Read reviews from our students.

Hear what former students have to say about us.

App Academy takes pride in putting students' needs first. Our goal is to ensure that students are totally satisfied with their experience. Read what former students have to say about us on Yelp - SF and NYC.

Patrick M.

Washington, DC

2016-03-03

Just finished App Academy and I signed an offer letter for an amazing job less than 1 week of graduating! Don't be fooled: the course itself is INTENSE and will leave you with 0 free time (if you're doing it right and you want to get the most out of it). Study hard and listen to the teachers and it will be the best investment of your time/money that you could possibly make. 10/10 would do it again in a heartbeat.

Stephanie L.

San Francisco, CA

2016-02-23

I attended App Academy in the October cohort of 2015. The experience was grueling yet rewarding. The early days involve a lot of cramming, but looking back, I was impressed with how much I had learned. The curriculum is in no way perfect, but the staff is constantly improving and adding to the curriculum. The course includes fundamentals of coding, interesting projects, and a helpful job search curriculum.

I was skeptical coming into the program, but they really do teach you what you need to know to be in the industry. If I could go back in time, I would still choose to attend App academy. I'm starting my new job next week and I can without a doubt say that the past three months have dramatically changed my life.

Edmund L.

San Jose, CA

2016-02-15

App Academy is a career changer. I am sure when you read my review you've already read a few others. If you heard good stuff about this place that's because they are all true. I am a new immigrant myself who've only been in the US for 3 years. I worked as a sales then I decided to pursue my passion and become a software engineer. I taught myself for one year before joining App Academy, only wished I had joined earlier.

The program is intense, starting from the interview process. And yes, they do kick people out, and there are some more that dropped out. But that's how this place is able to keep 'producing' high quality graduates. And all the people who stay till the end are real smart, hardworking, and have a real passion in software engineering. The curriculum only happens during m-f, but I personally worked 7 days a week (and many others do too), and about 10-12 hours a day. I am writing about this because you should know what you are getting into. I was fully prepared and I survived fine. And I guarantee that you won't even notice you spend so much time on it during the curriculum.

Staffs are supportive, nice, and great people. From admin to TA to the cofounders, everyone is trying to help you. Alumni network isn't great yet, but we certainly have a bond and would love to help out new graduates. The tech industry has a great sense of giving back to the community, and App Academy people perfectly inherits that. And you not only get the value of the course, but you will also meet some lifelong friends who share the same passion as you. It's life changing and if you like coding, you will be very happy during the curriculum and when you start working.

Or and yes, job search is hard just like any other industry. But as long as you keep yourself accountable, you can get a job. And yes, I got a job too after 2+ months of hunting.

R C.

San Francisco, CA

2016-02-09

After completing App Academy, I received my first job offer one week after sending out my first resume. By the time graduation day rolled around 3 weeks later, I had 6 offers in hand. After I was hired, my team went on to hire two more App Academy graduates and several of my coworkers have reached out to me for advice on App Academy and have referred their friends and family to the program. The program is not easy and there is always more to learn, there was definitely a lot of caffeine and many long nights, but the payoff for me has been huge.

The course teaches you the fundamentals of coding, how to tackle large projects, how to write clean code, and how to interview- a very different skill than how to work as a engineer. I've since spent a lot of time on hiring committees and I'm amazed at the average level of preparedness of applicants compared to the prep I received going through App Academy. At the end of the day, the job search and contract negotiation advice I received at App Academy is one of the most valuable things I took from the program.

App Academy opened amazing doors for me that would be closed to me otherwise and I have zero regrets about going through the program

Henry D.

Manhattan, NY

2016-02-03

I started at AppAcademy in September and graduated in December. I just accepted a job at nearly double my previous salary, so I would say the system works. If you can complete AppAcademy you will almost certainly be able to get a good job.

AppAcademy really seems to specialize in motivating people. The assessment structure keeps you constantly terrified of losing your spot, which for me was what it took to get me to spend every available hour studying. I think that without that pressure I would not have had nearly the success I did.

AppAcademy is not easy. I didn't actually believe them when they said it would take up ~80 hours per week, but it does. I can honestly say it was more work in a short period than any school I have attended or job I have had. I also learned more in that time than any other time before. Be prepared to bust your hump to make it through, even if programming comes naturally to you.

Billy L.

San Francisco, CA

2016-01-19

First to Review App Academy was the cornerstone in a pretty big life pivot for me. The program helped facilitate my switch into software engineering, introduced me to a bunch of great people, and really kickstarted my new life in San Francisco. It was a lot of work, but definitely worth while. I landed a job as a software engineer about a month after the program ended, and feel prepared to come and start contributing while continuing my own development.

Ryan C.

Brooklyn, NY

2016-01-13

Sounds too good to be true, but it gets the job done. You could probably learn everything you learn here on your own, but it'd take a helluva lot longer than 3 months. Definitely a worthwhile investment in your career if you'd like to make the move to software development.

Jake G.

Santa Clara, CA

2015-12-26

My days at App Academy were some them most intellectually stimulating, blissful experiences of my previous year. If you've googled the program enough, you may have encountered the analogy to drinking from a firehouse. But when you're thirsty for this knowledge, it's the most refreshing thing ever. Hydrated, educated, prepared, you're ready to take on any development job this ever changing world has to offer.

Since attending, I've worked at a start-up and Apple doing Python dev. (Oh wait, the curriculum was Ruby, but you can grok ANYTHING following this). And more frequently than is comfortable, I've run into flaw after flaw in codebases that the App Academy devs are gung-ho to get you to avoid. Whereas most devs running around these days are comfortable cargo-culting solutions from Stack Overflow, you're trained to build applications from the bottom up with every good practice in play, while knowing WHY THEY WORK. That's not something you get in the average CS undergrad curriculum, and it's not something you can gleen from a MOOC. You have well trained developers at your disposal to show you the RIGHT WAY, or at least the most logical, least oh-well-this-just-worked way.

Bottom line is... If you want to be a developer, and self-instruction isn't cutting it, or you really want to learn from pros, this should not be discounted. Take the assessment. Do it. If you can get that far, and I'm assuming if you've read this far, you can (even if you think you can't).

The future is written by software, and there needs to be better developers out there, coming from every background (you read that, subtle doubter, every background). This is the vehicle for their production. I reiterate: Do it.

Harris J.

Manhattan, NY

2015-12-18

App Academy sounds too good to be true, but it is as good as it sounds. Any student with the aptitude and motivation to make it through the rigorous 3 months of training WILL GET A HIGH PAYING JOB. Most people I know out of App Academy love their jobs as well. I certainly do.

Beyond just job placement, as a Software Engineer I can confidently say that App Academy gave me the skills crucial to doing my job effectively and with a high degree of quality. There's a lot of things schools don't teach that most software engineers just have to figure out on the job. App Academy teaches a lot of them.

The mark of any good Software Engineer is the constant will to learn and pursue new projects. App Academy will take anyone (with the willpower) with minimal knowledge of software engineering, and get them to the point where they can learn by doing. A wide range of independent projects become possible after App Academy, so even after the program while your looking for a job, you can continue the learning process you started at App Academy. I cant recommend App Academy enough to anyone looking to pursue a career in web development.

Satnam S.

Fremont, CA

2015-12-13

The 12 weeks that I spent at App Academy were not only pivotal in my career as a developer but also some of the best weeks of my life.

The curriculum is as good as it gets. It moves at a pace which strikes the perfect balance of absorbable and challenging. After 7 weeks, I couldn't believe how much I've learned in such a short amount of time. The instructors are very smart and friendly. I always felt very safe and welcomed whenever I needed help with something.

Even though I graduated with a CS degree, App Academy taught me things that I couldn't learn in school. Best practices, hands-on practice with the latest technologies being used in the industry (yes, they teach react.js!), effective communication and pair programming.

Also, although it was challenging at times but, it never stopped being fun. Pair programming with a new person every day and allowed me to meet up really cool people and tackle some really interesting problems together.

Nicole D.

Daly City, CA

2015-12-08

I'm a career switcher with a non-STEM background. I finished App Academy in SF three weeks ago, and recently accepted an offer from a start-up that I'm super excited about!

I chose App Academy because of the well-rounded curriculum, the selectiveness of admissions, and the payment structure that incentivizes them to help graduates get jobs. Previous reviews have covered the basics, and I'll agree:

- it's a tough program (70-80hrs of work per week for the first 8 weeks is typical) - it's an intense and stressful experience (over 10% attrition rate in my cohort) - you learn a whole lot and become obsessed with programming - nearly 100% of students who complete the program get jobs as developers

What I want to emphasize is how great the people are, both students and instructors. The students are not just extremely bright, they are passionate, which is a prerequisite for undertaking something as intense and demanding as App Academy. As a result, and because most days are spent doing pair programming, you are surrounded by people who love what they are learning and strive for mastery (and who are just plain cool) -- this is SO valuable. The overall quality of students is a big part of why you learn so much at a/A.

The instructors and TAs are helpful, knowledgable, and invested in students' success. The ratio of TAs to students is around 1:10, which means a TA is nearly always available to help you better understand the subject matter. They won't hesitate to spend the better part of an hour helping you track down a bug, and if something didn't click for you during lecture, they will go out of their way to explain it until it does.

If you're considering App Academy and know that you enjoy programming (even if you've just started), do it. I'm happy to answer questions - feel free to contact me here on Yelp or through my portfolio site at ndevvy [dot] io. If you've decided to go for it and apply, you can use my referral link for a little discount on tuition: appacademy.io/referral_r…

Alex K.

Madison, WI

2015-12-07

I attended in Winter '14 at Astor Place so some things may have changed, but:

I had a really positive experience here. I was surrounded by a lot of really smart, driven people with different backgrounds, all of whom were motivated to work together and workshop their skills as much as possible. This is facilitated by a work-in-progress curriculum that gives you the core ideas of a topic with interesting examples and exercises. Jonathan in NY, Ned and Kush in SF, and TAs in both places have put in a lot of work on this to give you something better than you can get in other online resources or books. Jonathan is the nicest guy in the world and devotes extra attention to people who are struggling. Your progress is tested with weekly timed exams where you have to code something up sight-unseen and make it pass a testing suite, which is usually a good review of whatever you did the previous week and also great practice for the types of tests you'll have to take on job interviews. I'm someone who really loves learning new things and trying to build my skills, and although I'm almost two years removed from it, I remember waking up every day feeling anxious and excited about whatever kinds of things we were going to do next.

I actually don't have any negative feedback, but some other students in my class felt like they didn't go far enough in helping you with the job search guidance and interview preparation. It was definitely difficult, but I personally feel like no matter how well you did in the class or how prepared you are it'll be a hustle to compete with other well-qualified candidates and exceed companies' expectations to get the job, and it's not really possible for any kind of schooling to just hand you a job at the end. That's just the nature of this (and many other) industries and it's better to learn that sooner rather than later.

Kevin X.

San Diego, CA

2015-12-04

Summary: This place is as legit as it gets. No tricks, lies, or scams--everything they say, they do, just as they promise. I, as a college dropout who was pretty much middle of the pack in my cohort, am employed as a software engineer.

When I first heard of App Academy, I was a little skeptical. I think every normal person who comes across App Academy will feel some sense of skepticism, and dig a little deeper. In fact, that might very possibly be why you are reading this review right now. Maybe you think the salary is a little (or a LOT!) exaggerated; maybe you think some of the students there are plants by App Academy to raise the average salary; maybe all the students who get in have at least a degree in CS or have way more background knowledge than you. All of these are thoughts that I had before I applied to App Academy. I'm really just writing this review to assuage the fears of my past self, whose shoes you are in right now, that none of these are true.

(P.S. I also thought that these Yelp reviews were paid reviews or had some incentive offered to write them for the students that did well... Nope, I'm just here because I'm so excited about the opportunities App Academy has offered me and I want other people to realize that App Academy is a legitimate option you should seriously consider if you want to get into the industry.)

Granted, not all app academy graduates are created equal. Yes, a select few might have CS backgrounds... but that doesn't guarantee that they'll outperform you, or that they'll end up with a higher salary in any way, shape and form. In fact, of the three smartest, most competent, incredibly talented software engineers I've ever met personally at App Academy, (who have, and undoubtedly will continue to, receive some of the best opportunities in the industry) two of them came in with absolutely zero knowledge of programming beforehand, and the third was a college dropout with minimal programming experience stemming from middle and high school.

