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Student Handbook

Table of Contents

  1. Program Overview
  2. Getting Started Checklist
  3. Weekly Lessons
  4. Assignments
  5. Mentor Meetings
  6. Leaving the program
  7. Conclusion

Program Overview

Lessons + Assignments

Code Apprentice works a lot like school. Each week, you'll have coding lessons using an online curriculum we provide. After completion of the learning material, you'll work on an assignment that will help you put into practice the coding skills you just learned. Lessons can be found in the curriculum folder here on Github.

Learn more about lessons and assignments.

Weekly meetings with a professional software developer

At the start of the program, we'll match you with a professional developer who will be your mentor during the course of the semester. Each week, you'll meet over video chat with them to review what you’re learning, ask them any questions, and work together on educational coding projects.

Learn more about mentor meetings.


Your final grade for Code Apprentice is based on the following factors:

  • Attending your mentor meetings each week
  • Completion of and level of effort with weekly coding assignments
  • Completion of and level of effort with final project

Getting Started


  • Create a Slack account
  • Create a Zoom account
  • Create a Github account
  • Install VS Code
  • Install Github Desktop

1. Creating a Slack Account

Slack is the tool we use for chat communication. We’ll use it primarily for announcements, but you can use it to ask questions of your mentor or just chat with other Code Apprentice students. We’ve sent a Slack invite to the email address you provided when you signed up for Code Apprentice. Follow the instructions to setup an account.

> Post a quick introduction in the #introductions channel

Once you're set up in Slack, post in the #introductions channel and tell everyone about yourself! Quick tip: to insert a GIF, type /giphy + any word (example: /giphy hello) and send the message.

2. Creating a Zoom account

Zoom is app you’ll use for your weekly mentor meetings. You can video chat and share your screen so your mentor can see the code you’re working on. Use this help document to create a free Zoom account and download the software to use on your Mac or PC.

3. Creating a Github account

Github is the app that developers use to store and share the code they're working on. When you complete a project, you'll upload your code to Github so that your mentor can review it. Use this step-by-step guide to create a free account and get started.

4. Install VS Code

All great developers have great tools. This semester we will be using vs code to write and edit our code. VS Code is an open source text editor developed by Microsoft, and it is very popular in the web developer community. You can download VS Code here.

5. Install Github Desktop

So what do you do once you've written some great code? Show it off. Github allows you to share your code with others, and the desktop client will let you do this with a few clicks of your mouse. Download the desktop client here.

Weekly Lessons

1. Self Guided Learning

Your learning material for the week. Your Assignment and Mentor-Guided Learning project are designed to test your knowledge of what was covered.

2. Resources

If you’d like to learn more about what was covered in the Self-Guided Learning section of the lesson, we’ve provided some additional videos and articles that can help explain things further.

3. Mentor-Guided Learning

If you have time during your weekly meeting with your mentor, you can both work through this project to reinforce what you learned in the self-guided learning portion of the lesson.

4. Extension

If you’re feeling ambitious, you can use the instructions provided in the extension section to keep learning and get a head start on next week’s assignment.


You’ll find a link in your weekly lesson to the assignment for that week. Follow the instructions provided, and then publish your work to Github so it can be reviewed by your mentor.


Your grade is a composite score from three categories.

  1. Classwork
  2. Mentor Meetings
  3. Comprehensive Final

Your final grade will be calculated using the rubric below.

Grading Rubric

Category Points Earned Points Possible
Classwork 33
Weekly Mentor Meetings 33
Comprehensive Final 33
Final Score 100

Mentor Meetings

Preparing for your meeting

Make sure you’ve completed all, or most, of your self-guided learning for that week so you can use the time with your mentor to review what you’ve learned and ask them questions.

Absence from a mentor meeting

Attendance at your mentor meetings accounts for 1/3 of your final grade. If you cannot attend a meeting with your mentor you need to do the following:

  1. Notify your mentor as soon as possible
  2. Provide evidence to your mentor that your absence is warranted
  3. Notify the Code Apprentice teacher of record at your school (if applicable)

If you're unable to attend a meeting with your mentor and do not follow the steps above it will be documented by the Code Apprentice team.

  • The first and second time this happens you will receive a deduction to your grade, and a verbal and written warning sent to yourself and your parent/guardian.

  • The third time this happens you will removed from the program.

Leaving the program

If you would like to be excused from the program you must send an email to with a valid reason. If you are a student at a partnering school your removal will be contingent upon approval from the teacher of record.


We're very excited that you chose to be a part of this program! Should you have any questions or concerns, please reach out directly to Paul Drake or Garrett Vangilder over Slack or using the following email:

Happy coding!