Are Coding Bootcamps Worth the Cost? A Comprehensive Analysis.

Are Coding Bootcamps Worth the Cost? A Comprehensive Analysis.

Are coding bootcamps worth the cost? It’s a question many aspiring tech professionals ask themselves before embarking on this journey. Our comprehensive guide delves into the potential benefits and drawbacks of attending a coding bootcamp, as well as the return on investment (ROI) of such a program. With facts and figures to back up our analysis, we’ll help you decide if a coding bootcamp is worth the cost. Discover the average cost of attending a bootcamp, compare it to other forms of education, and explore the potential financial aid options available.

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Coding bootcamps have gained immense popularity in recent years as an alternative path to a career in technology. The high demand for technological skills has left employers struggling to find qualified candidates on the job market, and coding bootcamps offer a potential solution for those seeking a quick and intensive way to learn these much-needed skills.

However, with their relatively high costs, many individuals looking to switch careers or start a new one may be hesitant about whether attending a coding bootcamp will actually lead to a return on investment.

In this guide, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive analysis of coding bootcamps, exploring whether they’re truly worth the cost by examining potential benefits, drawbacks, and success rates.

Why Attend a Coding Bootcamp?

It’s no secret that the tech industry is growing rapidly, and with it comes the need for skilled technologists. In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in computer and information technology occupations is projected to grow 11% from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. This means that there are more job opportunities than ever before for those with technical skills—as well as higher earning potential.

But on-the-job training often takes time and considerable company resources—something not feasible for many companies in today’s fast-paced world. As such, coding bootcamps offer learners the opportunity to gain specific hard skills quickly, efficiently, and inexpensively compared to traditional four-year college programs or self-learning options.

Additionally, many coding bootcamps offer networking opportunities to help students land jobs upon graduation. These connections can prove invaluable given that over 80 percent of jobs are now filled through networking channels.

What Are the Main Benefits of Attending a Coding Bootcamp?

There are several advantages that come with attending a coding bootcamp:

– Rapid Skill Acquisition: Coding bootcamps are designed to teach focused and practical skills needed for the workforce within months instead of years. In general, most people complete these programs within three to six months.

– Career Switching: For professionals who are considering changing careers altogether, bootcamps may offer a chance to pivot into tech without committing to lengthy schooling or debt.

– Professional Networking: Many bootcamps maintain partnerships with tech companies hiring graduates directly out of school. Instructors at these programs often also act as mentors after programming courses have ended and serve as ongoing support systems.

With so many tangible benefits available through attendance at a coding bootcamp, many hopeful learners remain curious about what exactly makes them tick—and how they stack up against more conventional forms of education.

The Cost of Coding Bootcamps

Coding bootcamps are an appealing option for those looking to switch careers or start a new one in the technology industry. With the promise of quick results and high-paying job opportunities, coding bootcamps have witnessed immense growth with students flocking to these programs in recent years. But with a high price tag attached to most of these programs, it’s important to understand what you’re paying for.

The Average Cost of Attending a Coding Bootcamp

On average, a coding bootcamp can cost anywhere from $8,000 to $20,000, depending on the program length, location, and curriculum. In fact, according to SwitchUp’s 2019-2020 survey report, the average cost of attending a full-time bootcamp was $13,584. While this amount may seem steep at first glance, many individuals find that it’s worth investing in their future.

One advantage of coding bootcamps is the short duration compared to traditional education routes. Instead of spending two to four years in college getting a computer science degree costing upwards of $100K, completing a coding bootcamp could significantly reduce your student debt burden while providing immersive technical training.

However, before taking out loans or draining bank accounts, it’s essential to research and compare different options available.

Comparing Costs: College vs. Self-learning vs. Bootcamps

While coding bootcamps offer a fast-track way into launching a career as opposed to waiting through several semesters of lectures and earning bachelor’s or master’s degrees, they remain expensive compared to free online resources like Codecademy and Udacity.

Also, registering in higher education isn’t cheap either. According to the National Center for Education Statistics , tuition fees range from $7,357 annually for public colleges up to $28,471 and above for private schools for undergraduate studies only. For graduate-level courses it gets even more expensive with annual tuition rates between $50,000 – $75,000 per year (nearly three times over coding school expenses).

