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Lambda School

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Lambda School

Avg Rating:4.2 ( 109 reviews )

Lambda School is an online coding bootcamp that trains people to become software engineers, data scientists, or back end developers at no up-front cost. The computer science academy offers full-time, 6-month programs for Web Development and Data Science, and a 9-month program for Backend Development, which is jointly developed by Lambda School and Amazon. Throughout the rigorous programs, students will demonstrate mastery of core front end and back end technologies as well as computer science fundamentals. Remote classes are live and interactive, and include one-on-one help, professional mentorship, opportunities to build real products, and frequent code reviews. The school also helps students find employment by providing interview preparation, portfolio review, effective resume writing tips, and salary negotiation practice. Students graduate with 900+ hours of hands-on technical experience for Web Development and Data Science, and with over 1,400 hours of hands-on coding experience for Backend Development. 

Lambda School's mission is to "remove every possible barrier to a world-class education and become the best place in the world to launch a new career." To fulfill this mission, they offer a deferred tuition model, so students only pay a percentage of income after they accept a job, and only if they're making at least $50k per year. Other tuition options include tuition installments and discounted upfront tuition.

During the application process, prospective students must complete the precourse work or entrance tests as well as provide a high school diploma, GED certificate, or college transcript.

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  • Backend Development

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    Networking, Java, Data Structures, Algorithms
    OnlineFull Time40 Hours/week36 Weeks
    Start Date September 27, 2021
    Cost$0
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    Lambda School is launching a new 9-month full-time program to train backend engineers. Graduates will be prepared with the skills necessary to land entry-level software developer roles at companies of all sizes. Our curriculum is jointly developed by Lambda School and Amazon, and is based on critical knowledge, skills, and attributes required to succeed as a backend engineer. Each graduate of the new Enterprise Backend Development program will leave Lambda School with over 1,400 hours of hands-on coding experience and will have the practical skills required to succeed at companies like Amazon, without needing a 4-year CS degree. Admissions open July 2021, and our first cohort will launch in September 2021. Go to our site to learn more! Our curriculum covers the following topics and more: - Java Programming - Data Structures and Algorithms - Software Engineering - Testing - DynamoDB - Concurrency - Interview Preparation
    Financing
    Deposit$0 down (No deposit, no down payment)
    Tuition PlansNo upfront payment required. Pay 17% of your income for 24 months (up to $30K) after getting a job making at least $50,000.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelJava fundamentals
    Prep WorkPre-course work is sent after acceptance to the program
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    September 27, 2021 - Online
  • Data Science

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    Start Date August 30, 2021
    Cost$0
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    With 26% annual growth, Data Science continues to top emerging job lists year after year. Building on centuries of statistics and mathematics, Data Science uses computational techniques to help the most innovative companies in the world scale. From self-driving cars to dynamic business insights for Fortune 500 Companies, Data Science is changing the world. If you enjoy mathematics and love using data to make decisions, a career in data science could be for you. Lambda School's Data Science program is an intensive online training for a career in applied statistics and machine learning. Our curriculum covers the following topics and more: - Python - SQL - Data Visualization - Machine Learning - Linear Algebra - Databases - Statistics & Modeling - Natural Language Processing
    Financing
    Deposit$0 down (No deposit, no down payment)
    Tuition PlansNo upfront payment required. Pay 17% of your income for 24 months (up to $30K) after getting a job making at least $50,000.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBasic Python and algebra
    Prep WorkPre-course work will be sent after acceptance to the program
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    August 30, 2021 - Online Apply by August 13, 2021
    September 27, 2021 - Online Apply by September 10, 2021
    October 25, 2021 - Online Apply by October 08, 2021
  • Full Stack Web Development

