Making a Part-time Coding Bootcamp Work for Your Schedule
Jan 27, 2021
woman works on a computer

You’re a busy adult with a stack of demands fighting for your attention, so the idea of learning how to code on top of everything else probably feels pretty overwhelming. Coding bootcamps and online coding courses require commitment, and they often involve a lot of collaboration with other students and solo work outside of class. Add a job, a family to take care of, bills to pay, mouths to feed, and that scarce amount of “you time” you need to decompress to the mix, and squeezing out a few extra hours each week can feel nigh impossible.

Is it really possible to do it all? The short answer is yes. 

Coding bootcamps are a straightforward and incredibly rewarding way to learn how to code, and there are plenty of options that you can make work for your schedule. The fact that you’re here looking for ways to make a part-time camp work for you means you already have what it takes to be successful.

Whether you’re hoping to switch careers or learn how to code to level up your resume, joining a part-time coding bootcamp is very doable.

Making a career change on your terms

Let us ease your mind a little bit: part-time coding camps are intentionally designed to be accessible for adult learners with full-time jobs. Some offer flexible schedules that you can participate in on your own time and at your own pace, and ––thanks to the industry move to remote work due to COVID––most of them are held online, including the classes with more structure, so as long as you have access to the internet, you don’t have to go far out of your way to participate.

Tens of thousands of people participate in part-time coding camps and courses every year for a variety of reasons—they’re working full-time, they’re stay-at-home parents looking for a source of income on the side, or they have personal and professional responsibilities that prevent them from taking a full-time course.

At Lambda, 60% of our students attend classes part-time! It goes to show you there are plenty of individuals just like you making it work.

Finding the time for a coding bootcamp 

It’s all well and good that other people are making part-time coding camps work, but how can you make them work? The first thing you need to do is take a look at your calendar and make a realistic assessment of what you’re capable of. How much time can you really commit to a coding bootcamp, and how much time would you like to commit? What hours work best for you? Are there things you can clear out of your schedule if necessary to make it happen? The good news is it isn’t really a question of ‘if’ there’s a part-time bootcamp that will work for you. It’s a question of which one and how committed you are. 

While they may go over a few of the same languages and frameworks, every coding bootcamp is different. Coding bootcamps and courses come in a variety of intensities, formats, and lengths. Many are free, some will cost you a few thousand dollars, and a few of the highest quality programs will cost more. That said, most coding bootcamps are a more affordable option than four years of tuition for a computer programming degree at an accredited university, which is why so many people are participating in them.

When it comes to the amount of  time you’ll need to commit, coding bootcamps can last anywhere from one week to several months. A 2019 report by RTI International found that, on average, coding bootcamps take 16.5 weeks, or just under four months, to complete. In-depth courses that cover a wider breadth of topics and are more focused on career placement can run for longer periods of time. Lambda’s part-time web development course and part-time data science course, for example, are 12 months of 15+ hours a week. 

The most common part-time code camps are held in the evenings and weekends, so you generally don’t have to worry about them interfering with your day job or other daytime obligations. There are also plenty of self-paced camps online, such as FreeCodeCamp, available at any time of the day if you have obligations keeping you busy at night. 

Assess your commitment and end-goal

Once you’ve made a realistic assessment of your time and considered what kind of bootcamp you want to join, it all comes down to will. Learning how to code takes lots of dedication and practice, especially if you’re wanting to make a career of it. You might have all the time in the world, but without commitment, you won’t get very far. That’s why it’s important to know what your goals are, ideally before you choose your camp. Do you want to get better at a programming language like Python? Do you want to compliment skills you already have? Do you want to make coding your hobby? Or do you want to make it your career? When you’ve got the desire and you know what your end goal is, making a part-time coding course work for you is easy.

Lambda School: a different way to code part-time

It can be tricky to find a part-time bootcamp that’s flexible, immersive, inexpensive, and also helps you score a lucrative career in tech. Most do some, but very few do it all. Lambda bucks the trend.

At Lambda, we offer both a competitive web development and competitive data science course taught by industry experts that give students comprehensive and in-depth instruction on different frameworks, languages, and machine learning models. Our students don’t just learn how to code: they put it in action by building real-world projects that look really good on their resumes. We not only teach them the skills they’ll need on the job, but we also set them up for the best possible chance to land a career that they’ll love. Your goals are our goals. 

There are several options to choose from when it comes to class times. In addition to an accelerated full-time track, Lambda offers two part-time tracks that can work with a variety of schedules: a 6–9 pm Pacific option and a 4–7 pm Pacific option. Classes run from Monday to Thursday with a fifth day of your choice (Friday, Saturday, or Sunday).

Here’s an example of what your schedule might look like when you take a part-time course at Lambda:

7 am: Snooze your alarm for five more minutes, make it to leg day, eat a good breakfast
8 am to 5 pm: Work your full-time job (you don’t need to quit to attend Lambda—60% of our students attend classes part-time)
6-9 pm: Work on your coding projects, collaborate with your Lambda classmates, and participate in virtual instruction
9 pm: Put the kids to bed, Netflix and chill, spend time with your partner, rest and relax

Sounds pretty sweet, right?

In addition to flexible schedule options, Lambda’s unique tuition payment model is flexible, too. Our students enroll under an Income Share Agreement, meaning that they don’t have to start paying back their tuition until they’ve graduated and been hired in a qualified position that pays $50,000 a year. If you’re not hired after graduation, you don’t have to pay for tuition, simple as that. Additional tuition payment options are available for students who are interested in paying upfront costs instead.

There are a variety of ways to make a part-time coding camp work for you, whether it’s Lambda or another option. To learn more about Lambda’s part-time courses, talk to an enrollment advisor or download our curriculum. 

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