Moreover, considering that professions based heavily around computer technologies get disrupted faster than others due to constant innovation advances; self-learning might not be comprehensive enough to prepare you entirely for these fields alone.

Despite there being numerous low-priced learning materials online that permit entry points into the world of programming; they often lack structured guidance forcing learners through difficult obstacles attempting to learn independently.

Financial Aid Options Available

If you decide on taking a bootcamp route despite the hefty costs associated, consider seeking financial aid alternatives.

Some popular financing methods include scholarships offered by tech companies such as Google Scholarships or Facebook Scholarship Programs. These opportunities award coverate toward payment credits and gaining access to mentorship networks.


In recent years, ISAs have emerged among novel ways finance-boot campers’ dream aspirations of transforming their careers. Such agreements defer upfront payments until after graduation when participants begin working.

Once landing a job later on — usually within six months following graduation —boot campers then commit to repaying an agreed-upon percentage of their fixed salary over a stated period. This model eliminates having graduates repay debts for which they derived no benefit if job offers don’t transpire after attending conferences.

With less pressure on acquiring credit lines beforehand another advantage of this approach is its universality across various populations who were earlier excluded from affording these classes.

Exploring potential scholarship opportunities or income share agreements can assist in reducing financial reliance on savings accounts following attendance completion.

In conclusion, although pricing remains steep whichever option you choose pursuing technical skills whether it be via earning certifications online/self-study/college/boot-camp or any additional form proves rewarding in its own merits because IT jobs come with higher salaries compared with other industries.

Bootcamps provide hands-on experience within shorter time frames leading to more exponential gains professionally in connections initiated networking events and mentees gained under advisory boards.

What did Dave Ramsey call? “Temporary sacrifice for long-term gain.”

The Potential Benefits of Attending a Coding Bootcamp

If there is one thing that the tech industry has shown us, it is that disruption can come from anywhere. As technology continues to pervade every aspect of our lives, we see new opportunities emerge in areas that we never thought possible. This means that, as individuals, we need to be agile and ready to learn new skills at a moment’s notice.

This is where coding bootcamps come in. Rather than a traditional four-year degree program, coding bootcamps are immersive programs that aim to teach you everything you need to know about a certain skill set in a condensed period of time.

Learning New Skills Quickly

One of the biggest benefits of attending a coding bootcamp is the ability to quickly learn new skills. Unlike a university program which can take years to complete, most coding bootcamps run for an average of three months. In this short amount of time, you will have completed a rigorous course of study and learned practical skills that apply directly to work in the tech industry.

As an added bonus, many coding bootcamps focus on programming languages and frameworks that are currently in high demand by employers. This means that when you graduate, you will have not only learned important technical skills but also have immediate value as a job candidate.


Another great benefit of attending a coding bootcamp is the opportunity to network with like-minded individuals. These individuals could become your classmates, mentors, alumni or even future co-workers. Having an established network within the tech industry can provide access to knowledge sharing, career mentorship and potential job opportunities.

Furthermore, coding bootcamps often offer career fairs and networking events specifically for their graduates. This provides an opportunity for students to meet with hiring managers from prominent companies and potentially land a dream job they otherwise may have struggled to secure.

Career Advancement

The ultimate goal of attending any educational program is to gain competency in your field and move up the ladder towards higher paying jobs or greater responsibility. However, rapid advancement requires both fundamental knowledge and experience coupled together.

Coding bootcamps can provide some of these crucial experiences typically lacking in other learning approaches. Working on real-world projects or having personal call-outs creates transferable examples sought after by hirers or HR teams scanning resumes.

Highlighting Success Stories

At Ace Coders’ Bootcamp, approximately 77% [1] of recent graduates improved their salary upon completing the intensive course studying JavaScript and UX design fundamentals. We’ve heard cases where graduates landed employment offers immediately after graduation.

Carissa Williams applied to her first large-scale company following her experience at IronHack where she studied UI/UX Design & Product Management. She now works full-time at Nike headquarters addressing web design elements.

The results mentioned above demonstrate proof-point evidence that such non-conventional education methods propel learners forward into lucrative careers just as consistently as earning BA’s and Master’s Degrees

[1] Ace Coders’ Internal Surveys (2018)

The Potential Drawbacks of Attending a Coding Bootcamp

it comes to coding bootcamps, many people are primarily focused on the benefits: learning valuable skills in a short amount of time and potentially landing a high-paying job. However, it’s important to examine the potential drawbacks associated with attending a coding bootcamp before making the decision to enroll.