Hint: Like everything else, App Academy will only give you back what you put in. It just has a much, MUCH higher standard for the "minimum required effort" to succeed.

How can you be sure this place works? Well, I got a job. Who am I? No one, really... I'm a college dropout who didn't excel or "stand out" significantly in any way in my cohort, put in the required work, and got a job as a software engineer.

If you're on the fence, at least apply. Do it right now! Seriously. It costs nothing, fairly easy to get into, and it teaches you some cool things about programming anyways. There's absolutely nothing to lose.

Mark S.

FRESH MEADOWS, NY

2015-10-31

Great place to learn code to prepare you for a career in web development. Taught myself enough before the course to get in, but otherwise had no coding experience. It was tough, but once it was over I was amazed by how much I learned in a short time. At my new job, I felt I had a really strong foundation with which to hit the ground running. Still learning (it never stops) but for people looking to switch careers I couldn't recommend aA highly enough.

Zak N.

New York, NY

2015-10-26

I went to App Academy because I thought that their model would attract the best students. I believe I was right. From the first day I felt as though I was behind the rest of the class. I had come in expecting to be ahead of the crowd, having built a website and developed an iOS app before. I had no idea that the talent of my fellow classmates would far exceed my own.

I think there is a perception that students who attend bootcamps learn the tools they need on the surface to become an app or web developer and I think for certain bootcamps this is true. At App Academy, I was learning algorithms from the first day. If you finished the assignments before the rest of the class you could write an algorithm to do a basic form of artificial intelligence to solve a maze - through breadth first search. My partner and I couldn't solve it. By the end of the week we had tackled recursion, studied tree logic, created hangman games that could play themselves, and rewritten many functions that make life in Ruby so simple.

For the remainder of our time there, we would study a different subject for a week or two to really master it, digging into the internals of how that thing worked and solving complicated projects that demonstrated why it was important to know. After 2 weeks of digging into the details of the Ruby language, we spent a few days mastering SQL - being expected to read half a textbook on SQL over a weekend so we really had 5 days with it. After SQL, we moved onto Rails and spent about 2 and a half weeks with it. In Rails, we recreated two of the most important libraries that make it up. We spent a week learning Javascript and by that point it felt like we only needed a week to really understand a topic.

I couldn't recommend App Academy enough. You will learn why things work, not just how to make them. App Academy is a great balance of theory and practice with excellent teachers and the brightest students.

Mike L.

Los Altos, CA

2015-10-15

Application process is a little challenging, especially if you are like me, a non-CS major with a few months into learning programming and mini algorithms. But.... Although cliche, it is true that you don't give up applying until it is really over.

This program will change your life, give you a good story to tell later, and spark your interest in developing apps. I was probably the dullest pencil in my cohort, but I was one of the first ones who secured a job - so if you think you are not worthy, I probably have felt the exact same way many many times more.

It is also true that most of the SF grads will secure jobs averaging $105k, you just have to stop questioning that and take my advice. I have been there, done that, and kept in touch with classmates in order to know that this is indeed the case. So I CAN say this with confidence. You'll just have to accept this and move on :)

Feel free to contact me for extra details or questions regarding to App Academy, as there are so much more to it than what I have posted here. Remember, no one will ever know how dumb you have felt while at App Academy, but they will see how awesome you have become in such short amount of time.

Me: years in biotech + 0 CS classes taken + 3 months in app academy + 3 weeks of job search = Employed software engineer

P.S. More than likely, App Academy will also spark another hobby - building cool apps during your free time.

Matt P.

Berkeley, CA

2015-10-10

In short: if you're thinking about App Academy, do it!

I highly recommend App Academy to anyone looking to get into Web Development/Software Engineering. I was in the cohort that started in June of 2015, and just accepted a job offer in Mountain View less than a month after finishing the program (about three and a half weeks from graduation to offer).

Before starting App Academy, I didn't have much programming experience (compared to someone with a CS degree). I had taken two courses in college (Matlab and Labview), and two more after college (Python, C++) in addition to some self-teaching, but I hadn't done any programming in a professional setting. Within three months, I had developed a full stack web application, a few games, and a simple web framework (similar to Rails).

App Academy is very rigorous and intensive, but it does exactly what it advertises: prepares you for a career in software development in three months. It was a huge time commitment, and it wasn't easy (long days followed by additional reading and any review of the day's material), but I learned so much more than I thought I would (or could) in such a short time frame. I can't recommend App Academy enough!

Aaron H.

New York, NY

2015-10-09

A little over a year ago, I had very minimal experience coding, yet I was hoping to start a career as a web developer. Those 2 things are not really compatible, but that's where App Academy comes in. They take people like me and turn us into web developers. Over the course of 12 weeks, I went from knowing next to nothing about programming and web development, to creating a full featured clone of Twitter utilizing the knowledge I had gained in that time.

Despite the way it sounds, there's nothing magical about App Academy. It requires focus, dedication and hard work. But if you're willing to make the commitment, there is a huge reward at the end of the rainbow. I'm definitely happy that I decided to quit my job and attend App Academy, and I think it's a great choice for anyone considering getting into the field. One big reason that I chose App Academy over any other "dev bootcamp" was due to their tuition policy. It was the only bootcamp I came across that didn't collect tuition until after you land a job. For me, it wasn't just about the money aspect, but more so about what it says about App Academy. They are so confident in what they do, that they fully expect everyone to be able to land a job afterwards. So confident, that they don't ask you for most of the money until then. This means that not only are they confident about their offering, but they are also invested in your success. To me, that was something that meant a lot to me. They do require a $3,000 deposit before you start, but the remainder of the tuition comes after you get a job.

Like I said, this is a commitment. It's basically a full time job + school. You work 9-5 Monday - Friday, with prep work to do each night, including the weekends. Every day is intense, as you take what you learned the day before and build on it. At the same time, the instructors are super chill and laid back, which makes it easier to ask those "stupid" questions that everybody has from time to time.

Overall, I am extremely pleased with my App Academy experience, and if you're considering attending one of the many dev bootcamps in the NY or SF area, I would highly recommend it. I left my previous job in August '14, started App Academy in September '14, and started my new job as a web developer in January '15 (where I am still happily employed). I would say that's a pretty quick turnaround for having minimal previous experience in coding!

Nat W.

Manhattan, NY

2015-10-09

I graduated from the June 2013 cohort, found a job a couple weeks later, and have been working as a web developer ever since. App Academy is a really great launchpad for a career in web development, especially for people who don't have a background in computer science. From speaking with my friends who went to other bootcamps, I think one thing that really distinguishes App Academy from the rest is the "hiring bootcamp" which prepares you for the job search. They really prepared us for the application process, coding challenges, and interviews, and made the whole job search a less daunting process. I'd wholeheartedly recommend App Academy to anyone who's looking for a career change.

Dennis S.

GLEN OAKS, NY

2015-10-05

[Repost: Before App Academy moved]

September '14 Batch:

I was part of the September 2014 batch when a/A was still at Astor pl.

App Academy is much more than a college course in web development. It's much more than a seminar or a workshop hosted on a weeknight.

a/A provides you all the standard resources you would see in an educational course: a syllabus, readings, guidance from instructors, and lectures. Everything that's described in the advertisement is what you get.

The time spent at a/A is much more than just the resources they give you, however.

The best things I can say about a/A revolves around my experience. The great pairing sessions, nights burning into the late hours on the next day's material, coming in on a weekend to have a relaxing, yet, productive study session. a/A is more similar to a hackathon or an incubator than most traditional courses. The collaborative experience is quite possibly the best part.

I was challenged in more ways then one. App Academy essentially throws you into the deep end and gives you the tools to survive. I remember around my third week I started feeling overwhelmed and felt like an impostor amongst my cohort. I made it known in my progress report that I wasn't feeling competent, and the next day was quickly pulled aside to be reassured that I was doing great. It really meant a lot to me that the instructors are looking out for you and reading your progress reports.

It was a tough challenge, and a motivating one at that. You either pass the weekly assessments or you become at risk of being kicked out. We all wanted to see each other succeed. We all supported each other by sharing elegant solutions and fresh perspectives. In the end, as cliche as it sounds, we really were like a family. We stayed around for gaming nights, Halloween celebrations, and hung out with each other on off-days.

The bottom line is: if you make it past the 12 weeks, you will have the necessary traits to become a solid developer. Most of my cohort, including me have found positions in the field. Everything from the workload to the collaboration, adds to the experience at a/A. If you're still unsure after reading about a/A online, you should definitely reach out to the instructors or alumni.

You'll touch upon core CS concepts involving algorithms, design practices, time complexity / big O, and data structures. The curriculum is curated by instructors who know what they're talking about and will always deliver with quality.

One of the key things that a/A taught us is: the learning never ends. a/A teaches you how to do your own research, how to implement quickly and effectively, and not to be afraid to ask questions.

Colin J.

Brooklyn, NY

2015-09-16

EDIT: Reposting here, because the App Academy page has moved.

Just about exactly one year ago, I was a final-year undergrad at Oxford avoiding finals prep in every conceivable way. One of my more insidious procrastination techniques involved running through whatever programming tutorials and online courses I could get my hands on--Codecademy, Treehouse, you name it--and convincing myself that I was being productive.

But I knew that I wasn't really being productive. I knew that programming was fun, and I enjoyed learning new skills, but I wasn't actually producing anything new, beyond the interesting but impractical projects I built while following tutorials. I believed, at that point, that I'd missed the boat, that because I hadn't grown up hacking through my teenage years or majored in Computer Science, that I had simply missed out on developing some creative part of my brain that connects the simple tools of if/else and variables into beautiful, response web pages.

One year later, I don't think that way anymore, and I don't think anyone else should either. After completing the App Academy course four months ago, I'm now in my third month as a software engineer at a very well-capitalized tech company on the verge of going public, working 40 hours a week on a big, hairy open-source project to build the next big cloud computing platform (and writing iPhone apps in my spare time), and pulling down a six-figure salary. I can honestly say that I wouldn't be anywhere near as happy a place as I am today without App Academy New York.

The curriculum is fast-paced. You get what you put in. But because the work is so collaborative, and the application process so selective, it's nearly impossible not to learn far faster than you would by hacking away on your own. There's no hand-holding here; no one's teaching you how to use a tool without explaining how it works. And that's its greatest strength: when you come out the other end of the program, you will have (at least in my experience) a *leg-up* over recent Computer Science grads when it comes to web app development. I repeat, with three months of App Academy under your belt, you will have a *better understanding* of web app development than most recent 4-year Computer Science college graduates, and a solid foundation on which to build expertise for more complicated software engineering problems, too.

From where I'm standing right now, it definitely feels like going to App Academy was the best decision I have ever made. So if you're thinking about it, then apply, and if you get accepted, then take it. You won't regret it.

Mike W.

New York, NY

2015-09-16

App Academy is an incredible experience that will transform your life! (A review by a British App Academy grad)

I heard about App Academy through a friend while I was living in London. At the time I was in a painfully dull job and was just looking for something interesting to do. I'd done a little recreational programming at university so I thought I would apply and see what happened. Now I'm a developer at a fantastic company with a great salary and an extremely exciting career ahead of me.

Moving to New York for the course was surprisingly straightforward. Because the course is only 84 days it can be done on an ESTA as long as you're careful to site that it is a "recreational" vocational course with no qualifications.

To say that the course is demanding is something of an understatement. They really aren't kidding when they say you should expect to spend the vast majority of your time coding for the duration of the course. However, the material is engaging and like many of my cohort I was so addicted that I found myself building code on the side.

The methodology that they teach at app academy sets you apart from other bootcamp graduates and indeed from other applicants for any job that you will apply for. The enforced pair programming not only serves as a way to get to know your cohort, but will stand you in excellent stead for joining some of the most exciting companies in the industry.

