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App Academy

New York City, Online, San Francisco

App Academy

Avg Rating:4.67 ( 1080 reviews )

App Academy offers immersive web development courses both online and in-person on campuses in San Francisco and New York City. App Academy’s curriculum is largely based on a hands-on approach. Students spend about 90% of their time pair programming and 10% in lectures, encouraging the sharing of knowledge while also making coding more social. App Academy places emphasis on career training to help students land jobs soon after graduation. App Academy's job-search curriculum focuses on algorithms, interview skills, and other technical interview-focused skillsets.

The in-person web development course is 16 weeks-long, and the full stack curriculum covers Ruby on Rails, Javascript, HTML/CSS, SQL, algorithms, data structures, and React/Redux. Students interested in this intense program should expect to put in 90-100 hours per week. The first 9 weeks of the course are focused on learning web development skills in multiple languages, and the final 3 weeks are a robust job-search curriculum. The online course runs for 24 weeks, and focuses on JavaScript and Python. Students of the online course learn fundamentals, such as JavaScript, Git, and object-oriented programming, and later build on these by learning languages, such as Express, React, HTML & CSS, and more. Like the in-person course, students of the online course create a portfolio that includes individual and group projects. 

Interested applicants should expect to submit an application, complete two coding challenges, complete an interview and receive an admission decision a few days after the interview. Prospective applicants can also enroll in App Academy’s Bootcamp Prep programs to increase their chances of admission from 2% to more than 40%.

App Academy offers a deferred payment plan where students are only required to pay tuition if they secure a job upon graduation. App Academy offers two other pricing models for students as well — a completely upfront model and a hybrid model that is a combination of the deferred and upfront models.

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  • App Academy Open

    Apply
    Start Date None scheduled
    Cost$0
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    With App Academy Open you’ll get free access to App Academy’s entire in-person full-stack curriculum, which has placed thousands of people in software development jobs. App Academy is ranked as the #1 coding bootcamp in the US and, since 2016, has placed more software developers at Google than UC Berkeley. On the Free plan you’ll get over 1,500 hours of material (readings, videos, projects), an interactive coding environment and community features like chat to keep you connected with thousands of prospective developers across the globe.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewNo
  • Bootcamp Prep

    Apply
    HTML, JavaScript, Node.js
    In PersonPart Time4 Weeks
    Start Date None scheduled
    Cost$2,999
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationSan Francisco, New York City
    Bootcamp Prep is a 4 week, part-time course, guaranteed to get you accepted at the most selective coding schools or your money back. The program will teach you up to an advanced level of JavaScript, and instructors provide you with 1-on-1 mock interviews, as well assist with your individual bootcamp applications.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Refund / GuaranteeYour full Bootcamp Prep tuition will be subtracted from your initial deposit if accepted into App Academy's full time program under the deferred payment plan.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelN/A
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewNo
  • Bootcamp Prep Online

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    HTML, JavaScript
    OnlinePart Time
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$1,795
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    Bootcamp Prep is a part-time, online course, guaranteed to get you accepted at the most selective coding schools or your money back. The program will teach you up to an advanced level of JavaScript, and instructors provide you with 1-on-1 mock interviews, as well as assist with your individual bootcamp applications.
    Financing
    DepositNone
    Tuition PlansStandard: $995 Plus: $1795 Premium: $3795
    Refund / GuaranteeMoney back guarantee if you aren't accepted into a top coding bootcamp
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelNo experience required
    Prep WorkNone required
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewNo
  • In-Person Full Stack Web Development

    Apply
    Start Date None scheduled
    Cost$17,000
    Class size60
    LocationSan Francisco, New York City
    Over sixteen weeks, you'll learn all the skills needed to begin a career as a web developer. Through hands-on projects, we train you to build web applications with Ruby on Rails, JavaScript, and React/Redux. Prior programming experience isn't required. However, you will need lots of tenacity and a passion for building cool stuff.
    Financing
    DepositOnly applicable for the Deferred tuition option, a deposit of $3k will be required.
    Financing
    Lending partnership with Climb Credit available for the Upfront tuition option.
    Tuition Plans$17,000 Upfront Plan $23,000 Hybrid Plan ($9k upfront, $13k deferred) $28,000 Deferred Plan (Fully deferred with a $3k deposit)
    Refund / GuaranteeGuaranteed placement under the Deferred tuition option.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBasic computer literacy
    Prep WorkProvided at each step by App Academy.
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
  • Online Full Stack Web Development

