Full Stack Web

Backend Development Course

A rigorous 9-month online backend web development course jointly developed with Amazon to prepare you for entry-level software engineering roles at companies of all sizes.
Java Foundations
Java Programming
Software Engineering
Data Structures and Algorithms
Interview Preparation
Apply now

Why Backend Development?

Backend web developers are responsible for designing, building, and maintaining a scalable “behind-the-scenes” infrastructure to support the user interfaces and user experiences built by frontend developers. This skill set is one of the most sought-after by major tech employers. We frequently have conversations with tech companies like Apple, Google, and Microsoft that have hired our graduates for full stack and frontend developer roles in the past, and they all say the same thing: "We need more engineers with back end web development skills."

Employers everywhere are competing for backend talent. Open software developer roles are expected to grow by 22% over the next decade, and backend engineers are in particularly high demand across the industry because of their specialized skill set. The nationwide average base salary for backend developers is $80,000 – 54% more than the median income in the United States.

Curriculum jointly developed by Lambda School and Amazon

Each year recruiters at the world's top companies need to fill thousands of engineering roles, but finding talent with the right skill set has become increasingly difficult.

Lambda School was inspired to create a new backend web development program after seeing the success of Amazon Technical Academy, which trains current, non-technical Amazon employees for software development engineering roles within the company. Amazon Technical Academy’s curriculum is based on the critical knowledge, skills, and attributes required to succeed as a software development engineer at Amazon, which Lambda School’s program will cover in their entirety.

Each graduate of the new Enterprise Backend Development program will leave Lambda School with over 1,300 hours of hands-on coding experience and will have the practical skills required to succeed as a backend developer or software engineer, without needing a 4-year CS degree.
Day 1
Lambda Launch & Prep Course
All learners are required to attend Lambda School’s orientation and are encouraged to practice Java, including completing the prep course made available through Codecademy
Java Foundations
Problem-solving strategies, command-line basics, IDE basics, Git basics, variables, arithmetic operations, strings, user input, object instantiation, boolean logic, conditionals, loops, arrays, and more.
Intermediate Java
Writing and testing functional requirements, debugging, unit testing, memory, encapsulation, polymorphism and interfaces, primitive wrapper classes, generics, lists, and more.
Designing with Java
Logging, remote debugging, inheritance, polymorphism, hashing, set, maps, design with composition, exception handling, mocking, and statics.
Working with Databases
HTTP and RESTful services, introduction to DynamoDB, creating exceptions, dependency injection, linked lists, searching, Big O, recursion, data stores, and deploying.
Learn and Be Curious
API design, DynamoDB table design, DynamoDB index design, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, integration tests, and scrum. Practice your new skills while building a project in a team setting.
Advanced Java
Iterators, DynamoDB delete, DynamoDB query, stacks, queues, intro to computer hardware, intro to operating systems, threads, immutability, final, in-memory caching, and more.
Java at Scale
Optionals, streams, DynamoDB scan, JSON serialization, executor services, futures, thread safety, graphs, trees, service design, and intro to relational databases.
Interview Preparation
Solving technical programming challenges that may include: complexity, counting frequencies, string representation, loops, sort, division & modulo, priority queue, sliding windows, prefix sums, linked lists, stacks, segment trees, graphs, and more.
Participate in our in-house apprenticeship program by building a real-world project in a small team.
Learn what being a Lambda School student is really like from the people who know our courses the best – our alumni.

Career services

Career prep is integral to the Lambda School curriculum. You’ll complete career development assignments throughout your program to help you define your career plan, optimize your job hunt, practice your elevator pitch, and put your best foot forward. 

When it’s time to start job hunting, you won’t be navigating the process alone. Here are three ways we support your career development at Lambda School:

Career Coaching
Get regular mentorship from our experienced career coaches who can help you prepare for interviews, build your network, source and apply for jobs, and negotiate your salary.
Job Sourcing
Get connected to job opportunities in our hiring network that match your needs and skillset. You’ll also join our nationwide alumni network who can introduce you to their networks and help you get your foot in the door.
Work for a real company for four weeks and get paid by Lambda School for your time. At the end of the fellowship, your company has the opportunity to hire you full-time.

