Tuesday 12pm, 5 December 2017


Barriers faced by coding bootcamp students

Kyle Thayer

PhD Student - University of Washington


Coding bootcamps are a new and understudied way of training new software developers. To learn about the barriers bootcamp students face, we interviewed twenty-six coding bootcamp students and analyzed the interviews using the Communities of Practice framework. We found that bootcamps can be part of an alternate path into the software industry and they provided a second chance for those who missed computing education opportunities earlier, particularly for women. While bootcamps represented a second chance, students entering the industry through bootcamps faced great personal costs and risks, often including significant time, money and effort spent before, during, and after their bootcamps. Though the coursework of bootcamps only ranged from three to six months, career change could take students a year or more, with some students even attending sections of multiple bootcamps.


Kyle Thayer is a Ph.D. student at the University of Washington. His research focuses on the intersections of programming, culture, and education.