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Thinkful

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Thinkful

Avg Rating:4.59 ( 581 reviews )

Thinkful is an online bootcamp that equips students for new careers in the world’s next workforce by offering online, fast-paced, job-ready programs in software engineering, data science, data analytics, design, product management, and digital marketing. Students learn cutting-edge industry standards, have 1-on-1 mentoring with an industry professional, and receive career services and job placement assistance to get a job in tech. Thinkful also offers a tuition refund guarantee for qualifying courses. While Thinkful is an online platform, the school also has in-person communities in tech hubs around the US, where students can attend in-person events and classes. 

Thinkful’s programs include the 5-month Engineering Immersion and Data Science Immersion, Engineering Flex, Engineering Nights & Weekends, Data Science Flex, Product Design Flex, Product Management Flex, Data Analytics Flex, and Digital Marketing Flex. All courses include personal mentor meetings, a custom-built curriculum, and mentor-hosted Q&A sessions with industry professionals. Students are expected to commit 50-60 hours per week for Immersion programs and 20 to 25 hours per week for Flexible programs. Thinkful students can learn while they can keep their jobs, and access course materials from anywhere in the world. Students can join a community of 3000+ students and mentors on Slack to get on-demand code help and build a professional network. All graduates receive lifetime access to the course curriculum.

Thinkful offers all students career guidance to navigate the job market, build a professional portfolio, and prepare for interviews. All programs guarantee job placement in a qualifying position that is full-time and in-field. If students are not placed within 6 months of graduation, they get a 100% tuition refund.

Prospective students can apply via the Thinkful website, and schedule a call to chat with an advisor. It’s important to note that the Data Science Immersion and Flexible programs have more strict admissions requirements than other programs.

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  • Data Analytics Flex

    Apply
    MySQL, Data Visualization, Excel, Data Analytics , Business Intelligence, SQL, Python
    OnlinePart Time20 Hours/week26 Weeks
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$7,990
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    Set your schedule in a program built to turn your into a highly-paid data analyst in six months. Benefit from one-on-one mentorship, career guidance, and community support from enroll to hire.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    Options: https://www.thinkful.com/bootcamp/data-analytics/flexible/#pricing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
  • Data Analytics Immersion

    Apply
    MySQL, Data Visualization, Excel, Data Analytics , Business Intelligence, SQL, Python
    OnlineFull Time50 Hours/week18 Weeks
    Start Date June 15, 2020
    Cost$12,250
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    A rigorous and structured full-time program built to get you a job as a data analyst. Benefit from instructor-led learning, a virtual classroom environment, 1-on-1 mentorship, and a robust support team.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    Options: https://www.thinkful.com/bootcamp/data-analytics/full-time/#pricing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    June 15, 2020 - Online Apply by May 25, 2020
  • Data Science Flex

    Apply
    Data Science, Hadoop, Spark, Algorithms, SQL, Python, Machine Learning
    OnlinePart Time20 Hours/week26 Weeks
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$7,990
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    A flexible, online data science course aimed at helping you launch a career. One-on-one mentorship, professional guidance, and a robust community network are on hand to help you succeed in this highly advanced profession.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    Options: https://www.thinkful.com/bootcamp/data-science/flexible/#pricing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelIntermediate
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
  • Data Science Immersion

    Apply
    Data Science, Hadoop, Spark, Algorithms, SQL, Python, Machine Learning
    OnlineFull Time50 Hours/week22 Weeks
    Start Date June 1, 2020
    Cost$18,500
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    An accelerated online program of classes, mentorship, and professional guidance designed to get you a career in data science, fast. This advanced program is designed to serve the needs of equipping degree graduates with the data science skillset they need to obtain a career in their field of study.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    Options: https://www.thinkful.com/bootcamp/data-science/full-time/#pricing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelIntermediate
    Placement TestYes
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    June 1, 2020 - Online Apply by May 4, 2020
  • Digital Marketing Flex