Course schedule

Our programs are rigorous. Every day, you will spend 5 to 7 hours outside of the mandatory live class studying and coding. Although our flexible schedule is designed to fit into your life, you must invest about 40 hours a week, including:
  • 8 hours of mandatory live instruction
  • Daily projects, due at midnight PST
  • Daily warm-ups, due at 9am PST
  • Friday sprint challenges, due at 5pm PST
  • Optional support hours every day
During Build Weeks and Labs, your schedule will change to include daily live stakeholder meetings, stand-ups with your teams, and more.

Upcoming course start dates for Backend Web Development

Classes are taught Monday through Friday from 9am to 11am Pacific. Attendance at our orientation program, Lambda Launch, is mandatory.

Oct 25, 2021

Apply by


Enroll by


12 months


Wed, 10/20/21

Class length:

9 months

Jan 10, 2022

Apply by


Enroll by


12 months



Class length:

9 months

Learn about our tuition options

Deferred Tuition
We understand that the cost of tuition is often a huge barrier for people who are interested in changing careers or leveling up their tech skills, so we designed our Income Share Agreement (ISA) and the CA Retail Installment Contract (CA RIC) to be accessible to anyone who is ready to change their life. Payments are based on what you earn post-graduation and are capped at $30k, so you’ll never pay more than that for any reason.

Please note that tuition in California is $30,000 and learners who choose to use a CA RIC must pay the full $30k regardless of how many payments it takes. Learners who are eligible to defer tuition using an Income Share Agreement, however, must only make 24 payments of 17% of their monthly income, and many of our graduates end up paying less than $30k total.*

Here's an example:
The median annualized salary of H2 2019 Lambda School graduates was $65k. If you were to accept a job after graduation making $65,000, you would pay $921 each month toward your ISA for 24 months, for a total of $22,100.

*Tuition options subject to change.

Watch our ISA video to learn more:
Browse all of our payment options

Backend Program Opportunity Scholarship

The Lambda School Backend Program Opportunity Scholarship was created to make careers in tech more financially accessible for aspiring software engineers. Lambda School is providing $250,000 in scholarships to advance equitable pathways to technical careers. You need to be enrolled in the Backend Development course before being eligible for a scholarship.

Learn more and apply.


Lambda School is fast-paced and immersive. It’s important to ask yourself, “Is this right for me?” Before you apply, make sure all of these statements are true for you.
I have researched careers in backend web development.
I can attend class 9am - 11am Pacific, Monday-Friday, for 9 months.
I understand the course is live and online.
I have access to a computer, WiFi, and quiet workspace.
I have explored the tuition options and know the right option for me.
I have a plan for how I will cover living expenses while I'm at Lambda School.
I understand how challenging Lambda School is going to be.
I have good foundational Java skills and am prepared to pass the Backend Skills Assessment.

Admissions Process

Below you'll find everything you need to know about the application process.
Complete an application
Pass the entrance test
Sign enrollment documents
Attend orientation
Complete the precourse work
Step 1: Start an application by creating an account
First, tell us your name and email address (be sure it's an account you check regularly), and choose a password. You'll use these credentials to access your class materials, so please choose a strong password that you'll remember.

Next, you’ll agree to the Lambda School Privacy Policy, which tells us that you understand how we might use your information and how we protect your data.

Once you fill out all the required fields and hit “Submit,” you’ll be redirected to the Lambda School Admissions Dashboard. There, you'll fill in your personal information, tell us about your background, and agree to the attendance policy – Lambda School is an immersive experience and we require 95% live class attendance to graduate.

Then, you'll select whether you’ll pay tuition upfront or sign an Income Share Agreement (ISA). You can learn more about the ISA by watching this 1-minute ISA intro video, or by checking out our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Lastly, you'll choose which program you want to enroll in. Not sure? Take this short quiz to get matched to your perfect course.

