Coding schools unveil Council on Integrity in Results Reporting

Largest coalition of coding programs commit to standardized graduation & job placement rate and truth in advertising framework to ensure integrity of data

(AUSTIN, Texas) – March 1, 2017 – The largest coalition of accelerated learning programs announced today their commitment to publish student graduation and job placement data in a single, standardized framework that includes truth in advertising standards, taking a significant step beyond mere transparency. Participatory organizations will apply the newly established definitions, documentation, and validation requirements to 2016 data and fully implement the standardized structure in 2017 reporting. Known as the Council on Integrity in Results Reporting (CIRR), the effort is led by student financing and quality assurance entity, Skills Fund.

"Leading bootcamps are moving beyond transparency to embrace the simplicity, clarity, and integrity of reporting graduation and employment outcomes in a single table free from footnotes, complexity, and gimmicks," said Rick O’Donnell, Founder & CEO of Skills Fund. "Students are the clear winners here. It’s another way coding schools remain at the forefront of delivering a high return on education that is leaps and bounds above traditional higher ed."

"The power of a high-quality online education is its accessibility — anyone can start learning. Now, because of CIRR standards, students don't need to take a gamble when they pick a school. Students have realistic, verifiable expectations from the get-go. We're excited to put forward this standard, as it's a critical building block for the future of education," said Darrell Silver, founder of Thinkful.

In compliance with CIRR standards, programs will release graduation and placement data on a semi-annual basis. Bootcamps will segment self-paced and published-length program figures, and report all 2017 cohorts according to adopted standards criteria. Initial 2016 outcomes data will be reported in accordance with CIRR methodologies on March 29th of this year. Outcomes data will be validated by a third party annually, beginning in 2017.

"CIRR creates an industry gold standard by constructing a clear accountability framework that anyone – students and regulators – can understand. Loopholes have been removed, safeguards have been put into place, and participatory schools have individually made an explicit commitment to data integrity and rhythms of coordinated, standardized reporting," said Shawn Drost, co-founder of Hack Reactor.

CIRR also establishes disclosure requirements in the promotion of average salary and in-field employment figures. To ensure truth in marketing in admissions practices, advertised salaries must be accompanied by a “clear and conspicuous” disclosure of metrics, and advertised in-field employment figures must have met CIRR established documentation requirements for paid, in-field positions.

"Students select these programs to learn new jobs-ready skills and to change their lives,” said Sharon Wienbar, CEO of Hackbright Academy. “If bootcamps report results in a standardized, caveat-free format, students can make important decisions with quality data. The CIRR standards provide just that."

CIRR reporting will be made publicly available on Skills Fund’s, Course Report’s, and individual school’s respective websites for use and engagement by all interested parties.

"A common outcomes rubric reduces the burden on future coding bootcampers to wade through scattered methodologies as they compare coding schools. Over the past three years, we've seen various bootcamp trade associations and reporting methodologies emerge, but CIRR is the first to bring a group of high-quality, committed schools together to decide on and enact a common outcomes rubric. While the coding bootcamp industry is still relatively nascent, the most successful schools have clearly proven that they can deliver results that their students expect; uniformity across reporting aims to do just that," said Liz Eggleston, co-founder of Course Report.

CIRR member organizations include Code Fellows, Codeup, DevMountain, Epicodus, Fullstack Academy, Grand Circus, Hackbright Academy, Hack Reactor, Ironhack, RefactorU, Sabio, The Software Guild, Thinkful, Turing School of Software & Design, Wyncode, Course Report and Skills Fund. For more information on CIRR, please visit: http://www.cirr.org