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Need a little bit of wise advice...

Discussion in 'MCDST' started by DigitalSickness, Oct 5, 2010.

  1. DigitalSickness

    DigitalSickness New Member

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    Hello by the way.

    I am very interested in studying and taking the MCDST (and also doing more courses). I am unemployed with no "useful" qualifications and looking to get my life back on track. I came across home learning that was linked to a job site while searching for work called http://www.homelearningcollege.com. Seems well put together and organized, applied for more information and received a phone call hours later.

    With all the support, and materials provided it seemed a sure thing until the price was mentioned. 1400 pounds :eek:. Since I am unemployed, they were nice enough to drop it by 100 and with monthly payments of 58 pounds. Now here is the part where I am having difficulty deciding, been looking for work for about 1 year with little to no success, don't want to get my self further into debt if I cannot find work within this month or the next. At the same time don't want to say no, as this course will help in my career....and that it is ending soon.

    Any advice would be much appreciated.8)8)
     
  2. soundian

    soundian Gigabyte Poster

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    Self-study.
    That should cost you around £200 for the MSPress books, which come with trial versions of XP, and the exam fees.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+,MCDST,MCTS(680), MCP(270, 271, 272), ITILv3F, CCENT
    WIP: Knuckling down at my new job
  3. Josiahb

    Josiahb Gigabyte Poster

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    Have you considered self studying? If your motivated enough and capable it represents a major cost saving over the various training providers. Its not for everyone but is certainly an option worth considering.

    EDIT: and with prometric currently offering exam packs (see here) which give you a second shot at the exam its definitely worth the attempt!
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2010
    Certifications: A+, Network+, MCDST, ACA – Mac Integration 10.10
  4. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

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    I wouldn't blow £1400 on doing the MCDST. As the guys have said the MCDST can be done self studying. You can always get help on forums like this when/if you get stuck or want advice. Buy the official MCDST books as I found them really good and if you can buy a cheap PC to mess around with if you haven't got one and get yourself a copy of XP (you can download a trial version if money is tight).

    Also try local colleges as some offer the MCDST or similar courses that might be run on night times so wouldn't effect your benefits whilst you look for work.
     
    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
  5. steven88

    steven88 Bit Poster

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    Me mate did the a+ with homelearning college early this year He failed big time! The books were outdated overly technical and they didnt even reply to emails.
     
    Certifications: A+
    WIP: MCDST
  6. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    By self study we mean get the books and practice material and study yourself.

    You do not need a course for any certification just some determination.

    If you get stuck then you can ask on here and it's free.

    When you buy the MS press books you get free trial versions of XP service pack to which you can using by downloading virtual pc onto your pc and installing the trials onto the virtual pc setup this will allow to mess about with xp without damaging your real system.

    The press books for the two MCDST exams cost about £20 each, virtual pc costs nothing and with the MS press books you get discount vouchers for the two exams so the exams cost you £88 each

    And you can get some CBT nugget books so for about £236 including the exams thats a steal.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  7. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Another recommendation for self study. :)

    Welcome to the forums!
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  8. twizzle

    twizzle Gigabyte Poster

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    Do you have a PC running windows xp and office 2003? If so then all you need extra is any book about the exams. Either the MS press books as previuosly mentioned or the exam cram, preferably both. Then just work through the books doing the exercises on your pc.
    I'm not sure if the Jobcenter can give you any money towards a pc or books if you dont already have them. I know they can hlep in some circumstances with some stuff but the rules keep changing.
    Once your happy you know the subject then just visit www.prometric.com and find a test center near you to book the exams. The MCDST consists of 2 exams at £88 each so thats probably the biggest cost to you if you have a pc (if you dont then the pcs the biggest cost and try to get one 2nd hand if you can).
    You dont need years of experience to do the MCDST just knowledge of XP and Office so its not that difficult to study when out of work, so long as your of the mind set that can study at home without distractions and dont need a class room environment to learn.
    Unfortunatley the course isnt taught at many colleges, if you could find one you may get a discount for being unemployed. I would stay away from training providers for this course. They charge too much for it and many dont have good material to study with or lack any support. There are good ones out there, but for the MCDST its just not worth it.
    If your still singing on, i'd speak to the employment center and see if they cant provide a loan or something that covers study material to help you get back to work.
     