What really gives App Academy its colossal advantage over the other options is the quality of both students and instructors. Jonathan, Tommy and Constance are all exceptional teachers. I really can't express the extent to which these three heroes make App Academy the powerhouse that it is. They will help you navigate the stresses of working at such a fast pace, infect you with their genuine passion for the web and make you feel like you belong in the world of tech. They are an absolute joy to learn from. My cohort was also full of exceptional people, many of whom I hope to keep in touch with for a long time to come. Being surrounded by such an incredible bunch of people really does make you feel a part of something special.

I should say that as a foreign student I was asked to pay the full cost of the course upfront, which is not mentioned in any of the FAQs. I consider it the best investment I have ever made by a significant margin, but I can understand your frustration if you can't pull that sort of sum together. I only managed it through a friend.

If you're thinking of applying, stop reading reviews and do it now. Right this instant. If you are a British applicant and thinking of applying but are worried about the upheaval of moving, stop reading reviews and just do it already! It really will be the best thing that ever happened to you.

Gary B.

Matawan, NJ

2015-09-16

Graduate - September '14 Cohort

Of all the institutions I've been a part of through my education and career, App Academy is probably the one I feel the most connection to and loyalty towards.

Unlike some of the boot camps springing up that seem to springing up to capture some quick profit, App Academy is building something awesome. With its highly selective admissions process and no-tuition business model, App Academy is bringing innovation to the badly broken higher education system.

During my time at a/A, I was surrounded by some of the the smartest, most driven people I have ever known. This environment lent itself to some seriously accelerated learning: a few months before I applied, I didn't know the first thing about computer programming, and especially not about the arcana of web development. But by graduation day, I had landed a job at an awesome startup and have been impressing my superiors since (which is apparently normal for App Academy grads).

Some people took quite a bit longer to find jobs, but I don't know anywhere from my cohort who has not yet found a good web dev job. And if you have even an iota of charisma (I think I do) or have a strong STEM background (I don't), you can expect to find a job in no time.

So basically if you want to learn a ton from smart people with other smart people and then get paid money to keep doing that when you finish, do a/A.

9.9/10 Would do again.

Jake S.

Manhattan, NY

2015-09-15

If you're willing to work hard and focus, App Academy can be a career catapult. The curriculum is remarkably well-designed in how it truly gives you a modern developer's frame of mind, allowing you to evaluate and get comfortable with new tools/skillsets quickly, whether your interests are in front-end web design or in software engineering. You definitely get out what you put in, especially once you commence the job hunt- the more thoughtful you are about the work up until then, the easier time you'll have finding a meaningful job. I had a great time participating in App Academy, and couldn't be happier with my career so far after finishing the program.

Anthony C.

New York, NY

2015-09-15

Imagine being a level 1 Magikarp then - BAM! - you're suddenly a HUMONGOUS FRICKEN GYRADOS.

That's a precise description of how App Academy transformed me.

A+++++ would attend again

Aaron B.

Santa Clarita, CA

2015-09-15

It takes a lot for me to a) review something on yelp and to b) recommend something to a stranger.

But I can say without reservation that I recommend App Academy to any/everyone. A bit more than a year after graduation, I look back am still shocked at how well I was prepared for employment by the incredible teaching of Jonathan and Tommy.

Cannot thank them enough.

Andrew K.

Long Island City, NY

2015-09-14

Here's App Academy: The cream of the crop (ivy league alumni, mathematic masters/phds, garage hackers, etc.), shoved together in one room, study collectively for 80hrs a week for 3-4 months to learn fullstack software development, its current, best practices (pairing + tdd) and interviewing skills. Students breathe, eat and sleep development. App Academy's greatest asset, its selection process, builds an incredible learning environment for future devs that want the right first step. That along with its living curriculum that is constantly being improved by each successive cohort of students leads to the insane 98% alumni to dev career rate that the program boasts.

I was a part of NY's second cohort in the summer of 2013, I've since been a software dev for two years and am currently working for Groupon. I've referred both my brother and close college friend to the program as well and both are now professional devs. More than a handful of fellow a/A alums have been coworkers of mine over the last 2 years.

As an interviewer for software devs at my previous employer, I can say that a/A alums are held with a different regard when compared with alums from other bootcamps.

a/A's tuition program is the key differentiating factor from other programs; it is literally invested in it's students' success.

I recommend to employers and prospective students both to make use of this wonderful program.

Lydia S.

Brooklyn, NY

2015-09-14

Some of the amazing benefits:

- It changes your life in 3 months - You can make real friends who you'll be in touch with for years and learn so much from - You never feel like you're learning something useless - Only 2 months out and most of my classmates and I already have jobs (along with significant salary increases!)

Word to the wise:

The material is not always easy to grasp at first and the class moves so quickly that you must practice, practice, practice in your down time. There are weekly evaluations to make sure you are up to speed. I'd say i was spending 60-70 hours per week working. You cannot change your career without putting work and extra effort in, so you have to be willing to do that at App Academy. You will enjoy your new career, and App Academy gives you the fastest way of getting there.

Finally, the fantastic teachers make the hard work completely worth it. I had Jonathan, Tommy, and Constance. Jonathan was the main teacher, and he cared so much that we understood the material. Tommy made crucial edits to my resume, helping me to land a job I really enjoy. Constance, the TA, has an insane amount of knowledge, and answered every questions I had and every bug I encountered within seconds.

Griffin A.

New York, NY

2015-09-14

App Academy would not have gotten me to the point where I am now, about to start a job at IBM Watson as a software developer in Austin. The combination of fun, learning, and career mobility the course at A/a provides you is unparalleled. I would recommend this program to anyone seriously interested in starting a career as a software developer, as I don't think you any other route can take you from 0 - 60 in less time, and with more confidence!!

Joe B.

Arlington, VA

2015-09-14

I would highly recommend App Academy. If you're interested in becoming a software developer and are willing to work hard, this is the best way to do it. In just three months, I went from knowing only a little about coding to being employed as a full-time software engineer at a major Bay Area tech company. The results from App Academy wildly exceeded my expectations, and I can't wait to pursue a career in software. None of it would have been possible without App Academy.

Without going into too much detail, I'd say "believe the hype." Right now there is a huge imbalance in the software market -- demand for software developers is massively outstripping supply, and App Academy's training will put you in position to get one of those highly coveted software jobs.

If you'd like to learn more about App Academy, check out the other reviews and navigate to the App Academy website to see some of the existing students' blogs. Learning how to program at App Academy is an incredible experience, and if you're on the fence about, remember this... leaving your current career may feel risky, but if you think you'd love programming then App Academy is totally worth it.

Sai To Y.

Norwalk, CT

2015-09-14

I remember the first observation I had on my first day at App Academy was how diverse the class was in terms of everyone's backgrounds. Our class makeup included people who came directly from college, people who had been in professional careers in law, finance, or consulting, and people who had already been doing software engineering but were looking to learn more about web development.

My second observation, after about a week, was how incredibly smart the class was and how passionate everyone was about learning the web development. I had applied to a few programs, and I think App Academy's acceptance process was the most rigorous and meritocratic. To have gotten in means that you've programmed for quite a bit already.

This can be both a good or a bad thing depending on who you are. It means that it's really tough to get in if you are a complete noob and if you had decided to apply on a whim without any sort of preparation. However, it's a great thing if you're looking for a bootcamp for more advanced students. This is because App Academy has already set a precedent for producing high caliber students, and has therefore established a strong reputation among the tech industry. Jonathan, Tommy, and Constance care a lot about their students, and they will prepare you really well for the types of interviews that will come up.

I'm not exaggerating when I say that going through App Academy changed my life. It opened up doors that I previously thought wouldn't have been possible without a CS degree. I wholeheartedly recommend a/A to anyone who is trying to break into tech and software development.

David R.

Brooklyn, NY

2015-09-14

From dabbling with programming to actually working as a professional software developer is something I could not have done without App Academy. The curriculum helped me build a strong foundation in programming, build up a portfolio, and taught me the best practices and tools of the trade so I could hit the ground running in my new career. The instructors are top notch, and once you get on the job hunt, there's a lot of resources and support to help land a great job, and continue learning.

I was also really impressed by the rest of my cohort. App Academy does a great job selecting smart and talented people making it a great environment to learn. If you're serious about going into software development, this is the way to do it!

Greg M.

Brooklyn, NY

2015-09-14

They are the best. I would recommend them to anyone, and I have done so a bunch of times.

Scott R.

Brooklyn, NY

2015-09-13

App Academy was the best choice I've ever made. I graduated as part of the very first cohort in NY, and have been an engineer for just over two years now. What I learned at App Academy proved invaluable in not just web development, but also in picking up new languages and new platforms like Android.

This program will give you the knowledge you need to change your life for the better. It certainly did for me and the dozens of other graduates.

John O.

Parsippany, NJ

2015-09-13

Attending a/A (despite the strange acronym) was a big turning point in my life. This program gave me the opportunity to change my career toward something that I always had an interest in but never did decide to study. The reason I chose a/A was not only because they did not take tuition upfront, but mostly because of the amount of stuff they teach. From barely knowing how to code or any best practices in writing code (I apologize to anyone that has had to read my old code...), I became fluent enough in two programming languages (Ruby and Javascript) to solve interesting problems in code, as well as create my own web apps.

The one thing that I really liked about how a/A taught is that they didn't just teach you how to write code, or just how to use Rails or Backbone.js to create an app. Instead, they teach you everything that went into creating these frameworks to give you a real understanding and appreciation for the frameworks and any others you may see in the future. For instance, Rails uses ActiveRecord as an interface to communicate with the database. In order to do so, AR interprets your code into SQL (database language) and returns objects to represent the result of the database query (for when you're trying to get information out of your database, eg, all the posts a user has written). At a/A, they don't only teach you how to write your own SQL code (so you can write your own database queries without AR's help), but they also have a project where you make your own version of AR (ie, ActiveRecordLite). By learning how Rails interacts with your app's database, you get a better appreciation for all the "magic" that goes on in AR, and also gives you the flexibility to create your own customized queries in case AR alone cannot do what you want.

Anyhow, I definitely do not regret my decision to attend a/A in November of 2014. Not only did I enjoy the curriculum, but the instructors were also amazing. I could say with confidence that I would definitely take any other class if Jonathan were teaching it (despite not caring too much about HTML/CSS and styling, I have a strong understanding of how web pages are structured thanks to his instruction). The two TA's are also super helpful and definitely know what they're talking about.

For those of you thinking about applying to a/A, I would suggest thinking about how much time you are willing to put into this. The curriculum is pretty difficult and fast-paced. Just getting into the program is a challenge since they require you to teach yourself basic Ruby and coding practices. I personally did not have much time to do anything outside of the program, so just know what you are getting yourself into. But, if you really do want to get in, then go learn some basic Ruby and practice using Ruby to solve some simple coding challenges. Some good websites are Project Euler and CodeEval (there are a ton more out there if you look). App Academy also does give you some resources as you are applying, so be sure to take advantage of them. In all honesty, the program really is what you make it to be. If you put in the effort, you will learn a LOT. I spent most of my time studying and making sure I understood the concepts during my time here, and I definitely felt pretty confident in my developing abilities after finishing the program. And now that I am working as a developer at a company, I feel like I was able to get up to speed pretty quickly despite my lack of experience.

Katie W.

New York, NY

2015-09-12

I have no reservations about recommending App Academy to anyone who is motivated to start a career as a software developer. I've now been working as a software engineer for over a year, and App Academy gave me the skills I have needed to be successful. I found the curriculum to be highly effective -- by making you work through everything yourself in the projects, you really absorb the skills at a very quick rate and in addition, they emphasized the principles behind the tools, so that you can continue to grow as an engineer on your own after the program. The NYC instructor Jonathan is fantastic -- he really cares about his students, is great at explaining concepts to people with a variety of backgrounds, and loves to share his enthusiasm with the whole class.

David C.

Manhattan, NY

2015-09-12

I attended App Academy as part of the September '14 cohort.

I had worked for a tech company before App Academy but not in a developer/engineering capacity. After several years of relative success I realized that I wasn't feeling entirely fulfilled simply advancing in the path I was on. I'd always enjoyed working directly with code and had considered switching careers to development in the past, but at the time coding programs like App Academy weren't around. But a friend of mine had recently gone through the program, and so on learning a bit more and hearing his own accolades on the program, I applied and was accepted.

