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New Member - Career Change, Experience & Q's

Discussion in 'New Members Introduction' started by NickMarch, Nov 11, 2008.

  1. NickMarch

    NickMarch New Member

    Dear All,

    Firstly Hi and well done for having such a useful forum.

    I'm thinking of getting into the IT Industry and just have a couple of questions.

    My History (in a nutshell):
    About 10 years (I know - a long time!) ago I succesfully completed a GNVQ Intermediate and GNVQ Advanced course in IT. However, I took a job working in a small private law firm (about 30 people), basically doing glorified data input. As time progressed, they were also aware of my aptitude for IT and computers and therefore my role was split inbetween the orignal position and a 'first line of contact' for any IT problems (albeit farily basic user issues) within the firm and then if the problem needed to be outsourced to our IT company I would deal directly with them and became their point of contact also being kept in the loop with any new installations etc.

    2 Years ago I moved to a large law firm in the city where my (small) IT role was no longer needed, although the job pays quite well for my age (29) it is not a career as such i.e. no upwards movements possible unless people leave etc. I believe My real passion (sounds a bit geeky!) and natural skills are in IT.

    Over the last few years I've been well aware of the Microsoft Certification exams but don't know enough about them to even know where to start, I was thinking that the MCSDT was probably a good place? I know for sure that I will have to take a pay cut if I was to jump ship althogether job-wise, so I thought it might be a good idea to study for the MCSDT and to gain some experiance, possibly get a part time job as something like a low level tech support.

    Perhaps I'm talking nonsense and that's why I though I'd post here, to get some feedback from some people that know.

    Any advice, questions or hellos greatly appreciated.

    Cheers, Nick
  2. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

    Hi Welcome :)

    Yes the MCDST would be one of the first certs you should get, may I also suggest you look at compTIA A+ and N+. The A+ is basic hardware & software and the N+ is basic Network both will prepare you for the MCDST.

    If you can get some good experience in networking etc in your future IT job then you could progress in certs such as the MCSA but only after some experience.
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  3. NickMarch

    NickMarch New Member

    Thanks GreenBrucelee,

    I had seen the CompTIA exams mentioned on various web pages but had never heard of it. There seems to be a lot of sites offering deals on courses etc. Have you a preferred site that you would go through i.e. with courses or are they rip offs!?!, some sites look a bit 'dodge' etc or is it viable to simply book the exams and then learn under your own steam?

    Cheers, Nick
  4. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

    most people on here self study, there isn't really a need for a course unless you really need one.

    The best books to get for the A+ are compTIA A+ all in one exam guide 6th edition by Mike Meyers and PC Technician street smarts by James Pyles.

    To pass the A+ you have to pass two exams, one is 220-601 Essentials (this is mandatory). Then you choose either 220-602 IT technician (the one most people take), 220-603 Help desk technican or 220-604 Depot Technician. The last two are normally done if your emplouer requires it so most people just the IT tech exam.

    To book the exams you visit the pearsonvue or prometric websites, you will find your nearest test centre on those sites and you can pay by credit card however the A+ exam are quite expensive about £266 for two including VAT. However you can vist www.gracetechsolutions.com and buy two discount vouchers (make sure you buy the international ones)which knock the price down to £214 then you visit the pearsonvue website and use the voucher codes instead of your credit card.
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  5. Mr Machfisto

    Mr Machfisto Nibble Poster

    Hi Nick

    To add my ten penneth!

    I am not for self study, and even though GBL advocates it, there are still many people on this forum who prefer to use a training provider.

    I have been very successful with my TP.

    I think if you want more info, you are better off sending me a private message and then I can divulge without getting harassed.

  6. kevicho

    kevicho Gigabyte Poster

    Another vote for Self study from me, people learn either through audio visual (i.e using a company such as CBTNuggets), reading, or doing (Vmware labs, which people on here are happy to advise on how to set up if you get stuck).

    The doing part involves using practicals from the books (such as MSpress books, or the A+/Net+ books out there by people such as Mike Meyers)

    The one thing I think that sets apart self study versus a training provider is you are learning for yourself, and you will come up against material which you may want to look deeper into, which is where you build on your research skills, which in IT, is a huge bonus.

    All people are different I just think that training providers are an expensive luxury, but the above self teaching, learning and figuring things out on your feet, make for much better technicians.

    A little short term pain for long term gain.
    Certifications: A+, Net+, MCSA Server 2003, 2008, Windows XP & 7 , ITIL V3 Foundation
    WIP: CCNA Renewal
  7. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

    Hi & welcome to CF :)

    I vote for both self-study and the use of a training provider, not everyone learns the same way.

    Apart from that, I can only echo what GBL has already said :)

    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
  8. Notes_Bloke

    Notes_Bloke Terabyte Poster

    Hi & welcome to CF:D

    Certifications: 70-210, 70-215, A+,N+, Security+
  9. Qs

    Qs Semi-Honorary Member Gold Member

    Hello and welcome to the forums! :)

    Certifications: MCT, MCSE: Private Cloud, MCSA (2008), MCITP: EA, MCITP: SA, MCSE: 2003, MCSA: 2003, MCITP: EDA7, MCITP: EDST7, MCITP: EST Vista, MCTS: Exh 2010, MCTS:ServerVirt, MCTS: SCCM07 & SCCM2012, MCTS: SCOM07, MCTS: Win7Conf, MCTS: VistaConf, MCDST, MCP, MBCS, HND: Applied IT, ITIL v3: Foundation, CCA

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