Monday, May 13, 2013

Ecole 42: artistically teaching technology

A new school has broken the system in France. Ecole 42, created by Xavier Niel of Free, is a free school for future developers. There are no teachers, or semesters. Comprised upon a series of exercises and group projects, students are taught languages such as Java and iOS through self education and independence. Even more surprisingly, not a single diploma is issued upon completion of the program, as "with technology's constant change, such a diploma would be outdated within a mere three years or so"! It goes without saying that France is finally trying to adopt the "startup" mentality, rampant within the US since the computer age. For a country focused on traditional education, Ecole 42 is truly innovative.

The process of selection starts online with a series of questions and puzzles. Once the candidate has completed those, they are then directed towards the Piscine (swimming pool), for a full month of 15 hours of work a day. Candidates are expected to clock in a minimum of 50 hours per week, 90 being optimal. Keep in mind that french citizens are known for 35 work hours a week at most, and this has either repelled or intrigued many. Selected candidates are accepted into a three year program, with two extra years of internships or jobs.

Sound good? This could be a new step towards a more artistic approach in the education of technology. Learn more (french):

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