The program, and everything that's followed, has been an excellent experience. The curriculum and teaching style take a decidedly DIY approach to education in that it challenges students to take charge of their own learning, which is a little scary at first, but is actually what makes the program so beneficial and successful. This is precisely the kind of attitude that's required to be a successful developer today and App Academy does an excellent job of imbuing it on its students. At the same time, day-to-day you're in an incredibly collaborative and open environment -- because of the demanding admission standards your classmates are guaranteed to be intelligent and self-motivated people from whom you can learn a lot. Likewise, the instructors care about education and are themselves well-experienced, passionate coders.

A good three weeks of the program was devoted to the job hunt. App Academy has several staff dedicated to helping get their students jobs after the program, who maintain relationships with employers, so students are provided valuable advice and guidance during the job search process. I found most employers to be impressed with the knowledge and capabilities I'd gained through the program. I'm now working for an exciting e-commerce startup and come in to work every day excited to be there!

Sarah M.

Hauppauge, NY

2015-09-11

I was part of the December 2013 cohort, graduating in March of 2014. This was a life-changing experience for me, and I would recommend a/A to anyone who wants to learn and is willing to work for it.

a/A give you the tools you need to launch a career in tech. The curriculum is rigorous. Indeed, you will need to commit ~80 hours per week to be successful in this program. Your instructors and classmates provide the motivation to survive the long work days. Pair programming FTW!

My degree is in Premedical Nutrition Science. I knew nothing about programming when I first applied to a/A. Only one month after graduation, I received my first job offer! Everyone from my cohort was employed within 2 months.

There's also a wonderful network of a/A grads. Many have become very successful in the field, working for big name companies like Google and Facebook. Referrals are aplenty.

But don't take it from me - I think the business model says it all. You don't pay tuition until you get a job, and the amount you owe is based on how much you earn. They must be damn good at what they do, or else they would've gone broke by now.

Daniel W.

Cupertino, CA

2015-09-11

I graduated from a/A NYC as a part of the March 2014 cohort. I was a business student at NYU at the time and wanted to learn how to program in order to prototype my own ideas. I made the decision to drop my minor, graduate a semester early and attend App Academy in lieu of my spring semester.

I knew very little about programming other than small but ultimately futile attempts to self teach. I found that it was difficult to ascertain what languages to learn, how to learn them, and ultimately how all they all fit together. App Academy provided the structure and guidance I needed to steadily learn and build my skills without falling into the traps I encountered while self teaching.

That being said, it proved to be very rigorous and required a great deal of dedication. This only better prepared me for landing a job as a software engineer. After being hired and seeing prospective employees from other bootcamps it became clear to me that App Academy is in the top tier of programming bootcamps. Overall an invaluable experience.

Kevin Q.

Brooklyn, NY

2015-09-11

It is because of App Academy that I am a software engineer today. I was a mechanical engineer looking to transition to software development in the most efficient way possible. App Academy was exactly what I needed. Their intensive curriculum covers everything one would need to start out in the world of web development, from the basics to the bleeding edge. After 3 months I was building the front and back end of web applications using some of the newest tools and methodologies out there in this field.

This program is for the passionate and motivated. If you're serious about transitioning into the world of software development, then do yourself a favor and apply.

Dave C.

Jamaica Plain, MA

2015-09-11

Fall '14 Cohort Graduate.

I haven't stopped preaching the good App Academy gospel since my cohort ended last December (this only increased after getting a job ~ 3 weeks after completion) and now it's time to bring it to Yelp.

I could just keep this simple and go with "what Gary says!" (review below), but because my own experience at a/A was so great, I have to share it. Less than a year ago I was feeling stuck and bored in a career as a microbiologist. I had picked up programming as a hobby and found that I really enjoyed it, but I had no idea how to turn it into a job. Around that time, programming "bootcamps" entered my radar, seemingly presenting a viable means to make the switch. After some research, I decided a/A was the one for me, largely due to the pricing structure and an excellent review from a friend of a friend that had recently attended. Let me go off on a tangent here and rave about the pricing structure. If you're not aware, App Academy charges nothing up front (although there is a deposit). You don't pay anything until you get a job and then once you do get a job, you pay a percentage of your salary. This unique model is incredibly fair, allows someone like myself who couldn't afford other bootcamps to attend, and says a lot about what a/A offers. With this model, a/A would completely fail if what they were offering was anything less than high quality.

I digress. So I applied about a year ago, putting all my eggs in the a/A basket. The application process was very challenging and took a bit longer than I expected. The process includes interviews and several coding challenges but you are not penalized for the time it takes to get through it all. a/A even provides a whole bunch of rich materials that, with enough review and practice, should be sufficient enough for one to get through the challenges. This says a lot about a/A's integrity and accessibility. a/A has high acceptance standards, but if you are willing to put in the work there's a good chance you'll get in, and a/A wants to help you be successful in doing so. In fact, I didn't pass the last coding challenge, but since I was close to a solution I was given more material to go through and a second chance.

a/A kicked off at full speed. I was expecting the program to be challenging and a whole lot of work, and I experienced exactly that. Days typically consisted of a "lecture" in the early morning led by the instructors where we went over the previous days assignments, went through demos, had a Q&A etc. Then we jumped into the days assignments which would take up most of the rest of the afternoon and often the evening. Most days we pair programmed, which was much more fun (and less lonely) than my programming journey had been up until this point. Seeing others' approaches to problems was also very insightful. At night we were expected to go over the solutions to the days problems and do the reading for the following day. We had nearly weekly programming assessments that were often very difficult, primarily due to not being able to use any resources. I hated the assessments due to the stress they brought me, but they did force us to develop a deep understanding of key concepts. However, even with regular stresses and working upwards of 100 hours a week, my time at a/A was very enjoyable. The instructors were incredible resources (I wish I took more advantage of this) and I made a ton of great friends. I have no shortage of fond memories from this period of my life and I was pretty bummed to see it end.

I can't recommend App Academy enough. I had a great time, the program is of the highest quality, and I couldn't be happier with the results I got. 3 months at App Academy (plus a few months in preparation) got me into a career that I'm very happy to be in and my income has doubled. How can you beat that? Also, in two months from now (~6 months after completion), my debt to a/A will be fulfilled. I graduated from college five years ago and I don't even want to get into how much of that student debt remains. If you're seriously interested in programming as a profession, make a/A your first consideration.

Stefan H.

Brooklyn, NY

2015-09-11

I graduated from the App Academy July 2014 cohort. My experience there was one of the best I've ever had. If I could, I would do it all over again. I was able to find a good, well-paying job a couple weeks after I finished the program. I ended up tripling my salary. The rest of my class pretty much all got jobs within that same timeframe, and I'd say the average salary for my class was between 85k and 90k. Because App Academy prepared us so well (by teaching us how to learn quickly), several of us have since gotten raises (after just six months on the job) and now make six figures.

Jesús M.

Austin, TX

2015-09-11

I originally wrote this review 02/21/2015 but I saw they changed their page. It's 09/11/2015 and I still hold it highly. :)

If you are serious about programming, you should consider App Academy. I've made some great friends throughout the program and it represents one of the major turning points of my life.

You will learn the modern libraries, tools and technologies so well it'll stun those friends you have with CS backgrounds.

But you don't just learn technologies here; you learn how to problem solve in computer science. You will implement recursion, breadth-first-search, trees, within the first week. You will learn how to bug-chase. The curriculum at the end has intensive algorithmic training.

Yet, the most valuable part about the program that differentiates it over bootcamps is that by the end you become a developer with these traits:

Speed. We learned JavaScript in a week. I don't think I need to say more.

Technique. Source control and awareness of conventions and CS/Web Dev culture. You learn the sources, and shortcuts. You learn to be thorough and to leave projects better than they were before you touched them.

Communication. In pair programming for the majority of the exercises, you get to gain the invaluable skill of how to communicate technically with another developer.

Work-ethic. All I need to say is that even those with CS backgrounds were overwhelmed.

By the 9th week you can make an application. A styled professional project you will be so proud of. From the database schema, to the back-end API, to the front-end framework. It's your baby!!

And, of course, that's not enough. At App Academy pace, you are trained for the job hunt. You learn how to hustle and play the game. You get advice on difficult topics like negotiation and you practice interview problems. This alone is worth the cost of the program.

I need to emphasize that a/A isn't just a cold-blooded employment agency. They actually care. When I needed to calm down before a phone screen, my teachers were there for me. When I told them I felt overwhelmed and frustrated the first week, my TAs sent me a pages-long response telling me I could do it. They care much more than they should just to take their pay cut. They continually improve the curriculum, and welcome feedback from the course.

Now, my story: I'm absolutely not the natural in my cohort. I failed the first assessment. The averages, BTW are nearly 100% on those unit tests every week. I have never taken a formal CS class. I had to work my ass off and at times I didn't think I was going to make it. But I learned, and I produced, aided by all of those around me. The good thing about having smart people around you is that you can count on them to help you!

And it paid off. Instead of writing this post, I should be preparing for further interviews at Facebook and Google. I cried when I made it past the first round at Google, one of the toughest processes in the CS industry. This is for a Software Engineer position -- the job that CS grads go for. I have offers with other companies I found really exciting too.

4 months ago being a programmer was just a dream and now it's who I am. I am by no means the exception, I am one of many. The first person in my cohort to be hired has no CS background. People without college degrees, people with PhDs, people that are older -- all of them have had success. I know because each and every colleague is also my friend.

If this sounds dramatic, it's because it is. It's dramatic that months ago I had no idea what any of this really was and I wanted to change my career so badly. Now I'm coding up implementations for complex data structures (I like the CS theory a little too much...) and I have the privilege, solely based on my technical ability, to prove myself before the companies that inspire me.

The only flaw about the program is that the office has(had?) really weird temperature issues. It's the price you pay for having tall windows facing east on beautiful Soho. Bring a sweater.

J S.

Berkeley, CA

2015-09-11

I picked App Academy because it charges nothing upfront and because I had never heard a bad word said about it - a friend who had done General Assembly even insisted that a/A is better than GA. When the bootcamp's incentive structure is based on you getting a job, everyone wins.

Although I had done a lot of coding on my own and had even taken a few courses in college, there are things that are hard to get on your own. Prompt feedback. What's semantic. Structuring code in a professional and maintainable style. Why your javascript looks terrible. How quickly you should expect to solve a problem. Interview and negotiation practice.

And while I expected to be challenged, I never expected it to be so much fun. Late nights optimizing code. Competing on the practice exams. Going to the gym together after sitting all day. Building the best Trello clone. Racing to make a minimalist rails app.

I came out with new friends, a job I love that compensates well, and memories I'll cherish for a long time.

My only complaints are about the sneakiness of their pay structure. Although they give every impression that there is no payment upfront, the day I got in, they told me I had a week to come up with a $3000 deposit. (I'm lucky I was able to make that happen; I wonder how many of the 95% who don't get in just can't make $3000 appear on such short notice. Note that some students have to come up with more.) After you get a job, you are scheduled to pay 50% of what you owe them in the first two months, and the first payments are scheduled before you get your first paycheck. (For what it's worth, App Academy has been flexible with some on this issue, but less so with others.)

Alongside comes the agreement not to work. I worked two jobs (nights and weekends) while at App Academy, which they have you agree to not do, but it was the only way I could make it work. Many other students I spoke with worked on weekends. They reserve the right to remove you from the program if they find out, which adds a lot of stress.

You'll make close friends and have the kind of life experience most people only find in college. You'll fall in love with coding. You'll get a fantastic job. Your teachers will bend over backward to help you. But be prepared for opacity and high stress when it comes to money.

Vincent C.

Brooklyn, NY

2015-09-11

Unlike most a/A students, I had a computer science degree. I used a/A to take the place of grad school and it was an amazing decision. It landed me a job at the #1 company to work for in the world, Google. If you can get in and make it through, a/A will change your life.

Anony M.

ASTORIA, NY

2015-09-11

Best thing I've ever done in my life was getting into App Academy. After passing the program I got an amazing job in no time. Jonathan and Tommy are super amazingly great! I am forever grateful for this experience!

Andrew K.

San Francisco, CA

2015-09-11

This program was one of the best single pieces of education I have received. I did a lot of shopping around before choosing App Academy. I looked at tons of other software development bootcamps. One of the reasons I chose a/A in New York is because of the instructor Jonathan. I had heard great things about him when he taught in SF, and now he is running the show in NY.

