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For many aspiring software developers looking to build their coding skills from scratch, the Remote Prep to Remote Beta trajectory is recommended. But what do these programs entail, and what skills do they provide? Here, we break down details about each and share some insights from two Remote Prep grads who are currently in Remote Beta.
Remote Prep is Hack Reactor’s 60-hour online introductory program that provides instruction on the fundamentals of coding. It is also a good way for prospective software engineers to test the waters: if you are interested in making a change, and think that learning to code may be the right next step for you, Remote Prep takes you from beginner to a competent level without the time-intensive commitment of an immersive program. If you are serious about pursuing this path, Remote Prep prepares you so you can thrive in Remote Beta, where, after graduation, you will achieve the level of mastery needed to help snag a coveted software engineering job.
Timothy Woo, a Remote Prep graduate currently enrolled in Remote Beta, describes his experience of changing industries and trying out the world of software engineering.
“Prior to Remote Prep, I was doing customer service with a little bit of technical support. I wanted to do something more challenging. I did some research, and all directions led me to Remote Beta.” Although Woo considered going straight for Remote Beta following self-study, he eventually opted for Remote Prep first.
“In the Prep course, I gained so many skills that were incredibly useful,” Woo says. Self-study, he notes, has its limits. “There’s only so much you can learn on your own.”
Josh Summerhays, another current Remote Beta student who went through Remote Prep, agreed about the importance of the introductory program.
Once you have gained enough coding chops for Remote Prep, your next step is Remote Beta--the online counterpart to Hack Reactor’s full-time immersive program. Not surprisingly, the program, with a jam-packed curriculum, is intense.
“I expected intensity, but I didn’t expect to learn this much. It’s a lot of material to absorb” says Woo. The upside? You can learn all of the concepts you would through Hack Reactor’s coveted on-site program from the comfort of your home. “It’s really convenient,” Woo notes.
Summerhays agrees, praising the program’s flexibility. “I can be in a coffee shop, or sitting outside, or at my desk. I don’t need to worry about a commute, which saves a ton of time.”
Remote Prep and Remote Beta are designed to instill a strong sense of community, making it easy to ask a question or collaborate on code with someone on the other side of the world. While you can’t physically tap someone on the shoulder, there are ways of working around this.
“There are still plenty of ways to communicate,” says Woo.
“You can jump into a Google Hangout or go into Slack,” adds Summerhays.
For prospective Remote Prep and Remote Beta students looking for advice about succeeding in the field, Summerhays suggests setting up a routine that you can stick with. “Tell yourself that you’re going to do a practice problem everyday,” he says. “Start the repetition early. Make the commitment that everyday you are going to do something to build skills.”
Woo’s advice? “Just do it. Especially Remote Prep. Relatively speaking, it’s pretty low commitment, so see if you like it. If you’re remotely interested in this field, you should try Remote Prep.”