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How long to complete A+

Discussion in 'A+' started by Carl S, Apr 24, 2005.

  1. Carl S

    Carl S New Member

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    Hi people, I started my A+ course for core hardware and os last week, and was just wondering how long it would roughly take me to complete the whole course. I know different people take different amounts of time to complete things, but I would like to hear how other people got on, so I can work out some rough timescales for myself. I am a total novice regarding computer hardware and os (I can use a computer fine but have no idea how it all works), and I am studying long distance with the Computer Training College, although I can do the practicals locally - which is a big bonus!
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: CompTIA A +
  2. Jakamoko
    Honorary Member

    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    Hi Carl,

    If you've literally no experience, you should really try and get hold of an old banger of a PC that you can really practice stripping and dis/assembling again, aka "getting your hands dirty". If you can do this, and really capture the bug for it, then sheer enthusiasm (and effort) should see you ready to take at least the first exam in maybe 2 months or so, if not both.

    As you say, this is really the "piece of string" question, but jump in with two feet, and you'll soon get a feel for how you are progressing.

    btw, why not jump up to the New Members area, and give us a quick intro - other than that, good luck with your studies :)


    EDIT:
    Oops, just realised you already did :oops:
     
    Certifications: MCP, A+, Network+
    WIP: Clarity
  3. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    As you pointed out Carl, different people learn at different rates. In my case, when I entered my program, I was a total newbie to hardware and os maintanence. I studied the A+ material both in class and later on my own for probably 6 to 8 months before I took the actual certification exams.

    I had plenty of "in-class" experience with the hardware material so I was pretty confident I'd pass but the OS section intimidated me. It was hard for me to conquer stuff like "DOS Memory in a Windows World". Hexidecimal and memory spaces are pretty slippery concepts...at least for me. I had to do alot of extra self-study to get a command of the material.

    Needless to say, I was pretty nervous on test day. I decided to take both the Hardware and OS portions of the exam back to back to get it over with. Long story short, I passed both tests. Besides my class material, I used the Mike Meyers book which had everything I needed to prepare myself. Only one question took me completely by surprised but I "guessed" correctly (looked up the answer later).

    Please keep is mind, the time frame cited above is only mine. You may grasp the concerts faster or it might take you a bit longer.
     
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  4. Boycie
    Honorary Member

    Boycie Senior Beer Tester

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    Hi Carl,

    I like you was new to computers before embarking on the A+ course. I have taken my time and in all honesty gone over and over the syllibus many times! I think I took the Core after about 2 months and that was 4 months ago!
    I am hoping to take the OS soon!
    Good luck with your study :onthePC
     
    Certifications: MCSA 2003, MCDST, A+, N+, CTT+, MCT
  5. Fergal1982

    Fergal1982 Petabyte Poster

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    it depends on ure style and how much u study. ive been at it almost a year now, but i initially read the book from cover to cover, and and now going through it taking notes - but i havent been that intense about studying lately

    Fergal
     
    Certifications: ITIL Foundation; MCTS: Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2010, Administration
    WIP: None at present
  6. Carl S

    Carl S New Member

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    Sorry guys I should have stated that I am doing this course in my spare time. I already have a pretty awful 9 til 5 job and this course is my way out of what im doing at the mo and in to a career that i have always wanted to be a part of. I also have two children under the age of two (yes, i have been busy!), so I really have to make spare time for this course. I do about 2 hours a night on weeknights and 3 - 4 at weekends
    By the way I do have an old banger of a PC that I can muck about with and pretend to know what I am actually doing. Its great fun!!!
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: CompTIA A +
  7. patientx

    patientx Nibble Poster

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    I work various shifts, 6.00am till 12.00 noon....12.00 noon till 6.30pm......4.35pm till midnight. I have no kids though,i tend to study during the night till 4.00 am. I would say for a total beginner, at least a year to grasp the whole content of the hardware and software section. Might i also add that i used dos way back in the early 90's as well, so that helped a little and I have built many pc's.

