Experience IT and the Codecool vibe @our “Intro to Coding” week in Vienna


5 min read

The concept of Codecool’s intro course is simple: new learning techniques paired with team exercises, project based learning, a sprinkle of fun and maybe the beginning of new friendships. It will be held for the first time in our new Vienna campus, in German, starting from 30 August.

Join the conversation with your future mentor Guillermo Herrero, where he talks about this eye-opening 5 day course.

What will the one-week ‘Intro to coding’ course look like?

There will be a lot of talking and an exchange of information, because of the flipped classroom setup. Nobody is going to be standing in front of you and talking about something. This kind of education doesn’t exist in our school.

So on a normal day it could look like that we will have a brainstorming, where I will give everyone a question and students have to come up with answers by themselves, collaborate with their teammates and exchange ideas

Then ‘exploration’ will follow. This is a new learning concept, which I designed in particular for this course. The exploration is basically an activity where students are divided into groups, they are given topics to research (1 different per group), and after some time of research and preparation, they present the topic to the other teams and get feedback from them.

Another important aspect is that everyone will have time to ask me questions for 4 hours, while in the other 4 hours students have to work without mentor support. There has to be a time where they are with mentors, but also a time in which they aren’t.

Then participants will be faced with cool challenges and learn some basic skills and technologies. For example, how websites are programmed, HTML and Java basics. Also ‘being a programmer’ is not just ‘being a programmer’. There are so many different positions and job roles in IT, and we will learn about these, too.

You can be a tester, product owner or even a project manager. The possibilities are virtually endless.

You’ll also learn the agile ‘SCRUM’ methodology and join a workshop on growth mindset. When you need to learn so many things for yourself, there are a few tricks on how to learn better and more efficiently.

Another important part of this teaser course will be learning how to present your work in front of your colleagues. Because this soft skill will also enrich your future life and career, whether you choose to work in IT or in another field.

We’ll also touch the topic of the software development life cycle (SDLC). As I mentioned, there are a few job positions in tech, but there are also so many steps in programming as well, and each of them will have their own specialist. They will learn the different steps from beginning to code to finishing the whole app or site on the cloud or another platform.

And of course we’ll have a party at the end of this awesome intro course.

As we mentioned earlier, you’ll have a chance to experience the Codecool way of learning, during this one-week course.

But what is so special about that method?

Let’s dive in.

What is so special about the Codecool way of learning?

1. Students become the teacher and the teacher becomes a mentor.

I think one special feature of our intro course and the Codecool way of learning is the ownership, which the students will get over their own education. This brings on a paradigm shift by changing the common education the way that it’s done. We challenge frontal education.

Frontal education means that there is a teacher in front of the classroom, the students sit in rows and receive the input. Psychological studies have already shown over the years that this is really not the best way to study. There are alternative techniques proven to create a much bigger impact in the minds of the students. They learn much more and remember it better later.

Some alternative techniques are called ‘flipped classroom’ or ’flipped education’. In such a setup the students become the teacher and the teacher becomes a mentor.

The mentor is not responsible for providing the input for the students, because the time with him can be used in a much more efficient way. The students are supposed to learn and try certain things by themselves. They even have time to read materials and practice the things on their own. The time with their teammates is more about collaborative work. They get a challenge and they need to solve it.

It’s proven that if the knowledge is presented on a silver plate by frontal teaching, you’ll only remember 20% of it. If you learn it by yourself, it’s possible you’ll remember 80% of it.

2. Students stay more motivated, because the projects are life-like and learnings applicable.

Project-based learning is also a key factor about the Codecool way of learning.

The students are going to be assigned to projects that are very similar to real-life projects. This is good for two reasons: First, to become engaged, because it’s not just a text-book exercise. Second, to keep up interest. Because the projects are so real, useful, they provide a practical simulation of future work-place projects.

The entire journey is designed for solo and team projects, and collaborative learning groups also massively enhance soft skills.

3. Collaborative learning groups strengthen soft skills.

Why? Because you’re “forced” to practice interaction with the other students on your team.

In Codecool we call this the ‘empowerment principle’. This means that the student is the owner of their learning and Codeool provides an environment, which is most efficient for their students. But this also means that the student is also responsible for their own education: from the beginning, to the middle- and the end-point of it.

Often students blame their teachers: “My teacher is really bad”, “I’m not learning because of my teacher”, “I don’t have enough time” or “This exercise is not good enough”. But if you flip the classroom, the mentor is not responsible for it anymore. It’s your own responsibility. And so things are changing, now our students are saying: “I’d love to find more materials for this topic” or “Oh, I wish we would have more time for this topic” and so on.

This is super important, because they become self motivated and it’s much easier for them to cope with a working position. For example they know half of the knowledge, but the other half is specific for the company. If they are not used to learning by themselves, they will be afraid of those challenges, because they always depend on someone else.

“The student is the owner of their learning at Codeool and we provide an environment which is the most efficient for our students.”

Inspired yet? Do you speak German and are you located around Vienna?

Check the ‘Intro to coding’ course and hit apply! We’ll meet at our campus in Vienna on August 30th.

See you soon!

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