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TGIF: Online Python 101

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TGIF! We recently launched a NEW digital course – Online Python 101. To celebrate, we sat down with our Director of Marketing, Ilana Bercovitz, to chat about what she’s excited to see from the new program.

Check back at the end of each week for our Friday finds. Here’s what we’re talking about – October 26.

The inside scoop: Online Python 101

Why launch an online course?

It’s clear that the market is heading in the direction of alternative education formats, with a strong preference for online. At Hackbright, our goal is always to provide as many women as possible with access to technical education, so it was really a no-brainer for us. We know that leaving your job is not an option for every woman, taking night classes is not an option for every woman, and even weekend classes are not an option for every woman. Our motivation to launch this online course has largely been to give more women the opportunity to learn to code on their own time and in a way that suits their lifestyles.

I’ve never coded before, can I take Online Python 101 without prior coding experience?

Yes! We have designed this course so that any woman, regardless of prior experience, can jump in and learn the fundamentals. It was extremely important to us to create a very low barrier to entry, we want any woman who has ever been curious about coding to feel comfortable giving it a try through Online Python 101. That said, if you have spent a few hours coding here and there, this is still a great option to provide you with a strong foundation in Python before deciding what your next step with regard to coding may be.

I’ve been thinking about taking Prep, is this the same thing?

Not exactly. Prep truly is modeled in the format of our bootcamp. It’s in-person, intensive, and focused on preparing women for the bootcamp application process.

Online Python 101 will provide women with the technical tools to be able to apply to the bootcamp, but it is a bit more about providing women with foundational skills in Python and a little less about preparing for the bootcamp experience. I would say that if you know you want to apply to an in-person bootcamp, then Prep would be the best way for you to get yourself in the mindset of attending a class, listening to lectures, and participating in the lab. If you’re early in your journey and not sure if you want to do a bootcamp or you’re just looking to skill up but haven’t committed to becoming a software engineer, then Online Python 101 is the course you would take to get your feet wet and decide if coding is right for you long term.

Also, I would encourage women to consider how they learn best. Are you disciplined enough to learn from home in a self-paced course? Or do you need the structure of a classroom with teacher and classmates to be held accountable to?

What are you most excited for with Online Python 101?

I’m most excited to be offering a format that can reach more women, not only geographically, but also women in different stages of their careers, lives, and skills. Hackbright is so special (yes, I’m biased), but has only been available to women in the San Francisco Bay Area. Offering Online Python 101 means more women can benefit from the amazing quality of education Hackbright provides, which will only help to #changetheratio faster.

In addition, this course is priced significantly lower than Prep, which I hope will create more opportunities for more women to figure out if coding is right for them. I myself have contemplated learning to code for some time now, but I didn’t feel ready to take an in-person Prep course, especially because my longterm goal is not to apply to a bootcamp and become a software engineer. Online Python 101, however, is that sweet spot that will enable me to learn the fundamentals of coding on my own time and in a way that enhances my current career and skillset. I’m so excited to see who joins us in our venture into online education.

What are you reading, watching, and listening to? Share your thoughts in the comments below.


Interested in learning to code? Check out our upcoming Prep Course and our immersive 12-week full-time or 24-week part-time Software Engineering Programs

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