    Apply
    Digital Marketing, Growth Hacking, SEO, Data Analytics
    OnlinePart Time20 Hours/week12 Weeks
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$4,950
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    Learn the technical skills needed to build an audience, create a brand, and drive sales. Study with a flexible, online schedule, a personal mentor, and peer groups. Professional career coaches guide you with networking advice and personalized resume tips to help secure a high-income marketing role.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    Options: https://www.thinkful.com/bootcamp/digital-marketing/flexible/#pricing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
  • Digital Marketing Immersion

    Apply
    Digital Marketing, Growth Hacking, SEO, Data Analytics
    OnlineFull Time50 Hours/week6 Weeks
    Start Date June 1, 2020
    CostN/A
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    The fastest way to launch your marketing career. Create campaigns and analyze results as you learn relevant, up-to-date technical skills. Showcase your knowledge with an interview-ready portfolio that stands out and earns job offers. Enroll now, and pay nothing until you’ve graduated and landed a job.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    Options:
    https://www.thinkful.com/bootcamp/digital-marketing/full-time/#pricing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    June 1, 2020 - Online Apply by May 18, 2020
  • Engineering Flex

    Apply
    HTML, Git, JavaScript, CSS, React.js, Node.js, Front End
    In PersonFull Time20 Hours/week24 Weeks
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$9,500
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    A flexible program built to get you a career in full-stack web development. Study online at a pace that works for you, while a team of mentors, career coaches, and peers guides you every step of the way.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
  • Engineering Immersion

    Apply
    HTML, Git, JavaScript, CSS, React.js, Node.js, Front End
    OnlineFull Time50 Hours/week22 Weeks
    Start Date June 29, 2020
    Cost$16,000
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    A fast-tracked, full time program of online classes, mentorship, and career coaching. Skills, tools, and the support you need to become a highly paid full-stack web developer.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    June 29, 2020 - Online Apply by May 11, 2020
  • Product Management Flex

    Apply
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$8,650
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    This flexible, online Product Management course is built to help you start a brand new, high-paying tech career. You’ll receive a personal mentor, work on real-world projects, and benefit from career coaches.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
  • Technical Project Management Flex

    Apply
    OnlinePart Time20 Hours/week20 Weeks
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$6,750
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    Break into tech as a project manager. Learn how to plan, schedule, and budget in a business setting while developing the leadership skills for long-term career growth. A flexible format that works around your schedule, with industry mentors and career support until you’re hired.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
  • Technical Project Management Immersion

    Apply
    OnlineFull Time50 Hours/week11 Weeks
    Start Date June 29, 2020
    Cost$9,000
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    The fastest path to a project management career. Learn to leverage the tools used by top employers in this full-time, online course. Work through a project-based course that builds your portfolio with the support of industry experts, a rigorous curriculum, and paired workshops.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
    More Start Dates
    June 29, 2020 - Online Apply by June 8, 2020
    September 7, 2020 - Online Apply by August 17, 2020
  • UX/UI Flex

    Apply
    HTML, Git, JavaScript, jQuery, Design, User Experience Design, CSS, Front End
    OnlinePart Time20 Hours/week26 Weeks
    Start Date Rolling Start Date
    Cost$8,500
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    Set your schedule with an online program aimed at taking you from newbie to a confident, highly-paid product designer. Learn the skills and the best way to present them with a team of mentors, career coaches, and community supporters.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes
  • UX/UI Immersion

    Apply
    HTML, Git, JavaScript, jQuery, Design, User Experience Design, CSS, Front End
    In PersonFull Time50 Hours/week20 Weeks
    Start Date None scheduled
    Cost$12,150
    Class sizeN/A
    LocationOnline, Detroit, Washington, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Louis, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, Raleigh, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Cleveland, Columbus, Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boise, Boulder, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Hartford, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Madison, Memphis, Milwaukee, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City
    Learn career-ready skills in research, web design, and teamwork on your path to a high-paying role in UX/UI. One-on-one mentorship, interview prep and community support take you from newbie to hired and beyond.
    Financing
    DepositN/A
    Financing
    ScholarshipSelf-identifying women and US military members (active or discharged) are eligible for reduced tuition.
    Getting in
    Minimum Skill LevelBeginner
    Placement TestNo
    InterviewYes

Shared Review

  • Perfect for me
    - 1/25/2019
    Clayton Weller  User Photo
    Clayton Weller • Software Developer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:

    I had experience in the tech industry as a marketing guy, and I decided I'd rather make things than tell people about them. 

