42 Born to Code: a free computer school without professors

Today for the Training and Professional Life heading, we present you a bold project, implemented by two great personalities. Discover how Xavier Niel and Nicolas Sadirac opened the first free IT school without professors. Xavier Niel, president of the 42 Born to Code based in Paris, revolutionizes the world of training with the help of Nicolas Sadirac. Both share the same philosophy: a radical change must be introduced in the French training system, shared between universities and private ‘Grandes Ecoles’.

11, Jun, 2018 | Your Stay


An innovative computer school


Innovating the system is above all bringing something new. With this in mind, creating a new training that is not based on traditional teaching methods quickly becomes Niel’s and Sadirac’s priority. In addition to this, their ambition includes offering a training opened to everyone: free and open to everyone, with or without a diploma.

Since we were very young, we used to receive lessons passively, sitting on our chairs. The information comes from above, from an expert or a professor who holds the knowledge and shares information. Today, this model can be considered as being overcome: ‘peer-to-peer’ revolutionizes traditional teaching methods from A to Z.


#1 Peer-learning


42, it is the first completely free IT training, open to 18-30 year-old. Its philosophy is based on the peer-to-peer learning.

How? Easy, everyone has an expertise and is able to share it to allow the development of skills of their co-workers. It is time for this revolution also to affect training. In this line of thinking, 42 Born to Code is there to give an answer to what the school of tomorrow should represent.

So no teachersno classes: here,they’re the students themselves who are responsible for their success and that of the other participants. We can say goodbye to the frontal lectures in the university-style. Success turns only around a 100% practical iter and linked to concrete projects.The challenges facing the participants must be resolved within a set time frame, with the strength of the group.


#2 Peer-evaluation


To be both a trainer and a learner is to participate actively in project 42. This new model also eliminates evaluation as we usually know it. Learning at 42 does not stop once a project has been completed: students evaluate each others’ productions.

In this way, no standard correction is ever given. Rather than fearing a bad grade, students are pushed towards dialogue and constructive criticism. In this way, project participants learn to receive advice that is essential to their progress and at the same time to defend their point of view.

The student’s final grade reflects the average of all evaluations provided by their peers, to obtain a harmonized final grade.


#3 Peer-pedagogy


42 is now based on a model that deviates from the traditional educational system. The role of the teacher is replaced by a community of peers. Students are strongly encouraged to self-study, by doing so they have access to an increasingly vast and rich set of projects.

By giving students the freedom to submit their projects to the community, they also leave a trace in the history of the school and thus reinforce this training, designed for students, by the students.

If you are interested in this project, a unique place in France, the Heart of Code, has been designed to welcome you and the other participants to project 42. It is located in Paris, in the 17th arrondissement and occupies an area of more than 4200 m².

Are you interested in this project?

Do you intend to take part in this innovative project and do you need accommodation in Paris? A furnished flatshare with other students and young working people is the best solution to enjoy this incredible experience!  Discover all our furnished flat-sharing offers in Paris here.

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