Course Spotlight

What is an edX MicroBootCamp?

Jess Feldman

Written By Jess Feldman

Liz Eggleston

Edited By Liz Eggleston

Last updated on November 15, 2023

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Within a rapidly changing workplace, adding industry-relevant skills like knowledge of AI tools is a great way to level up your career. edX has partnered with several leading universities to launch a new, self-paced program, MicroBootCamps to help learners quickly gain important skills and be able to integrate them into their professions. We spoke with Glenna Mowry, Vice President of Learning Innovation at edX to find out how edX keeps curriculum up-to-date in their MicroBootCamps and how to make the most of this learning opportunity.

edX just launched MicroBootCamps — at a high level, what is a MicroBootCamp?

A MicroBootCamp is a program designed to provide experienced professionals the opportunity to directly apply new, industry-relevant skills to their current role and make an impact in their organization. These programs are shorter, and skills-focused with project-based objectives.

Both edX’s boot camps and MicroBootCamps are offered in partnership with leading universities, but what is the difference between an edX boot camp and a MicroBootCamp?

A boot camp is typically an 18-24 week, instructor-paced course where students are learning skills that build towards specific career outcomes.

A MicroBootCamp is a much shorter program (typically 6-8 weeks), focused on skills-based outcomes. Courses are self-paced, but with industry expert support.

A boot camp is perfect for a student that may have no experience in the industry, while a MicroBootCamp is the perfect way for someone to level-up within their career. 



edX Boot Camps

What is it?

A short, self-paced program focused on skills-based outcomes. 

An 18-24 week instructor-paced course aimed at teaching skills towards specific career outcomes. 


6-8 weeks

18-24 weeks


Self-paced with expert support

Instructor-led, live online

Weekly Time Commitment

10-15 hours (self-paced)

9 hours of live classes + 10-15 hours outside of class for projects & portfolios

Who is this boot camp for?

Both upskillers and career changers. Suitable for experienced professionals to apply new skills directly to their role.

Those looking to break into a new industry. Suitable for those with no industry experience.

Are Career Services included?

Access to Career Engagement Network's content but do not have full career services experience.

Career services included in boot camp.

How many hours a week should students expect to commit to the MicroBootCamps?

MicroBootCamps are self-paced, but in general they are designed to last about 6-8 weeks. If the student completes one module per week, each module should take between 10 to 15 hours. 

Will MicroBootCamp students have any interactions with instructors?

While a MicroBootCamp is self-paced, there are industry expert-led office hours for the expected duration to support students with questions, concept review, or areas they want to dig in deeper. Our industry experts who lead office hours are professionals in a variety of industries, with a passion for teaching and practicing the skills taught in the course. 

Which technical tracks do MicroBootCamps cover?

We currently offer an AI MicroBootCamp, which covers topics including machine learning, natural language processing, neural networks, deep learning, generative AI, and other emerging topics within the field. 

Will students complete projects in the MicroBootCamps? 

Students work on a variety of activities throughout the MicroBootCamp and two larger projects. 

  • The first project focuses on creating classification models for a dataset, a logistic regression model and a random forest model. 
  • The second project asks students to predict loan repayment success by using a neural network model on a dataset they prepare for evaluation.

Students may choose to add either or both of these projects to their own professional portfolio. 

Will students have the opportunity to collaborate with each other or interact with the larger edX community?

Since the course is self-paced, students can lean into community and support as much or as little as they prefer. Learners have access to their cohort via a Slack community while going through the course in order to build community and leverage peers as resources during the learning experience. 

Is there an ideal candidate for MicroBootCamps? Are they aimed at career changers or upskillers or both?

MicroBootCamps are aimed at both! Depending on your background and what MicroBootCamp topic it is, it could be an opportunity to upskill and stay on top of trends in your current industry or to help make a switch into a new career. 

For prospective students, what are your tips on how to choose between enrolling at a MicroBootCamp vs a full-time or part-time boot camp at edX?

In addition to considering what type of time commitment fits into your lifestyle, students should consider their career goal and their level of familiarity with AI. We recommend that prospective students looking to enter a technical field for the first time consider the full bootcamp in order to acquire all of the skills necessary to break into a new industry. For students that may already have some professional experience or exposure to AI that are hoping to gain a few new skills, the AI MicroBootCamp will likely be a better fit.

We have admission counselors to help every student determine which pathway might be best based on a student's individual needs. The right program for each program is a personal decision, but the factors that could help lend clarity for learners include the following:

  • Career vs. Skill Outcome - If prospective learners are established professionals looking to build up a specific skill (MicroBootCamp) versus someone looking to get their foot in the door in a new industry or role (boot camps). 
  • Flexibility - Boot camps lend to far less flexibility (9 hours of virtual live classes) than MicroBootCamps (self-paced content, around 10-15 hours per week).
  • Time Commitment - Boot camps are 18-24 weeks in length, with 9 hours of live classes and an additional 10-15 hours outside of class on projects & portfolios. MicroBootCamps are 8-10 modules in length, with about 10-15 hours of work with 2 optional 90-minute office hours each week. 

For students who are struggling with the program, what kinds of assistance can they expect from edX?

We have twice per week office hours with an industry expert for the suggested duration of the program (typically 8-10 weeks). Office hours allow students the opportunity to meet with experts and receive extra assistance or solicit feedback on their work in real-time in a smaller-group setting. In addition, students receive personalized grading on assignments and have access to 24/7 chat support.

For students who are excelling in the program, does the program adjust to give them more challenging material?

While the content doesn’t adjust to give them more challenging material, they are free to move at their own pace and get through the program faster than the suggested duration. We also provide additional resources for them to continue exploring topics that caught their interest. 

Do students in MicroBootCamps receive career services, too?

MicroBootCamp students receive access to the Career Engagement Network’s content, though they do not have access to the full Career Engagement offering of resume review, coaching, etc.

What is your advice for making the most of a MicroBootCamp experience?

MicroBootCamp students should take advantage of the robust support available to them throughout the experience in order to leave the program with skills that are job-market-ready. This includes leveraging office hours, soliciting personalized feedback, communicating with their peer network, and reviewing the career materials available to them. 

This article was produced by the Course Report team in partnership with edX.

About The Author

Jess Feldman

Jess Feldman

Jess Feldman is an accomplished writer and the Content Manager at Course Report, the leading platform for career changers who are exploring coding bootcamps. With a background in writing, teaching, and social media management, Jess plays a pivotal role in helping Course Report readers make informed decisions about their educational journey.

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