    I taught myself webdevelopement for about 3 months before deciding on a boot camp. I chose Thinkful's Full-Stack Flex program because it was remote, at my own pace, and the offered a refund if I didn't get a job in the industry within 6 months of graduating.

    I really liked my mentor (who I did code review with twice a week), and I wound up finishing the program ahead of schedule. I credit, learning on my own before starting as a big part of that. I highly recomend doing some video courses before you start so you can hit the ground running.

    Also, they started doing more in person stuff about half way through my program. They're actively seeking to improve. 

     

    Just got a job as a software developer. Totally worth it.

  • Kelly Harrington  User Photo
    Kelly Harrington • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
    Instructors:
    Job Assistance:
    N/A

    Starting the Data Science course to this program, I had no computer science background. I had earned a master's in biology 5 years prior and really enjoyed processing the data (Excel, sigma plot and sigma stat). After comparing a few programs, I decided Thinkful was the way to go since they are so sure of the program that they offered a money back guarantee if you don't get a job in the field within six months. I just graduated the program, so I will start my career search now. What I can say about the program is that I learned a TON. Some of it I may never use, but I am glad to have the information. Other info such as the supervised learning techniques I see as indispensible. I started with a mentor who eventually left the company and I therefore ended up with a really helpful mentor half-way through the program. He always gave great advice and was super encouraging. I did not find Slack, the online collaborative chat to be very helpful, as I would often just get responses that sent me to stack overflow links that I had already seen and did not help my situation. I would also say that the timing estimates were not all that accurate for me. Some tasks that were only supposed to take a few days took me weeks. I work 40-50 hours a week and was anticipating dedicating 20 hours to Thinkful but it ended up being closer to 30-35. I used all my pause days as I juggled work, a family emergency, and an unexpected trip so it took me about 8 months to do this six month course. But therein also lies the amazing thing about this program: I was able to balance my life with this program and I came out of it with so much more knowledge than I had 8 months ago. It's cheaper than some of the other programs I looked at as well and for someone who, again, was starting with no foundation, it was necessary to endure a longer program as I don't think I would have understood anything going into a 'Learn Python in a week' course. I also ended up with two different program managers in the course and they were both amazing. Super nice and encouraging and always very quick with their responses and help. I think the curriculum could use some tweaking as some assignments are a bit ambiguous, or show you something simple and then ask you to do something far more complex. Overall though, I learned a lot and was glad to work on real world problems and not just theory during this course.

  • Matt Francsis  User Photo
    Matt Francsis • Data Scientist • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
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    I enjoyed and strongly recommend Thinkful.  

    The program is fundamentally a broad, though shallow, overview of the core data science toolkit. It’s primarily designed for people without a coding background. The curriculum features a structured, top-down, conceptual overview of topics and algorithms followed by hands on exercises, challenges, and capstone projects.  Thinkful does not provide a holistic, nor deep-dive, into the math behind the algorithms but the lessons often have links to additional resources for the students to consider in due course. Given that students come from diverse backgrounds, I think this is smart.

    The real highlights of Thinkful are the things which go beyond the actual data science curriculum, namely all of the technical support. This includes: one-on-one mentorship multiple times a week, open technical coach "office hours" multiple times a day, an active student message board with mentors available 10 hours every day, and finally, a career support team to assist with your job hunt after graduation. It amazes me that they offer so much personalized technical support.  This is the strength of the program in my eyes.

    They created a successful program to lift students into the data science field. I couldn’t have asked for more from a bootcamp. 