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    Python, CSS, Git, HTML, JavaScript, Node.js, React.js, SQL, MongoDB, Algorithms, Data Structures
    OnlineFull Time40 Hours/week36 Weeks
    Start Date August 30, 2021
    Cost$0
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline
    As a developer, you get to be the person that translates your passion into a functional website or web application to share with the world. A rapidly changing technological landscape means the industry continues to grow quickly, and is expected to grow by at least 13% in the next decade, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. While many of those jobs are located in major tech hubs like San Francisco and New York City, the widespread need for developers across all industries means there’s likely a job waiting for you wherever you want to live. And if you’ve got persistence, grit, curiosity, and a brain that likes to solve puzzles, full stack web development could be the career for you. Lambda School's Full Stack Web Development is an immersive, online program to prepare you for a successful career in web development that teaches: - JavaScript - HTML - CSS - Node - React - Python - Redux - SQL
    Financing
    Deposit$0 down (no deposit, no down payment).
    Tuition PlansNo upfront payment required. Pay 17% of your income for 24 months (up to $30K) after getting a job making at least $50,000.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBasic JavaScript
    Prep WorkPre-course work is sent after acceptance to the program
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    August 30, 2021 - Online Apply by August 13, 2021
    September 27, 2021 - Online Apply by September 10, 2021
  • Review
    - 8/11/2017
    Angelia • Freelance Developer • Graduate
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    I took the web development mini-bootcamp and the part time full stack web development course. It was tough in the beginning but I was highly motivated by the end of the course. It was the first time I worked so hard and invested time and money. But, it was all worth in the end. The teachers were always available to me, and really supportive throughout the process. I had a great time going through the course.

  • Decent Experience
    - 8/11/2017
    Ethan Robinson • Web Developer
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    I didn’t have any experience in programming or advanced computing whatsoever. And, my sole intention in joining lambdaschool was to become a programmer and get a job. I did not research anything about the bootcamps, and joined lambdaschool because it was online and cost effective.

    Now, I am glad that I joined lambdaschool but I immediately regretted after the first class. It was way too fast for me. And, I think almost all of the coding bootcamps are paced like that to cover everything in three months. Anyone who has no background in programming is going to have hard time going into these courses, and lambdaschool is no different. Don’t be afraid to ask, instructors are amazing. They will answer anything and repeat any time you want.

    I eventually caught up, but I had to work a lot to barely catch up. But, I am glad that I was able to catch up and thankful for wonderful instructors who helped me, and Austen for the support. 

  • Boomer • Graduate
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    I have been an anti-bootcamp person for a while.  (I have a fair share of friends that have taken them and came out not much better than they went in).  I was doing the normal FCC/Udemy courses and just not making it anywhere.  Have a problem?  Go google it and have a sparatic understanding of the question or get little to no answer at all and just randomly copy and past stackoverflow posts until your tests pass or code does what you want.  This is the overwhelming issue with self learning or these "pre recorded" video courses wether they are on Udemy, MOOC's, Udacity and even some of the expensive online bootcamps are just recordings being played back for you.

    Then comes Lambda School, I took their free mini javascript bootcamp and was pretty impressed with the content.  Then they let us know about the upcoming Bootcamp and I was kind of interested and kind of not cuz it's still a relatively expensive bootcamp (I took the PT bootcamp as I have a full time job) but figured i'd fill out the form and see what they said/emailed/talked about.  Got a phone call from Austen and it wasn't just "Hey, do you have X amount of money??.  You do?  Awesome you are in the bootcamp".  We talked and he asked why I was interested, what my previous experience was, how the mini camp series was.  They actually made sure I was a good fit for the bootcamp they aren't just cashing checks and spitting students through the course.  I signed up and they gave me pre course work to be ready for the course 3 weeks later.

    I took the PT bootcamp so it was mon - thur 6pm - 9pm and sat 9am - 6pm   I only bring this in because when i'm talking about what was being taught at the different stages it will vary if you do the FT or PT stuff.

    Now I have no personal experience with any other bootcamp but from what my friends have told me/complained about with other bootcamps I knew I made a good choice right out of the gates.  We started with Data Structures, Hash Tables, Linked Lists, Graphs, Binary Trees and lookups.  Now this was tough and really challenged my brain but these were things that my friends were being asked about in their interviews and had no knowledge of from their $15k bootcamps.  Immediately i'm thinking awesome this is a great start.  Then we start ramping up and going over how to use these data structures, manipulate and do various other things that we will need through out the course.  The other amazing thing was there were coding challanges at the beginning of every class.  Really helped to drive home the ideas from the first week (as you can't learn all of that stuff and remember it from just a week or 2).  Then we go over React and the basics, followed with Routing and then we dive into Redux and Redux-thunk.  Now this in my opinion was almost worth the whole admission amount in and of itself.  I could not wrap my head around Redux or Redux-thunk.  I have had this same problem before and no course, article or anything else really cleared it up for me.  Since these are live classes not pre recorded I DM'd Ben and we got on a google hangout and we took 15 mins, LITERALLY 15 mins and I was able to ask direct questions and get direct answer and I was able to wrap my head around how to layout the actions, reducers and store which was HUGE.  Not waisting a day or 2 trying to tie multiple articles together to try and usually only gain an entry level understanding if that, was SOOOOOO amazing and SOOOOO worth it to just ask and be taught.  Along the way we were building a front end project with React to connect all of the pieces together.

