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A review of Ironhack as a tech bootcamp

Hi, I’m Brian, a former senior software engineer and now industry mentor at Pathrise. I have helped hundreds of software engineers land their dream jobs in tech. Check out my review of Ironhack.

What does Ironhack do?

Ironhack is an online bootcamp that helps people learn the technical skills necessary to land a job as a web developer, UX/UI designer, or data analyst. Students can choose between full-time and part-time options in Miami and campuses outside the United States. Moreover, they also offer a remote option, allowing students to participate in live classes with 1-on-1 support from anywhere.

Before starting an Ironhack bootcamp course, students must first complete 40-60 hours of online pre-work. Web development students study 50 hours of JavaScript, HTML, and CSS. In the same vein, UX/UI design students study 40 hours of usability evaluations, site redesign, HTML, and CSS. Ironhack’s data analytics course requires 60 hours of pre-work on the command line, Git, Python, MySQL, and statistical analysis. The pre-work curriculum features recorded lectures, teaching assistants, and a Slack channel for discussion. 

Web dev

The 9-week full-time web dev bootcamp meets Monday-Friday from 9:00am to 6:00pm, with an assessment every Friday. However, students in the 24-week part-time program meet 10 hours per week Tuesday and Thursday from 6:30pm to 9:30pm (or Monday and Wednesday) and Saturdays from 10:00am to 5:00pm. In both courses, students participate in lectures, workshops, programming challenges, pair programming exercises, speaker events, and other hands-on projects. Classes are live and recorded. Therefore, students can review the material later.

The web development course teaches students how to build front-end and back-end applications using HTML, CSS, React, JavaScript, and APIs. In addition, they also work with databases, server hosting, and learn version control with Git and Github. For their final project, students create a full-stack application meant to demonstrate web development skills to prospective employers. Upon completion of the web development course, Ironhack hosts a career week where students test their coding skills for a technical interview with one of Ironhack’s corporate partners. Hiring partners include Google, Visa, and Magic Leap.

UX/UI

The UX/UI course teaches students design thinking, Agile methodologies, lean structuring, site evaluation, site redesign, as well as the basics of HTML and CSS. For their final project, students develop a digital product to compete in Ironhack’s Hackshow. This project boosts students’ portfolios and helps them land a job as a UX/UI designer.

Data analytics

Ironhack’s data analytics course teaches students to combine programming and mathematics to analyze large quantities of data by using Python, SQL, and Tableau. For their final project, students build a data set, apply an analytical model, and get to exhibit their work in Ironhack’s Hackshow showcase. Similarly, students may add their project to their portfolio, helping graduates land a job as a data analyst. This course is not currently offered in the United States. But, limited remote options are available.

Ironhack also offers a career services program, Careerhack, to help students land a job in tech. Careerhack is a standalone course with 1-on-1 support from coaches. In addition, the course teaches students about networking, crafting strong portfolios, and job hunting in the tech industry.

As of August 2020, all campuses are operating remotely due to Covid-19.

Who is Ironhack for?

People with no experience in web development, UX design, UI design, or data analytics who are looking to move into these careers could benefit from Ironhack’s bootcamps. Moreover, Ironhack prioritizes learning with tools and workflows that students will encounter on the job. This makes Ironhack excellent for students who value fast-paced, hands-on learning. Finally, the program is especially helpful for people who are based in Miami or those interested in working outside of the United States.

What does Ironhack cost? How much work is involved?

Tuition for Ironhack depends on the course. First, students who enroll in the full-time web development course or UX/UI design course in Miami pay $12,500. Similarly, the part-time web development course or UX/UI design course in Miami costs $13,000. Finally, data analytics courses are not available in the United States yet.

Financing is available through Climb Credit and Skills Fund. Rates and repayment plans depend on an applicant’s credit history. In the same vein, Ironhack’s Miami campus offers a variety of scholarships, including a Facebook scholarship and a Sims scholarship ranging from $1,200 to $12,000.

Before applying to Ironhack, candidates should familiarize themselves with the basics of computer science, such as loops, variables, and functions. The Ironhack application process starts with a written application asking candidates to share their background and motivations. First, candidates submit their application. Then, they do a behavioral interview. Finally, Ironhack gives a final technical interview led by one of their Miami instructors, consisting of a 30-minute coding challenge. Ironhack has an acceptance rate of about 23.5%.

