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As much advice as you can spare please.

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by jollygreen, Mar 9, 2004.

  1. jollygreen

    jollygreen Bit Poster

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    Recently I got a sort of Dear John letter from my employer kindly informing me that in a little over a year my job and the jobs of all my good mates will be given to some Mexican people who will do our jobs for about a fiver a day. Althought out of spite I have vowed to stop eating Doritos I know this is not going to help my career prospects.

    ....Enter the rep from Computeach....(is that a 'bad word' round here or not...lol). I am thinking about (no I havent signed yet) doing the following programme and need as much advise as possible before signing away my social life and a very hefty amount of money

    They call it 'Senior Networking Professional'

    Qualifications promised;

    CompTIA certified A+ Service Technician (A+ Core Hardware exam 220-221 and A+ Operating System Technologies exam 220-222)

    7 MCP's (70-210,70-215,70-216,70-218,70-219,70-217 & 70-2-221)

    MCSA

    MCSE

    core or elective credit towards MCDBA

    I dont currently work in IT but do love (in the correct sense of the word) computers and am forever dismantling,upgrading,trying different OS's ....blah di blah di blah....

    So if you can spare the wear and tear on your fingers to help/advise me it would be greatly appreciated,dont spare the facts even if you think i may not wanna hear what you have to say cos I need to know.

    Jollygreen :?
     
  2. Phil
    Honorary Member

    Phil Gigabyte Poster

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    Hi Jollygreen

    Sorry to hear about the job, good a time as any to get a career change under way I suppose :) I can't really advise you about the training providers since I self studied mine. One thing you will have to prepare yourself for whichever provider you go with is the amount of hard work required to finish all those exams. The quicker you want to get them done the more of your spare time you will need to dedicate to studying and I assume you want to get a good proportion done before your current job disappears offshore. The good news is that as soon as you have a chunk of them under your belt you will be in a far more employable position but in this industry a lot seems to depend on being in the right place at the right time to get that first break.

    Sorry, no real practical advice but it is a big (and expensive) venture you're committing yourself to, no fast buck to be made just a lot of hard work which only begins with the qualifications. Make sure it is what you really want to do before signing on the dotted line. Thats the doom and gloom :) however if you love working with computers as you say you do you'll probably find this is the industry for you. I turned my hobby into my career and can't think of anything else I'd rather do :D
     
    Certifications: MCSE:M & S MCSA:M CCNA CNA
    WIP: 2003 Upgrade, CCNA Upgrade
  3. jollygreen

    jollygreen Bit Poster

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    Cheers for the reply Phil,

    AS you can imagine its a difficult position to be put in but i have the advantage of a decent length of notice and im getting a decent redundancy package. Ive got the chance of a career development loan so ive only got cough up about 20% to get started so ive been quite lucky already.
    Whatever happens ive gotta retrain in something so it might as well be something i like doing.My friends at work find the fact that read books on DOS and Linux as light reading when im on night shifts a little strange in the past.Also i have been in the position of being in a job which pays double my local area wage (semi skilled) so my next career move has got to be into something worthwhile so i dont go to far backwards.

    I live in East Kent so anyone out there with a knowledge of the approx. salaries Im gonna get in my area on completion of all this stuff then I would gladly appreciate if they dropped me a line or two.

    Also if there are any Computeach students out there then i would also appreciate a chat.

    Jollygreen
     
  4. Jakamoko
    Honorary Member

    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    Sounds to me like the time is never going to be better for you go for it, Jollygreen. I only broke free of my stuck-in-a-rut van driver's job after I'd got a few certs and could show I knew at least a bit about what I was talking about.

    Only you can decide, but we will all wish you the very best of luck, and will be here for any help and support we can offer along the way.
    :D
     
    Certifications: MCP, A+, Network+
    WIP: Clarity
  5. flex22

    flex22 Gigabyte Poster

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    If you add me to msn as flex22 I can give you many reasons why I don't believe you should go with computeach.

    Oh, for some reason, a couple of people I get on with actually disagree with me and think omputeach is a good deal.No offence to them, but I don't have a clue where they're coming from, it beats me

    Of course get a balanced view, and talk to other people.At the end of the day it's your money.