    Then we jumped over to node and the backend.  This again was a super huge benefit to have Ben the instructor right there and he even had some guest instructors teaching stuff which was awesome too (usually people in the field).  A decent amount of those guest speakers are not instructors with Ben so you will get that benefit along the way.  There isn't a whole lot for me to go in here but it was awesome to build backend servers with node, express, mongoDB and mySQL.  Along the way we continued to build a backend server and keep on building through out the weeks we were learning this.  After we had a lot of GET/POST requests working and doing various things for us we went over how authentication works.  Encrypting passwords and the right way to store the encryptions (not the passwords) and how to check if someone was authenticated and provide limited access depending on that, which we used web tokens to keep track.

    The last month for us was putting all of the previous stuff together to see how you put the front end and back end together (which this again was another HUGE mind blown situation).  All of the other courses I have seen or taken were either FE (react/angular/vue) or the BE (node, express, templating language) and I never understood how the pieces fit together and that opened my eyes SOOO much.  After that you will never look at site the same again!  This time was really really cool cuz we were doing out own thing with minimal instruction (compared to the rest of the courses) or Ben would do a video, let us know what it was gonna be about then let us choose to watch or not.  This was awesome because the instructor was available for more one on one time and helping along the way.

    Also for what it's worth I interviewed and received an offer 2 days after the course end while I was back home.  I was able to negioate an above average salary for both that area and the area I actually live in.  The fact that I could speak to CS style questions (hash tables, binary searches, linked lists and things like that) put me according to the interviewer "above the other people interviewing" and allowed me to negotiate a higher salary.

    Here is the big thing, can you learn the same things and end up with the same salary as I was offered for free??  Yes you can but I have been trying for a 1.5 with FCC and various other courses and NEVER got close, let alone the CS stuff that is really hard to wrap your head around.  The money spent was the best investment in myself I have ever made.  I got direct access to the instructor during the lectures, a direct path to learning, a great bunch of class mates and an environment mean to help you learn.  Lambda School has free options know which make this an even BETTER option if you are willing to apply yourself and work with the team at Lambda School.

    I hope this was helpful and if you are serious about becoming a "developer" I think this is a great option as the knowledge taught will put you more on the software developer side of things which in most areas equates to better pay/options.

     

  • Anonymous • Software Engineer • Graduate
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    I write this 2 years after I "graduated" from Lambda School and have paid off my ISA. It has been an absolute persistent, nagging drain on my finances. I got a job shortly after joining Lambda School based on skills I learned on my own and through various other free and inexpensive courses. I found Lambda School's content to be very similar to the courses I took previously and found myself waiting for more advanced work but it only came in small doses at the end with the computer science section and only then it was so quick and I didn't get much out of it.  I went into it thinking I'd really level up but but I can say 2 years later that I did not get anything out of the school that couldn't be learned for free elsewhere. I was hired for my relevancy and skills alone--as I was still enrolled when I got hired. I've paid $30,000 at this point and wish I had spent that money towards a computer science degree as I feel now no one will take me seriously saying I went to a "coding bootcamp". It feels utterly worthless to me. I wouldn't be so bitter if the financial commitment was the length of the program but 2 YEARS is just insane. Price your product for what it's worth! Also, it didn't help that some of the instructors were stumbling their way through the lectures having had only a few years experience themselves. I went into it thinking we've have true experts but was sorely disappointed. Really, the school is not that great and kinda scammy.
  • Anonymous • Graduate
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    I was a front-end developer when I joined Lambda school hoping to learn some back-end development technologies and to find a better and higher paying job. Now I am a frontend developer (with a possibility to move to full stack) at a big tech company with a salary of over $100,000.
    I am for the most part happy and satisfied with the curriculum, the materials and the teachers. The school gives students free and easy access to lots of premium tools which I really liked. The teachers and TAs were helpful and available to help and to answer questions. There was some confusions and changes during my cohort, but it got settled after a while.
    I found the backend and CS units the most useful of all units. The labs were probably my favorite part of the school as they imitated real job projects, yet it was the part that lots of students didn't pay enough attention to and didn't do enough work. If you decide to join the school, definitely opt in the longer program. You will learn so many useful stuff, and you will not regret the decision.

