1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Need some advice, dont want to waste £5,000.

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by cHk4, May 31, 2007.

  1. cHk4

    cHk4 Nibble Poster

    58
    0
    28
    Hello all, well I may be jumping the gun a bit but I am having a meeting with a guy from NITLC tonight in regards to doing a Microsoft Certificate.

    The route I want to go down is programming. And I have been told there are 4 options this company offer. ranging from £3,000 - £5,000 each. Now this is a lot of money to part with as you can imagine and I really want to make sure I am not making a mistake. I know I want to get in to programming, when I was a lot younger dabbling in VB, HTML etc I really enjoyed creating something, understanding how the machine worked, how it interpreted different things so on and so forth. So I know this is what I want to do. I want to do the most expensive one, at the moment any one as I want to get as much under me to do with programming as possible.

    Now I went straight from school basically in to work and I am extremely IT literate. Well I think so any way but this does not matter if I don’t have any paper to say so. Do you think even if I do this and pass I will find it hard to find a job in the ICT sector? Also are they kind of (some people have told me this any way) a golden pass, you go for a job with one of these and they are going to love you?

    Like I said £5,000 is a lot of money which I don’t want to waste, I want to do it from home as I work and go to where ever to take the exam, if there is any other places you can recommend please tell me as like I said im looking to start over the next few weeks to a month.

    Thanks very much in advance for your help,

    Thor.


    Admin (J): Moved to T&D
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: MCTS
  2. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

    19,136
    462
    374
    Things may be different in the UK, but a certificate from a training school is NOT a golden pass to get a job here in the US. Every advantage you can give yourself over your competition is helpful... but will a certificate virtually guarantee you employment? No.

    Personally, when I'm checking resumes of potential candidates, I could care less that they went to a training course and got a certificate. I care more that they have certifications (which are different from certificates) and college degrees. Even so, certificates, certifications, and degrees all pale in comparison to real-world experience.
     
    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!
  3. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

    10,831
    357
    341
    Hi,

    First of all, there is no such thing as a "golden pass", don't buy into the hype :)

    In my opinion £3,000 to £5,000 is expensive for a cert. If you do want to do a cert (or even a couple). I would recommend contacting your local college, for example the IT
    Practitioners Diploma - Software Development in .Net is £230 plus £53 for the exam(price at our local college). Then either self-study or again approach the local college (alot of them are becoming MS/Comptia/Cisco academes), and it's about £300-£500 per MS course (inc exam).
    Anyway, there will be alot of other people with alot more good advise along.
    -Ken
     
    Certifications: CITP, PGCert, BSc, HNC, LCGI, PTLLS, MCT, MCITP, MCTS, MCSE, MCSA:M, MCSA, MCDST, MCP, MTA, MCAS, MOS (Master), A+, N+, S+, ACA, VCA, etc... & 2nd Degree Black Belt
    WIP: PGDip
  4. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    3,782
    302
    184
    Interesting Question Thor, where to start...

    Well firstly it does indeed sound that you may well be suited to a development role so I think your are on the right track career wise !

    As has been mentioned many times on these forums there can be a distinct difference between computing as a hobby and computing as a profession. An expert user is not a sys admin or a developer.

    There is no such thing as a golden ticket unless you live in willy wonker land that is !
    There is never any guarantee that your employer will love you no matter how good you are ! Nor should you expect this love ! A job is largely a commercial agreement between two parties that could end at any time !
    On the plus side I have met developers from many diverse backgrounds, some had no formal training or certifications and it did not stop them having a successful career.

    With regard to getting a job it varies but in general its a sales pitch and you are the goods! You have to remove as many barriers to sealing the deal as possible, having proof of your competence in the form of references, certificates or certifications are all ways of doing this. Its the 'nobody got sacked by buying IBM' principle, make your pointy haired boss feel warm and fluffy and good about their decision to hire you !

    Since it sounds like currently you don't have much development experience professional or otherwise you are right in that you need to train. There are many ways you can do this. When you train even if its ad hoc study you are effectively following a syllabus, even if its one you made up yourself ! To make it easier to prove to a boss that you have trained why not make it an industry approved syllabus ? This is where certs come in. Equally good would be a HND, HNC or degree program.