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    Start Date None scheduled
    Cost$20,000
    Class size25
    LocationOnline
    Over 24 weeks, you'll learn all the skills needed to begin a career as a web developer. Through hands-on projects, we train you to build web applications with JavaScript, Ruby on Rails, React/Redux, SQL, and HTML/CSS. Prior programming experience isn't required. However, you will need lots of tenacity and a passion for building cool stuff.
    Financing
    Deposit$0
    Financing
    Available through Climb Credit
    Tuition Plans- ISA: $0 Upfront. 15% for 3 years with a maximum of $31,000, only after you're hired making over $50,000 - Upfront: $20,000
    Refund / GuaranteeGuaranteed job under ISA tuition option.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBasic computer literacy
    Prep WorkProvided at each step by App Academy.
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
  • Anonymous • Senior Software Engineer • Graduate
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    For 26 years prior to App Academy I held a latent disdain for my generic fellow man because he was just dumb and me discussing the truth with him would probably offend or shock him.

    App Academy is the only time in my life where I've felt legitimately overmatched and fighting for my life.  Where I felt dumber and seriously fighting to just stay there.  Every day I had to decide to get up and fucking fight and even then I lost a lot.

    The best thing about App Academy is not the curriculum.  It is the opportunity to spend time with the humble folks with whom you will be walking on coals.  I have poor character so I had to cheat to not get expelled, but now 9 months removed I am making $130k/year and my superior colleagues are surely making more.  Don't cheat though.

    If you are driven, you should quit your job, then get the curriculum from an alum and devote 80 hours per week to the correct delivery of their daily exercises.  This can save you a lot of money.

    Try get a job by applying with scripts.  Their job search is way too manual of a process for people who just learned to try to automate everything.

    App Academy gets the best people because they charge nothing up front.  Don't settle for a lesser school that just wants your money and kicks you on your way.  App Academy does not get paid until you get employed, AND they only get max money if you get $100k.

  • Are you prepared?
    - 8/21/2015
    Eric • Web Developer • Graduate
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    The time at App Academy was a HORRIBLE experience, BUT WAIT! before I continue I just want to say, I graduated App Academy and got a job as a developer immediately. So to continure with this review, I will continue to that getting through App Academy was literally the hardest thing I have ever done in life. I went through engineering school as an undergrad and never have I been through more stress and worked harder for anything. Although this is coming from someone with absolutely no coding experience before app academy so some of my cohort mates had it much easier than I did. But anyways, after it was all over, I must declare it to be the BEST DECISION I HAVE EVER MADE. I was so amazed at how much I was able to learn in just a little bit of time. App Academy gave me everything I needed to start my first job as a web developer. It actually gave me confidence in myself after I saw how much knowledge I was able to gain so quickly, which is something college never did for me. So, to anyone looking to apply, study hard! because they are hard to get an acceptance from, and prepare to work hard. How ever hard you worked to prepare for the interview process, be prepared to work 50 times as hard once you're in.

    p.s. Jonathan, the instructor at NYC is an awesome teacher. I don't know about SF but I would recommend the NYC office just because Jonathan was such a good instructor and he really knew how to help with all the issues you might have, and make the learning more interesting and fun for everyone.

  • Sarah M • DevOps Engineer • Graduate
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    If you do not like to work hard, then you should not attend this bootcamp. My cohort put in the 80-90 hours per week. Other bootcamps offer services like counseling, group exercise, and off-topic workshops. App Academy is not like that. It is a no-frills immersive program.

    HOWEVER, if you are prepared to earn your stripes, then this is the best bootcamp around. It's thorough and hands-on. Honestly, their business model says it all. You owe no tuition unless you get a job, and the amount that you pay them is based on your starting salary.

    The curricumlum has changed since I participated in the program, but it involves Ruby, Rails, JavaScript, HTML5/CSS and algorithms (which is prep for whiteboard interviews). You pair with another student, and you're basically doing a new lab every day. When I started the program, I barely knew how to use my command line. By the end of the program, I had completed a dozen (barebones) apps, including a solo capstone project.

    While I stand by the fact that this place will kick your ass, Jonathan is the most nuturing instructor one could ever dream of. He pours his heart into his work and each of his students. He wants you to succeed. While you spend most of your classroom hours working with another student, the TAs and Jonathan are always available to help get you un-stuck.

