Mar 2017

Do coding boot camps measure up? These groups want to help you find out

By Kate MacArthur

As coding boot camps multiply to meet demand for programmers, it’s harder than ever for would-be engineers to pick a school. But growing complaints about the schools’ value and recent fines against one for misleading advertising have left many people looking for a consistent measuring stick.

Two new groups — the Council on Integrity in Results Reporting and the Quality Assurance Task Force — aim to do just that, create unified standards for audited reporting of results.

The Quality Assurance Task Force announced its initial 25 members in December. It hasn’t published its standards yet but plans to open them up for negotiation in about two months. The group later plans to create an independent nonprofit organization to maintain the standards and support auditing, akin to the International Accounting Standards Board.

The task force is a project of Entangled Solutions, a for-profit innovation agency for education based in San Francisco. Its members include boot camps General Assembly and Hack Reactor, higher education leaders, associations and former North Carolina governor Bev Purdue.

“The sooner that there is a trustworthy process with a third-party auditor with no financial relationship to the institution, the better,” said Michael Horn, principal consultant at Entangled Solutions. “Those that don’t have it are hugely at risk.”


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