    Thanks

    Moderator edit note: sections of this post have been removed due to comments which may compromise CertForums legal standing, all such posts will either be edited or removed
     
  6. Layton

    Layton New Member

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    As a newbie to this site and a former student of Computeach I am surprised to see this type of attitude shown. I thought that this site was going to be supportive and help us advance in this rat race. Maybe Flex has had a bad day and it is all too much for him. Still we all need a break sometimes. Go have a good stiff drink flex, and when you come back to it you will feel a new energy and motivation. A virtual spring in your step. Whatever happened to

    Obstacles cannot crush me.

    Keep it in mind and you may start to actually believe it.

    At the end of the day the only obstacle is yourself.
    :wink:
    I will help you wherever I can.
     
  7. Jakamoko
    Honorary Member

    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    Hey, Guys,

    Firstly can I say it's good to see someone else doing self-certification - good on you Layton :helpread

    Gotta say, though - although jollygreen's original post was for information and advice on Computeach as a specific training provider as opposed to "which Provider do you recommend", I don't think we can let personal opinions of particularly bad experiences with one company be allowed to escalate into an open-air slanging match.

    That's not what we do around here, as it doesn't benefit anyone. If you Guys want to share opinions on a company, please do it "off-Forum". The implications for CertForums as a result of these comments simply jeopardise the site for all of us.
     
    Certifications: MCP, A+, Network+
    WIP: Clarity
  8. Layton

    Layton New Member

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    I just want to put all this into perspective a little. After years working in a dead end job. I wanted to get into the technological age. I parted with my redundancy money and did a Computeach course. I ended up with several City & Guilds certificates in computer programming. Armed with these skills I took several jobs as a programmer. Until settling into my present position.

    Undergoing this transformation is difficult and motivation to study is of paramount importance. At the outset of study it was easy to blame my course provider for my own inadequacies and all course providers have their faults. There comes a time when you realise that you are not just gaining knowledge, but, your whole outlook is changing and you become a different person. A career person.

    You become genuinely interested in your subject and your thirst for knowledge becomes overwhelming. When this genuine interest overtakes you study becomes a pleasure. Computers and programming are not just a means to employment, they are my work and my hobby. My thirst for knowledge will never stop and it is my total pleasure to learn something new. With technology if you do not continue learning you will not keep up.

    Onwards and upwards. The sky is the limit. Study till you drop. But most of all ENJOY IT.

    If you do not enjoy it then do not do it. At the end of the day life is too short and this is not a practice. This is it.

    Sorry for this going on so long, but I rather hope that it will inspire people.

    Self certification. Many people have said that I should be certified.

    :lol:
     
  9. Obi Wan Kebobi

    Obi Wan Kebobi New Member

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    Hey Jollygreen,

    Good to see your starting on a self improvement and learning experience !!! Sorry to hear about the impending Job doom, not good.

    Firstly, why are you looking at a distance learning training provider? is it due to hours of work or are there no alternative Instructor led, classroom based trainers available close to you?Hve you looked into Classroom based?

    If your not already working in the industry, and have little experience other than the h/w and o/s you have now, then you going to need plenty of support and interaction with a qualified proffessional tutor or mentor.

    You will need to decide between distance learning and a full classroom based study programme.

    10 Questions to ask any "learning advisors" (SALES PERSONS) for Distance Learning Packages that make an appointmemnt to visit your house or on the phone .......

    1. What courseware is it you provide - is it industry standard/ recognized such as MS Press/ Curriculum or Sybex or it self produced by the learning provider (term for this is GreyWare - if so could be out of date or no use at all)?

    2. Internet learning - who provides and what certs/stamps of quality does it have. Do they provide Practice exams and at what ratio do they compare to the real exams- ie harder or easier (believe me this can make a difference to a pass or a fail on the day)

    3. Any classroom / workshop time involved - what ratio of students to tutors involved - what is the curriculum within the workshop??

    4. Is it possible to visit their training/workshop centres prior to signing any thing - so you can talk with the tutors and existing students?

