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advice needed?! I don't want to be ripped off

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by danielbh, Jan 12, 2006.

  1. danielbh

    danielbh Bit Poster

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    Hi everyone. I am new to this site but I think I'm getting the hang of it. I would love to begin a new career in IT and am looking into training providers. I am tempted to go for justIT.co.uk, they are pricey - £5000! but for that you get A+, cisco, MCP and more importantly a job guarantee: if you don't find a job within 3 months of finishing the course they repay fees @ £500 a month. Is this a con? am I better of gaining the qualifications myself? I don't want to be ripped off
     
  2. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    Cisco what?
    How many MCP's?

    It's not necessarily a con, but are you sure those are the courses that you want to do?
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  3. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    Hi there Daniel,

    I think that the first question you need to be asking yourself is 'Can I afford £5000'? It is a LOT of money, and ultimately you may find that you cannot complete what is asked of you in the time allocated, especially as some of the certs that you mention are definately NOT entry level, despite what you may have been told.

    The Guaranteed job may well be attractive, but I'll bet that you will have to get through some VERY strict rules to get it.

    My suggestion would be to start self studying for the A+ by buying yourself a book and some old PC's that you can break for a cost of what, £150 at most? At least this way you will be no where near as out of pocket should you decide that IT is not for you.

    If you really feel that you would need the extra things that being with a training company would bring such as deadlines, etc, then see if you can just sign up for the A+.

    Another valuable thing that I will say is not to be taken in by people saying that this offer is for today only. These people work in sales and have targets to meet.

    8)
     
  4. Arroryn
    Honorary Member

    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

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    As Jonny said - which Cisco? There are a few different Certs out there. And which MCP's?

    I'd also read the small print on the job 'guarantee'.

    It's difficult to guarantee work in any industry, and IT is just the same - if not slightly worse.

    Any offers these companies give to you are normally encased in so much red tape, the offer almost never comes to fruition.

    With job guarantees, check for the following:

    • Wages. They guarantee you a job, but above a set wage. So despite them getting you Cisco this and MCP that, if they find you a job that pays 12K or over, they consider their part of the bargain fulfilled.
    • Distance. Often, the jobs they find are up to 50 miles away, and for the pennance wage they often find, it's not worth it or not financially viable to relocate.
    • Course duration - if you take a certain amount of time to complete your course, they consider their offer of finding you a job null and void. Check out any potential time limit.

    Apart from that...yeah. They sound 'ish'. As always, you might want to research other routes, such as self studying (especially for the entry level certs), local colleges and the like.

    Hope this helps. Good luck :)
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, 70-410, 70-411
    WIP: Modern Languages BA
  5. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

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    Agree 100% with Simon on this. Also to take into consideration is what type of job do they guarantee. Technically they could probably get you data input job and class that as an IT job. If you are going to do it make sure you read the small print BEFORE you sign anything. Personally for these types of Certs I would self learn doing what Simon has said.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  6. danielbh

    danielbh Bit Poster

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    Ok from what I understand it is a 12 week course (six tuition, six self study at home), the certs are CCNA, ComTIA+ - hardware, CompTIA+ - operating systems, ComTIA Linux+, MCP XP professional 070-270, MCP windows server 2003 070-290. That's the lot! They say you have up to 18 months to pass these exams if somthing happens to go wrong. They say I don't have to relocate for the job guarantee. I am sceptical and it is easy to get sucked in with the "new career" idea. I nearly signed up to computeach last year but I didn't like their sales pitch and time limeted offer! I will go down to London on the 31st Jan and look at the small print! What do you think of the training from the above by the way? it's www.justIT.co.uk if you wanna look. Thanks
    Dan
     
  7. Arroryn
    Honorary Member

    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

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    The only thing I would say (can't look at the site - web blocks) is that there are a lot of Certs to do there in 12 months. How much of the information do you genuinely think you'll retain? When it comes to a work situation, and they expect you to draw on all of your qualifications, will you have benefited from cramming it all in?
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, 70-410, 70-411
    WIP: Modern Languages BA
  8. _omni_

    _omni_ Megabyte Poster

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    does that 5000 pounds include VAT? does it include the cost of the exams?
    personally i think 5000 is too much for the certs you will be getting.
     
    Certifications: MCSE 2003, MCSA:M
  9. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

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    This is only my opinion but I wouldn't touch it with a bargepole. As Arroryn points out this is a hell of a lot of work to do. 12 weeks todo all that is complete crap. 12 weeks todo one of them is more realistic. Even if you take the 18 months it's still improbable that you will be able to do even half that. Even if you are experienced with IT it's still a huge amount of work.

    I get the impression that companies tend to offer to train you in several certs knowing that 99% of the students aren't going to complete all of the courses but when they areselling it to you it sounds great.

    Do what Simon says and buy a couple of PC's and network them. Buy a good A+ book (Sybex or Myers) and start from there. Also bookmark us :biggrin and help will always be at hand if you get stuck.

    I'm saying this because I hate seeing people desperate to get into IT get sucked in by training companies preying on their hopes and parting with vast sums of money for certs that can be learnt at home.

    For cheap A+ training look on Learndirects website for Cisco IT essentials 1 which is run by a lot of colleges and is basically the A+ syllabus. I did it years ago and it only cost me about £80 for tutor lead training.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  10. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    It's taken me 12 weeks to do 270 and 290, and I'm not finished...

