A coding bootcamp is supposed to give you the skills to become a software developer, data scientist, or UX designer. However, if you enter into one unprepared, you may fall behind or struggle to pass. Don’t let your money go to waste; prepare for your online coding bootcamp!
How to Prepare for a Coding Bootcamp
According to multiple studies, job placement rates after graduating from a coding bootcamp range from 74% to 90%. You can make your odds even higher if you prepare for your course.
1. Choose the Right Coding Bootcamp
The correct coding bootcamp should align with your career goals and educational preferences and prepare you for the current job market. On the other hand, the wrong programming bootcamp will prepare you for the wrong jobs, not prepare you at all, or scam you out of your money.
To choose the right coding bootcamp, you need to consider your coding background, goals, and cost of tuition. You also need to choose the right format (online vs. in-person), pace (flexible vs. structured), and career services offered (resume prep) to find the best online coding bootcamp.
2. Practice Looking Up Technical Answers
The hardest part about learning how to program is understanding what went wrong with your code. You’ll sometimes feel that your code should be able to run, but for some reason, it just won’t work. For this reason, you’ll need to learn how to look up technical answers on search engines.
For example, if you have an error in your HTML code, you can either copy the code into a forum and ask fellow coders what happened, or you can look up a completed version of what you’re trying to do. HTML validation programs/services also zone in on errors, like W3C.
3. Take Daily Coding Lessons for Free
One month before the bootcamp, start participating in daily coding lessons with free websites, blogs, courses, and programs. Free materials aren’t meant to replace a paid bootcamp, as they’re less structured and don’t provide you with career advice or the ability to ask questions.
However, you should get familiar with the topics you’re going to study, as it’ll give you a head start when you take the full-time program. Try to focus on improving your speed. If you can get through assignments quickly, you’ll soak up more knowledge in a shorter time frame.
4. Join Supportive Coding Communities
Online coding communities like GitHub, Stack Overflow, and Women Who Code are built to empower tech professionals. If you prefer to join a private community, check out Reddit and Discord. Either way, you’ll be included in a community full of like-minded individuals.
If you’re facing difficulties perfecting your code, you can ask your network to chime in. Once you become more familiar with programming, you can return the favor. Active community members tend to build a stronger professional network, which can help you get a job after you graduate.
5. Pay Attention to Your Physical Health
Bootcamps are hard. You’ll be completing a 4-year course in 3 months to a year, but if you’re working a full-time job, it may take even longer. The last thing you want is to burn out and waste your time and money, so prioritize your physical and mental health during the bootcamp.
Since you’ll be sitting a lot, find time to do some cardio, eat healthily, and get a decent night’s sleep. Drink 10-12 glasses of water daily to keep your focus strong. If you’re really busy, buy a desk bike, pre-plan your meals, or do a few pushups, situps, and squats when you wake up.