Thinkful and General Assembly are both education platforms with a similar goal: to help people around the world kickstart a career in tech. Both offer programs that aim to produce hirable graduates that are ready for entry-level roles in their field of study. However, with variations in courses, curriculums, support, and pricing, the two offer very different student experiences.
Thinkful offers five-month, full-time courses and six-month, part-time courses for a range of tech career paths. All of them are exclusively online. Part-time courses are predominantly independent study and offer a more flexible schedule, while full-time courses provide an immersive community learning experience. Students are paired with an experienced mentor for live 1:1 sessions and also receive multiple forms of career support.
General Assembly provides courses both online and on campus, with locations in London, Manama, New York City, Paris, Singapore, and Sydney. Its offerings include its Full-Time Immersive, Flex Immersive, and Part-Time course structures, all of which cover a range of tech fields. Students work to produce real-world portfolio projects that they can show to future employers, and receive career support from a dedicated coach. Instructors are available during class and office hours to assist with coursework.
Thinkful and General Assembly offer a collection of similar courses that cover popular fields within the tech industry.
Thinkful courses include:
Software Engineering, Data Analytics, and UX / UI Design have both a 50-60 hours/week full-time structure and a 25-30 hours/week part-time structure available. The other courses are only available on a part-time basis.
General Assembly offers the following courses:
Full-time courses are 12 weeks long, while flex courses offer the same curriculum over a 24-week period. Part-time courses, on the other hand, are 10 weeks long with around 20 hours of study per week.
Each course at Thinkful has its own pricing, with full-time options ranging from $13,475-$16,000 and part-time versions costing between $5,341-12,350. Full-time courses cost about twice as much as the part-time equivalents because it’s a more robust course that offers more content.
Thinkful offers multiple financing options, including an upfront option with no additional costs. Students can also choose to pay month to month, or defer their payments until after graduation. Students planning to take a full-time course with deferred tuition even have the option to take a $1500 loan for monthly living expenses during the course.
At General Assembly, the Full-Time Immersive and Flex Immersive courses cost $15,950. Its part-time courses cost between $2,800-3,950. As is the case with Thinkful, full-time courses offer much more content.
Payment options available at General Assembly include ISAs, installment plans, and loans. With an ISA, you agree to share some of your future earnings with the school once you have a job earning at least $40,000. One of the most popular ways to finance a General Assembly course is through employer sponsorship, where companies with professional development budgets pay for part or all of your tuition.
When Thinkful produced its Long Term Outcomes Report tracking the progress of students upon graduation, they found that the average student earned $17,000 more in their first year of work, and an additional $8,800 within a year of that. Thinkful also offers a full tuition refund for qualifying graduates who don’t land a job within six months of graduating.
General Assembly doesn’t back its courses with a job guarantee, but they do have career counseling services with an impressive success rate. General Assembly says that 97% of its graduates secure employment in their field, and that 84.6% accept an offer within 180 days of graduation. This is achieved in part because of General Assembly’s 19,000 hiring partners.