    Certifications: Comptia A+, N+, MS 70-271, 70-272
    WIP: Being a BILB,
  9. DigitalSickness

    DigitalSickness New Member

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    Thanks for the help guys.

    I decided not to go for the provided course and get the materials my self. My PC is currently running XP so hopefully I'll get cracking for next week. Plus, with all the spare time I have It can probably be done by january 2011 8) 8).
     
  10. Shinigami

    Shinigami Megabyte Poster

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    Definitely self study for MCDST or A+.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCITP, MCDST, MOS, CIW, Comptia
    WIP: Win7/Lync2010/MCM
  11. willolpl

    willolpl Bit Poster

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    I did the A+ with Home Learning College and found them to be very good and was lucky to pass before CompTIA changed to retaking the exams every three years.The support was also very good via email from my tutor.However after becoming a member of this forum i have learnt that self study,as described by other members can pay off.(Sybem,Microsoft Press etc).
    I was quoted £1500+ by a Training Company to do the MCDST but do to finanical issues i am following the advice given by greenbrucelee and others.
    Here is the breakdown.

    Microsoft Press Books 271,272-Tony Northrup & Walter Glenn £70 in total off Amazon,2 x £74.80 for the test at Prometric(15%discount at rear of books).

    Grand total £219.60
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2010
    Certifications: CompTia A+, MCP, MCDST
    WIP: 70-680
  12. TechySuperOZ

    TechySuperOZ Bit Poster

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    Firstly welcome to CertForums.

    As mentioned from other members, self study is the way to go. Especially if you been using Windows XP regularly. I've been using XP since release and haven't had any problems with the MCDST revision. However share & NTFS permissions were all new to me. Also the Microsoft books provide trial software which came in very handy especially office 2003.

    Training videos are worth visiting, cbtnuggets & trainsignal. Check their websites.
     
    Certifications: CCNA, MCDST
    WIP: MCTS
  13. Darkfunnyguy

    Darkfunnyguy Byte Poster

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    All though it illegal you can get cbtnuggets, trainsignal or Mike Meyers videos cheap from Ebay or even use utorrent to download the free videos.

    Not sure I should have said it on here though. :oops::oops:
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCP, MCDST, MCSA 2003
    WIP: Server+, Vista,
  14. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Umm... no, you shouldn't have. :dry

    You might have another look at the forum rules.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  15. Darkfunnyguy

    Darkfunnyguy Byte Poster

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    I do sincerely apologised, just trying to help the guy who who is unemployed.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCP, MCDST, MCSA 2003
    WIP: Server+, Vista,
  16. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Just because someone is unemployed doesn't give him the right to steal the work that people like me have worked hard to create. :thumbdwn
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  17. Sparky
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    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

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    Disappointing attitude there mate.
     
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  18. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

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    There are plenty legitimate free resources on the web and the cost of a couple of good books isn’t going to break the bank.
     
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  19. nugget
    Honorary Member

    nugget Junior toady

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    No, you shouldn't have.


    To the OP, check out the post pinned at the top of this forum about what you need to know about the MCDST. Lot's of info to get you started there. :thumbleft
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP (270,271,272,290,620) | MCDST | MCTS:Vista
    WIP: MCSA, 70-622,680,685
  20. veloce

    veloce Byte Poster

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    Previously undertook a VB.net course with homelearningcollege.

    While they will happily promise the earth, you will never hear from the sales guy who paints such a rosy picture again (despite him promising to check in on your progress), the tutors are reasonably helpful, but their customer services is downright rubbish.

    I know you have elected NOT to go down this route and instead self-study, just reassuring you that you made the right call.

    Plus you now have the help from the people on this site for any questions you have, not some disinterested customer service pleb:x

    Now if I had known about CF 4 years ago.....
     
    Certifications: A+
    WIP: BSc Hons Computing & IT

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