Smooth Start Program
Whether you're new to Launch School or just trying it out, our 4-week program invites new students to meet peers, build study techniques & talk to graduate software engineers
Our Program Goals
We built Smooth Start with new students in mind. Our goal is to help individuals gain clarity and focus at the start of their Launch School journey. By participating in Smooth Start, students benefit from the following resources.
Our student leads organize helpful live sessions to answer Launch School questions and other new student concerns
Students are introduced to peers around the same level to share resources and learn from each other’s experiences
Leads provide gentle guidance and conduct interactive brainstorming sessions to help students with study approach
Helpful Topics Presented Live Over 4 Weeks
Each week, our team of leads deliver practical topics live to budding Launch School students. Individual topics are carefully selected to support study habits and navigate Launch School’s self-paced Curriculum
This week, students get to know each other and are introduced to several helpful Launch School resources, including how to create study groups. Students are encouraged to share their questions and concerns to ensure they'll get the most out of the program moving forward.
This week, students engage in a candid conversation about handling impostor syndrome while navigating a new career in programming. The session concludes with a brainstorm focused on effective study habits, inviting students to share their own strategies, while considering new ones for their study sessions.
This week, Prep Smooth Start students learn what to expect from their first Core Curriculum courses. Core Smooth Start students discuss what to expect from their first assessment. Both groups gain practical tools and advice on readiness to take their next steps at Launch School.
This week, we close Smooth Start with an Ask Me Anything (AMA) session with a Capstone Alumni Software Engineer. During a 1-hour session, students gain access to their Alumni's valuable perspective and experiences as they discuss Launch School, Capstone, the Job Hunt process and what it's like working as a Software Engineer.
Gain insight from our graduate software engineers
In Week 4 of the Smooth Start Program, students will participate live in a Q and A with a graduate software engineer. Guest alumni share their experiences of Launch School, what it’s like on the job and advice for new students working through our courses
It helps us get to know other people and realise we are all on the same page so it’s ok to have doubts and fears - we are here to share how to overcome them.
I appreciated learning about other students’ study habits. Walking through the LS study resources and then sharing our experiences pushed me to seek out help quicker than I would have on my own.
All questions and concerns were openly welcomed. I found the guidance on how to approach the prep courses to assess our readiness for the Core to be particularly beneficial. This has provided me with a clear structure and focus on how to proceed with my studies.
It was useful participating in these sessions as they are a great ice-breaker and allow you to start mingling and speaking with other students at the same level. The chance to ask questions about the core curriculum fits nicely with the ‘no entrapment’ policy that Launch School aspires to.
I loved the structure in that each week focused on a different topic. I enjoyed our fun weekly questions and gathering. It was great to meet new people who are starting out at the same time. Helpful to speak directly to people who have done it already, especially the session with the Capstone grad.
I feel way more confident and better about continuing to learn and use launch school resources after being involved with this group. Just having some peers around me that are also working hard helps so much with feeling like this is something I can do. Thank you very much to LS.
I really loved hearing the experience of people who were further along or who had even graduated from the program. Also hearing about the struggles people who were running through the program with me faced helped me to feel much more confident overall!
There are so many friendly people going through the curriculum and that Launch School is truly invested in helping its students succeed - I’m so impressed that Smooth Start Prep was completely free, before we even started the paid portion of the Curriculum
A Supportive Program Designed to Get New Students Started
Smooth Start is a live, online course conducted over 4 weeks. Students have access to a small, private chat to gain advice from leads and connect to other students. Students are invited to participate in 1 hour in live weekly calls, including a Q and A session in week 4 with a guest Software Engineer.
*While smooth Start is offered as a free program, to participate in Smooth Start Core you will need an active subscription to Launch School's Core Curriculum ($199/mo)
New Smooth Start Cohort Commences February 12th, 2024
Applications are now open! Please fill out an application form to be considered for our upcoming cohort.
Applications close February 2nd, 2024. Please see FAQs below for more information.
By filling in an application you will receive email updates and information about your application status and start dates. As we have limited seats not all applications will be successful.
Smooth Start is an *optional* program for new Launch School students. It's designed to help students who might be feeling a bit overwhelmed to connect with new peers and gain more focus and clarity at Launch School.
Not at all. If you are comfortable with the study involved, reaching out to others and exploring Launch School on your own, you probably don't need to attend a program like Smooth Start. However most students find they need additional support getting started.
All students are required to fill in an application form to be considered for Smooth Start. As there is a limited number of seats
and prerequisites for both groups, not all applications and signups will be successful.
Smooth Start is a free program for Prep and Core Curriculum students. However if you'd like to participate in Smooth Start Core you will need an active subscription to Launch School's Core Curriculum ($199/mo)
To apply to Smooth Start Prep you must have:
To apply to Smooth Start Core you must have:
- An active subscription to the Core Curriculum
- Currently enrolled in RB101-RB119 or JS101-JS119 courses
- A Launch School slack account create one here
Because live sessions are where the main part of the program takes place, Smooth Start participants are required to attend. As the program is only 4 weeks long with a commitment of 1 hour per week, Smooth Start may not be the best fit for those that cannot meet this weekly schedule. If you are currently enrolled in a Smooth Start group and are unable to attend your next session, please contact your Lead.
Currently, Smooth Start cohorts do not run on set dates. Those who are interested in the next cohort can sign up to our waitlist to receive updates on when the next cohort becomes available.
Applicants will receive an instruction email on how to check if they have been accepted into Smooth Start. Accepted students are added to their own private group in Launch School's Slack chat which they will need to login to participate in Smooth Start.
Yes, you will need an active subscription to the Core Curriculum to be able to participate in Smooth Start Core ($199/mo). As Smooth Start Core content is suitable for Core Curriculum students, we want to make sure that students are working through the Core Curriculum courses. However, Smooth Start Prep is completely free and does not require a Core Curriculum subscription.