Jonathan is one of the best teachers / professors I have ever had. He truly cared about each student, took time to present information in a way that was easy for everyone to digest, and then took the one-on-one time that was necessary to ensure that everyone understood (at a fundamental level) each concept that was presented.

The class is fast paced, so don't think it's easy. It will be challenging, and it will be grueling, and it will be WORTH IT.

I think software development is a skill everyone should invest some time in learning. It doesn't really matter what industry you're in, software is a part of it now. So do yourself a favor, sign up for App Academy, and spend two and a half months of your life giving yourself some knowledge and a skill that you surely won't regret having.

Edward J.

Newark, NJ

2015-09-11

My path to becoming a professional software engineer was rather roundabout.

I earned a BS in Computer Engineering from the University of Maryland way back in 2002, but changed paths immediately upon graduation and ended up working in Real Estate for more than a decade. Last year I decided to return to my software roots and even generated some interest and meager entry-level offers from employers due to my degree. However, I knew that I could be more valuable if I refreshed and updated my skills.

After a bit online research, I came upon App Academy. Their statistics were impressive and their unique contingent tuition payment was very appealing. I applied, attended the November '14 class, graduated, and am now employed with a much better salary than was possible before a/A.

Going into the class I expected it to be a breeze due to my background. I was mistaken. It wasn't that the material itself was incredibly difficult...

If you are one of the few accepted into a/A, then you will be perfectly capable of mastering the material. My former classmates are some of the brightest people I've ever met...

It was that we learned an incredible amount in a relatively short period of time. It was an intense experience that required all of my discipline and dedication. Also, the languages, frameworks, and real-world programming techniques that we learned, which are all in high demand with employers, are not taught in traditional colleges and universities.

After completing the technical materials, there was a curriculum on the job search. It helped me to greatly improve my résumé and online presence. It also covered various techniques for interviews that helped me feel confident in mine.

Finally, I must say that the professor and teaching assistants were fantastic. They are passionate about programming, helpful to those who need it, and even carry a good sense of humor!

Jacob P.

San Francisco, CA

2015-09-01

App Academy was a great experience. I learned a ton while working with a great group of people!

This is the best web development program in the bay area. There is only one real competitor in the area, and their asking for tuition upfront completely excludes anyone isn't already very well off.

App Academy's tuition model says, "We think its awesome that you taught high school math, studied philosophy, and/or volunteered with non-profits! You seem really excited, hard working, and ready to learn. Lets start doing web development, don't worry about tuition until you have an awesome new career."

You should consider App Academy if all of the following apply to you:

- You are really passionate about web development and are willing to commit everything to it. The 90hr weeks are real, you will not have a social life outside the office for at least the first 2.5 months. (It becomes much less stressful near the end, but the most successful people from my cohort kept up the hours all the way through their landing their dream job.)

- You are really passionate about learning. You get excited when you figure out how why that mystery code does what it does.

- You like working with people. The majority of all classwork is done with a 'pair'; you will not work alone very often. This keeps you focused on long days and provides organic knowledge transfer between students.

- You have at least 6 months to fully dedicate to the process. 3 months of coursework and sufficient time to find a great job. The job search can be expedited if you keep working hard after graduation, but the interview process at places like Google still take time.

FYI: My cohort started on April 20th and I just accepted an offer at 23andMe. I'm super excited to start working!

Krishna K.

ASTORIA, NY

2015-08-03

First to Review I was in the March-May 2014 NYC cohort of App Academy.

I thought App Academy was one of the best learning experiences I've ever had. It was really demanding (11-14 hour workdays + weekend work), but also incredibly rewarding. I really thought the course was extremely densely packed with information, and I also thought they taught it very effectively by having such a high percentage of class time (80-100%) be working through coding projects.

I got a web developer job one month after graduating at a company I'm really passionate, and, coming from an Economics major with zero professional programming experience, I think it would have been nearly impossible without App Academy.

Finally, from what I've gathered, it really does compare very well with other Bootcamps (e.g. General Assembly, Dev Bootcamp). App Academy grads I've met almost uniformly are quite competent at the fundamentals of building web applications.

As long as you can keep up with the work, you're probably find it extremely valuable, as I did.

Khaaliq D.

San Francisco, CA

2015-07-29

App Academy really is as good as it gets. This year has been nothing short of life-changing for me! I went from making less than $45k as a Bioengineer to working for my dream company making over $100k. This is definitely not a get rich quick scheme, however, and it took hard work to reach my goals, but if programming is your passion and you are dedicated to working hard to reach those goals App Academy will make it all possible!

Mike G.

San Francisco, CA

2015-07-17

Yep. 5 Stars. It was a long journey. It was not easy (assume it will not be easy). It started last summer when my friend told me about a/A at a bbq. I had been studying JavaScript on my own just a bit already (and otherwise had practically no applicable programming experience), but the next day I dropped everything and started studying Ruby to get accepted to App Academy. I applied myself 100% for the next month to studying all the Ruby materials I could find, as well as ones that a/A provided upon my official application... and was accepted. I was accepted to a later cohort and so had another 3 months to study as much as possible. Even still, I was positively overwhelmed during the program, at first by the sheer amount of coding all-day-every-day, and then by the rapidly-accumulating new subject matter.

I am writing this on Friday night after my first week of employment as a JavaScript Engineer. I believe that App Academy definitely prepared me to excel at software development. I have been thrown into a dev environment where I'm working on not quite a web-app, though I am working primarily using Ruby and JavaScript. The brunt of the difficulty comes from understanding the existing code-base and learning the SketchUp Ruby API--which has a plethora of proprietary classes that allow interacting with the 3D-modeling software. Though difficult at times, I am able to research items fast. Having a solid foundation in Ruby and JavaScript allows me to quickly write solutions after understanding where to write them. Searching for the place to insert code, and understanding the code-base seems to take up 80-90% of my time, if not more. I would say the first week has been a success, and it would not be an exaggeration to say that without a/A I would not have successfully switched careers as quickly as I did--just about 1 year between jobs, nor secured a roughly 3-fold increase in salary within said time-frame. a/A prepared me not only technically, but also regarding the job application process I would face.

To say that this was a tough transition would be an understatement. To get through the past year I routinely put in nearly all my efforts into learning, studying, and practicing. It is not an exaggeration when other reviewers claim you will breathe and sleep code. For example (and this was when a/A was a live/study space, which it no longer is) I recall having concept-solidifying conversations after midnight while brushing teeth, on several occasions. I dreamt about code the very first night of a/A.

Throughout this first week I have found myself excited to come to work, and ready to stay late and work overtime (even though I will not get paid for the extra hours). This is gravy. Going into all this I had no idea exactly what "being a developer" would be like. So far I am happy to say it is turning out to be pretty awesome. I had previously pined for work that would require 100% of my skill, effort, and intelligence to perform, and I think I have found it. I look forward to an exciting career in this field, and am very grateful to all the talented instructors, and particularly to a/A's founder, Ned, who at one point during my job-search noticed that I was down (it's really a tough process--you are constantly being judged and rejected and there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel at times) and took the time to talk to me about the process and offer words of encouragement. I really appreciated that at the time. He also taught us about algorithms. And about his cats. Also thank you to my a/A peers for inspiring and struggling alongside with me through this transition.

If you are ready to work hard, a/A will show you were to direct your efforts, and you will succeed.

Pixie G.

Los Angeles, CA

2015-06-24

My friend (who doesn't do Yelp) went to App Academy and he LOVED it. It was a really intense program and he got so much out of it. He had never programmed for a living before this. After App Academy he was offered over $100k/year from a few big shots like The NY Times, Drop Box, and a few others including freakin Google! - which, he actually turned down (believe it or not).

He turned down Google to work at the company of his dreams. I'm so incredibly proud of him and amazed at what App Academy did for him. It's absolutely incredible.

I would definitely recommend this school for anyone interested in programming for a living. The school also teaches you how to find a job, how to apply, how to interview, and how to negotiate a contract once you accept an offer. This is unheard of for schools. App Academy rocks!

Sanam H.

San Francisco, CA

2015-06-13

Its not how it is advertising.. Im very much disappointed. I went to their campus in SF to talk to a staff member to give me information etc. I waited 30 mins outside the door but there was no way u can get to the floor they are at. U have to have a special access to get there. I called them million times left them voicemails emailed them but "NO RESPONSE " im just concerned I would never trust something who don't even have anyone to give u information or respond back

Anastasia Z.

Cupertino, CA

2015-05-29

I highly recommend App Academy. It has been key in helping me turn around my career (from accountant/financial systems consultant) so quickly (7 months) and focus on a field that I am excited about and interested in pursuing.

7 month breakdown: 1 month: to prep/finish homework for the program before starting (if Rails tutorial is still part of prep work, don't worry about feeling overwhelmed about all the different parts to a web app, these will be engrained into your memory during class, like it, or not :P) 3 months: for the actual bootcamp 1.5 months: to prepare myself for algorithm interviews with Cracking the Coding Interview/other advanced material 1.5 months: to interview with companies

Payment plan perk: You just make a deposit before starting and pay the rest of tuition after successfully securing a job. Without the payment plan I would not have been able to pay and attend a similar program until I saved up enough money and would have been stuck in the world of accounting.

Student backgrounds: People with no programming experience have successfully finished the program, so I encourage everyone to apply! (of course after taking the due diligence to either take some intro programming courses at a community college or online :) )

Program difficulty: You will highly possibly program during all waking hours during the 9 weeks of web dev curriculum. (It is a lot more relaxed during the 3 weeks of algorithms curriculum) Web development is a lot of fun though, addictive even! :D I was initially scared about the "fail 2 quizzes policy and you're out", but highly similar practice tests are always given, and if not on the practice quiz, you would have gone over the problem during the week's classwork. Study hard, and study for speed and you will have nothing to worry about.

Fun: Enjoy yourself, you get to be a full time student again for a couple months, practically for free, what could be better than that? You get to meet many interesting people that made the same drastic decision as you and make friends while pair-programming with a different person every day.

App Academy has released yet another satisfied individual into the world. Thank you so much and keep up the wonderful mission!

John K.

San Francisco, CA

2015-05-29

A lot of others already addressed how awesome the curriculum and teachers at App Academy are, so I'll focus on the burning question you must have if you're looking into App Academy: Will you actually get a job? Are the placement numbers accurate?

Well, it's hard to say how accurate the numbers are because honestly I don't know. But statistics won't mean much to you anyway if you do end up being one of the few people who get through the program but struggle to find a job. I had a relatively difficult time of it myself; the typical time seems to be within 2 months of graduation and it took me about 4-5 months. There are people who have been searching for a lot longer than that as well. It's not necessarily about being a good programmer vs. a bad one, either. There are a lot of variables, among which are luck and timing. I personally had a lot of confidence issues and had trouble staying focused without the structure of the bootcamp curriculum. I honestly think I found the job search much more stressful than the curriculum itself, which was challenging and stressful in its own right. So what happens if this happens to you?

You know how App Academy has deferred payment for all students? It's only partial evidence of their investment in their alumni's success. They recently hired a great Head of Student Outcomes, whose sole job is to focus on getting alumni hired. They have a three week job search curriculum, which, if you follow, WILL get you interviews. Recently they tested out a course extension curriculum with additional Javascript material for a small group of job seekers. I don't know of any other bootcamp doing anything like that, and it played a huge part in addressing the more intangible, psychological issues I was having in the job search.

I know there's at least one other bootcamp with a better reputation for getting more alumni hired more quickly (rhymes with Jack the Actor). But those students tend to already be confident engineers with programming or STEM backgrounds going into the program. App Academy, while still having a selective admissions process and challenging curriculum, also doesn't just give up on you because you're having a hard time after the course. Other places might also share job openings with alumni or whatever, but I'd bet it's hard to find anyone doing more for their job seekers than App Academy.

If you know you're hot shit and you're one of those weirdos who's basically just doing a bootcamp for the formality and you're already awesome at everything, more power to you. You'll probably do great at App Academy or anywhere else. But if you think there's a chance you might struggle, and don't want your bootcamp to peace out on you when you do, I can't recommend App Academy enough.