One of the most significant potential drawbacks of attending a coding bootcamp is the cost. On average, coding bootcamps can range from $10,000 to $20,000 or more for just a few months of instruction. This cost can be a major barrier for individuals who may not have that kind of money upfront and need to take out loans or find other ways to finance their education. Even after graduating, some people may struggle financially due to debt repayment.

It’s crucial to consider whether the investment is worth it for your career goals and financial situation. Look at factors such as the return on investment (ROI) of graduates from the program, the availability of scholarships or financing options, and whether you can afford any potential loss if you do not land a job after completing the program.

Time Commitment

Another drawback of attending a coding bootcamp is the intense time commitment involved. Most programs last around 12 weeks and require students to dedicate several hours per day to coursework, projects, and assignments. This can be difficult for those who work full-time jobs or have family obligations.

Some bootcamps offer part-time or online options, but these may not be as intensive or effective as full-time, in-person programs. It’s essential to realistically evaluate your schedule and ensure that you will have enough time and energy to dedicate to the program before committing.

Intensity of Program

Coding bootcamps are known for being highly intense and demanding on students’ mental health and well-being. Many participants experience anxiety, stress, burnout, and imposter syndrome during the course of the program. The curriculum is fast-paced and challenging, and students are expected to absorb new information quickly and apply it to real-world scenarios.

It’s critical to prepare yourself mentally and emotionally for this type of environment before enrolling in a coding bootcamp. Some strategies may include taking breaks when needed, seeking support from friends or family, practicing self-care activities such as exercise or meditation, and setting realistic expectations for yourself.

Criticisms and Concerns

In addition to these potential drawbacks, there are also criticisms and concerns regarding coding bootcamps. One issue is that not all programs are created equal, and some may not provide adequate education or support for students. Unregulated bootcamps can be especially problematic, as they may lack oversight or accountability.

There are also concerns about diversity in tech careers, and whether coding bootcamps are accessible to individuals from underrepresented backgrounds. While many bootcamps strive to create inclusive environments, some continue to struggle with issues of bias and discrimination.

Overall, while coding bootcamps can offer tremendous benefits in terms of skill development and employment opportunities, it’s important to carefully weigh the potential drawbacks and criticisms before deciding whether they are right for you. By doing your research, evaluating your personal priorities and circumstances, and approaching the program with an open mind, you can make an informed decision about whether a coding bootcamp is worth the cost.

Are Coding Bootcamps Worth the Cost? A Comprehensive Analysis.

Return on Investment (ROI) of Attending a Coding Bootcamp

Coding bootcamps have been hailed as an effective way to break into the lucrative and ever-growing tech industry. However, with tuition fees that can range from several thousand dollars to almost $20,000, potential students often wonder if the investment is worth it. In this section, we will discuss the potential ROI of attending a coding bootcamp in terms of job placement rates, salaries, and career advancement.

Job Placement Rates

One of the most significant benefits of coding bootcamps is their promise of high job placement rates after graduation. The job market for coders is currently thriving, with projected growth rates far above average for all occupations. According to Course Report, a leading source of information about coding bootcamps, 80% of graduates from its 2019 survey found full-time employment within six months of graduating, with an average starting salary of $66,964. Similarly, Thinkful reports a 90% job placement rate among its graduates, with an average annual salary of over $75,000.

Bootcamps with specialized training programs boast higher success rates and command top dollar post-graduation. For instance, Galvanize has reported an incredible near 95% job placement rate for its Data Science program graduates from its campuses across the USA according to Also, bootcamps that offer payment plans and income-share agreements help ease financial burdens on students while maintaining high job placements are gaining popularity in the industry.

These figures indicate that coding bootcamps do indeed provide excellent value for those wishing to enter the tech industry quickly.


The other primary factor in determining the ROI of a coding bootcamp is the earning potential once you’ve landed your first tech job. It is no secret that many technology roles come with impressive salaries despite not necessarily requiring advanced degrees or multiple years of experience.

