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Learners Guild

Oakland

Learners Guild

Avg Rating:1.85 ( 13 reviews )

Learners Guild is a 10-month, full-time full-stack web development learning collective with no upfront tuition cost in Oakland, CA. Learners Guild is a creative learning environment that uses the principles of cognitive apprenticeship to design a system for effective software development skills training. Nearly all learning takes place in team projects, much in the way that actual software applications are built. Therefore, there are no teachers telling students what to study. Instead of many students learning only from one person, every learner is learning from others and, in turn, passing on their skills and knowledge.

At Learners Guild, a new cohort joins every 10 weeks so there is always a dynamic range of skills and experience in the room that students should use to their advantage. The learning system helps students to choose projects and goals that are both relevant and challenging so that students are working on interesting problems that push them into "Proximal Zone of Development". Students do not pay tuition until they have secured job placement.

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  • Cognitive Apprenticeship

    Apply
    MongoDB, HTML, JavaScript, CSS
    In PersonFull Time
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    CostN/A
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOakland
    Learners Guild doesn't believe in one-size-fits-all learning. This apprenticeship program allows for everyone to learn from each other without the typical teacher teaching students method. Students will learn Javascript, HTML, CSS and a range of databases including/ but not limited to PostgreSQL and MongoDB.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelN/A
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewNo
  • Anonymous • Learner • Student
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:

    Accessible & Inclusive

    Everyone is welcome at Learners Guild. We especially encourage historically underrepresented groups in software engineering--people of color, women, LGBTQ individuals, persons with disabilities, and veterans--to consider joining us.’


    When I applied to Learner’s Guild last year, there was a repeated emphasis on creating a welcoming environment for women and people from diverse backgrounds, from the marketing found on their website through the interview and orientation process. After I started, we were encouraged to help the guild live up to its potential by offering the staff feedback on what parts of the program were and weren’t working, and reassured repeatedly that the feedback we offered wouldn’t be held against us.


    In reality, the guild has a massive problem with misogyny and ableism from the top down, and has consistently been almost entirely unresponsive to feedback on things that matter the most. The founder, Shereef, has been consistently hostile to criticism from women and has bullied several to the point of tears during mandatory ‘support’ meetings. Those who have tried to share their concerns about the power dynamic at play have been regularly shut down with language like ‘don’t be a hero’ and ‘not everyone belongs here’, and the most outspoken among us have consistently been asked to leave, discouraging those of us who are still around from speaking up further. Women who have been kicked out of the program have also had their stipends immediately cancelled fewer than 48 hours before they were expecting to be paid, which is beyond cruel for an organization that knows its learners are mostly from low income backgrounds and reliant on that money while spending more than 40 hours a week working here.


    After the staff were disappointed by unfavorable feedback on the last organizational climate survey, they simply haven't accepted for any more anonymous feedback on the subject, and all of the cultural changes have been in the direction of decreasing flexibility, more blatant refusals to listen, and even more women being kicked out of the program. The only full time technical woman on the staff also resigned recently, and the writing on the wall for me is that the Guild is rapidly giving up on the pretense of being interested in being anything other than another place in tech meant for men. The increasing toxicity of the climate here and witnessing the way my peers have been treated has turned this program into a traumatic and exhausting experience, and despite the talent here it isn’t going to last without major change starting at the top.