David H.

San Francisco, CA

2015-05-13

I enrolled in App Academy for two reasons: - I was tired of having ideas and not being able to make them a reality. Plus my technical friends were getting tired of being pitched to. I wanted to learn to build things on my own. - I wanted to get paid for the above.

Judging on those two criteria, A/a gave me exactly what I wanted. I currently have an awesome job with a reputable company that pays me 4x what I used to make, AND I get to learn to build cool stuff on the job, then use what I learned in my own projects. I couldn't ask for more. Actually I could, and thanks to the skills that I learned at A/a & the current state of the market, I'm pretty sure I'd get it :)

With all of that said, there are a couple catches. You do have to drop everything in your life for 3-6 months. You do need to put in 80+ hour weeks (but it won't feel like it since you love it, right?). You do need to spend a lot of time in the Tenderloin. And unfortunately, you won't get to have a free place to stay while you're doing all of this like my cohort did (they had to end that policy following a row with the landlord). And once it's all over and you've achieved your wildest dreams, you owe them about 50% of you take-home pay for 6 months unless you can pay upfront, which I didn't.

But what you come out with - the skills, the job, and also the really close friends - is totally worth it. I recommend it highly. Feel free to use my referral link when applying appacademy.io/referral_r…

(Hi Ned!)

Scott N.

San Francisco, CA

2015-05-07

1 check-in It's already been over two months since I finished my cohort and the experience is still fresh in my mind. Now that I'm happily employed in SF, I think I can offer some insight into how it all worked.

The program is 12 weeks, divided into two parts: first 9 weeks learning web development, then 3 weeks learning algorithms and searching for jobs. I should mention that I had taken two CS classes in college, so I was somewhere in the middle between students who had zero programming experience and a few who were CS majors. That being said, all of us learned a ton.

The Web Development portion focuses on Ruby on Rails and Javascript, including frameworks like Backbone. From what I hear they're also covering Node.js now. There's so much to cover that it really does feel like a sprint, and they're not kidding when they say to drop whatever else you might be doing during this time. You should stay healthy by getting rest and working out, but that's about it. You'll need the time certain days after you get out at 6 to study/continue working. Luckily the TA's are super helpful and will answer as many questions as they can. Advice: Don't fall behind on this. Although you should try to do all the readings, I found some are more important than others. And reviewing code was the most important.

After that you enter the next portion for three weeks, which is a more independent process. You are recommended to come in to algorithms lectures, which help a lot for interviews. You also get some talks about how best to prepare resumes and things like that. This part is up to you and I found it helpful getting organized and ready to start.

Some downsides I found: - Not enough TA's. Most days were fine, but some days they were stretched too thin. They need to hire more, but it does seem like they're actively looking to expand. - Their room needs a tune up. It got a whole lot better by the time I left, but some new furniture, rugs, and other things to make the place look nicer would go a long way. - The neighborhood takes some getting used to.

Overall it was a really positive experience and you get to meet some people who are just as crazy and motivated as you are.

I recommend you check it out and if you do feel free to use my link appacademy.io/?referer=S…

Nick A.

San Bruno, CA

2015-05-02

I'm writing this review FAQ style!

1. Does App Academy Work?

YES. I was able to successfully transition from a full-time (albeit unhappy) attorney to a full-time software developer in about 5 months. App Academy teaches you the fundamentals necessary to become a proficient web-developer and land your first paid position in the software industry. You will still have a lot to learn by the end of the program, but hopefully your education can continue while you are working in the industry.

2. What is it like?

App Academy provides a structured curriculum designed to teach you the fundamentals and best practices in back-end and front end web development. You will spend a few weeks learning Ruby and Rails. Then you will spend a few weeks learning JavaScript, jQuery, and the Backbone framework.

Expect short daily lectures. Jeff, the lead instructor, is both hilarious and has a commendable commitment to ensuring students understand the relevant material. From there, you spend the rest of the day pair programming with another App Academy student under the watchful eye of the Teaching Assistants. The TAs are there to help you sort through bottlenecks. Not only can they guide you to a solution, they teach you how to find the solution on your own (using debugging tools, online resources, etc.). Shout out to Cj, David, Andrew, Ryan, and Shawna for having an enormous impact on my life!

Solo-days are also an important part of the program. On solo-days you are expected to complete larger, more complicated projects on your own (i.e. without a pair programming partner); the solo day projects simultaneously hammer in the lessons from the previous weeks and build your portfolio.

The program wraps up with a final project of your own choosing. This is your chance to use all of your skills to build a project from the ground up. Build something amazing because it is important to the job hunt after the program is over. Speaking of which...

3. What resources does App Academy provide for graduates to help them find jobs?

There is a pretty robust job search curriculum. App Academy will offer advice on how to put together a winning resume, portfolio, and online presence. Furthermore, they offer non-conventional advice on how to approach your job search (which I found very effective). Moreover, Ned, the company's founder, provides ongoing lectures on Algorithms and Data Structures even after the official program has ended. You have plenty of support through the process, and most students find jobs in places they are happy to be a part of.

4. How does this compare to other bootcamps?

Because this is the only one I've attended, I'm not in a great position to compare. However, I would recommend stalking graduates of other programs on Linked-In. App Academy students are gainfully employed about 6-12 weeks after graduation. Many other bootcamps can't say the same.

In short, its a great program and I recommend it highly.

Edit: I received a few emails asking more about the experience. I kept a detailed blog detailing my journey, including the steps I took to prepare for the entrance test which might help: coderoad.tumblr.com/post…

Aaron C.

San Francisco, CA

2015-05-01

TL;DR If you get into App Academy and stick with it, you'll become an amazing developer, so much so that you'll surprise those around you that you learned to code from a "programming bootcamp."

I knew programming was going to be my profession. But after doing a few classes at college, I was bored out of my mind. The classes go so slow, as slow as the slowest student and you don't learn the practical skills (at least that early on) to make anything worthwhile.

The huge difference about studying at App Academy is that every single person enrolled is brilliant and so you're learning at a pace that will keep challenging you every day.

The hours are fairly grueling, especially the first couple of weeks. I spent close to every waking hour either at App Academy or finishing up assignments at home. It isn't a walk in the park, but every minute of it is worth it.

I ended up getting a salary 3X of what I was making before, which put me over 100k. Funny thing is, not only did I get employed right away, but the CTO at my company has repeatedly said how impressed he is by my code and at the speed that I can complete tasks. I constantly am told the great work I am doing as an engineer and that's because of the intense training at App Academy.

Doing App Academy is a no-brainer, if you can get in. The teachers and teaching assistants are beyond amazing and you can always get help to understand anything and the content of the materials is spot on. To this day, I find myself looking back at the a/A curriculum to use parts of it on the job. The curriculum is that good, you learn EXACTLY the things you will need on the job and thus in technical interviews to get a job.

You might be thinking, if it's so good, why doesn't everyone do it? Two reasons, 1) many people are afraid to look at code, and so will never be developers and 2) It seems to good to be true.

Why would 3 months of App Academy get you a higher salary than almost any person newly graduating from a 4-year school? It's ludicrous! I'm making more than twice that of a nurse after graduating a 4-year degree program.

It's possible because of the super high demand for developers. If every single student enrolled in a Computer Science program in college graduated TODAY and all of them found jobs, they would only fill 25% of the open positions for developers. That's what makes these programming schools possible. I can't find the link where I read that, but there is no doubt that the demand of developers far outweighs the supply.

I don't know of one person in our group that did not find a great job. The lowest, lowest offer someone took was an internship at a company she loved SO much (for 70k) and she actually declined an 90k+ offer, because of how much she loved the company.

A good thing to know is that people who had even a tiny tiny bit of experience doing any development, get a higher salary. Previously I had done some volunteer work using HTML and CSS and this gave me a great advantage on my resume. But don't get me wrong, I could not get anyone to hire me as a Software Developer before this, I tried.

A few other a/A grads who had some type of dev experience that they could put on a resume, were offered salaries above a/A average, so if you have even an inkling of experience with code, you'll get an even higher salary. And don't fret if you haven't done any coding at all, as some people in that position still get salaries 100k+.

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE: I didn't know this before I started, but the average time to getting a job after graduating is 2 months. So, when planning for App Academy, make sure to set aside 5 months of wherewithal to live, because chances are you won't get a job in the first week after graduating. Some companies move very slow when hiring... In fact, I just got a rejection email this morning for a job I applied to when I graduated over 4 months ago!

Pro Tip: if you can, pay upfront and don't do the deferred payment. You will save money. You won't have trouble finding a job and your % paying a/A will end up being more than the upfront cost of 15k.

Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or if you want help getting accepted. aaroncordovez.com

Tirso P.

San Francisco, CA

2015-05-01

This program was exactly what I needed. I loved it. I had a great time, learned a ton, and now I have a job that I enjoy doing and pays well - not to mention the friends I made while there.

Short version: It's a wonderfully structured course that will put you out on the street with the knowledge you need to start a career in software engineering!

Here's some bullet points: - The day to day is a lot of work. I went in with the attitude that the more effort I put in the more I would get out and I think that paid off. Structure is a short lecture in the morning with paired work throughout the rest of the day and a couple of short breaks to keep you going. Many of us would stay until late into the evening working on improving our daily projects and I know that extra effort really paid off for me.

- The people who teach you are awesome and they are really genuinely interested in helping you learn to code well. Also, the TAs you interact with on a daily basis all went through the course themselves so they know what it's like. They're also constantly evolving the curriculum to stay relevant with what's going on in the industry.

- You will come out of this course with a skill set that is very competitive in the current market. Since I've started working (8mos ago) I've found that my level of knowledge has sometimes exceeded that of people who have been in the field for years and that is because App Academy taught me to pay attention to the right things.

- A note on the competition: I looked into a variety of programs (General Assembly, Hack Reactor, Dev Bootcamp) and my impression was that the standards for admission to App Academy are much higher. This worked well for me because I was looking for a very technically rigorous program and I wanted to make sure that other students in my program were in the same boat so that I could learn from both my instructors and peers. This was a HUGE plus for me.

I recommend this course to anyone trying to move into engineering as a career. I really can't speak highly enough about the program and the people involved.

Minsoo K.

Seattle, WA

2015-04-30

App Academy is truly a juggernaut as far as disrupting the traditional higher education to employment pipeline goes. Its ability to teach you web development skills to jump start your developer career is unparalleled. So many App Academy students, myself included, have been able to successfully pursue their dreams in the tech industry thanks to App Academy's fast-paced, purposeful curriculum. Best of all, the staff at App Academy make it their personal priority for you to become an able (employable) developer.

My only gripe with App Academy is that it needs to improve its employment pipeline. Considering the immense concentration of talent present in App Academy, it should not be difficult for App Academy to hold better hiring events. Better marketing efforts and hiring pipeline will ensure App Academy's continued track record of success.

App Academy > Hack Reactor!

Yiling C.

San Francisco, CA

2015-04-29

I LOVE my experience at App Academy. I went in with practically no experience in web development. After our 9 week curriculum ended, I built a full stack web application using Backbone and Rails.

App Academy moves FAST, but it is SO rewarding and SO worth the effort! I remember one of our TAs (by the way, the TAs are AMAZING and so knowledgeable) telling us something along the lines of "you have 2 days to learn javascript, and we expect you to know as much javascript as you do ruby before our javascript curriculum starts." I think that's an accurate representation of how fast App Academy moves.

If you enjoy challenging yourself, pushing yourself, and learning new things, then App Academy is the perfect choice.

One tip: make friends! App Academy is HARD, but that doesn't mean it can't be fun. Some of my most fun experiences since college graduation happened during App Academy with the friends I have made here.

Adam B.

San Francisco, CA

2015-04-26

I graduated from App Academy in December, and definitely feel like attending was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I now work at an awesome company working on really cool problems as a full stack engineer.

My background: I had taken a couple of college C.S. classes and I had a degree in analytic philosophy. I'd done codeacademy and tried a couple small projects, but I was having trouble making the leap to employment-level skills.

The structure and content of the App Acadaemy curriculum is top notch. They know exactly what is useful and what is not. For example - not useful: rote memorization of code. Useful: learning how to think logically, approach problems with the intention of creating an elegant algorithm, and how to read documentation and quickly pick up new skills. That being said, the tools you learn are also really useful tools to know how to use (most of the focus is on ruby/rails and javascript/backbone).

