Self-paced instruction on a large scale dates back to the early 1970’s. At the time it was introduced, students were flooding into colleges and universities, thanks – in part – to the relatively new federal student loan program. Early research on self paced coursework didn’t reveal a lot of student success, but at the time, colleges and universities were still trying to figure out how to make self-directed instruction work.

Fast forward to 2020. Self-paced learning is a widely accepted educational approach that works especially well for both adult learners and those students who want a “refresher” on a particular subject. Many of the most successful self-directed learning experiences combine an array of teaching techniques. These might include textbooks; video or in-person instruction; computer-aided testing; hands-on laboratory or learning exercises; one-on-one instruction and tutoring.

Self-directed learning strongly appeals to adult learners because classroom-style learning experiences don’t accommodate the needs of adult learners. Traditional students may be able to devote several hours each day for several days of the week to traditional study, whereas for working students that can be difficult to consistently do. Further, traditional students often enjoy significant financial support from their families.

Non-traditional students have to balance the demands of work and family against the need or desire to train or retrain. Additionally, paying for traditional studies means making tuition and fees available on a regular schedule, or borrowing to finance the cost of attendance. Non- traditional students may be able to find the right number of hours in the day, but those hours may be early in the morning, late at night or on weekends – outside of the scheduled offerings of traditional education providers.  It may take non-traditional students longer to amass the resources they need to pay for traditional classroom offerings. Their need to support themselves and their families may also put a traditional degree program out of their reach.

Some people can successfully self-teach. Most students, however, need some structure and guidance to complete their educational objectives. Self-paced learning provides the structure, the materials and the guidance to help students understand what they need to know. It also provides them with a defined path and a platform to acquire the knowledge and skills that they’re seeking.

Another key differentiator between self-teaching and self-paced learning is evaluation. A self- paced learning program that provides one-on-one guidance gives the student a way to objectively assess their understanding of the material they’re trying to learn.  One of the greatest benefits of classroom learning is the presence of the teacher. Most people assume that the teacher’s primary purpose is to provide instruction. This ignores the value of assessment. Having resources that indicate how well a student has mastered the material is invaluable. It’s also the component that’s missing when students attempt to teach themselves. They may learn the material, but they have no real idea of whether they’ve learned the material correctly or completely.

Developer Bootcamp offers self-paced instruction in a wide variety of the most in demand IT skills.  Our coursework is offered on demand. You decide when you start the coursework and when you finish it. The coursework provides a clear path and all of the tools and materials you need to acquire the skills you want.

In addition to providing video instruction, we also provide hands-on exercises that allow you to acquire the skills you’ll need to work as an IT professional in the field. In addition, we provide one-on-one facilitation from subject matter experts, so you can be sure that you’ll get answers to your questions and assistance with lab exercises. You’ll also know that you’ve both understood and mastered the material. You will not leave the class with “blind spots” that commonly occur among fully self-taught workers.

When you complete your chosen coursework, you’ll also receive a certificate of completion that verifies that you’ve acquired the skills that employers are looking for. Being able to document your capabilities can put you ahead of job seekers who may claim to have undocumented skills.

For more information about Developer Bootcamp and our IT course offerings, please visit us on the web at www.developer-bootcamp.com. You can also contact us by email at info@developer-bootcamp.com or call us at (978) 250-4983.

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