According to Glassdoor data, various entry-level tech jobs pay anywhere from approximately $50,000 to over $130,000 annually. While the specific role and location affect average earnings significantly, it’s evident that some careers offer more monetary potential than others.

As previously mentioned, typical starting salaries for recent graduate coders hover around roughly $67,000 mark instantly providing positive returns on investments made towards coding bootcamps. This amount averages between equivalent engineering or programming positions attained conventionally through at least four-year institutions while also taking less time and money invested.

Career Advancement

It’s crucial to note that coding bootcamps aren’t only useful for aspiring software engineers seeking their first job. Many seasoned developers seek out further education in niche programming areas or certifications to move up into managerial or technical lead positions resulting in rapid pay increments. As they’re already working professionals with work experience or industry knowledge, additional training through these courses prepares them for taking senior roles through intra or intercompany promotions effectively increasing potential earnings.

Overall, there’s strong proof supporting the notion that teaching codes in a concise timeframe produces very qualified graduates ready to be placed directly into hiring pipelines while quickly breaking into the tech sector with considerable ROI realized immediately.

How to Decide if a Coding Bootcamp is Worth the Cost

So, you’ve decided that a coding bootcamp might be the key to unlocking your dream career in tech. But with so many options out there and often hefty price tags attached, how can you decide if it’s worth it? Here are some tips for evaluating whether a coding bootcamp is worth the investment.

Evaluate Your Career Goals

Before jumping into a coding bootcamp, take some time to evaluate your career goals. Are you looking to switch careers completely, or simply add skills to enhance your current job? Is there a specific type of job you’re aiming for (e.g. front-end developer or data analyst)? Knowing what you want to achieve will help you determine if a coding bootcamp aligns with your goals.

Research Potential Bootcamps

Once you have a clear understanding of your career goals, it’s time to research potential coding bootcamps. Look for ones that specialize in the area(s) you’re interested in, have high job placement rates, and offer a curriculum that matches your learning style. Don’t forget to read reviews and talk to alumni to get a sense of their experience.

Consider Other Forms of Education

A coding bootcamp isn’t the only way to learn programming skills. Online courses, free coding resources, and community college classes are all alternative routes. Consider what fits best within your budget and schedule, while also providing quality education.

Ultimately, deciding if a coding bootcamp is worth it comes down to weighing the costs against the benefits. With proper research and consideration of other educational options, a coding bootcamp could be the perfect launchpad for your new career in tech


After analyzing the different aspects of coding bootcamps, it is clear that they can be a valuable resource for individuals who are looking to start a career in tech or switch their current career path. They offer an alternative way to gain relevant skills and knowledge quickly, bypassing traditional degree programs, which tend to take much longer.

However, attending a coding bootcamp is not cheap, and there are several factors to consider before making a decision. In this guide, we explored the different benefits and drawbacks of coding bootcamps, including:

Benefits of coding bootcamps:

  • Shorter duration: Usually ranging from 3 to 9 months.
  • Intense focus on practical skills development.
  • The curriculum is usually designed by industry experts.
  • Opportunity to network with other students and instructors already in the field.
  • Better employment opportunities may arise since companies understand that these graduates have demonstrated competencies in skills required on the job.

Drawbacks of coding bootcamps:

  • High tuition fees compared to online courses.
  • Not all coding camps guarantee high employment rates upon graduation; therefore, thorough research needs to be carried out about the institute where you want to enroll in.
  • Lack of depth in theoretical technical concepts when compared to conventional four-year degrees.

In conclusion, while coding bootcamps remain excellent resources for acquiring in-demand tech job skills within quick periods, careful consideration should be taken before enrolling at one as costs and promises do not always translate into viable job offers.

We encourage readers interested in attending a coding bootcamp to compare different options carefully, read reviews, speak with alumni and attend online or physical free seminars delivered by those offering such schools.


About The Author

Jake B.

Jake B.

Jake brings a unique perspective to the table with their extensive background in hiring and job placement in the tech industry. With over 10 years of experience in recruiting top talent for leading tech companies, he has a deep understanding of the skills and qualities that make for a successful tech professional. Jake aims to provide valuable insights and practical advice for job seekers and hiring managers alike, drawing on his extensive knowledge of the tech job market. When not writing, he can be found staying up-to-date on the latest industry trends and connecting with tech professionals on LinkedIn.

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