    Edit: I've had a look at the site. Don't sign up for a web design course with them whatever you do. Urgh.

    Then this is stuck on the job guarantee page:

    How do you qualify for the Guarantee?
    We cannot offer this guarantee to everyone. To find out if you have the necessary skills look at the criteria about what we look for on your CV and at interview.


    Apart from being a very long sentence, it gave me no clues as to where to look for 'the criteria about what we look for on your CV'.

    I checked out the 'hot pages' in case it was there. Nope, but there was a picture of Chuck Norris with his head cut off.
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  11. Boycie
    Honorary Member

    Boycie Senior Beer Tester

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    Dan,

    Just picked up on this thread and feel it has all been said.
    In my opinion there is far too much to learn in six weeks classroom training leaving you, what, 17 months to ask them for help via e-mail? .

    Even if you had been in IT for years and just needed the certs to back up your experience then you would be hard pushed!

    If i were you do as Si has said. Mike Myers All in one, a few cheap P2/P3 machines to play and break. :) See if you can get one with Win98, one with 2000 and use your everyday machine (i assume XP) so you can have a play with all the OS covered by the Sylibus.

    Best of luck, post away here when you need help :thumbleft
     
    Certifications: MCSA 2003, MCDST, A+, N+, CTT+, MCT
  12. danielbh

    danielbh Bit Poster

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    Thanks for the advice. Their website is not the easiest to get around but it does have a list of what they look for in offering their 'guarantee' things like 'positive attitude', even a european language!- the list isn't all unreosonable but I wont be signing up for anything without it. I 'm now considering the learndirect route for A+ however I thought I would get some tutor led classes, but they told me it was all online? I think it's 3 courses, the first one is technical support for ICT systems, 85 hours. It's free apparently!
     
  13. danielbh

    danielbh Bit Poster

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    So you reckon they talk people into handing over £5000, then give them a shedload of work to get through which really is unobtainable within the 18 month time limit? That sounds pretty sneaky-can they really get away with it?
     
  14. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

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    All I can say is that it's a hell of a lot of work todo in 18 months mate. As pointed out even if you were an experienced IT engineer it's still a huge task.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  15. danielbh

    danielbh Bit Poster

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    Ok I get the point, I don't know anything much about IT but I can appreciate that it does seem unfeasable to achieve all that in 14 weeks. Even in 18 months I imagine it would be a hard slog.
     
  16. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    I would suggest you do one thing at a time.
    everything you learn will have a bearing on what you do next.
    Doing A+, CCNA and MCP is a bit like buying your next three cars in advance.
    What if having driven the first one a bit you decide never to buy Ford again? Doh!

    Do A+, see how you feel then decide what to do next.
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  17. sebastian65654

    sebastian65654 Bit Poster

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    My personal advice would be avoid this kind of courses, you will not get much return for your investment, the guarantee job that they offer most likely will be Helpdesk\Call centre, which you should be able to find this kind of job if you complete your MCP and you can study all this certification on your own.

    Forget about A+ and other related certifications, because to tell you the truth they will not play a major role when you looking for a job, it may be good idea to read a book on A+, but I would not invest lot of time and resources on A+.
    Do your MCP (XP Professional 070-270) and CCNA on your own and start looking for a job. Most likely you will end up in Helpdesk or if lucky you may end up in desktop support, work for 6-12 months and see where you want go in the industry, and see what you like. There will be many avenues to choose from and you have to remember that the key to IT career success is not in following the crowd.
     
  18. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    I have to disagree with you on this one, the A+ shows a strong understanding of the basics and is the perfect place to start from on the certification path.

    You say that it will not play a big role when you are looking for a job, I personaly believe that it does, for the reasons mentioned above.

    Had I known about the A+ when I started in IT I definately would have picked it up. In fact it is something that I may even consider looking at in the future just to better aid my understanding.

    If Boyce's recent QOTD's are anything to go by, I need it!

    8)
     
  19. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    I too would say this is pretty poor advice for two reasons:
    1. If someone has no background in IT they need something to show they have the requisite knowledge.
    2. If a proper foundation is not laid any structure falls of its own weight.
    I I thought I knew a fair amount about repairing computers until I did my A+. I had read for many years on computer architecture, cpu's, buses, etc... but I really didn't understand it until I did more extensive hands-on and the study for the cert.

    This quoted advice is, to me, is the equivalent of saying, "Forget the fundamentals. Go for the advanced knowledge." That is a mistake every time.

    I was an HVAC technician for approximately 20 years and I can't tell you how many incompetent techs there are. They know nothing about electricity, the fundamental physics of the refrigeration system, etc.... They don't know the fundamentals so they can't do the work.

    It's the same way in the computer industry. You have to know the fundamentals before you can ever hope to really understand the more advanced issues and concepts. Anyone that tells you differently really doesn't understand what they are talking about.

    To repair something you must understand it thoroughly. There are no shortcuts.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  20. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    There is good some good advice here as always 8)

    I would just like to add that I parted with $9500AU to do an MCSE course (seven MCP exams) because I was categorically told by a salesman that it would take me six months. Three years later I earned that MCSE. It was ten times harder than I was led to believe. I know of no other person that attended those courses with me that passed all the exams and attained MCSE status.

    Let the buyer beware!
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)

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