  • Graduate
    - 7/20/2019
    Charla  User Photo
    Charla • Graduate Verified via GitHub
    Overall Experience:
    Curriculum:
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    N/A

    I chose Thinkful over other boot camps because of the cost, the mentorship, and the job guarantee.  My experience has been positive on all fronts.  I can't say enough about my mentor and my program manager, they were the key to my success along with my hard work.  My program manager was there to assist with any questions I had about the program, such as staying on track to graduate on time.  My mentor was patient, helpful and knowledgeable about various Data Science topics. If you don't have the math and programming skills, you will definitely have to put in more time. I am glad I stuck with this course and finished strong.  If I had to do it all over again, I wouldn't change a thing.  It's never too late to start something new!

  • Clinton Owen  User Photo
    Clinton Owen • Software Engineer • Graduate • Verified via LinkedIn
    Overall Experience:
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    Apologies for the wall of text that's about to follow! Apparently I had a lot to say, so I hope that some will find it useful.

    Overview (TL/DR)

    Enrolling at Thinkful is one of the best decisions I've ever made. They have a solid curriculum with staff who are really invested in student success. Not only do you graduate the program having obtained a highly-sought-after skillset, but Thinkful continues to support you in your job search and provides the strategies, resources, and connections that will really help you reach your goal of becoming a Developer.

    Why Learn to Code?

    I assume that if you're reading this, you've already thought about the answer to that question. For me, I started coding as a side-project when my former company asked me to redesign their website—I had no prior experience, but it was so rewarding to dive in, solve problems on-the-fly, and emerge with something I was really proud of. After taking some time to reflect, I decided that my interests and skills were more aligned with a career in programming.

    I found it helpful to figure out my own, personal "why" and think about what I really wanted to get out of this journey. Defining a simple, reasonable, quantitative goal gave me something to aim for and helped me to stay motivated and focused. The goal I came up with for myself was to "obtain a growth-oriented software developer job in the Chicago area within 6 months of graduating from boot camp with a salary that would allow me to comfortably start a family."

    One of the first major steps I took was to complete Udacity's "Intro to Computer Science" course, which validated my feelings that this is something I would really enjoy doing. There are many similar resources out there (freeCodeCamp is another good one) where you can get a taste of what being a programmer is all about and decide if it's right for you. Additionally, Thinkful has a mandatory Prep Course (which I'll discuss in more detail later) that also allow you to dip your toes in the water before taking the full plunge.

    Why A Boot Camp?

    One thing I know about myself is that when I’m trying to learn something on my own, I can spend hours just researching the "best" way to learn it, often to the point of paralysis by analysis. That's why the concept of a boot camp really resonated with me—allowing someone else to handle the "what" and "how" of my education by curating a solid curriculum would help me stay focused and moving forward. My next step was… research!

    Why Thinkful?

    Using sites like SwitchUp and CourseReport, I created a comparison spreadsheet of all the boot camps I was interested in. Thinkful's Engineering Immersion program checked all the right boxes—it combined the ideal qualities of a modern, comprehensive, project-based curriculum, high-quality teaching staff, regular 1-on-1 mentorship, daily peer collaboration, and outcome-oriented career services. From the glowing reviews of alumni, I got the impression that Thinkful is constantly striving to improve and update the program to the benefit of future student cohorts. So, I decided to take the leap and applied for the July 2018 cohort.

    Prior to Starting

    After applying to the Engineering Immersion program, I had a phone call with one of Thinkful's program coordinators to make sure that I was a good "culture fit." They mainly wanted to hear about my background and why I was learning to code, answer any questions I had, and go over the next steps.

    Then I began the Prep Course, the cost of which went towards the full program tuition. It was 4 weeks long and required a 30 hours/week commitment. The course is designed to get you up to speed on the basics of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. This was mostly self-guided learning using the curriculum they provided, however I was assigned a Mentor during the Prep Course, who I met with twice a week to go over what I was learning and discuss anything I was struggling with or had questions about.

    The Prep Course also included a few short lessons on communication and other soft skills which provided some tools and strategies to help you work well in a group environment. I loved that they provided this and it gave me the impression that they really wanted everyone to have a great experience collaborating in our cohort.

    Towards the end of the Prep Course, my Mentor helped me prepare for the Technical Evaluation, which you need to pass in order to be admitted to the full-time program. They asked some general questions about the topics covered in the Prep Course and then I had to complete 5 coding challenges using JavaScript.