    Now getting to the downsides of the schools: 
    One main reason I joined lambda was their advertisements on how they help students find and land a job. Lambda helped me learn and understand data structure and algorithms that are important to pass interviews, however I was completely on my own during the job search. The help the school gives during the job search is mostly focused towards inexperienced developers, and not on someone who already has some experience. The opportunities that the school suggests to the students are mostly for junior developers with the average salary of $50,000. I was earning more than that before joining Lambda school, and of course I was aiming for even higher salary. Surprisingly, Lambda leaves experience developers on their own while it can make more money when they land in high paying jobs. I was lucky that I was getting reached out by recruiters themselves, as I did not get even one interview with help from Lambda. I am very disappointed with the amount of help I received during the job search from Lambda school.
  • Anonymous
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    They're trying to automate the grading system after they ended the team leads program. Team Leads were other students above your unit that were forced to work for them for minimum wage that were supposedly going to help you move along, answer questions and review your submitted code. Now as long as you submit your work with the right file type before deadline you've passed. No one is looking at your code. The problem is really bad: I was told by one of my classmates she's sure she'll repeat the course because she hasn't been completing her work, the system passed her. They tell me I failed the final project because I didn't write a summary of what I did and complete some new quiz. No one is looking at how I completed the team project on my own, my code is completely ignored, they're just looking if you've jumped into these hoops with quantitative metrics. It's literally a "coding bootcamp" where no one is looking at your code!

    The live lectures are awful. The instructors don't know what they're doing half the time. You waste half the lecture of them trying to debug something and don't even complete the lecture. They don't even understand the material and are constantly saying things like "I think that they meant by this is...but I'm not sure." You'll get better quality content in Udemy. I was literally watching udemy videos on the weekend on the subject they touched upon during the week based on how damn awful the lectures are.

    Then there's no help with building a resume. I was told by students more advanced in the program that they lied about the support at finding a job, which is why they got into debt with them in the first place.

    I got out in unit 3 owing them $10,000 rather than having to repeat it and get $30,000 into debt with their awful program. 
  • Anonymous • Student
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    Lambda has made massive changes to its curriculum halfway through my experience. 

    While some of the changes might be for the better,  many of them change fundamental facts about Lambda that would have made me reconsider signing away part of my soul to the tune of 17% of my income for five years. 

    Also, some of the changes have necessary bad side effects that Lambda is unwilling to acknowledge. They no longer have "team leads" individuals with coding experience who would look at your code after you completed it and help you with minor problems. Your, the student, are now the only person who looks at your code. If you have a pervasive problem, you might never know.

    Team leads have been somewhat replaced by a peer mentorship program. A peer mentorship program, by itself, is not necessarily a bad thing. But replacing paid, trained help, with unpaid untrained unwilling help is not. 

    Lambda also shortened the curriculum by six entire months for part-time students (3 for full time). They've pasted on some voluntary busy work at the end, so that we can't say this is a violation of contract.  

    These changes might make for a better program, but its not the program I signed up for. Lambda does not seem to think this is in any way dishonest. They respond to legitimate concerns by telling the students they are wrong. Which is, by itself, a further concern. All large changes, good or bad, are going to have some difficulties and unforeseen side effects. By refusing to acknowledge any of these, Lambda makes it difficult for me to believe they will actually ensure these changes are for the better.

    And even if these changes (shortening the program, removing 1:1 help from paid instructors, removing half of the computer science curriculum, adding mandatory group/leadership meetings that take up a large fraction of total time) do make Lambda better in some theoretical way, it does not change the fact that I did not sign up for this.

    So, Lambda is not trustworthy. Even if you like whatever current version of Lambda you see, keep in mind that Lambda has no qualms about yanking the rug out from underneath your feet. 

    You may be happy to commit 17% of your income to the program you see, but that might not be the program you end up getting. 

