Mark Lutz's Python Training
This page describes the prices of our classes. Its sections:
For class content and setup details, see the curriculum and setup pages. For additional background details, see the about page. To inquire about current availability or to schedule a class at your site, please contact us.
All our classes are in-person training sessions for private groups, where the instructor travels to your site to deliver the training. We use an all-inclusive pricing structure, and publish all our prices up-front here to assist your planning. All prices quoted on this page are in US dollars (USD).
Please note: as indicated in the table below, we no longer teach classes outside North America, and no longer offer classes open to individual enrollments. For classes outside the US and Canada, see the web for providers that service your area. For options for individuals, see our suggestions page.
Our 2016 all-inclusive class prices are as follows:
The prices above are all flat rate, all-inclusive amounts. This means that they include all costs related to the class, including, but not limited to:
Per the prices table above, your total cost includes the base price common to all classes, plus any optional add-on charges for items in the table required for your class. In more detail, the base (starting) price for all classes is $10,000. This base price allows for:
To determine your price, add to the base whatever optional fees apply to your class, based on your number of days, number of students, and payment method. Here are some examples of how this works (the first row is most common and recommended):
You'll find more on the optional price add-ons below. If in doubt, please contact us for a detailed price quote.
If you shop around, we think you'll find our class price to be very competitive, especially for the medium-to-large class sizes that make up most of our business. Here are some perspectives on our price levels.
Per the web, commercial open enrollment classes led by live instructors today average $2,000 per student for the class fee alone. For students who must travel to the class, the per-student cost is likely closer to $3,000 or higher. At those rates, our 3-day classes:
Because we primarily teach larger groups, we've also structured our pricing to increase your savings with class size. Here are our 3-day classes' effective per-student costs:
For the larger group sizes, the costs of comparable open enrollment classes could be more than double or triple our price.
In addition to price benefits, our classes:
But while you shop, be sure to also compare class quality, and get the full story on instructor experience—both in training in general, and in Python in particular. Don't be fooled by corporate training outfits that claim to teach every topic imaginable, but fill teaching slots on demand with lowest-bid subcontractors who may not be qualified to teach a class's subject.
A knowledgeable and supportive Python instructor is key to a successful Python class. While other options are available, we think our classes offer top value for your training investment.
This section discusses the payment options and policies we use.
We accept payment by credit card, check, EFT/ACH, and wire transfer, and can work with whatever procurement and accounts payable processes your organization has in place. Submitting an invoice for a purchase order with payment by check or EFT is the most common payment method. We encourage payment by credit card if this can simplify setup tasks, but charge a nominal added fee to recoup our costs as described ahead.
Naturally, we prefer payment on or before delivery of services, but understand that most clients can't accommodate this. We accept payment after the class, and allow for most standard payment terms. Net30 is most common terms when post-class invoices are required.
To pay by credit card, please contact us for payment instructions. You'll be directed to a payment web page where you'll be able to enter your card and purchase details and receive an immediate receipt. We do not take or store your card details. Instead, we use PayPal's payment service, which allows you to pay with or without a PayPal account.
Please note that we add a $500 fee for credit card payments only, to offset the roughly 3% fee charged to merchants by credit card processing companies. This fee will be itemized and included in the total class price provided to you ahead of time. Cash payments are always exempt from this fee.
If your organization will pay by purchase order and invoice, please allow sufficient time for your accounting process before the class start date. Some organizations cannot hold a class until a purchase order is in place, and others have held up payment for months when their process was not followed and completed prior to the class. If in doubt, please check with your finance people for setup requirements.
Because reserving class dates can lock others out and cause us to incur travel expense, we use the following cancellation policies, which apply to classes cancelled after they have been formally scheduled by verbal or written agreement:
A few words on the last point above: If you must reschedule the class for a later date, the cancellation penalties listed above are generally waived. However, because rescheduling may still cause us to incur expenses for travel already booked, as well as lose revenue for other clients declined, we may add a fixed cost to the newly scheduled class to recoup our losses. Please inquire for details if this scenario arises.
Under our price model, in addition to the class itself:
We do not have or require a formal written contract. In practice, many of the details regarding our agreement (e.g., price, dates) are often spelled out in a purchase order by organizations that use one. We're happy to work with all organizations, whether they do or do not require a contract or PO up-front.