    Once I passed the Technical Evaluation and was admitted into the full-time Engineering Immersion program, I had an orientation session where I got to meet all of the other students in my cohort and got an overview of the program.

    The Curriculum

    There were four main instructional "units" of the program, each led by a different instructor. After each unit ended, we would schedule a mock interview (similar to the Prep Course Technical Evaluation) which would focus on the material covered in that unit.

    1. The first unit (2 weeks) covered JavaScript, jQuery, and how to architect and build asynchronous web applications, culminating in a 3-day solo project where I built my own web app.

    2. The second unit (4 weeks) was all about server-side programming, using Node/Express to build RESTful APIs, PostgreSQL and Mongo to build databases. We also learned how to write tests and construct user authentication strategies.

    3. The third unit (2 weeks) was dedicated to learning React and Redux, an extremely popular framework for building web apps.

    4. The fourth unit (2 weeks) was on data structures and algorithms, a very useful topic to prepare you for programming interviews.

    Interspersed between and around these core instructional units, we had about 7 total weeks dedicated to working on projects, both solo and in groups. In the final week of the program, we focused on completing our online portfolios and polishing up our projects in preparation for the job search.

    Overall I was extremely impressed with the quality and freshness of the curriculum. One of the program coordinators told me that they try to make at least one substantial update to the program after each cohort of students, and it really shows in the quality and attention to detail of the curriculum. You can tell that Thinkful really cares about what their students think. There are many opportunities to provide feedback, both solicited and unsolicited.

    There were a few scattered instances of an outdated or broken link, but that just comes with the territory of a curriculum which is constantly improving and evolving to keep up with the pace of the industry.

    Thinkful was really, really good about teaching us to be independent developers. There was some necessary hand-holding in the beginning as we learned the basics, but they pretty quickly transitioned us to working both independently and on group projects where it was really up to us to come up with an idea, organize the projects, research different technologies that might be useful, study documentation, and work autonomously.

    A Typical Day

    Class started at 9am (Central) every morning with a lecture by the lead instructor for that unit of the curriculum. This was typically about an hour long and was held in a group chat room where we could watch the instructor and ask questions via text, voice, or video. I really enjoyed this format and thought that the instructors provided a lot of great insights. They were also very good at explaining things in a way that was easy to follow and understand.

    Next, we would break into pairs (we had a different partner each day) and work on coding exercises using a technique called pair programming—this is where you take turns writing code ("driving") and providing direction ("navigating"). This definitely took some getting used to, but quickly started to feel more natural as we progressed. It's great practice for learning to work with different people and different personalities, and it helps us pull each other along—I noticed on some days that my partner was teaching me a lot, while on others I was doing the teaching. Most days it was a mix of both. If you ran into any trouble, you could always message the instructor/TA's, who would join your room and help you figure things out. 

    After a 45-minute lunch break, we'd have an afternoon lecture, which was usually a short review or small addition to the content we covered in the morning lecture.

    Then, we'd break into our pairs again and work on some more exercises until the end of the day (4:30pm Central).

    In the evenings, we'd meet with our personal Mentors at an agreed-upon time for 30 minutes. Thinkful Mentors work regular jobs in the industry and provide mentorship on the side, so in addition to getting help with your coursework, they can provide valuable insight about life as a real Developer.

    We'd also usually have an assigned reading each night to introduce the topic for the next day's class. Thinkful recommended that we dedicate at least 2 hours per night to studying outside of class. Obviously, the more time you put into it, the more you'll get out of the program, so it's important that your family/friends understand the time commitment you've made so that they allow you time to focus and study. I found that in order to keep up" at the level I wanted to be at, I had to devote more like 3-4 hours every night, plus an additional 3-4 hours per day on weekends.

    Projects

    The projects were a great way to really apply our knowledge in a practical setting and review and reinforce some of the lessons we had learned. They also provided great material for our portfolios.

    The highlight of the program for me was our first Full-Stack Capstone project. We had finally reached the point where we had the knowledge to build a complete web application and then were given two weeks to brainstorm, plan, design, build, and deploy a full-stack project of our choice. While we still had regular progress check-ins with our instructor, it was so cool to have the freedom to flex our skills and creativity and dive deep into a project.