    (I'm leaving this review anonymously, unfortunately, because Lambda has broken the trust I would need to post it publicly. I am at this point deep enough into the program that I need to finish.)
  • Look elsewhere
    - 2/25/2019
    Anonymous • Applicant
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    I couldn't even get through the admissions process. I suppose no reply within 4 business days means I didn't make the cut. It's been 2 weeks and no word from Karen. I sent her a screenshot of my Web Dev application which lists my email address, but I guess she still couldn't find it. She didn't know the email address that I listed on my application was a short domain email address despite the fact that she was still able to email me and I was replying. I also hadn't entered my full name thinking I could just fill it in later, but to my surprise, there isn't an edit button for the application. I guess they want to re-submit your application should you need to edit something. You can only view your application. Easy fix for a bootcamp, no?

    Anyway, that's really all I can say about it. It's fine though since I was getting cold feet from the bad reviews in the midst of all the good reviews. Many of the glowing reviews are from people who have experience in the field already. That isn't to say there aren't any newbie reviews, just not as many.

    Lastly and more importantly are the numbers - 17% capped at $30k is steep. No thanks, but thanks for not getting back to me. Dodged a hole in my pocket.

  • Anonymous • Web Developer • Graduate
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    I would highly recommend Lambda School to anyone who is looking to further their education and personal skills while also getting a job in the field of software development. I graduated in mid-2018 and the curriculum was still in flux. Some bits were a little rough but overall it was a fantastic experience. They are very keen to adapt to student needs and trends in the industry. I even saw a few critical pivots happen within a week after my cohort voiced their concerns. Most of the instructors are very knowledgeable about their subject matter and are available if need be. If you ever have any questions, I would highly suggest reaching out to some of their students on Linkedin.
  • Perfect Experience!
    - 12/22/2018
    Anonymous • Graduate
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    I started Lambda School in April of 2018 after much deliberation about whether an online school provided the same quality education as one in person. On the surface, it seemed like Lambda School was too good to be true: free until you get a job, world class instructors, ability to get in touch with your instructors at any time. I just graduated a few days ago, and Lambda has delivered on every part of what I signed up with. The instructors were amazing; if I ever had a question about something they were very eager to help (I once had a problem and an instructor spent 2 hours with me to troubleshoot), everyone is extremely nice here and everything is very transparent. I’m so thankful that I chose Lambda when I started. One of the things that I didn’t think about was how important a career coach is after you’re done with instructions. My career coach was able to help me every step of the way and was easily one of the biggest highlights of my Lambda experience.

  • Drink the kool-aid
    - 10/4/2018
    Anonymous • acertainherbalist@gmail.com • Student
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    I joined Lambda School with Project Manager Experience and a professional background of working with developers for a number of years. I am a millenial with a college degree who was looking to bridge over to programming and development.

     I find that lambda school's Full stack web program started off very cheery and promising but quickly fell short as soon as the first month was over. It immediately became apparent that they only cared about getting you job ready for maybe a very rigid corporate environment and focused much more on things like doing a code challenge everyday, reviewing your peers code even if everyone has identical code and asking your pm for help- even if they often dont provide any help. They focused less on making sure that you actually understood course material by providing adequate resources to help you understand whats wrong with your code and more on job prep fluff. TLDR: It became a teach yourself, while they put time constraints and focused on fluff to get their ROI.

    In the end you are paying Lambda 20-30k for these 6 months. While I dont think they are total cons, im glad my github repo has expanded as much as it had. I do think there are some fundamental issues in their structure of hiring students as section leaders and PMs (glorified term for a T.A.) when they themselves barely know the content to teach students who will then be hired to do the same. a lack of knowledge or curriculum changes perpetuates this knowledge gap through generations of cohorts. like their React program for example. 

    They also dont seem to take feedback very well and have shut me down many times just for the sake of winning an argument so it seems, perhaps because they cant withstand any negative press atm. I complained about having been switched around group to group 6 times in 4 months, they agreed it was a mistake they overlooked but it continued even when I approached the SL to rectify the issue. Despite being exposed to so many PMs i can say there have only been three or four at the most who i can say know what they are talking about. Basically any student who comes to lambda with previous programming knowledge is better off than those who have none. and those students who have programming knowledge from the start end up being better PMs. Lambda rides on the success and knowledge of the students prior to any value added by them. it is quite the circus.

    So do be advised that in time there will be better options in ISA's and education than Lambda provides

Thanks!