    As far as job placement, App Academy grads work at impressive companies, like Google, Pivotal, Thoughbot, Groupon, etc. Alum (including myself) attend hiring day for recruiting purposes. Companies in the city are 'repeat customers', hiring grads from a/A when they need new devs. There's also a mailing list for alum, so the cohorts continue to support each other even after graduation.

    Bottom line - this program works.  Whether you decide to become a dev or take the ops route like I did, App Academy will prepare you for a career in the tech world.

  • Andre • Agile QA Engineer, Intent Media • Graduate
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    Positives:

    -Their claimed information about percent of students placed and average salaries is absolutely right, even though it sounds too good to be true.

    -You are not charged money up front, except for a $3,000 deposit. This distinguishes App Academy from most other programs, and it's much better to pay money when you have it than before you have it. This makes AA inherently more accessible to students with less of a financial cushion than some other programs.

    -Jonathan (instructor in NYC) really knows what he's doing and is a very compassionate person.

    -The students are quite intelligent and motivated.

    Negatives:

    -High-stakes weekly assessments with sometimes unclear information about consequences; makes the program somewhat more stressful than necessary. Also, some of the assessments are spelled out in advance too much, which favors type-A over-studiers over people really trying to understand the concepts. That said, nobody was actually kicked out in my group.

    -At least in NYC, App Academy doesn't seem to be marketed as well, or have as many deep connections to employers, as some other bootcamps. Placement outcomes seem to still be good despite this.

    -I felt like half of the advice I got about jobs seems wrong to me now that I know the industry better. Maybe it's overly tailored at SF?

    -Application process is sketchy. Founder Kush Patel seems to have shown up late for pretty much everybody's interviews (mine included), and many people report being unnecessarily intimidated by his personality. They should probably get somebody else to handle this process. Also, the public-facing website being way out of date doesn't help.

    -Sometimes felt like cramming lots of fancy technologies into a short period of time was valued more than building resilient products with the user in mind, and this sometimes shows in students' finished work (i.e. "let me tell you about my fancy AJAX thing! No, don't try that feature, you'll break it. Just let me demonstrate. Anyway, about that AJAX thing...) This may be a problem with pretty much every bootcamp.

    -It would be nice if there were no $3,000 deposit; this would make App Academy really be able to brag about its no-strings-attached $0 upfront price and really distinguish itself from competitors.

    Overall, despite the above rants, this is an excellent choice for a cash-strapped career changer (or even a non-cash-strapped career changer). It definitely got the job done.

  • Anonymous • Graduate
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    It was great. You have to understand that you are going to be working your ass off, but if you come to learn every day, you're going to get a lot out of the experience.

    There is a test every week (basically). The tests are completely passable, given that they give you sample tests and tons of learning resources, but be prepared to stress a little over those (fail 2 and they may ask you to leave).

    It's not in the best of areas (near Civic Center on market), but the computers are great for pairing and what do you really need other than that?

    Instructors were great. The TAs are the best of past cohorts and are very bright and knowledgable. Ned is crazy good at explaining concepts, using examples to help with his demonstrations.

    They do have a live in option for out of towners since finding a place in SF can be extremely difficult and expensive. I didn't do this, but the people who did seemed to be ok with it.

    Great job searching tool and prep, lots of white board problems, and comraderie with other students who are going through the same job search struggle.

    Perhaps one of the best aspects is once you graduate, you still get access to the Github resources, which are constantly being updated.

    Overall, come ready to work extremely hard, and you'll get a job in no time.

  • Anonymous • Web Developer • Graduate
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    The App Academy was great. I was trying to teach myself web development on my own and was at a job that paid well but was miserable. I thought I'd come out of the App Academy with a better job that maybe paid the same or less.  Ended up getting a big raise. 

    I partially credit that to the fact that a/A gets paid based on your first year's salary. It's in their best interest to get you the highest paying job possible. Because of that, they helped me with job hunting strategy, putting together a portfolio, and ended up giving me negotiation help as the negiotiations for my job were happening. Just that last bit ended up being worth about $5k a year for me. 

    App Academy is intense and you need to be willing to commit fully to it. Not just quitting your other job, but also all other obligations and commitments. But when you pay that much for something, it should be easy to commit.

