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New York’s Thinkful is improving online education

Some pursuits are best left to the privacy of your own home. Air guitar solos, for example, or your attempts to twerk. Education – despite the rise of online learning and MOOCs – isn’t always one of them.

New York’s Thinkful is bringing a social element back to e-education, without confining students to a fluorescent lit classroom.

“Learning online is often very lonely,” Darrell Silver, the company’s co-founder and CEO, told us. “We felt like there had to be a way to combine online education with a community and with expert help.”

Founded by Silver and Dan Friedman in 2012, Thinkful matches students with expert mentors and connects them with fellow students – while using available coursework from online resources. The approach not only improves the retention rate of students, it also results in a more personalized approach to learning.

Thinkful currently offers two course tracks in front-end web development and programming in Python, although they plan to expand their curriculum soon.

The Thinkful team has doubled to eight full-timers in the last three months, and they’ve got six more job openings that they hope to fill. Check them out here.

Or if you’re interested in improving your engineering chops, Thinkful’s next class starts tomorrow. Get more information here.

Now go forth (and don’t go it alone).

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