    During the final Capstone project, I was on a team of five, where we came up with the concept for an app, decided on the features we wanted to implement, created user stories and wireframes, organized our tasks on a Trello board, and had daily morning stand-ups to discuss our progress and any hurdles we encountered. I think we all learned a lot about the importance of communication, organization, and version control when working in a collaborative environment. It was so cool to be put into an Agile development environment, simulating the type of tasks and interactions we might encounter in our professional work.

    Pace/Difficulty

    The pace of the program was very quick—it often felt like we were just starting to wrap our heads around one subject when another would get introduced. Some days were definitely more difficult than others, but the days seemed well-balanced so it never got too overwhelming.

    I sometimes wished that I had time to read more about a few of the more complex topics we covered, but then you run the risk of going down a rabbit hole and losing focus, so overall I'm happy with the pace and structure. It did feel at times like I was literally just coding, eating, and sleeping, but I knew the program would be time-consuming, so it's hard to complain, especially when I look at how far I developed in such a short time.

    Job Search

    One of the key selling points for the program was the focus on giving me the skills required to land a Developer job, and that includes the soft skills. There was an entire section of the curriculum dedicated to crafting application materials, networking, and interviewing.

    Upon graduating, I was also paired with a dedicated Career Coach, who would meet with me every 1-3 weeks (more frequently earlier on) to go over your application materials, talk about different job hunting techniques, and help you refine your strategy if things weren't working.

    They definitely expect a lot from you during the job searching phase (see the specific requirements in their Tuition Refund Guarantee), but it's all designed with the goal of getting you a job as quickly as possible.

    Thinkful is great about connecting with companies who are looking for Developers like you. Your mileage may vary depending on where you live, but Thinkful introduced me to quite a few companies in Chicago.

    Outcome

    I'm thrilled to say that, having recently been hired as a Software Engineer at Groupon's Chicago headquarters, I've surpassed my wildest expectations of what I'd be able to accomplish in only a year's time. Thinkful was absolutely instrumental in every step of the way. Not only did they provide me with the current, relevant skills I would need to impress during my interviews, but their incredibly hard-working Careers Team helped me get a foot in the door by making an introduction with Groupon and helping me cut through the high volume of applications they receive on a regular basis.

    One of the highlights of my life will be the moment after I received the job offer and then immediately called my wife to deliver the good news and got to hear her cries of joy. This means so much to us and our aspirations of starting a life together. It's also incredibly significant to me, personally, to be doing something that I love in an environment where I'll be challenged and inspired to learn and grow. As I think about my future and start to set new goals for my life and career, I'm so grateful for the time I had with Thinkful and for their incredible team of instructors, mentors, managers, and coaches. I'll always look back fondly on Thinkful as the pivotal factor in propelling me along my desired career path.

  • Charles Hebert  User Photo
    Charles Hebert • Student • Verified via LinkedIn
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    ...quite thoughtful, if you'll forgive the pun. In my experience with the program over the last few months, I've come to this conclusion on more than one occassion. From the screening process to the curriculum development to the mentoring, there's ample evidence throughout that the community which designed & developed this bootcamp put a lot time and effort (and therefore a lot of thought) into its creation & maintenance. I think the most impressive aspect though is the confidence that everyone on staff has in the mission to prepare you for a job when you're ready, or upon completion (it's up to you, truly). And that goes for the resources that are made available throughout: it seems that there is a constant drive towards what is relevant whether it's a project management tool, or another Excel reference. Thinkful as indeed the right choice for me.

  • Full Stack Flex
    - 5/20/2019
    Timothy  User Photo
    Timothy • Student Verified via LinkedIn
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    I am currently in Thinkful's Full Stack Flex program, and I'm very happy with my decision. I was initially planning on doing a local in-person bootcamp. I wanted the face to face mentorship and the opportunity to have an immediate network of local partners. I decided to go with Thinkful primarily for two reasons (aside from being able to keep my day job while I learn...):

     

    1) Mentorship. I have learned a ton by meeting with my mentor twice a week. And since it is a self-paced program (unlike a structured local bootcamp) I'm not held back by the class when I easily understand a concept, and I'm not rushed past a concept when I am slower to understand it. Also, I have a regional advocate, a project manager, that helps with bigger picture things, and helps support a local community of learners.

