Why choose Enspiral Dev Academy over university?

*Cost of University is the average cost of 4 year Engineering degrees at Otago, Waikato, Canterbury, Auckland and Massey Universities. **Universities do not track or release rates of graduates landing a job in their field. Data released by MOE in 2013 showed that 53% of Bachelor’s degree holders were in employment one year after study. This did not specify whether they were working in the field they had studied. ***Dev Academy’s hire rate is based on students finding a job as a junior developer within 4 months of graduating.

Dev Academy vs. university

The table above shows the difference between studying to become a web developer at Dev Academy vs university. Dev Academy is faster, cheaper, job oriented, adaptive and it’s about people.

It’s faster

For those who have already studied, who have external commitments, who have entered the workforce but want a radical change, 4 years full time study is an opportunity cost that is often too great to consider. Dev Academy creates the possibility of levelling up and launching into a completely new career within the year.

“What I learned at EDA is worth gold…. I learned more in these nine weeks than I have in over ten years as a self-taught software developer. I personally found the holistic curriculum at EDA to be incredibly effective.”

Martin, 2016 graduate

Web development jobs hold the options of flexible hours, remote work, salary increases and the security of an ever-expanding high-demand field where the most exciting innovations are being made. When Dev Academy offers the possibility of joining this world within the year, the prospect of engaging in a radical career change seems far more possible.

The intensive, in-class part of Dev Academy’s programme is 9 weeks, with an optional extra week at the end for jobseeking. That’s 360 or 400 hours — though we do go late and cram in extra hours some weeks! In a University degree you might have 12 hours of lectures and tutorials per week, and 23 weeks of learning per year around holidays and exams. This means that in a whole year you’d only get 276 hours learning. So while a 9 week bootcamp seems brief, it’s tantamount to the teaching time of a whole year and a half at uni, which is almost half an Engineering degree! We pack in the maximum amount of learning possible in a tight space of time, which means your costs of living and lost income are lower.

*First year’s salary is based on median industry average in NZ **Subsequent years’ salary estimates are based on 2016 data from AbsoluteIT ***Numbers are rounded to nearest thousand

It’s cheaper

$11,000 up front is not to be sniffed at, it’s a lot of money. But compared to four years out of work, four years’ living costs and the cost of a University degree, Dev Academy is far more economically viable, and includes the possibility of entering a job with higher earning prospects within the year.

We also work extremely hard to keep that cost as low as possible — we run a very tight ship with no wastage. We want the very best teachers and developers helping students along the way, and rely on our community and our well developed networks within New Zealand’s technology sector to reduce our overheads where ever possible. We also run a raft of other revenue streams to help finance Dev Academy externally. These include our events and coworking space. These streams not only offset the cost of the Dev Academy programme, they have the added benefit of allowing us options to support our students after graduation.

Another way of looking at it might be to ask, “What’s the opportunity cost of four years at University?” Opportunity cost looks at the potential and lost income of the time investment.

Dev Academy is more money up front but ends up being much cheaper overall.

You can get a job out of it

Finding employment is never guaranteed — it depends heavily on the personality of the applicant, their go-getter attitude, as well as the market at the moment. In saying that, however, Dev Academy is extremely proud of our job placement rate. We run an optional Careers Week at the end of the programme to help students with what to expect when they’re applying for a technical job.

“The pay is so significantly better than anything I’d done before going through EDA, so after the enjoyment factor of this work, that’s just been a total bonus!”

Sam*, 2015 graduate, $61–65k starting salary

This includes CV writing, cover letters and interview practice. Dev Academy is also an events hub for the startup and technology sectors in Auckland and Wellington. This means that students are plugged in to a range of events where they can rub elbows and meet and greet the companies looking to hire keen young graduates. This industry connection is not to be understated, as several of our graduates have found work in this way.

Check out our blog on Barriers to getting a job after a coding bootcamp to learn about why the other 22% take longer than 4 months to find a web development job, or go into different fields, and tips on how to succeed in the job hunt after Dev Academy.

It’s adaptive

Universities are operating on a model of education that is centuries old. The system is outdated and struggles to adapt to suit 21st century learners in a modern and rapidly changing economy. This is reflected in universities’ worsening staff to student ratios, their unilateral drop in international rankings since 2013, staff cuts and predicted drop in student numbers all while the costs of university rise and the size of loans increase.

As Grant Davidson, Chief Executive of Skills Active, notes, “The Productivity Commission has just released its report on tertiary education, essentially finding that the current system is broken. Some can’t find a study option that suits their preferences while others are excluded from participating altogether.”

While there is a lot of social emphasis on university being the ‘correct’ post-secondary training option, many students are finding smarter, faster, job-ready ways to learn the skills they need.
Dev Academy’s relationship with employers and tech companies, and our agile methodology, means we can readily adapt to the needs of the industry to ensure students are always receiving relevant education tailored for the real world. This is why we emphasise “soft skills” (i.e. communication, dispute resolution and emotional intelligence), because employers tell us that these are the skills that make technically capable people far more hireable.

Another example is that students learn full stack JavaScript at Dev Academy, which Stack Overflow’s 2017 developer survey (‘the largest developer survey ever conducted’) showed was the most commonly used and most popular language for developers. We also use agile methodology and teach in sprints. Our teaching and content is tailored to reflect the working world.

Dev Academy was born as a startup and has the hunger, agility and speed to reflect the working world and give students the education they need in the format that best suits them.
Check out Dev Academy educator Don’s blog for an example of how we adapt our programme: Dev Academy’s Living Curriculum.

It’s about people

There’s something that the numbers don’t show, and that’s Dev Academy’s culture of inclusion. Dev Academy is about people: you become friends with the people you journey with on your cohort, you are heavily supported by your teachers and staff, and you leave with a whole new community alongside you. The diversity of Dev Academy’s students is renowned and sits at its heart as one of our core values. People from all backgrounds and identities feel comfortable here. As well as teaching you to code, Dev Academy’s curriculum emphasises “soft skills” — that is communication, dispute resolution and emotional intelligence. These skills are shown to make technically capable people far, far more hireable, and we mirror their importance by walking with you the whole way through your web development journey. The experience is far better than being a number in a 500 person lecture theatre, waiting in line for student support services.

To sum

Job are not the be all and end all of our existence on this planet. Universities are excellent places to go to learn the theory and science of web development. But for those wanting to upskill rapidly and change their lives, Dev Academy is the way to go. We give you the tools you need to become a web developer and create the future. Web development is creative, it’s ever-evolving, it’s challenging and it’s about problem solving. If you think Dev Academy might be the place for you, check out our website and apply today for the next Auckland or Wellington cohort.