After you complete your application, it will be sent to our Admissions Team for review. Applications to Lambda School are assessed on a rolling basis. If you’re selected to proceed with the application process, we’ll send you an email in 1-2 days.
Step 2: Pass the entrance tests
Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT)
Now we'll ask you to complete a brief assessment called the Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test, which helps us predict your ability to be successful at Lambda School and in your future career.

The CCAT consists of 50 questions, and you will have 15 minutes to complete the test. It's normal not to finish all 50 questions in the time allotted, so take a deep breath, do your best, and find a quiet place to work before you begin. You can find a free downloadable CCAT study guide here.

Enterprise Backend Skills Assessment
Applicants to the Enterprise Backend Development program must also pass a short assessment which will test you on your knowledge of basic programming concepts and Java. There are 10 multiple-choice questions in the assessment which you can complete in any order. You will need to submit each task after you have completed it, and you will have 30 minutes total. Check out our free Backend Skills Assessment study guide for help preparing.

The assessment is open-book, and you may use a Java resource of your choice if necessary. You can take a practice test here to help build your confidence.

Verify Your Education
If you live in DC, CA, or TX, we'll need to verify your educational background. You can upload one of the following:

1. College Transcripts
2. High School Diploma
3. GED Certificate

Alternatively, you can take the Wonderlic basic skills test. More information about ATB tests can be found here.
Step 3: Sign documents and choose start date
Now it's time check your email, which will contain a series of tasks you'll need to complete before you can begin classes.

Choose Your Start Date
First, you need to choose your desired start date via the link in the email. This link will send you to a confirmation form, where you’ll let us know when you’d like to begin your Lambda School course, and you'll be asked to share some optional demographic information with us.

Along with the email asking you to choose your start date, you will be prompted to read through the Lambda School Catalog (this will be sent to you in an email) to make sure you understand and are willing to adhere to our policies. You can check the Catalog out ahead of time at lambdaschool.com/catalog to learn more about Lambda School’s style, structure, and ethos.

Sign the Enrollment Agreement
After you’ve reviewed the Lambda School Catalog and chosen your start date, you’ll be sent the Enrollment Agreement to review, initial, and sign.

Confirm Tuition Payment Method
If you elected to pay $0 upfront and sign an Income Share Agreement (ISA), or if you sign a California retail installment contract, when you filled out your application, you’ll be directed to sign the appropriate contract. If you selected the $30k upfront option, you'll receive an invoice via email.

If you need to change your payment method, feel free to reach out to us to discuss your options.

All of the above must be completed by our enrollment deadline for the class of your choice.
Step 4: Register for orientation
Now it’s time to prepare for your first day of class! The first key to success on Day One is to register for our new learner orientation, which we call “Lambda Launch.”

During Lambda Launch, you’ll learn effective strategies for remote learning, be briefed on our academic expectations, get a crash course on how to use the software and tools needed for your program, and receive instructions for how to get help. Other than completing your precourse work, attending this orientation program is the best way you can prepare yourself to succeed at Lambda School.

Please note that Lambda Launch attendance is mandatory, and failure to attend may result in your start date being delayed.
Step 5: Complete the precourse work
We've designed a self-paced pre-coursework experience for each course to ensure that all learners are prepared with the foundational programming concepts and Java skills they need to be successful in Unit 1.

Completing the precourse work is not only mandatory, it's essential for your success at Lambda School. The Lambda School curriculum moves quickly and learners who do not have prior coding experience may fall behind without self-study prior to day one.

The precourse work will take you about 15 hours to complete, so please plan accordingly so you can ensure that you've completed all of the requirements before Lambda Launch begins.

Ready? Get started with Step 1 and start your application:
Apply now

Check out our backend development Free Mini Bootcamp Series to get a taste of Lambda School

Next Event:
Looks like there aren't upcoming sessions at the moment. Subscribe below to get notified!
Ready to hustle?
Apply to Backend Development
Not ready to apply? Stay in touch and get updates on our Backend Development program:
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.