The 3 or 2-day session choice is dependent on client goals and constraints. We recommend the 3-day format to allow sufficient time for topic coverage and lab work. In a 3-day session, we cover the entire language, and introduce more advanced application-level tools and techniques in overview fashion. However, a 2-day abbreviated session is offered as an option for clients with more focused needs or time constraints.
For clients booking multiple classes, please note that separate classes are priced separately even if held during the same week, and any days (up to 3) between back-to-back classes are billed as on-site time, as described in the next section. In all cases, we're happy to provide on request a quote itemizing your total training price.
The total number of class days for which you will be billed generally means the total number of teaching days at your site. It never includes any instructor travel days. A Monday through Wednesday class, for example, counts as 3 days, regardless of how the instructor arranges travel. In more formal terms, the class days total refers to the total number of non-travel days spent at your location. This includes any partial-day classes, as well as any days (up to 3) that may fall in between teaching days.
For example, a class which includes half days on Monday and Tuesday; a non-teaching day Wednesday; and full days on both Thursday and Friday, is considered 5 class days for billing purposes. Similarly, a session that includes 2 extended 5-day classes held back-to-back on Monday-Friday is considered to be 2 classes and 12 total on-site days for billing: 6 base teaching days, plus 4 extra teaching days, plus 2 extra weekend days between. We bill days between classes if they span 3 or fewer days, because this precludes travel during the break.
The $3,000 per-extra-day fee will be charged if you elect to add additional days to the standard 3-day format for any class. Although 3 days is sufficient for most classes and is generally recommended, such extra days can be used to devote additional lecture and lab time for the standard topics (e.g., advanced OOP subjects). Please inquire for more details if you are interested in this option.
Our base prices allow for up to 15 students, and we charge an additional $500 per student above that size. This is intended to discourage very large groups; in the past we've had clients pack a room full of 30 or more students, which makes for limited interaction time, and degrades class quality for all. We recommend class size of no more than 20, and prefer 15 when possible. If your group size is larger than 20, please ask us about options for booking multiple classes.
This section addresses some common price-related queries regarding our classes.
We do not generally discount our prices for classes booked through third-party resellers. Most of our business is direct contact with clients who can find our prices here easily with a simple web search. Although moderate price markups and instructor rate accommodations may be warranted as finder and service fees, please note that charging clients substantially more than our direct-contact prices posted publically here:
We do not provide any of these. In our opinion, they reduce training to media consumption, and sever the mentor/student connection which is the core value of a training experience.
In more detail, and based on two decades of teaching experience, the two primary values of a quality training product are these:
Virtual training formats tend to negate both of these benefits — students are not empowered to focus in a way that's conducive to learning the subject, and there is no live interaction of the sort afforded by an in-person, on-site training session. Even in-person classes are just an introduction to a subject, of course, but they do tend to offer advantages over video and online alternatives, especially for groups with limited learning time.
More fundamentally, learning is supposed to be a struggle, and true training requires a coach. It's only through intense study and practice that any valuable skill can be acquired, and it's only by knowledgeable and immediate feedback that the skill can be honed rapidly. Much like learning to drive a car, learning to program in a new language requires real hands-on practice, and the patience of an experienced person in the "passenger seat" guiding students through those first few intense moments.
Education is an experience, not a shrink-wrapped commodity. Although watching online videos and cutting-and-pasting canned code samples is a kind of activity, it's not really training, and it won't generally impart knowledge of the sort required to work in the software development field. Our classes address just one initial phase of the learning process, but are designed to provide a more substantive experience that can better serve students' needs.
If traditional training isn't an option, your students may be better served by a book, which can provide more in-depth content, may be studied and reread as needed, and may be used at any appropriate pace. Books lack the live interaction and required focus of a traditional class, but can often make up for this in extra depth, richer examples, and pace flexibility. By contrast, virtual training options generally lack both the coverage depth of books, and the interaction and focus of traditional classes. See the curriculum page for more on suggested texts that can serve as content-rich alternatives to our classes for some learners.
We provide only in-person, on-site training sessions for private groups, held at the client organization's site, and not open to outside attendees. Per the prior section we do not offer any on-line options, and we no longer offer classes open to individual enrollments. If you are interested in such options, please search the web, and see our suggestions for individuals page.
Although we don't offer public classes, our on-site class's pricing often makes them a viable alternative to sending some groups to a public class, especially when student travel and time away is factored in to total class cost. See the price comparisons section above for more details.