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CareerFoundry on Why Coding is Essential Education

Posted by Admin on Feb 26, 2015

In this featured guest editorial post, Rosie Allabarton from CareerFoundry details the importance of coding programmes and share a list of companies who help educate students worldwide to develop these essential tech skills. Read more below to learn about why coding knowledge has become a top priority for workers and companies alike.

The tech skills gap has been all over the news in recent months, due to the stark contrast between the demand for skilled tech workers in every industry and the increasing lack of people with the right skills to perform these highly-paid, flexible and creative jobs. With post-recession unemployment seriously affecting many European countries, it is becoming increasingly urgent that this tech skills gap is filled, but not just to decrease levels of youth unemployment but also if we are to continue to rely upon technology in the future as much as (if not more than) we currently do now. Learning to code has suddenly become a top priority.

This tech skills gap is essentially a gap in education and a huge opportunity for those willing to get skilled up. With a million jobs opening up in tech in the next year alone, many people are beginning to realise the worth of having coding skills under their belt and the opportunities available for them should they learn how to program. The huge affect on the future employability and career options of a young person who has not learnt how to code is becoming ever clearer.

Every industry from the arts to the sciences, from retail to business are now demanding basic coding knowledge from its employees, developers or not. Basic coding is now required from project managers, office managers, recruiters and company founders if they are to play an active role in their organisation.

Coding is becoming an essential part to what is becoming an increasingly digital future. But with education policy makers, schools and universities still dragging their feet - with many still refusing to include coding in their syllabi - it has become the role of startups and entrepreneurs to step into the breach and teach coding skills to a generation that has been passed over.

Which startups are teaching code?

Below are a few of the leading startups teaching students coding skills: 
CareerFoundry.jpgBerlin, Germany

Learning to code is easier together. CareerFoundry, Europe’s leading online platform for Web Development and UX Design, have built their whole business around this concept. CareerFoundry works at taking complete coding beginners and bringing them up to employable standards of code in tech.

With a mentor-centric and outcome-orientated approach, the Berlin startup and its in-house team of just 15 employees, have garnered rave reviews from the tech scene and educationalists worldwide. For CareerFoundry the key is teaching coding with a learning-by-doing methodology, so each student feels like they are an active apprentice to their very own mentor.

Based on the experience of co-founder and CTO Martin Ramsin, the educational platform, believes that having a helping hand by an expert in the field through an online course is the key to high completion rates and career progression on graduation.



Portland, Oregon

Treehouse is another solely online platform that offers courses in web development.  Its core focus is on beginners looking to start a new career, guiding them through video tutorials, interactive coding challenges, quizzes and badges to give them a grasp of the problem-solving nature of the industry. Although not mentored, Treehouse is an affordable, online and accessible option for many wannabe coders to get their grounding in the field.




San Francisco, California

Bloc.io offers full stack web development, iOS, Android and UX design. With both full time and part time courses available these online programs are suitable for those with full time jobs or families. Projects are based around portfolio-building and all courses are mentored. The ideology behind Bloc is that it is a course-to-career, hands-on training program rather than simply a theory-based education.



New York City, New York

Thinkful’s package focuses predominantly on front-end web development for those who would class themselves as beginner-to-intermediate.  Thinkful’s 11 courses cover front-end web development, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Python, iOS, Node.js, jQuery and Git and all are mentored. With customized curriculums and quick-responding community support, Thinkful really puts its students at the centre of the learning experience.

What's Next?

From what we have witnessed happening on the startup scene in the last few years, it appears that startups and entrepreneurs are leading the way in innovation in edtech, with policy makers and educationalists taking its lead from the startups rather than the other way around. University graduates are attempting to enter the workplace and realising they simply don’t have the skills that employers are looking for and are looking for ways to retrain in relevant fields. As schools and universities are seemingly unwilling or unable to meet the demand for tech training students are going elsewhere to get their education and finding it online.

Innovation - a word that is synonymous with startup life -  has been applied to education in order to enable every kind of person to learn how to code, wherever in the world and in whatever circumstances they might live. Online resources mean that you don’t have to be in a classroom to learn, you can even be mentored by an expert remotely and enjoy vibrant student discussions hundreds of miles away from your peers. We have seen at CareerFoundry how our own students have begun to organize their own projects together, building websites in teams and organizing social events and tech discussions for those who live in the same locations.

Rather than limiting education, the internet is expanding what is possible and making outreach to every corner of the globe possible. By enabling every kind of person to learn how to code, barriers in tech are coming down. Many more women are now getting on board in a decidedly male-orientated industry as online resources enable them to learn around raising a family or working. For those with fulltime jobs, part-time online courses are enabling them to learn these skills at the weekends and in the evenings from wherever they are. Young and old are realising the value that having these skills can do for them in their careers and private lives.

Coding skills are now necessary for highly paid, creative and fulfilling work in almost every industry, not just tech. As educationalists are currently unable to provide students with the courses they need to be valued in the marketplace and to launch successful, long-lasting careers, then startups will continue to bridge the gap, innovating in an increasingly exciting space.  


Rosie Allabarton is a writer who lives in Berlin. Her journalism specializes in technology, education, employment and women in technology. She works as a tech writer and content manager for CareerFoundry, an online educational platform that provides training in web development and UX design, providing career changers with the skills they need to launch themselves onto the tech scene.

Topics: Guest Editorial Contributor

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