Full-Time Versus Part-Time: Which Should You Choose?

March 11th, 2019

Lauren Mabra

Marketing Coordinator @ Suncoast Developers Guild

So, you’ve decided that you want to begin or further develop your coding career. Now, you’re left to choose between full-time or part-time. Which is best for you? It’s important to remember that there is no right or wrong answer. It’s about why you’re going to enroll and what suits you and your lifestyle. Let’s explore a few of the different factors to consider when going into a course:

1. Curriculum

While the full-time and part-time courses differ greatly, both will earn you a quality experience and knowledge on the most up-to-date methods and tools. Technology is continually evolving, we want our students to be able to keep up with the changing technology, for that reason, we are consistently updating our curriculum.

Here are just a few ways in which our full-time immersive program curriculum and the part-time curriculum differ:

  • The full-time program takes our students from little to no knowledge to becoming full-stack developers using an immersive process.
  • Part-time classes are designed to introduce students to specific topic areas.
  • The full-time program preps students for a job as a developer and includes career support.
  • Part-time courses are designed to help educate and inspire students and to help them test the waters of development or to enhance their current tech skills.
  • Full-time program requires students to be on campus for almost 40 hours a week.
  • Part-time classes are held evenings and weekends.

We currently offer four part-time courses: (Web Development Test Drive, User Experience for Non-Designers, Digital Marketing, and React I). Each course has been created specifically for personal and professional development, allowing students to build up skills on their own time. Our part-time courses do not include career support, a certification of completion or credentials.

If you’re looking to fast-track your way to a career change, the full-time program will give you tools the help you enter the workforce as a junior front-end or back-end developer. Our full-time immersive program consists of three units:

  • Web Fundamentals: students get to know core web technologies such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript
  • Front-End Frameworks: students learn about building complex interactive applications with React.
  • Full-Stack Development: students will round out their full-stack toolkit with an exploration of server-side technologies through Ruby (and the Ruby programming language) or .Net (and the C# programming language).

2. Time

Time is often the first factor that prevents a person from joining a full-time program. Family, work, commuting, or other obligations can be a blocker for many people that want to learn web development and our goal has always been to make sure our students can maintain a healthy life balance throughout the program. It’s important to be realistic with yourself about what you can do without burning out or struggling in other areas of life. We understand this pain point and it’s what led us to offering part-time courses. Rather than 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., five days a week for three months, part-time students attend class once or twice a week (depending on the course chosen) for a total of six weeks. It’s important to consider who you are and your own learning style as well. You may not be able to physically or mentally attend class everyday for three months. Part-time offers quality education in more “bite sized” chunks.

3. Finances

When considering the options between full-time and part-time courses, finances always play a role especially for people looking to make career changes. While the full-time program comes at a significant upfront cost, it also comes with options around scholarships or financing options not available to students taking the part-time courses. Part-time courses do, however, give a person the ability to learn the same skills as the full-time program while also continuing to work which releases some of the financial burdens our immersive program would have put on them. Part-time upskilling courses such as our React I or UX courses also allow for companies to fund employees through these programs, it keeps the cost down for the company, and their employees get much-needed skills.

4. You

If you are looking to direct your career towards development but aren't sure you are ready for the full-time program, our Web Development Test Drive part-time course might be the place to start. Web Development Test Drive will introduce you to the same information we teach in the first three weeks of the immersive program, and the cost of the course will go toward the tuition of the full web development program if you decide you are ready to take that next step.

Despite the choice you make, what really matters is that you’re taking a huge step into building or improving your skills as a web developer. Don’t be afraid of making the wrong choice. You can’t go wrong when you’re choosing the program that suits you best.

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