    Money aside, it's a great school and I recommend it. I had 8 interviews in my first week out of school. I'm almost 5 months into my new job and it's awesome. 

  • Nick Hong • Software Engineer • Graduate
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    TL;DR: App Academy is an extremely fast-paced deep dive intro for Ruby on Rails and Backbone.js. It's good for students who can drop everything to find junior developer positions.

    I went through the App Academy bootcamp over a year ago.

    Deeper dive:

    • AA has very strong batches: Since AA is free until after you find a job, the application pool is huge and the selection pretty rigorous (I think the acceptance rate is < 5%). This means AA places you with with really strong batch mates and designs a curriculum that challenges you.
      • Pros: You work with smart people. You mostly pair with peopel you can depend on to work at a quick pace and swap learnings and coding patterns with.
      • Cons: You might have a hard time getting in. I know people who have applied and been accepted into multiple bootcamps but were turned down by AA. Make sure you really study Ruby on codeacademy.com, coderbyte.com, rubykoans.com, etc. AA will give you a similar list nof resources when you apply before you do your coding interview.
    • AA is extremely fast-paced: You're forced to learn a lot and are tested weekly on your progress. They know you're smart and design a curriculum assuming that will make your head hurt.
      • Pros: You're really challenged. The course load and pace reminded me of the 'drink from the firehose' feeling I had in some of the harder courses I took while at MIT. You'll learn a ton if you apply yourself 100%. 
      • Cons: The  pace was too quick for some - we ended up having to drop a few classmates that couldn't keep up and productively pair with us. There's a weekly test that can be difficult, and students were dropped if they failed 3 assessments in a row. This makes sense - you don't want to pair with someone way behind on material, as it would hamper your own learning. Still, don't attempt AA unless you can really commit your time to pairing during the day and studying at night and over the weekend.
    • AA emphasises on working through problems: We were given the entire day to work through problems, with solutions made available only after a full 8-10 hours of work put in.
      • Pros: We learned what we covered much better than if we had a quicker, more guided approach. Since we were forced to experiment and reason through problems with less structured guidance, we all learned how to read error logs, use Chrome's web inspector for inspecting DOM / inspecting network requests / using the javascript console / tail and grep server logs better than most other bootcamp students I've interviewed since graduating.
      • Cons: We covered fewer overall algorithms and patterns. Example - I only learned the Rails conventional AJAX form method using remote: true at work. However, I had a pretty good understanding of making AJAX calls from in-class experimentation, so picking up the remote: true method wasn't too difficult.
    • AA emphasises on deep dives and web basics: We were taught Ruby extensively before we learned any Rails. We built a rudimentary version of ActiveRecord::Base ourselves, forcing ourselves to learn a lot of Ruby metaprogramming while we were at it, before really using ActiveRecord extensively. We did something similar with Backbone.js - we built our own simple version using basic arrays and understanding of Javascript / AJAX  before diving in with Backbone.js in projects. 
      • Pros: This approach taught away the 'magic' in lots of the libraries we were using and made debugging complicated issues easier, since we had a more intuitive feel for what was happening under the hood.
      • Cons: We learned fewer libraries and covered their actual implementation/documentation in less depth. This made us read documentation on our own time for our more extensive final projects.

    Perhaps the most important point is that I'm very happily employed now with the same company I started with immediately after AA (www.therealreal.com). So is a fellow batch mate - we work on standing desks right next to each other 18 months after having first paired together. We're both valued contributors with an above-average salary and are still learning constantly from more experienced developers. Both of us think AA really helps set of promising careers in web development / software engineering.

