical coaches through the online learning platform. In addition, the program provides some interview prep guidance by including readings and recorded lectures on how to approach pre-interview research, phone screens and behavioral interviews, and coding challenges. 

4. Hack Reactor

Hack Reactor Prep, a free program designed by the creators of Hack Reactor, is a self-paced, free coding bootcamp that prepares students for full-time software engineer programs. Featuring videos, assignments, and more, the self-guided course teaches students the basics of JavaScript at their own pace and helps them build a strong foundation in coding before they launch their careers. Those looking to brush up on modern web development techniques can benefit from the prep course as well.

5. Skillcrush

An online tech bootcamp, Skillcrush offers a free coding camp for beginners. In addition to learning the basics of HTML, CSS, and WordPress, students work through the fundamentals of 

Java, Python, and Javascript, all at their own pace. They can also network with Skillcrush alumni through the online learning platform. By connecting with alumni, students can learn more about the creative and analytical career paths in tech.

6. Codecademy

Codecademy is also a tech educational tool with free and paid resources. Beginners can use the interactive online learning platform to practice the fundamentals of HTML, CSS, PHP, Python, Ruby, AngularJS, The Command, Line and more without paying tuition. They pick and choose from a variety of classes, which take between 1 and 20 hours to complete. 

7. Coursera 

Hosting courses taught by professors at accredited universities, Coursera has free and paid options. The online learning platform has courses in computer science, data science, and math, as well as the humanities, and more. Students learn through a mix of recorded video lectures, assignments, and community discussion forums. While many of the courses are free, students can also pay a fee to receive a “Coursera Verified Certificate.”

8. edX

Partnering with universities such as UC Berkeley, UPenn, and Oxford, edX is a massive online open course (MOOC) offering over 300 free and paid courses. Students can take free courses on topics such as HTML5, CSS, mobile app development, Java, and more. 

9. freeCodeCamp

As suggested by its name, freeCodeCamp is a free software engineering bootcamp that offers tracks in front-end and full-stack development. Self-paced, the program offers over 1600 hours of learning material, with a focus on JavaScript. Students can also check out freeCodeCamp’s technical interview challenges to prepare for coding interviews. If they are stuck, students can participate in freeCodeCamp’s forum, where they can pose questions and discuss issues they are experiencing with challenges. 

10. Udacity 

Udacity allows users to take courses in innovative topics such as artificial intelligence, blockchain development, virtual reality, robotics, and much more. Most of their introductory courses are free if you register with your email address, though students can access more material by paying for the nanodegree program, which costs from $599-$1,199. Learn more about Udacity in our review.

11. The Odin Project

The Odin Project is a free online coding bootcamp that is sponsored by Thinkful. An open source community, advanced software engineers curate the best online tutorials, blogs, and courses to help beginners learn how to code from scratch. By working through the modules, students build dozens of portfolio-worthy items, from basic scripts to websites. In addition, they connect with The Odin Project’s community of beginner and experienced developers through the online platform, where they can ask questions if they are stuck on a problem. 

12. Kenzie Academy

Besides their full-time bootcamp, Kenzie Academy offers free online mini-courses that students can complete at their own pace. Designed by software engineers from top companies such as Google, LinkedIn, and Zillow, the curriculum covers HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Students learn through brief video tutorials and coding practice sessions. Whether you are considering a career in tech or looking to learn the basics of web development, Kenzie Academy’s free coding courses can prepare you for taking the next steps in your career. Learn more about Kenzie Academy in our review.

If you are looking to work with a mentor to help you land a job as a software engineer, Pathrise is an online program that provides 1-on-1 support to students and professionals on every component of the job search, including technical and behavioral interview prep, resume and portfolio building, salary negotiation, and more.

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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