    5. IMPORTANT - what certifications do your tutors/mentors hold - (they should at least hold two track qualifications such as MCSE, MCDBA etc AND MORE IMPORTANTLY should be MCT certified. and can they show proof of this fact , if the answers is no or only two MCP's etc - then you'll find yourself more qualified after passing your first two exams!

    6. IMPORTANT - WHAT SUPPORT do the mentors/tutors give - how easily are they contactable by phone (usually premium rate numbers) or email adresses - are these emails answered regularly by the tutors or un-regularly by a non qualified rep?SEE PROOF - if they can provide it.

    7. TIMESCALES - TIMELIMITS - ask them what the time period is "they" expect you to qualify and do they have a cut off point. One thing to remember if their support is non existent or very scarce when you get started you will take invariably longer time to complete, very likely over their cut off point, at which point you will start paying extra fees.

    8. Many companies claim to "Guarantee a JOB" in the industry on passing your exams , are these realistic claims - can they back them up with proof of themselves getting their students into a job position. IS THIS JOB/ MONEY BACK guarantee affected by the time constraints to complete their course?? again if the support is not there, no one is answering your emails, or when they do are skirting round the questions as they are not qualified to answer, or maybe marking your test papers down to slow you down in your quest for certification, or maybe you cannot afford their premium rate line then do you think the guarantees will stand??

    9. IF THEY GIVE YOU A COMPETENCY TEST - throw them out the house and ignore their cries! these "competency test" are one of the oldest sales tricks in the book, to make you think when you pass it , as you deffo will, that you really deserve to take their courses now! its the old double "take it away from em' " ploy. Any company that uses these kind of tactics should be given a wide berth, preferrably in a sinking ship.

    10. Last but not least - what is their pass rate for their students and can you see legitimate proof i.e a list of contactable students (not made up- with the same quotes on promo materials) not the one voice at the end of the phone that gets all the "testemonial/proof calls" A percentage - legit. HOWMANY hardworking students complete their particular course/ packages ??? legitimate proof wanted.
    One other thing before signing anything which has large sums of money from you to "them" read the terms and conditions with scrutiny, do not be pressured on the day, take your time to look at all styles of training and training provider.

    Consider the muse "Are they legitimate qualified Trainers trying to sell their Product, OR, are they just a sales and marketing organisation with training courses as their product!"

    I myself would look at a flexible classroom based course with MCT trainers at least , good facilities and training rooms , extra materials and good levels of support from the staff and trainers. If you can spare 5-10 days every two months then at least look into them, i did and have a first rate support and training experience as i am constantly in touch with them. Never ignored. and believe it or not the prices for the classroom based are not that far away from distance learning courses.

    If you would like to contact me via my email I could let you know of some good alternatives ie. where to purchase coursware ie Sybex or Microsoft Press and e-training + exam prep tests at a fraction of the price that Distance / Selfpaced learning providers can muster, if your determined to be homestudy only then use tech forums like this one to support and help you through! most people who are wise and masterful in the art of IT, are often happy to help young network padawans! or I can give you list of reputable Tutor led training providers as an alternative other than the same ones that seem to be "Advertised" all over this Forum site, i really think commissions should be paid for the amount of times NITLC and Computeach are mentioned on here and absolutely no other providers!!!! (really admin's and mod's - take a leaf out of the Swiss's book and maybe be a little more neutral?)

    Anyway, go well with which ever choice you make, Jolly - and may the force be with you.

    obi
     
  10. Jakamoko
    Honorary Member

    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    Some wise words there, Guys :thumbleft
     
    Certifications: MCP, A+, Network+
    WIP: Clarity
  11. Jakamoko
    Honorary Member

    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    OWK,

    I can assure you that the only reason you see mention of these sites is that those are the ones that the majority of Members use/have used. We in no way "advertise" their respective services, and if you read through some of the other posts on this Forum, you will see we often bring up negative issues with them as well as positive.
     
    Certifications: MCP, A+, Network+
    WIP: Clarity
  12. littlebud

    littlebud Bit Poster

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    I want to thank layton so much. This has inspired me so much that I have made a poster
    to put in my study.
    8)
     
  13. AndyL

    AndyL Nibble Poster

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    Just a quickie, JollyGreen, and nothing to do with which provider but the certs they are offering you are all Windows 2000. I reckon you should be looking at Windows 2003.



