Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Coding Dojo's Learning Platform Was Lightweight, Agile and Does the Right Thing

Coding Dojo's Learning Platform Was Lightweight, Agile and Does the Right Thing

In yesterday's post, I explained that the Rails curriculum at the Coding Dojo isn't all superpower ready. That being said, today I opened up its learning platform to review Rails before my meeting with a founder tomorrow.

Recently, I have had quite a few none-job-seeking meetings where I meet and greet Silicon Valley founders, approach them as an consultant rather than a developer. Much like my time at the Codecademy.

The Coding Dojo Rails videos are on the longer side 20 minutes+. It wasn't exactly organized as curriculum but really does the trick when you need a massive review like I do.  I have been hitting JavaScript hard for one month, and also being approached for PHP, i.e. my Rails is indeed rusty. To see Michael roams around all screens of Rails apps actually helps a lot.

But I am writing to talk about the platform. Unlike other bootcamps, one can view the dojo learning platform before joining the bootcamp, or paying a penny. It is the same platform as Michael's previously founded Village88.

The amazing part is that this platform is Facebook friendly and was developed by a previous student turned co-founder at the Coding Dojo - John, a great person and mentor, and a very dedicated hard working person.

Each class is available as an enrollable module, as are the weekly tests, new orientations. Each class has multiple tabs containing usually Youtube or Vimeo videos, some public as well. And at times, it is followed by a brief quiz, and the juice of the course content: while the videos may not be the best, the exercises, the explanations - more like enlightenments than step-by-step instruction are the essence of what makes Coding Dojo a serious contendant in the bay area bootcamp world.

It's not hard to see the teaching philosophy in this: the platform is lightweight, agile, easy to access in more remote regions, and it's been actively changed and developed. The videos are externally hosted which is more open and less problematic. Strong emphasis is put on the flow, the tips and tricks, summaries following each video rather than the videos themselves.

The exercises are the best content in the Coding Dojo libraries, followed by easy and quick file submission and content management widget. The other value-adding content at the Dojo? The breadth of technologies that the founder himself can cover: Agile, Python, Ruby, Rails, jQuery, HTML, PHP, CodeIgniter,, Node.js. Here, I did it: one big praise for Coding Dojo.

Also refer to my other posts for criticisms and deeper dive.

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