Code School Review

Code SchoolCode School is a subscription website that teaches coding with a combination of video lessons, screencasts and interactive coding exercises. It’s best described as a collection of specialist courses, rather than one all-encompassing training package. The courses cover sub-topics of Ruby, JavaScript, HTML, CSS and iOS amongst other technologies.

Code School differentiates itself from the competition by letting you ‘learn by doing’ and experiment with code as you go through the training. If you’re unsure whether it’s the right training for you, this review will help you to decide.

Details on Code School

Code School is produced by Envy Labs. It began with a single course, Rails for Zombies, in November 2010, with the full site being rolled out in 2011.

Code School caters for beginner, intermediate and advanced learners. The training is divided into Paths – which are suggested sequences of courses organized by topic. There are currently five Paths:

  • Ruby Path
  • JavaScript Path
  • HTML/CSS Path
  • iOS Path
  • Electives (miscellaneous topics)

Digging deeper, you will see that the sub-topics include lesser-known technologies like CoffeeScript, Node.js, Sass, Git and Chrome DevTools. Most other training providers don’t cover these topics.

Each individual course is taught by an experienced professional and is made up of at least five levels. Each level starts with a 10-15 minute screencast, followed by a series of interactive exercises. There’s a lot of content packed into each course. Upon completing a course, you can even win prizes – such as generous discounts on other Code School courses and O’Reilly books.

Themed Courses

The most unique, the most striking and possibly the best aspect of Code School is the way its courses are themed. Pairing Rails with zombies, jQuery with air travel and iOS with comic books is definitely something you will not see anywhere else.

Each course is presented with professionally designed graphics matching the theme, and even a jingle! This may seem trivial, but it really does motivate you to learn. As an example, here’s a video from Code School where the theme is coffee.

Click here to get your first month at Code School for only $9

Code School Screencasts

Another unique aspect of Code School is that it has a large library of screencasts produced by the community, under the label of Code TV. The screencasts are intended as supplementary training to the main library, and cover a range of different coding topics. You can access them as part of a Code School membership.

Cons?

Code School courses are definitely of the highest possible quality, but the library lacks in quantity and is limited to selected topics. For a similar price, you can access a much wider range of training from lynda.com.

It’s also worth noting that Code School does not specialize in training you for a career in coding. If you would prefer career-oriented training, Treehouse may be what you’re looking for.

Bottom Line

The quality of the material at Code School is second to none. Knowledgeable teachers, fun themes and a lot of content packed into each course are just some of the characteristics of its training.

If you have any questions, the best way to get them answered is to contact Code School directly. Otherwise, good luck learning by doing!


Recommended Training – Treehouse

TreehouseAlthough this site recommends various training services, our top recommendation is Treehouse.

Treehouse is an online training service that teaches web design, web development and app development with videos, quizzes and interactive coding exercises.

Treehouse's mission is to bring technology education to those who can't get it, and is committed to helping its students find jobs. If you're looking to turn coding into your career, you should consider Treehouse.

Read our full review of Treehouse…



Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.