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Discussion on: How Dev Bootcamps Are Failing Their Students

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Matthew Schwartz

I just finished teaching a 24 week full stack (MERN) bootcamp. Our approach is to start with fundamentals and adapt them to the latest techniques and frameworks. My goal is for them to understand enough to be able to learn more on their own.

For example, we spent the first few weeks on HTML and CSS. No frameworks. After learning how to "manually" lay out parts of a page we introduced Bootstrap. Bootstrap is taught as a tool that just makes this easier. When projects were due, one requirement was to use a framework other than Bootstrap so students would be obligated to learn something else on their own.

When we got to MySQL I taught them SQL. Their JS first interacted with the db with plain SQL. Then in another lesson I showed them Sequelize and the benefits of an ORM. Similarly with Mongo we started with plain JS and documents right in the Robo3T.

I guess I'd call it a layered approach. And throughout it's my responsibility to reinforce fundamental concepts.

24 weeks is barely enough time, and the top complaint of students is the fast pace. By the final project I can see the majority of students who put the effort into it will be very good entry level developers. They can take what they've learned and grow from there.