  • Anonymous • Graduate
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    I had no coding experience or coding knowledge prior to attending and graduating from App Academy. App academy does a great job in creating a fundamental foundation for a software engineer. In terms of teaching, the teacher assistants and the instructors are mainly alumni who graduated recently from the program. The curriculum itself is great and helpful but there are moments when the instructor does a difficult time teaching the curriculum or it might be my learning style did not match with the instructor's teaching style. It's stressful in that you must pass each assessment in order to move on to the next topic and if you do not pass then you will be deferred and join the upcoming cohort. Deferring is not a bad thing, but knowing that there's a constant pressure to keep up with the material and keep an 80% or higher on the assessment is stressful. If you're not able to put in the time and effort after hours then I would suggest that this program is not for you. App academy really does emphasize the 80 hours per week in studies is necessary in order to graduate and be a well developed programmer. As someone who had no knowledge prior to joining, I would definitely recommend a/A's program to anyone who has an interest and passion about coding and who is willing to learn. 
  • Graduates
    - 8/15/2022
    Anonymous • Graduate
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    I really enjoyed my experience at App Academy. I looked forward to attending class everyday and really enjoyed learning new material each day. It was a great experience and I valued my time in App Academy. The staff was always welcoming and understanding. I also made amazing friends during my time in the boot camp and consider them as close friends. I recommend this course to anyone who wants to learn how to code but it is a long commitment but definitely worth it. I really liked working with others and getting to know new people daily. 
  • Anonymous • Software Engineer • Graduate
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    The program is fairly intensive, being a full-time commitment. That being said, the staff does a great job of walking you through the day to day and the ever-improving curriculum prepares you from any beginner level to being ready to apply for a full-time software engineering position. It's a little pricey, but a more than worthwhile investment.
  • Anonymous • Graduate
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    I joined App Academy with no prior coding experience and I believe that I came out with a solid understanding of web development. The program was no small feat and you definitely need to put in the work, but for as little as just 4 months of your time, it was for sure worth it! Probably the biggest skill that I've learned early on in the program was how to use the debugger. This allowed me to debug my code as well as other people's code and figure out what every single line of code is doing. Definitely a great tool for beginners if they want strong fundamentals and just a better understanding of the code that they write.
  • Anonymous • Graduate
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    App Academy has team of instructors who give lectures on SW topics and help with projects. These instructors and the job search coaches are recent graduates from AA who are also doing their own job search. The projects were fun to work on and helped me put into practice the knowledge and skills that I was gaining from the curriculum and from working with other peers.  AA makes sure you adhere to deadlines and stay on top of your projects and job search. This bootcamp is useful if you need some extra encouragement and direction in software engineering.

    On the curriculum: 
    You will learn Ruby, Ruby on Rails, SQL, Active Record, JavaScript, React and Redux. There is very little on CS topics and ultimately when you finish the curriculum, they tell you to go back and study data structures and algorithms on your own and via LeetCode because that is what companies will interview you on. There is an assessment almost every week for the first 2 months and will have very thorough practice tests and some will just be a simple practice test. Instructors will tell you to do each practice test at least 10x over the weekend and the assessments are mostly memorization of material. Every night there is homework to do each night to prep you for the project you will do pair programming with the next day. The quality of this material can vary greatly from topic to topic. 

    Post curriculum:
    Once you finish the 16-week curriculum, you have to do 3 projects (JavaScript, Fullstack and MERN, with MERN being a group project) which will become your portfolio projects. Once these are done, their job search team will guide you through the process of making job search materials. This will includes resume, cover letter, portfolio website, creating GitHub, LinkedIn and AngelList profiles, and how to give a personal pitch. So far I have received wonderful feedback from coaches (also past graduates). 

    For those who are good at self study, you probably won't need AA because their curriculum is the same as their free online curriculum, or other free resources online. Communication with their team can be disorganized as they don't have a consistent platform to share information (including what is expected of each student). There were a couple things that caught us off guard and was a bit frustrating:  

    * We were initially told passing scores for assessments are 50% but once you start, they tell you its 85%
    * They do not use Slack Premium, so you will not be able to look at communication that is over 1 week old
    * Deadlines for various tasks may be given in Zoom chats, Slack or verbally (inconsistent) - It would have been best if they used email
    * They have a bot that emails nightly with information needed but they are not updated - often we received deadlines for previous cohorts
    * All marketing says it's a 16-week program but after the 16-weeks, they begin the job search period which you are still required to attend for at least the first couple weeks after graduation, meaning you can't make vacation plans, this should have been better communicated prior to signing onto bootcamp

    Ultimately, it depends on what you want to get out of a bootcamp. They provide a set curriculum and structure for those who need it, which I like to have. I really enjoyed meeting people from a very diverse collection of backgrounds and learning from each of them. I also had a lot of fun using the knowledge learned to do the final projects. Since instructors are past grads, there is quite a bit of turnover and I think each cohort's experience will vary greatly depending on the team of instructors. It's a very good start for anyone who doesn't have a technical background and doesn't know how to start, or what materials to study on their own.

Thanks!