My Thoughts on Coding Bootcamps vs University Computer Science Degrees

Senior Brogrammer
7 min readSep 19, 2022

Ahh, the grey space, everyone will recognize it, but still try to make it black and white.

So tons of articles have popped up on Medium and they read more as an advertisement rather than a opinion piece. Sure people are getting paid for clicks, referrals and tips on this platform, but blatantly disregarding one sides arguments and calling it a cult isn’t a convincing argument.

After working/talking with a fair amount of boot camp attendees at Hackathons/conferences and completing a computer science degree myself at a non-prestigious university. I’ll give my true thoughts that isn’t coming from an ad read or seemingly AI generated article.

Theory vs Hands On

One of the biggest talking points about coding boot camps is “real world” experience that isn’t offered at university. Several camps courses are built around spinning up full stack web services, security practices, and testing those services. Hypothetically after completing a course you could land a role as a web developer and/or QA engineer. However, that being most courses I’ve seen others offering programs for data science, DevOps, cybersecurity, UI/UX designing and even product management. Assuming they follow similar patterns of hands on experience, you’ll see a lot of technologies used by companies each day.

Now, on paper this seems great, but these camps are incredibly jam packed with information and usually run up to a few months to a year. Which is incredibly fast for a new subject not commonly taught at primary education institutions. On top of that, you won’t have a grace period of just learning fundamentals like loops, conditionals, classes and etc. since you’ll be hopping into frameworks, building out things like endpoints or using spark, and deploying. So hands on, you’ve just done an entire software lifecycle besides the pain staking process of figuring out what product management/customer wants. However, you miss out on a lot of time spent on the fundamentals like conditionals, loops, classes and etc. Assignments that are tailored towards applying those concepts you’d get at a typical university.

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