    Well for home study there’s the open university but I looked at it and it does seem to take an age to get a recognised qualification and a lot of self discipline and dedication.

    This therefore leaves local tech colleges for HNCs and certs really for part time study. Many of the training companies originate from commercial companies designed to offer courses to organisations, here it is common for a fee of £500 per day, so providing you are getting more than 10 days £5000 sounds like a good deal ! However its a much bigger price for an individual to pay without the tax breaks etc.

    I took the HND route myself so can't comment on any individual company but the NITLC web site looks a little too sales based for my liking, little detail in terms of course content and prices !
    A college HNC will cost as well but you can get government funding and the cost per hour of tuition will indeed be much lower. Otherwise I’d look into individual courses from a tech college as stated.

    Self study is a good option but is very time consuming and probably not the best route for starting a programming career from scratch in a short timescale.
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  5. cHk4

    cHk4 Nibble Poster

    58
    0
    28
    Thank you every one for your replies especially in regards to the other routes I could take (Practitioners Diploma - Software Development in .Net, HND, HNC)

    He has been and gone and to be honest he was quiet informative. He said that recently Microsoft have lumped a few things together in the new Microsoft Certificates.

    The course is 36 months long, below is what it covers

    Computing Basics,
    Microsoft Office,
    Introduction to Application Programming (Intro to VB.net and XML),

    Then you do 2 exams
    .Net Framework 70-536 Application Development Foundation
    And .Net 70-526 Windows-based client development


    Once I pass these 2 exams I would get the Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist ( MCTS ).

    After this I would sit a further 2 exams
    70-529 .Net Distributed Application Development
    70-528 .Net Web-Based Client Development


    Once I pass these 2 I would then get the Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist + ( MCTS+).

    Then the next part
    Exam 70-547 or 70-548 Designing and Developing Windows or Web Applications using .Net Framework
    Then
    IT Diploma - Visual Basic.Net Windows Application Project
    Upon completing this I would then get Microsoft Professional Developer (MCPD)

    Then the last bits
    Exam 70-549 Designing and Developing Enterprise Applications using .net Framework (MCPD+)
    Project management Foundations
    MS Project
    CompTIA Project+
    Exam PKO-002


    Then the final bit

    Exam 70-431 Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Implementation & Maintenance
    Exam 70-441 Designing Database Solutions using Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Open License 6.0
    Exam 70-442 Designing and Optimizing Data access using Microsoft SQL Server 2005

    Upon completion of the final bit I would get Microsoft Certified IT Professional Database Developer.


    I mean to my self 36 months seems like a good amount of time, I can complete earlier, I just really want to make the step to start doing something soon. I am not getting any younger. I mean how does this sound to people that know more than my self ? I know what Boson said applies to most cases but on a certificate point of view ?

    Thanks once again :)
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: MCTS
  6. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    3,782
    302
    184
    Well sounds very reasonable for that many certs. How many actual hours of on site instructor led study time does it get you ?

    Cert path is good in that you get recognised certs along the way, this is problem with things like OU !

    Do you want to take 3 years to get the certs ?

    If you don't mind bootcamps and india you could possibly get MCPD in 39 days if you can hack it...

    http://www.koenig-solutions.com/tra...Id=112&CityName=Delhi&hStatus=Budget+Hotel&k=

    £2,340

    Friend did his MCAD there and said they were very good, mind you he had been doing VB for years and was just retraining in VB .NET and getting certs....
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  7. cHk4

    cHk4 Nibble Poster

    58
    0
    28
    He said the site is open from 9am till 7pm Mon to Thurs, 9am till 5pm Friday and 9:30am till 1:30pm sat+sun the tutors are avail if that is what you mean.
    I idealy want to complete the course in a year and a half. The first cert I think will take me about a month to complete just the rest will take longer. lol 39 days damn thats intence! Lol

    Thanks for the link may end up going there :P
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: MCTS
  8. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    3,782
    302
    184
    If you think thats intense they offer a 10-16 day option ! :|

    They do evaluate you for experience so this would not be offered to you !
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  9. cHk4

    cHk4 Nibble Poster

    58
    0
    28
    10-16 days thats just crazy lol, ok so far looks like this option is not bad ( what I posted ) guess I will apply for a loan and hope no one comes back and says nooo dont do it lol :D Thanks once again for your help :D
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: MCTS
  10. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    3,782
    302
    184
    Sounds like best option for you providing you do get some direct teaching and that they let you accelerate the path a bit. It should be possible within 2 years if you really apply yourself.

