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Hi There! *wave*

Discussion in 'New Members Introduction' started by SpaceHamster, Sep 12, 2006.

  1. SpaceHamster

    SpaceHamster New Member

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    Hello everyone,

    My name is Dave, I'm a 21-years-old ex-student, and I stumbled upon this fine community whilst searching for information about certification the self-taught way. I'm an avid music fan - I listen to anything and everything - and I'm a not-so-closet video gaming geek. I must confess to having a more than slight addiction to World of Warcraft (*hangs head in shame*).

    Anyway, I have a few questions for you!

    I'm currently considering doing a course through CompTIA-Certification.co.uk which would enable me to get my A+, N+, CCNA and MCSA qualifications. The price is pretty good, I think, from looking around various provider's websites (it's £799 for all four qualifications, costs for exams are on top of that), but I'd only be given a year to complete the studies. They suggest that 6-9 months should get me through, but I'm assuming that that's full-time study - I have a regular job, and so need to study in the evenings and weekends. I can do a fair few hours a week, maybe 2-3 each night and more on the weekends, but is that reasonable or completely out of the question?

    Another thing I'm slightly confused about is whether or not I even need to learn via a provider. I've been led to believe that I could quite happily teach myself to pass the A+ and N+ exams. One option would be to teach myself the A+ and N+ certifications, but considering that I'm not brilliant at learning things on my own would it be worth having a tutor for the CCNA and MCSA? What kind of level are these exams pitched at? Also, if I taught myself the A+ and N+, I'd have to pay almost as much to learn CCNA and MCSA (it's a package deal, and the individual components are hideously expensive).

    To give you some idea of where I am, I've spent the last 5 or so years fiddling around with various different computers and set-ups. I'm fully confident in building, upgrading, and maintaining pcs and networks; I consider myself very adapt in working with both Windows XP and Ubuntu; I have working knowledge of other Windows OS's, including NT and 2000; and although I have no formal IT qualifications or experience, I would consider myself an enthusiast.

    Sorry for the long post, and thanks in advance for any help!

    Dave
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: A+, N+, CCNA, MCSA
  2. riaz.hasan

    riaz.hasan Kilobyte Poster

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    hello and welcome to CF spacehamster! self study is a very common route by many, but many also go with the providers...i would say self study is a cheaper way...have a look at this good post by zimbo, it might help u quite a lot :)
    link
     
    Certifications: Degree, A+, HDA, MCP(270 finally!!)
    WIP: MCDST, MCSA2k3
  3. SpaceHamster

    SpaceHamster New Member

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    Brilliant! Thanks for the speedy reply. I've just read Zimbo's post, and consequently talked to a friend of mine who is lending me his Sybex books. I guess I'll have a go at learning the A+ and N+ certifications on my own and see where to go from there
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: A+, N+, CCNA, MCSA
  4. riaz.hasan

    riaz.hasan Kilobyte Poster

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    good luck with your studies! :thumbleft
     
    Certifications: Degree, A+, HDA, MCP(270 finally!!)
    WIP: MCDST, MCSA2k3
  5. wizard

    wizard Petabyte Poster

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    Hi there and welcome to CF :D
     
    Certifications: SIA DS Licence
    WIP: A+ 2009
  6. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    Hi and welcome. I reckon, if (like me) you find it hard to motivate yourself with the old self-studying, the price you quoted for that course is very competitive as long as 1. If you don't finish it all in a year, which is not impossible but unlikely, you get all outstanding materials so you can continue at your own pace and 2. the price you're quoting includes workshops and things. If not, you may as well go down the self-study route. I've never heard of them either so I don't know if they're any good.

    Good luck with whatever you choose.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  7. Boycie
    Honorary Member

    Boycie Senior Beer Tester

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    Hi,

    Welcome aboard. Don't be sorry for such a good intro. :thumbleft

    While that is a very good price for a training provider you need to check what software/resources you will have access to and (like Baba pointed out) if they will give you the remainding courseware after the year is up. Also, what about support?
    Personally, I wouldn't be able to do all that in a year.

    Good luck, with whatever road you choose- CF probably has the quickest response to most IT cert questions.

    Si
     
    Certifications: MCSA 2003, MCDST, A+, N+, CTT+, MCT
  8. SpaceHamster

    SpaceHamster New Member

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    Hi to you all, the warm welcome is much appreciated :)

    Thank you Baba for the advice. I did a little research, and it turns out that the provider would only allow access to the materials for a year (after which, I could continue for another year but I'd have to pay again - half price, admittedly, but still that seems slightly harsh to me), and also there are no workshops, just online labs. Now, to me, it would appear that for my money I'd be getting the course materials, exercise labs and access to a tutor. I think the only part I'd miss if I were to teach myself is the support - if I teach myself, what happens when I can't do something, for example? Of course, you guys have all been there so with any luck you can alleviate my fears!

    It would also be very interesting to hear from someone who has done the certification through a company, just to hear both sides of the argument as it were.

    Thanks again for the prompt replies, and I'm looking forward to my stay here.
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: A+, N+, CCNA, MCSA
  9. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    I agree that the cost of an extension seems quite high, and for the money they're asking you can get all the materials they seem to be offering for a lot less and do it yourself. I'm not sure what, if any, lab software is available, but something like Transcender has simulations in it as well as test questions.

    I'm doing a course through NITLC, and the only part of it I don't utilise is the tutor support. I can always find answers I need here or elswhere on the web and even in these big lumpy things people call books! For my course I get several instructor led workshops which, for me, sets it aside from self-studying.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  10. UCHEEKYMONKEY
    Honorary Member

    UCHEEKYMONKEY R.I.P - gone but never forgotten. Gold Member

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    How long did it take to do A+ through NITLC?
     
    Certifications: Comptia A+
    WIP: Comptia N+
  11. UCHEEKYMONKEY
    Honorary Member

    UCHEEKYMONKEY R.I.P - gone but never forgotten. Gold Member

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    Welcome Space_Hamster!

    Good luck with your studies!

    I guess if you have strong time management skills and study skills you could do the self study route or long distance learning!
    I guess it depends on what your commitments are in life?
     
    Certifications: Comptia A+
    WIP: Comptia N+
  12. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    Dave firstly that was a blinding intro post!

    If you can do A+ N+ CCNA and MCSA in 9 months or even a year, well as my mum used to say, you're a better man than I am Gunga Din :eek:
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  13. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    As long as you like, it's all self-paced. When you feel ready, you book yourself into the week-long workshop and either take the exam at the end of it or go home and stew some more. It took me six months but about three of those I didn't open my books for one reason or another - real life really gets in the way!
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  14. Malnomates

    Malnomates Megabyte Poster

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    Welcome to CF..8)
     
    Certifications: A+ Network+

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