    Moderator Note: Spelling corrected and correction post deleted. Please edit posts to correct misspellings rather than making a second post with corrections.
     
    Certifications: MCSE 2000,2K3,MCSA:M 2000, MCSA 2K3
    WIP: Painting the doorframes.
  14. JK

    JK Bit Poster

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    Flex, without starting world war 3 can you explain why computeach are so bad.
     
  15. Obi Wan Kebobi

    Obi Wan Kebobi New Member

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    OK, fair comment - but people looking into IT Training and certification should be made aware of the differnt types of training and providers....and accepted that positive and negative comments about the two mentioned previous but it does seem that distance learning is being championed in these threads, has any one got experience with Tutor led companies to advise the young IT Jedi's? As many seem to be new to the business we call IT, do you not think that they would benefit more by being in close contact with a Tutor ? If the price's were similiar to that of distance learning providers and they did indeed have the time to attend classes?

    Just an opinion....as long as people decide whats best for them and get a good/fare deal then good luck to em! MTFBWY....Obi
     
  16. jollygreen

    jollygreen Bit Poster

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    Cheers dudes and dudettes,your posts have raised many ponderances and highlighted many things to be things to be investigated/considered
    .... so much so that my brain now hurts and my mouse (the pointing thing that i have on my desktop ...as i dont care for rodents) is working overtime... :)

    ...thanks really ppl

    Jollygreen
     
  17. Jakamoko
    Honorary Member

    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    @Jollygreen - glad we stirred some ideas around for you :D

    @OWK - hey, no big deal made, my Friend :) We is all here to discuss all aspects of what we do and love (I mean IT-based :evil: ) By whatever means we achieve our learning is surely secondary to the fact that we're all doing it :clap

    Oh, and by the way - I do the best d@mn Chewbacca impression you will ever hear :lol:
     
    Certifications: MCP, A+, Network+
    WIP: Clarity
  18. Mark

    Mark Bit Poster

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    I started my 2 year course in Oct 2002, which has cost me £4600.
    At the moment I have 4 MCPs (MCSA) A+ and Network +, by the end of my course I will have another 4 MCPs (MCSE) and CCNA to add to the list. At the moment I actually work for an IT company (document solutions provider), as a field service engineer, repairing and installing digital network copiers. So before my course started I had experience of working with networks. I'm not the only one but I have applied for loads of jobs and most of them don't even reply.

    My main point is that if I could go back in time then I would have gone it alone, and saved some money. I haven't got a problem with my training provider, in fact I would say they are the best in the business.

    It has been said many times before on this forum, but different people learn in different ways and at different speeds, I must be one of the lucky ones because up to now I find it all comes natural to me, but I still have one thing missing and that is actual experience adminstering a network.

    My problem is I'm in a not too bad paid job that is boring and sucks big time, and it will mean that I will most likely have to take a pay cut just to get into the industry, unless I can make a sideways move within the company I'm at now and become a systems engineer, but thats unlikely as it's more a case of jobs for the boys.

    So my advice is make sure it was what you really want to do, as you aren't going to make your fortune in IT unless you've got experience and quals.
    Check the local jobs ads and see what the going rate is for entry jobs and availability of jobs.
    Do you need a training provider or could you buy the books and do it yourself?

    If you want to earn money and job security enroll in a plumbing course at your local college!!
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, MCSA+M, MCSE:2000
  19. SimonV

    SimonV Petabyte Poster Administrator

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    Some very interesting views discussed here, I would be interested to here more on the reasons why "going it alone" would be a better option that signing up with a training provider.

    Yes its cheaper but what else?
     
    Certifications: MOS Master 2003, CompTIA A+, MCSA:M, MCSE
    WIP: Keeping CF Alive...
  20. Jakamoko
    Honorary Member

    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    I can understand it would make a lot of sense if you were already employed in IT and had access to "hands-on kit" and people who already knew the stuff, but for many of us Newbies to IT, going it alone would NOT be an option.

    Mind you, saying that, I've made minimal use of the tutors available to me through my Provider

    I guess it's just what suits each individual ...
     
    Certifications: MCP, A+, Network+
    WIP: Clarity

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