    2) Job guarantee. Although I feel confident that if I put in the work that Thinkful is preparing me to enter the industry, I don't need blind faith. Thinkful is transparent about its outcomes, and reports are released by a third party (CIRR). Basically, if you can graduate, you are extremely likely to find a job. The caveat seems to be that because the barrier to entry is low for Thinkful, a lot of people don't make it through the program (roughly half). I am committed to taking it seriously and putting in the hours, and I am on pace to graduate on time. Even if I can't find work upon graduation (which I don't think will be the case), I am guaranteed my money back.

     

    This program is not easy, especially while working a full-time job and being a father of two young children. For background context, I have a B.S. degree in Science, and have been putting in pretty close to the 25 hours a week to keep nicely on pace for the 6-month graduation.

  • Daniel  User Photo
    Daniel • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    Thinkful's program provides incredible support for students seeking to jump into full-time development. They seek to emulate a professional dev environment by utilizing paired programming throughout ~80% of the course, setting you up to do very well in many coding interview formats. Mock interviews and mentor support are top-notch. The staff is incredibly passionate about shaping the next generation of developers, and it shows!

  • Emet Ozar  User Photo
    Emet Ozar • Student Verified via GitHub
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    I had a phenomenal experience in Data Analytics. Usually when I am taking a course "fun" isn't usually the first thing that pops up in my mind, but I really did have fun taking this course. That is probably partly because I am a nerd and data really fascinates me, but I think it is also because I enjoyed the projects and content immensely.

    A huge part of the experience was my mentor, Alicia. Not only did she help with the trickier technical aspects, but she helped me to feel really supported. I think the worst feeling when you are learning something new can be that self-doubt or feeling that you're stupid or not getting the concepts or that things are too hard. Alicia always made me feel like I could conquer the projects and master the concepts and let's be real- it feels great when someone praises you and notices the good and hard work you've done, and she was wonderful at that too!

    Overall I learned a ton and felt great about the new skills that I acquired.

  • John Young  User Photo
    John Young • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    Thinkful's Engineering Immersion program was a pretty life-changing experience for me. It finally allowed me to pursue Software Engineering, which is what I have wanted to do for years.

    Pros:

    - Excellent support staff

    - Curriculum is well thought out, and constantly evolving

    - Data Structures and Algorithms section

    - Apprentice feedback is welcomed and acted upon

     

    Cons:

    - Instructors need to be more involved during the final days of the program. This feedback has already been given, so I expect it to change quickly.

     

    Overall, I would 100% recommend Thinkful to any and everyone thinking about switching careers, or looking for a post-education boost to their resume.

  • Will Nixon  User Photo
    Will Nixon • Associate Applications Developer • Graduate Verified via LinkedIn
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    I spent a good few weeks researching all the available bootcamps - emailing alum and current students to find out what they thought.

    With Thinkful - the overriding feedback was that the course was great as long as you were willing to work hard and do what you need to succeed. Thankfully, that's what I planned to do!

    What separated Thinkful from the others was that they offered money back if they didn't help land you a role within 6 months of graduating. To me, that spoke highly of how successful they believe themselves to me. They were willing to put their money where their mouth was - again, as long as I played my part!

    I attended the flex course, which meant I could continue working full time. It worked perfectly for me, and I loved that I was able to meet twice a week with a mentor to help me push through the barriers that slowed me down to allow me to keep on growing.