The quality of instruction is incredibly high, and you spend most of your time (probably 80% of the day) actually coding and working on problems. I really liked that, as I definitely learn better by doing, and most of the best learning moments were working with TA's who could explain a concept in practice after getting stuck on a specific part of a problem.

After the course, they have good resources to help you apply and interview for positions. It's still a lot of work, but it's really valuable to hear what actually matters on a resume or cover letter, what interviewers are actually looking for, etc.

I now work at a really cool company, working on stuff way more interesting than anywhere else I've ever worked, and getting paid like 3x more than I was at my old job. I'm using the ruby/rails and js I learned at App Academy, but I'm also using React on the front end, as well as Scala/C++ on the backend. So don't let anyone tell you that you're only qualified in the language you know.

Two quick caveats: 1) This is not a place for people who want to figure out if they'll enjoy software engineering. You have to be committed and ready to work really hard from the beginning. 2) This is not a place for people who have trouble self-motivating. 80-90 hours per week is not a joke, and a lot of that is forcing yourself to work through really complicated readings and problems. After graduating, you won't be handed a job, but you'll have the skills to get a great job if you work hard and keep practicing. But if you're likely to burn out easily or need someone else to push, maybe this isn't the best place for you.

tl;dr: Great program that will teach you the skills and mindset to be a software engineer anywhere if you're already motivated and willing to work for it.

Wahab S.

San Francisco, CA

2015-04-09

A great program for anyone who is interested in software/web development while lacking the technical skill set to be marketable in the industry. Over the course of 12 incredibly rigorous weeks, you learn a full-stack curriculum focused primarily on Ruby on Rails and JavaScript. Near the end you develop a final project and commence a job search with the portfolio you built during the course. A lot of the other reviews here cover the specifics of what makes App Academy great, so I won't belabor the point. However, the best advice I can give is to 1) listen to the instructors and 2) take the initiative for your own learning and job hunt. If you are prepared to work hard and learn quickly, App Academy will definitely be a rewarding experience. The program is the main reason I have my current job.

Dana Y.

San Jose, CA

2015-04-05

I just graduated App Academy a month ago. So far, I'm extremely happy with my decision.

Background: Before App Academy, I was working with medical devices. I had taken some classes in programming before so I wasn't a novice.

Decision: The reasons I decided to go with App Academy were the following: -I wanted to become a developer. I had some experience with programming so I knew what I was getting myself into. -Deferred payment: quitting my full time job for an unaccredited program was a hard pill to swallow. App Academy was the only program I could find that had a deferred payment plan. You only start paying them back when you get a job. -Stats: They have really good stats on graduates finding jobs after the program. -I didn't think I could make enough progress studying on my own. -I didn't want to go to grad school for two years before actually getting a job in the field.

Program: The program is very intensive. It's 3 month of hard work. You may wonder how 3 months can compare with a four year degree - I definitely did - but when you account for how much you fill your day with, I would honestly guess it comes close. Class time is 9-6 everyday, the bulk of which is actually programming. Evenings are filled with reading, going over solutions to that day's problems, and studying for assessments. During class time you have access to awesome TAs, and of course classmates who went through a rigorous application process to get in. You're surrounded by smart, hardworking students. You will often feel stupid, but you will learn a ton everyday. The last three weeks are dedicated to job search curriculum and algorithms lectures. I think when it comes to job search a lot is up to the individual, but they can definitely make some good introductions and give you a lot of good feedback. Algorithms lectures are also quite helpful when it comes to interviewing.

Results: I'll be starting a job as a developer this week! I'll be working at Optimizely in San Francisco. The process definitely worked for me. I think if you're willing to put in the work, you can definitely get a job as a web developer after completing App Academy.

All in all, I would highly recommend it if you're considering doing a web development bootcamp.

Alvin A.

San Francisco, CA

2015-03-07

Before this program, I was a chemical engineer working in a large corporation in Houston & have been trying to learn programming for the past two years. I've always felt that my progress has been too slow, then applied & got into AppAcademy & DevBootcamp. Ended up going to AppAcademy in the Jan 2014 Cohort, best decision ever :)

Here's why I went with AppAcademy: 1. Students are usually have a little more experience with programming/web work (either its SEO, experience with wordpress sites, etc). 2. Hardcore - the goal of the course is to provide you with a large amount of structured content that you can absorb, learn & apply immediately. 3. Reference check - I spoke with a number of alums and they have great jobs & are excellent developers now 4. Personally vested - I only need to pay a deposit and do not need to pay unless if I get a job. Every staff wants you to succeed because they are incentivized to do so.

Here's how I felt during the program: - Most students are in a sink or swim situation where they have no choice but to succeed we worked really hard together. - The lessons are very well defined and taught me what I've always wanted to learn, but wasn't clear about. - The best way to learn is by doing & we do that everyday. We learn, we apply and we build. The TAs are very knowledgeable & always available. - Met 40+ great friends who are doing very well now in various careers

What I got out of it: - Fundamentals of coding, focusing in Ruby, JS & SQL & frameworks like Rails & Backbone.js. With that, learning any other languages is a whole lot easier. - Ability to visualize the feasibility of an idea from a technical perspective and create the product if desired - Learned lingo, algorithms & can finally speak/understand in geek language - Network from all AppAcademy alums

I would recommend AppAcademy to anyone looking to make a jump to an exciting world of unlimited possibilities or merely be exposed to get better at programming. App Academy has a great program, amazing instructors and awesome community.

Ben W.

Seattle, WA

2015-02-25

I became a Software Engineer through App Academy. It fulfills it's promise, and it's business model heavily favors students. I recommend it to anyone who is looking to become a software engineer.

Aaron S.

San Francisco, CA

2015-02-05

Updated review At first I was about 50/50 on the fence that App Academy would be either a complete scam or an amazing experience. It proved the latter! I, and AFAIK 100% of my fellow cohort (roughly 50 or so peeps) got jobs as software engineers in the area. The effectiveness of App Academy's curriculum, teaching style and staff coupled with the market's monstrous demand for software engineers makes this completely worth it. For me it was especially helpful because while I'd been flirting with coding for a while, trying to teach myself Ruby and RoR, I could never quite get comfortable. This program provided just the boot in the bum I needed.

All in all, two thumbs up, and trust me - App Academy is actually not a scam :)

Melissa M.

Berkeley, CA

2015-01-29

Like another reviewer who currently has been filtered, I've spent a ton of time (maybe 100 hours) doing App Academy assignments. Each time they send a new assignment, they say the next step will be an interview. When I submit the challenge or assignment, I get invited to take another challenge or do another assignment. I bailed after completing two challenges, doing all of the prep work associated with those challenges, all of the coderbytes for good measure, buying and reading the two required books, completing the various required online tutorials (Ruby Monk and Ruby in 100 Minutes) and completing all of the Test First Ruby problems and bonuses...which all passed the tests and were refactored to be as clear and tight as possible. After doing all of this and being told that the next step would be a Skype interview just to make sure everything was in order, I got....not an invite to a Skype interview, but an invite to another online coding challenge as well as an e-mail saying they'd be in touch soon with next steps...though no one ever was in touch with any other next steps. The program is too big of life commitment to keep pursuing with an outfit that is either tragically disorganized, or that is just stringing me along in case someone better doesn't crop up.

Given my choice to walk away from the process after putting so much into it, why two stars? One star is because I learned a ton doing the assignments. And the second star is because I still believe in the concept and know someone who is happily employed and feels professionally well served by her time at App Academy.

Patrick S.

Oakland, CA

2014-10-17

tl;dr Attending App Academy was one of the best decisions I've made in my life.

I had made the decision that I wanted to move from working in research to something where I could write code and build things, but had not idea how to get there. I felt overwhelmed by the time, cost, and number of prerequisite courses that a bachelors or masters in computer science would take, but I also felt like it was my only option.

When I found out about App Academy and similar programs, I was skeptical but excited. I did my research and App Academy stood out because of its unique business model. I chose App Academy over other programs because it is low-risk for the student, and they are incentivized by your success.

I was surrounded by brilliant inspired people and fully immersed in learning from the first day. The instruction was very personal and always attentive to my needs. It was challenging at times, but the resources and support necessary for success were readily available. I left the program with so much more than just knowledge of how to build web applications (which you'll be able to do with a blindfold on), I learned the foundations of software engineering principles and best practices.

It's been over a year since I completed App Academy, and I'm enjoying every minute of my successful career as a software engineer.

If you're considering a career switch to software development, definitely apply to App Academy.

Gnome S.

Oakland, CA

2014-10-16

I picked App Academy because it was low-risk; you only pay tuition if you get a job. It means they're putting their money where their mouth is. If they trust themselves that much, then I can too.

And I'm glad I did it. Truly one of the best decisions in my life. I had never learned so much in such a short time in my life. Ned (the head instructor) is a programming genius but so were a lot of my fellow students. You learn from your fellow students as well.

After their course, I was able to land a 6 figure software engineering job within 2 weeks. Even now when I meet programmers who've had a couple of years of programming experience, I cant help but remark to myself: "Wow, I bet the average App Academy grad knows more than this guy."

My company has employed 4 App Academy grads (including myself) and in our company at least, we have a positive impression of the strength of App Academy grads.

In terms of academic rigor, I'm pretty sure App Academy is the best of all the bootcamps.

James S.

San Francisco, CA

2014-10-16

I'd been slowly teaching myself to code for some time, but I wasn't sure how to learn enough fast enough to make it my career. Enter the bootcamp: become eligible for developer jobs in just two months of intensive training. But there were lots of choices.

I settled on App Academy because of ecstatic reviews and because of the implicit promise in their pay structure: if I didn't have to pay them anything until I was comfortably ensconced in my new job, they had to know what they were doing.

I couldn't have been more right. Because App Academy's driving motivation is to get its students jobs (and high-paying ones at that): - Their curriculum is constantly evolving to fit the developer market, so your skills will be in demand. - The instruction is stellar, but the real focus is on learning by doing. You will spend your entire days coding. App Academy's grads can look like they've been programming for years. - The students' motivation is intrinsic and the demands are rigorous, so in some ways, they're exactly the kind of people you'd expect: smart, driven, and hard-working. On the other hand, since there's no up-front financial commitment, you get a very interesting mix of people from diverse backgrounds. - App Academy emphasizes pair programming, which is an invaluable skill both for interviewing and for being successful on a dev team. App Academy students learn to be fantastic collaborators.

App Academy taught me what I needed to know, and I've had great success in my new career. If you're considering applying, DO IT -- you won't look back!

Nicollette L.

Brooklyn, NY

2014-10-14

If you're interested in a shift into web development, App Academy is the way to go. I was looking at various developer bootcamps, and the thing that sold me on AA was their pricing structure. As someone who didn't have any programming experience, finding a job after my bootcamp days was a major concern. It's great that you don't have to pay AA UNTIL you get a job. Which means, they don't get paid unless you get paid. (win/win/win(?) situation)

App Academy has been pretty good at selecting talented students. I studied with super bright people. It's rewarding to be intellectually stimulated by the curriculum and your peers.

But be warned that AA is not for the faint hearted. The amazing instructors and TAs will provide all the support they can, but it is ultimately up to you to keep up. It's true that you'll be working 80+ hours a week, but IT IS SO WORTH IT. You graduate not only with the skills to build modern web apps, but to quickly learn the constantly changing technologies of this industry. The staff is also readily available for support after you graduate.

Maggie M.

Los Altos, CA

2014-10-09

TL;DR This program literally changed my life. The education that I received and the friends that I made are outstanding. If you're considering applying to coding bootcamps, or you've already been accepted and you're choosing between multiple options, choose App Academy.

Top 4 Reasons to Choose App Academy:

1. App Academy stands out among its coding bootcamp competitors in terms of quality of student and rigor of instruction.

2. App Academy is not for the faint of heart or fuzzy of mind. They set the bar high, keep the pace fast, and you will benefit from that.

