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Being a student at 42 requires to be able to research your answers. Before contacting us per email with any questions, please read the answers to these Frequently Asked Questions.

Learning Environment

What is 42?

42 is a private, tuition-free coding school. It was founded in Paris in 2013 as École 42. Its mission is to equip talents – whether female or male, career changers or school dropouts – with the hard and soft skills needed to be successful tech experts of the 21st Century. With a disruptive peer-to-peer education model and philosophy, 42 has achieved great results (100% of well-employed graduates, 80% have opportunities before graduation, 30% build their own companies, 50% never coded before). Due to their success, other 42 schools opened up all around the world. Currently there are 54 partner schools in more than 31 countries with more than 21.000+ students. 42 Vienna is the first Austrian 42 school that opened in October 2022.

Why are there no teachers at 42?

42 uses a project-based learning approach, in which you develop your own solutions, supported by your peers. 42 provides the learning environment, and ensures that you are making progress along the curriculum.

What does project-based learning mean?

In project-based learning, students gain a deeper knowledge of a subject through active exploration of real-world challenges and problems. They learn by doing and thinking critically, rather than by following instructions and memorizing.

Who will assess the quality of my projects?

The projects will be evaluated by your fellow students using the evaluation guidelines from 42. You will learn how to deliver and receive 'code reviews' and feedback on the software that you develop.

What language is used at 42 Vienna?

All of 42's content and projects are available in English. English is an important language to be able to thrive in the digital world and we want our students to think globally. At 42 Vienna we use English as our common basic language to enable non-German speakers to participate and contribute and to empower German-speakers to work internationally.

Does the school organize any activities?

Yes! The best way to prepare our students for a job is by organizing regular events with guest speakers and other forms of collaborations with companies and organizations, such as hackathons and workshops. During the Piscine, 42 Vienna organizes activities, such as sports sessions, yoga, meditation, arts & crafts.

Why would students choose 42 Vienna over a traditional university or college?

42 Vienna offers a program that is 100% practical and focused on coding. You'll work in teams and write code every day. At 42, students immediately learn the principles of coding, while content is being updated on a regular basis. During the specialization phase of your studies, you are exposed to fresh, practical projects (AI, app development, operating systems, security), which allows you to build a portfolio of your work in advance of a job interview.

What are the main differences between 42 and other coding schools?

The 42 program is 100% free. It teaches the foundations of coding, and does not focus on a specific language or operating system. Above all, you will learn how to learn in a completely different way. This will help you find solutions for any kind of challenge even beyond 42.


How long does it take to complete the program?

As long as you need! We strongly believe that each student is unique and should be allowed to learn at their own pace. The course takes an average of 3 years of full-time dedication, including two internships to achieve senior-level software engineering skills. But it’s up to you. You can still graduate as a highly qualified junior developer after just one year. Some students will complete the course in less than two years; others will need five years. Both are perfectly fine! It is not a race; 42 Vienna is a learning curve.

What does the curriculum include?

You start building a base in the C programming language, the UNIX operating system and fundamental programming concepts. As you progress towards your first internship, you will explore introductory branches in UNIX, graphics and web programming. After the internship, the curriculum will include deeper projects in many fields of software engineering: mobile development, web security, kernel design, network architecture, game development, artificial intelligence, data engineering, and many other areas of coding and IT.

How is the curriculum designed that students can in fact choose their own path?

All 42 Network campuses worldwide share the proven curriculum of École 42 in Paris. When you complete a project, you will move to the next one, until you can choose from different paths and discover multiple aspects of programming and IT. Each student's experience is unique, as you will experiment with projects and choose to follow different specialization paths in the curriculum.

How is the curriculum gamified?

You progress in the curriculum by completing projects and getting points. With these points you level up and unlock more projects and specialization branches. You can also master different skills, complete quests and achievements.

How is the curriculum kept current?

The original curriculum was created in 2013 by École 42's team in Paris, which consisted of veterans in the computer science educational field in France. It has evolved since then by the educational staff in Paris and other schools, co-operation with companies and even students.

Is the program full-time?

At 42, there are no scheduled classes. You organize your work and your schedule. The school is open 24 hours a day throughout the year, and you can expect to spend most of your working time on campus – 40 hours per week on average (during the Selection Piscine more than sixty hours per week). We recommend to see the program as a full-time activity, however, there are students who study and work part-time.

Is it possible to attend the curriculum online?

42 Vienna is an on-site program. It is an essential component of the peer-to-peer learning model of 42.

Do I have to move to Vienna to study at 42 Vienna?

Yes, the program is on-site. Living in Vienna or close to Vienna may be helpful. We can support you with information on housing.

Is studying at 42 Vienna really free?

Yes, 100% free. We believe everyone deserves the opportunity to develop their talents and fulfill their dreams, regardless of their background and resources. We will not charge you anything before, during, or after your journey at 42 Vienna. This is possible thanks to the generous support of our founding partners.