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    Some of the pros for me is being able to schedule times that work for me since my goal was also to continue to work alongside the program. I also really like being paired up with a professional mentor that really can help me narrow down my struggling points and help me progress through the program.  I think the material does a great job of covering up to date topics and complementing projects to go along with the material which can also be used in your personal portfolio when it comes down to applying for your first job. There are also 5 mock interviews which have given me a taste of what a typical interview will feel like and you get personalized feedback so you can work on improving yourself for the real one. One last thing I would personally recommend to anyone out there considering starting the program is making sure you have the time to dedicate to learning, practicing and progressing through the program because it is very easy to fall behind schedule.​

  • Bryan Spearman  User Photo
    Bryan Spearman • Graduate Verified via GitHub
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    Hello all,

    I just graduated from the Full Stack Web Development Flex Program at Thinkful.  It was both a great experience and a serious challenge.  Although I had lots of feedback to offer the school about the program and ways that I believe the curriculum could be improved, I do walk away not regretting anything.  

    The program is tough and just because you pay thousands, doesn't mean anything is going to be served on a silver platter.  It was not always fun and just like in real life, I got really frustrated at times with my code and the learning experience in general.  But again, learning something totally new (and something seriously complex) is almost never easy.  I speak for myself anyway.

    It's worth noting that I came to the table with years of HTML and CSS experience under my belt however I'd never written one line of JavaScript.  And despite me having the HTML and CSS experience, I found the Node and React portions of the course to be seriously challenging.  

    That's where your mentor comes in and makes this particular program what it is.  My mentor was an absolute jewl of a human being much less a jedi master with coding and he never grew tired of my stupid questions and/or helping me out of a bind. He coached, tutored, encouraged and at times coded along side me to make sure I did my best. That doesn't mean all mentors are like this.  In fact I requested to change to a new mentor after a few weeks because I didn't gel at all with my first one and thankfully the school catered to this which ended up making a huge difference in my learning experience.

    Being in the "Flex" program also meant that I was studying, coding and solving problems remotely.  So if you go this route, you must learn to use the community!!  For the first part of the course I didn't see a need to do this because I'm self taught and I generally read up on something or hack it to death myself to figure it out so going to Q&A's or asking questions in the forum just wasn't my thing.  I later learned that that was a big mistake.  The forum is filled with mentors and even talented students who can answer questions, analyze code with you and help to solve issues.  When finally pressed into a corner with some Node.js code I began reaching out to the community and holy crap what a huge help.  I should've been doing it from day one so that I was familiar with the other mentors and got to know people.  People who "know you" online tend to be even more helpful I later learned.

    Finally, I'll say that for those considering attending Thinkful, in my humble opinion it's worth it in the end.  Just like you, I came to this website before making the decision because I wanted to know if it would be a sound investment or total waste of time.  Now on the other side I can tell you that it's totallly worth it.  And like me, you may find some things overly easy and you may find other things overly challenging.  But if you work your butt off and really apply yourself, you can do it and you WILL benefit from it. 

    It's also just the beginning of my journey as pro developer not the end.  I can't hang my hat on a Thinkful graduation and think it opens doors.  It simply doesn't.  It's knowledge and discipline.  I learned how to learn and that in and of itself is a major part of this.  I am personally light years beyond where I was when I started the program at Thinkful and I'm now applying for jobs that previously I had to skip because I couldn't even begin to measure up to the requirements.

    So take it from a Thinkful graduate, it's worth the time, effort and money.

    If you have any questions feel free to drop me a line.  I don't mind.

     

    Sincerely,

    Bryan
     

Thinkful Outcomes


N/A
On-Time Graduation Rate
78%
In-Field Employed
$60,450
Median Salary

100% of students intended to seek in-field employment within 180 days of graduating. 0% of students did not intend to seek in-field employment.Below is the 180 Day Employment Breakdown for 9 graduates included in report:

180 Day Employment Breakdown:

Full-time employee
77.8%
Full-time apprenticeship, internship or contract position
0.0%
Short-term contract, part-time, or freelance
0.0%
Started a new company or venture after graduation
0.0%

Employed out-of-field
0.0%
Continuing to higher education
%
Not seeking a job for health, family, or personal reasons
%

Still seeking job in-field
22.2%

Could not contact
0.0%

Salary Breakdown:

100% of job obtainers reported salaries. 0% of job obtainers were hired by the school itself.

Notes & Caveats:

Read the full Thinkful CIRR report here

Thanks!