3. App Academy will, in fact, adequately prepare you for a job in web development.

4. App Academy will be there for you long after you've left the classroom.

Let me start by saying that the core team behind App Academy is full of amazing people. Ned Ruggeri, co-founder of App Academy, is a literal genius and worked as a software engineer for several years before starting this bootcamp. Kush Patel, the other co-founder of App Academy, has background is in finance and generally being a rock-solid businessman. Simon Chaffetz, the Director of Operations, is a brilliant networker and knows, without a doubt, how to get you (yes, _you_) a job. Each one of the App Academy instructors was a top student in his or her App Academy cohort. Together, they have created a deep, challenging, and comprehensive web development curriculum, and together, they will see you thorough to your first job as a software developer.

There's a lot of variability in the quality of education at different coding bootcamps, but I think that what it really comes down to is the _students_. App Academy has a 7% acceptance rate-- smaller than MIT or CalTech. That means that when you walk into class every day, you are standing in a room of incredibly bright people. The conversations you will have, the challenges you will face, and the projects you will build are like nothing you have experienced before. Prepare to feel a little dumb. "Dumb" is the word used to characterize the feeling of new ideas bombarding one's brain. You WANT to feel dumb, because that means you're learning. And nothing will push you to learn quite like the urge to keep up with the superstars that are your classmates at App Academy.

App Academy moves _fast_. The curriculum covers everything aspect of building a web app, including HTML, CSS, Javascript, Ruby, Rails, and SQL. But App academy doesn't just aim to teach you the languages-- the curriculum is designed to teach you how all these components work alone and together. Moreover, they teach you software development fundamentals like algorithms, object-oriented design, DRY code practices, test-driven development, and documentation practices. That's a lot to pack into 9 weeks of instruction, so the course moves quickly. Incoming students would be smart to expose themselves to all of these concepts before the course begins. However, even those who students who were not so wise as to review the coursework before the course should find that the in-class exercises and projects are enough to funnel that knowledge into the gelatinous mass of neurons that is your brain. Students probably spend a minimum of 80 hours per week on coursework.

This will, in fact, be enough to get you a job. App Academy selects for brilliant problem-solvers, and it fills their heads with practical knowledge about web development tools, data structures, algorithms, and interview prep. All the while, those same highly intelligent, driven students are forming bonds with each other that will last long beyond graduation day. App Academy gives you a personal and professional network that business school grads would envy.

In conclusion, if you're thinking of steering your career towards software development, I would highly recommend applying to App Academy. And if you happen to be one of the bright, driven self-starters lucky enough to be accepted to App Academy, you should definitely go.

Why take my word for it? Who the heck do I think I am, writing this giant essay? Well, if you've read this far, you deserve a treat! But alas, my story isn't very sexy. I did not go from flipping burgers to writing code. I have a master's degree in cognitive science, and I worked as a user experience researcher for a bit. Throughout grad school and my work in UX research, I wrote software for my experiments and data analysis. When I decided that I wanted a more direct role in building a product, I applied to App Academy. On graduation day, I signed the employment contract for a great job that I love writing software for a crazy little company called Tubular Labs. My name is Maggie Moreno, and I'm highly Googleable. If you still have doubts or just want to know more about me, App Academy, or coding bootcamps in general, head over to my website (missmaggiemo.com) and ping me.

David A.

San Leandro, CA

2014-10-07

I loved my experience at App Academy, and can't thank the folks there enough for helping me make a huge career transition.

I was previously heavily involved with the medical field, and tech ideas would come to me, but I didn't have the skills the implement them. I taught myself some stuff, but I feel like the pace at which App Academy went would have taken a LOT longer to cover on my own.

The instructors and TAs are knowledgeable, down-to-earth, and pretty awesome overall. But you do have to work. We would have class weekdays from 9am-6pm (we spend the majority of time coding and actually learning practical hands-on skills, not being lectured to), and then I would usually study and/or program more at night and on the weekends (they provided us with PLENTY of additional readings and such to keep us busy, even outside of class!!). But the more time and effort you put in, the most I think you can get out of it.

Though App Academy focused on Ruby/Rails and Javascript, they set the foundations for understanding programming. After App Academy, I have found myself reading a book on Objective-C (to learn iOS programming), a book on server deployment (covering Chef and Capistrano), a book on AngularJS, and more.

App Academy helped me score a job soon after the course work ended, and after 6 months, I got hired somewhere else with a $10k raise! Overall, the people are great, the instructors are terrific, and my peers were fantastic.

Overall, 2 thumbs UP!

Rosemary J.

Hayward, CA

2014-10-07

I researched a lot of different coding bootcamps before deciding on App Academy, and having gone through the program and gotten my dream job, I know I made the right choice.

The deciding point for me was App Academy's screening process. It was a lot more rigorous than the other places I had applied, so I knew they would demand a lot more of me. When I got there, that definitely proved to be true. By the end of the course, we were able to make our own web apps, from designing the database to writing the HTML and CSS. I was able to make a fully functional web application in about a week. It is an incredibly empowering feeling to know how all the pieces fit together and be able to implement them yourself.

Another HUGE selling point for App Academy is its job placement program. They have a full job placement curriculum, and they really care about their grads landing on their feet. They gave tailored advice, practice with technical interviewing skills, and a supportive environment. A full time job hunt is demoralizing and discouraging, and with their help, I was able to find an amazing job within weeks. The jobs people get out of App Academy are really good ones too. The average salary is 6 figures. App Academy really delivers, and teaches their students well enough that we can deliver at our new jobs as well.

Rory O.

Oakland, CA

2014-10-04

Everything that App Academy claims on their website is true. I started seriously learning to code in the summer of 2013, started App Academy in November 2013, and graduated in January 2014. One month after graduation, I got a job offer as a developer. Over the next 2-3 months, every member of my cohort that I was in touch with got a job as well. Other than an initial deposit, none of us paid any tuition until we had taken a job.

At this point I've been working as a web developer for about 7 months, and I've never felt disadvantaged in any way as a result of having fewer years of experience than other developers, or of not having a computer science degree. On the contrary, employers, my own included, often recognize that App Academy grads are exactly the kind of developers they want: they learn fast, they're self-motivated and independent, they solve problems, they adapt, and they enter the industry with a deep understanding of the technologies they're using.

It's not a school where they just teach you how to Rails. They teach you how to program, how to program *well*, what Rails *is* and how it was built, how the Internet works, and everything about the structure of a web app that you need to know to be a full stack web developer. The head instructor, Ned, and the TAs are awe-inspiring and completely devoted to what they do.

The curriculum is both broad and deep, and to fit all of that instruction into 12 weeks requires you to put in a LOT of time. I probably spent 70-80 hours/week on schoolwork. That's really the only "catch": none of it was easy, from admissions all the way through to the day I got a job. The program is 100% about learning to be a developer. The office isn't fancy, there aren't really guest speakers or special events, and we were not pampered in any way. We wrote code for at least 8 hours a day, and read code the rest of the time we were awake. As soon as we started to get the hang of something, we moved onto the next concept and were newbies again. I loved every day of it. If that sounds like heaven to you, learn yourself a bit of Ruby and apply!

Phil N.

San Francisco, CA

2014-09-23

Plain and simple: I spent 4 years at one of the best universities in the world, and it did less for my career than 9 weeks at App Academy. I'll likely never learn as many marketable skills in as short a period for the rest of my life.

The job search resources are also great. Aside from having tons of technical skills, we're also taught how to optimize the job search.

G H.

San Francisco, CA

2014-09-13

App Academy has been one of the best decisions I've ever made and easily lived up to all of its hype.

The people who come here are those with a high technical aptitude, very naturally smart and are looking to either hone in on their skills or learn new skills entirely. Technical ability isn't everything -- what is more important and critical to your success is the drive and motivation you come into this program with. Nobody can force you to put in the time and effort to hone in on your skills, only you can.

There are so many good and positive things I have to say about app academy that it's hard for me to even put everything into words here. This school is beyond legit, the instructors are people who know their stuff and care about your success. Most importantly, the curriculum is constantly improving in respect to what is in demand in the tech industry. This is by far one of the most impressive aspects of the school.

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tldr

I went through 4 years of studying an engineering degree, but was never exposed to as much critical problem-solving, project-based and hands-on work as I have been through App Academy. I've evolved so much more as an engineer through this program. The mission, the results and the dedication of the founders & instructors of this school are something that really moved me.

Go to App Academy, get a high-paying job in tech -- guaranteed. But be smart and ready to work hard.

** I made this review purely out of respect I have for this program and its founders/instructors. **

Michael H.

Beverly Hills, CA

2014-08-23

I just finished up the June 2nd course here in San Francisco, CA. I think, above all, the teaching at App Academy is phenomenal. I have been in school most of my life, and I have never seen instructors who were more experienced and willing to help than this group of instructors. They have a great sense of humor and I have learned more than I could have imagined (seriously).

Also I have 4 job interviews lined up next week (thanks to this place), and it's just a fun place to be and learn Ruby, Rails, Javascript, and all the other stuff that I can't imagine trying to learn on my own.

The founder Ned is very nice, very helpful, very courteous, and a pleasure to be around. Ned volunteers his weekends to come in and work with students, and he has zero obligation to do so.

David W.

Los Altos, CA

2014-08-22

This place is amazing. Learned a lot in a short period of time. Met a lot of great people.

Teo D.

Santa Monica, CA

2014-04-17

App Academy is legit. The other reviewers already hit most of the key points but I'll reiterate the ones I agree with most:

* It is no joke when they claim 100 hours of work a week. That said, you will learn more in 3 months than you ever thought possible. * I went from a self-taught amateur programmer to a professional software engineer, which simply wouldn't have happened on my own. App Academy will teach you what you need to know to cut it in the real world. * Support system is amazing. The instructors know their code inside and out and are available + willing to help whenever you need it. You will learn a lot if you take advantage of this. * Your peers will be the smartest people you've ever met (after the instructors). It was also extremely helpful to pair with a new partner almost every day, helps get you better accustomed to a real-world working environment. * Risk-free payment plan rocks. Costs you nothing unless you find a job (which you will if you make it through, and then it's worth every penny)

You have to work for this every step of the way, but it's beyond worth it. If you're reading this and you've gotten in, good luck and don't plan on doing anything but coding for the next 3 months (and beyond...which hopefully appeals to you). If you're applying or thinking about it, obviously can't recommend it highly enough and good luck on the coding challenges (go do rubymonk 10 times before you apply)

Sean K.

Los Angeles, CA

2014-03-06

This program is amazing. Prior to App Academy, I was floundering doing freelance web design using wordpress and sloooowly learning javascript and deeper understanding of web development/programming principles. After App Academy, I received an amazing job offer making probably 4 times as much money as I could have made before.

Even without the monetary incentive, this is an amazing program -- period. The amount of learning that got pushed into my brain in the 9 weeks that I was enrolled was incredible. I learned so much more than I had learned in the previous 3 years trying to figure things out on my own. Ned has a very deep understanding of what is fundamentally important to web development and he passes on that information effectively. How else is it possible that he turns a class of people who know nothing about professional web development into very hirable web developers?

Additionally, it's pretty much risk free. If you get a job you pay a percentage of your salary, but if you don't get a job, you pay nothing. You can only lose your time.

That said, the program is hard as hell. You will feel crazy, you will think you are failing, but you just have to persevere.

Attending App Academy was the best thing that has happened to me in a long time.

P.S

Also a great part of App Academy: your peers. They will be some of the brightest people you've met, and will help you push past what you think is possible.

Ryan S.

San Francisco, CA

2013-11-13

This program is absolutely awesome. It's the best and fastest way to learn web development and switch into a career in software development. In 9 weeks, I learned far more than I was able to teach myself over a year. The curriculum, the structure, and the instructional staff make this one of the most effective learning experiences out there. And the fact that you only pay if you find a job as a developer afterwards makes App Academy pretty much one of the most (if not the most) insanely ethical educational programs in the world.

Nathan H.

Chester Township, NJ

2013-11-13

First to Review This is an excellent program. Before coming to this program, I was already a self taught programmer of around 5 years. Even with that, I feel as though this program has taught me so much about programming in general, not only the languages and skills that it teaches. The program is intensive, and it pushes you to your limits, but it is well worth it in the end. The location isn't the best (even if there are some great places to eat around here), but I truly do believe that this program is the best of it's kind.