This post was written by Erica Freedman, Content Marketing & Client Services Specialist at SwitchUp.
With the amount of tech programs and bootcamps currently available in the market, choosing the right one can be a daunting task. To narrow down your choices, you may have looked to sites like SwitchUp, or Quora to read reviews of previous students, or reached out to alumni online.
Because regulations for tech programs can vary, prospective students depend on reviews and feedback to weed out the less satisfactory programs saturating the market. Based on SwitchUp’s research, “there are currently 120 in-person bootcamps and hundreds of part-time and online programs available worldwide.” While choice can be good, it can also make it difficult to find what is just right for you.
Detailed reviews are important because they take students beyond marketing materials or publicity, and provide valuable first-hand experience. Your on-the-ground perspective is unlike anyone else’s. It can help students understand the big picture, from the beginning of your research through to your career in tech. Think back to when you were trying to find the best program possible and write a review from that perspective. What do you wish you had seen or heard before entering a bootcamp?
If you are a bootcamp grad (or soon-to-be grad), your perspective can help “pay it forward” to the next cohort of students, and give your school helpful feedback as well. We suggest the following tips to write a review that is valuable to future students:
- Weigh the Pros and Cons
If your bootcamp was the most perfect experience of your life, do researching students a favor and cover the positive aspects of your program experience while balancing this out with constructive criticism. This feedback not only helps those looking to join the school, but also the school itself.
At SwitchUp, we’ve found that prospective students are most interested in the quality of the curriculum, teaching staff, and job support, so be sure to mention your thoughts on these areas. If your school has multiple campuses then you’ll want to list the campus you attended, as these variables change from campus to campus.
- Talk About Your Complete Experience: Before, During, and After The Bootcamp
Have you ever seen a review that says, “It was great!” or “I hated it.”? Although these are technically reviews, neither are helpful to prospective students. What made the bootcamp great? Was it the teachers? The length of the courses? The location of the campus? There are so many variables to consider when thinking about the application process straight on through to a job offer. As you write a review, include how the program helped you to become immersed in the world of coding as well as how it helped you succeed after graduation. For example: Did the pre-work give you a useful introduction to coding? Did they hook you up with a great recruiter? The complete picture will show future bootcampers how the program can help them both learn to code AND meet their career goals.
- Tell Your Story
SwitchUp has interviewed a wide range of bootcamp students: from a linguist who switched into a career in data science, to a musician who switched to coding simply because he wanted to move to Montana! What is your story? Maybe you embarked on a career change into coding from a completely different background. Or maybe you took a semester off from college to gain UI/UX skills at a bootcamp. Whatever the case may be, your path will show other students what’s possible. This perspective is especially helpful if you do not have a computer science background, since many bootcamp students come from different fields. Your story will show future students that as long as they are committed, they too can switch to tech career.
Where To Find & Write Your Review
Many bootcamp alumni are choosing to leave reviews on a review site like SwitchUp.
If you are interested in writing a review of Beach Coders, check out their SwitchUp reviews page here. Plus, you will automatically be entered to win a $500 Amazon gift card from SwitchUp once you submit a verified review. This sweepstakes ends on December 31st so get those reviews in now!
By taking a few minutes to write a review, you’ll provide invaluable feedback to Beach Coders and help “pay-it-forward” to future students.