Can I switch to another campus in the 42 network?

Students must study at the campus where they completed the Piscine. If a campus transfer is needed before the Piscine, please contact us as soon as possible so that we migrate you into the Vienna application system. If you have passed the games, you won’t have to play them again.

After you complete the first part of the curriculum you will have the opportunity to change campus if you decide to move.

Admission to 42 Vienna

How can I apply?

The admission includes several steps:
1. Register at (5 Min)
2. Play two logic games (2 hours)
3. Meet us in an introduction meeting (1 hour)
4. Attend the Piscine (4-weeks)

What is the Piscine?

The word "Piscine" is the French word for "swimming pool": dive into the deep end of coding, and learn how to swim - together with your peers. The Piscine is a four week long trial period. During the Piscine, you will discover the basics of coding from scratch. No prerequisites of any kind are needed: no previous degrees, no coding experience. This period will be very intensive and requires commitment. There is no competition between applicants and anyone can be selected.

Can I do the Piscine part-time?

During your Piscine, it is not possible to work or spend a lot of time on other commitments. You will spend an average of 8 hours per day (weekends included!) learning and working on exercises.

Do you offer rooms for the time of the Piscine?

No. If you need support finding accommodation, write an email to with the subject: Accomodation Help Needed.

What are the selection criteria?

We do not reveal the selection criteria, but we can tell you this: candidates who work hard, make progress, work as a team and never give up are the ones that are most likely to be successful.

When do I know if I get in?

We announce the results of the Piscine 2 weeks after the end of each Piscine. Each candidate gets an email with their results.

If I pass the Piscine, when can I start in the program?

After you passed the Piscine, you will start at next kick-off date. You can find the kick-off date on our Homepage.

What if I don't pass the Piscine? Can I apply again?

You can take up to 2 Piscines in your lifetime in any of the 42 campuses. A minimum of 300 days between the 2 Piscines must be respected.


How does 42 prepare students for a career in the tech world?

42 won't teach you how to solve a specific problem, or how to use a tool. 42 will teach you how to learn, and how to use the tools that are available. After 42 you will have the ability to solve hard problems. You will be able to quickly learn new coding languages, thinking creatively, seek and share knowledge.

Are students obliged to come study at 42 in person?

Yes, developing soft skills, peer learning, and peer correcting are central to our learning philosophy, so students need to be at the campus in person.

What are the age requirements for students?

There is only a minimum age limit of 18, and no maximum age limit.

Does 42 deliver any degree or diploma?

The 42 educational model is new in Austria, and it does not correspond to any established certification model. However, we do not believe this to be a problem in the tech sector, given that many companies tend to focus on your skills, your ability to solve problems and work in a team. Moreover, during your studies at 42 Vienna, you will build your own coding portfolio. Lastly, we want to add that in a tech role, you will never stop learning. Technology is constantly evolving, and so will you!

When the student decides to end their training after having completed the core curriculum, the 42 certificate is issued. It attests the final level obtained at 42. Depending on the student’s personal pathway, the level will change from the minimum level for the validation of the core curriculum to an above level if the student validates several thematic branches available in the curriculum, which may include periods of professionalization.

The RNCP6 and RNCP7 certificates will be available only for students carrying out certain projects and requirements. RNCP6 and RNCP7 are part of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF) and therefore recognized across Europe. The EQF is a common reference framework that describes the qualification levels across the European Union. It has eight levels, from 1 (low) to 8 (high).

RNCP6 certificates are equivalent to EQF level 6, which is the level of a bachelor’s degree or a higher professional qualification, more info can be found here.

RNCP7 certificates are equivalent to EQF level 7, which is the level of a master’s degree or a higher professional qualification, more info can be found here.

In Austria, EQF level 6 is equivalent to the “Bachelor” grade, and EQF level 7 is equivalent to the “Master” grade. It is important to note that the equivalence between the RNCP levels, EQF levels, and Austrian grades is general. There may be some cases where a specific RNCP certificate is not recognized in Austria, or where it is recognized at a different level than the general equivalence table suggests.

Do candidates need to know how to code to join 42?

No, not at all! It is not necessary to have any knowledge in programming to join and succeed at 42.

Will I receive any financial support from government or 42 Vienna?

We understand that finding financial assistance is an important factor in your decision to attend our school but please note that at 42 Vienna, we can only provide support for socially needy students from the time of admission (kick-off date) and the start of the curriculum. Kindly be informed that the number of scholarships we offer is limited, and we cannot guarantee that you will receive one. Therefore, we encourage you to follow our social media and website for updates on this and other important information.

Is it possible for companies to apply for real-life challenges to be included in the 42 curriculum?

Yes, companies can apply for real-life challenges to be included into the curriculum. The pedagogical team in Paris, who created the curriculum and update it on a monthly basis, will review the project for suitability. If the project is included in the curriculum, it will be offered as part of the curriculum worldwide.

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