    Use all the various online mock exams and practise like hell, and i found the Mike Myers books and exam cram 2 books very usueful.


    Cheers,


    Stevie
     
    Certifications: Comptia A+,Network+ MCSA.MCSE
    WIP: Ccna, Cwna, Ceh.
  8. nugget
    Honorary Member

    nugget Junior toady

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    If you can do this now then you'll be up and running in no time mate. My hat's off to you.:D
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP (270,271,272,290,620) | MCDST | MCTS:Vista
    WIP: MCSA, 70-622,680,685
  9. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    Wow! You are busy, Carl. I know how tough it can be.

    When I was in school studying for this career, I was working full time and going to school full time plus studying at night and attempting to maintain some sort of relationship with the wife and kids. It wasn't easy but it was do-able. I like studying early in the morning because the house is quiet and my mind is more active than it is late at night (guess I'm not a night owl).

    I'd take a book to work and study at lunch as well. You'll probably have to be pretty creative, especially with two little ones at home. There's no easy way to do this as a family man. My hat's off to you.
     
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  10. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    I came at the A+ from an experienced perspective. I already work in IT Support and have many years of experience in older legacy hardware right up to the latest stuff. I'd never heard much about the A+ or other CompTIA stuff until chatting with a fellow technician recently, so I decided to have a crack at it.

    I went through the Learnkey A+ course (PC Video based) quite quickly in about 2 weeks, then spent a few days running through lots of exam questions. I found the latter quite useful as it allowed me to focus on questions I was getting wrong. Even though this stuff is my 'bread and butter' I didn't really feel I was quite ready and was also a little nervous. I think I was more worried about wasting the money the exam had cost me more than anything else. :) I passed it though and have the OS exam in a couple of weeks.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCP, MCDST, MCSA 2K3, MCTS, MOS, MTA, MCT, MCITP:EDST7, MCSA W7, Citrix CCA, ITIL Foundation
    WIP: Nada
  11. nugget
    Honorary Member

    nugget Junior toady

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    How did you find the vids? I'm using cbt nuggets ones at the moment and to tell the truth I couldn't get through A+ just with these. I find they cover either a lot of topics in little detail or a few topics in greater detail and also some topics that just aren't necessary, but nowhere near enough detail for all topics that we need as technicians.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP (270,271,272,290,620) | MCDST | MCTS:Vista
    WIP: MCSA, 70-622,680,685
  12. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    I found the LearnKey series just fine (can't speak for CBT), although I realised I didn't take enough notes when going through the hardware part of things. I think that is the key (certainly for me) with these video based courses. Taking notes as you go along helps to make the material sink in. The learnkey A+ course is actually presented by Mike Meyers, who seems to be somewhat of an authority on the certification.

    For me though, I didn't really learn much, mainly because it's all stuff I have covered through practical experience over the years. Some parts were a bit of a refresher and also I wanted to make sure I wasn't missing out on anything I needed to know so I went through the whole lot.

    I did enjoy Mike Meyers approach though. He emphasises things that CompTIA will definitley test on, and sometimes mentiones things that he thought would be useful for you to know, but stressed you wouldn't be tested on it. He was quite charismatic I though and delivered it very well.

    I did have a chance to sample one other A+ video course, and put it this way ... It's a good job there wasn't a noose or a gun handy because after a couple of minutes viewing I felt like topping myself.

    So overall, I think the video training can be very good, depending on it's source. I certainly far prefer it to just sitting reading a book. It can be an expensive option though, so it has it's pro's and cons just like any method of trainiing.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCP, MCDST, MCSA 2K3, MCTS, MOS, MTA, MCT, MCITP:EDST7, MCSA W7, Citrix CCA, ITIL Foundation
    WIP: Nada
  13. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

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    Carl, It took me around 2 months to do the A+ from picking up the book to doing the exams but I have a strong background in Hardware and software. If your a novice then you want to take your time with the A+ as pointed out every person is different so there isn't really a timeline to stick to only you know when your ready for the exams...:D
     
    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

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