    Best of Luck !
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  11. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    3,782
    302
    184
    I'd double check prices at local tech colleges and consider all your options before coughing up the £5k! When they are open how do they allocate the lecturers across subjects ? Whats the contention ratio ?

    Farnborough College
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  12. cHk4

    cHk4 Nibble Poster

    58
    0
    28
    Thanks for the link that College is only down the road. Its all done at home so not to sure to the answer to your question :(
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: MCTS
  13. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    3,782
    302
    184
    Well I'd just make sure that you are getting X hours worth of lecturer time a week. I'm not sure how these providers work but there must be a schedule for certain lectures otherwise they'd need aload of lecturers ? If theres a schedule you will only be able to take certain courses at set times. Some providers even limit when you can take the exams. I'd just get the detail on all this, how long does each course take and when is it scheduled to run ? Do you have to turn up or can you view the lecture from home over the web etc ?

    Thats what i was getting at just make sure you know what you are getting.
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  14. cHk4

    cHk4 Nibble Poster

    58
    0
    28
    aaa right I get you, will give him a call again tomo as have a few more questions. Thanks once again mate :)

    Approved - Boyce
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: MCTS
  15. Sandy

    Sandy Ex-Member

    1,091
    2
    65
    Hi

    I am a Open University student and would recommend that you look at their courses. You could get a BSc (hons) in Computing for far less that that. IMHO a degree is of more value.
     
  16. cHk4

    cHk4 Nibble Poster

    58
    0
    28
    Thanks for your feed back Sandy :) All feed back welcome lol :D

    Approved - Boyce
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: MCTS
  17. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    3,782
    302
    184
    I agree the OU is cheaper as is self study, however if you are a beginner to programming and want a kickstart i'd look for some direct tutoring, a formal course will also introduce you to peers who you can learn from. cHk4 mentioned part time study only.

    Thats why i reccomended the HNC/HND route. If you have time of course a degree is better ! MCP and HND qualifications can be used as credit towards an OU degree so this could always be pursued later.
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  18. cHk4

    cHk4 Nibble Poster

    58
    0
    28
    aaa you have a point, I dont really have time due to working 37.5 - 42.5 hours a week. Yea, like you said can always persue later, just a bit confused some places (forums,people) are saying a MS Cert is regarded higher than a HNC/HND and other degree's -_-.

    Really dont want to make such a expensive mistake lol :D
    So once again thank you all so far ^_^
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: MCTS
  19. cHk4

    cHk4 Nibble Poster

    58
    0
    28
    Was thinking about this and well, if from what I gather I can go to any Microsoft test centre and do these ? Not saying I am but if im confident enough I can just go pay the £100 do a test pass ( I hope! Lol ) then get the cert ?

    I mean was thinking over the interviewer, there was something which has made me question things ( apart from the advice ) They did 2 packages on the course I wanted to do
    £4950 for one, £6500 for the other. The first we had to pay for our own exam, the 2nd exam fee's involved ( not re sits though ). He told me do not take the 2nd option as it works out as £150 a exam through them and you have to travel up north (10 exams ). His recommendation was to phone them up when ready to take exam and they will organize it with another company more local to my self and it will only be around £103.

    Now this has really thrown me off. The guy was a more mature guy and seemed to really believe strongly in what he was selling.

    Another thing which has made me start to question it, He briefly showed me a picture when I asked him about what I get I remember there being maybe 6-8 self made books A4 Size then 15 or so books, some which im sure you can buy from the shop. If I decided to learn my self just buying books how would I go about finding the right ones which will teach me what I need to know for the exams.

    Hope this new post makes sense.

    Thanks :D
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: MCTS
  20. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

    5,239
    211
    236
    Programming is a huge field, and unfortunately it often gets lumped into one box for convenience.

    Programming what?

    MCSD/MCPD is a great cert, but it's of no use if you want to do firmware/embedded systems or write games for the Playstation.

    Try to think about what you want to do and then work out how to get there.

    And beware of made up certs - what the hell is MCPD+ ?
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD

Share This Page

Loading...