Ratings and reviews

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Ironhack has generally positive reviews. They have a 4.5/5 star rating on Career Karma and have been listed among CourseReport’s top 20 courses for 3 years. Ironhack graduates praise the program for its job search guidance, but some graduates have mixed feelings about the instruction style and curriculum.

On CourseReport, students said that they learned a lot from web development, UX design, UI design, and data analytics courses, though some students were frustrated by a disorganized curriculum. One grad was impressed by Ironhack’s instructors, but expressed concern about errors in the web development curriculum. While his overall experience was positive, he was disappointed with skipped lessons and sometimes outdated instructions.

A student on Quora describes Ironhack as “an amazing educational experience…. that was difficult, and stressful. But it was completely worth it.” She praised the Ironhack’s Hackshow showcase and felt Ironhack did an amazing job teaching students practical web development skills in a very short timeframe. Another Quora reviewer described it as a game changer, saying Ironhack “reached a level of difficulty that had me wondering at times whether I was meant to pursue this path, but the Ironhack staff consistently encouraged us to keep pushing”

Most students benefited from Ironhack’s personal instruction and career week. One student praised the positive work environment, helpful TAs, and the hands-on learning approach. While he was impressed by Ironhack’s career services, he still warned students to “not place all your bets on getting a job from one of the companies that come to career week.”

Ironhack is rated 4.95/5 stars on SwitchUp, where students praise Ironhack for its intense, hands-on approach to web development, UX/UI design, and data analytics. While the courses are described as fast-paced, reviewers were satisfied by the instruction style and the tech skills they gained.

Alternatives to Ironhack

If you decide not to enroll in Ironhack, there are a number of alternative bootcamps and courses that can help aspiring web developers, UX/UI designers, and data analysts. 

More alternatives
  • Students can also consider Kenzie Academy, a full-time tech bootcamp that offers in-person and online courses in 2 tracks: software engineering & UX design and front-end engineering. Learn more about Kenzie Academy in our review.
  • Aspiring designers can consider Designlab, an online bootcamp that teaches the necessary skills to land a job as a UX designer. Read more about Designlab in our review.
  • Students interested in taking online self-guided or instructor-led product design courses can check out DesignerUp. Learn more about DesignerUp in our review.
  • Similarly, Avocademy is an online design bootcamp that helps students build up their portfolios.
  • For students seeking lower-cost web development, data science, and UX/UI courses, Simplilearn, Learn UX, Treehouse, and Pluralsight could be worth pursuing. While they may not have the same level of support as full-time bootcamps like Ironhack, these programs offer a wide range of courses to learn essential skills for a software engineering career.
  • Students may also consider Udemy, which has thousands of affordable video courses on web design and computer science.
  • In the same vein, Codecademy is one of the most popular coding programs online. Moreover, they provide free courses on many different programming languages. Learn more about Codecademy in our review.
  • Udacity is another online educational resource with courses in web development, design, and data science, as well as other topics like product management. Learn more about Udacity in our review.
  • Students can check out Springboard, which is a similar online learning platform that hosts thousands of courses on a variety of subjects. Learn more about Springboard in our review.
  • Finally, edX is one of the most popular online learning platforms. They have courses from top universities like Harvard and MIT as well as big tech companies like Microsoft. Learn more about edX in our review.

How does Ironhack compare to Pathrise?

Ironhack is a bootcamp for people interested in learning the skills needed for a career as a web developer, UX/UI designer, or data analyst. While an interest in tech is recommended, most Ironhack students start from scratch. 

Pathrise job-seekers should already have some background in their chosen field to get the most out of the technical curriculum. A full service organization, Pathrise works with program fellows on each component of their job search including resume and portfolio optimization, cold emailing and reverse recruiting, technical and behavioral interviewing, and negotiation. Through workshops and 1-on-1 mentorship, Pathrise personalizes the program for each individual fellow’s needs. 

Our program is flexible. There are only 2-4 hours of group sessions and fellows can schedule 1-on-1 sessions as needed. The Pathrise income share agreement (ISA) means that fellows don’t pay anything until they land a job they love and start working. Plus, we never require upfront payments or deposits. 

Pathrise is a career accelerator that helps people land their dream job in tech through 1-on-1 mentorship. If you are interested in optimizing your job search, join Pathrise.

Apply today.

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