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Opinions on OU course

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by andy404, Dec 4, 2006.

  1. andy404

    andy404 New Member

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    Hi all,

    It seems that the general advice given to those looking to gain employment in IT (such as newbies like myself) is to go for the A+ and Network+ certs, but what about courses such as this one from the OU? I would really value any opions on the merits of such a course. Do you guys think this qualification would be usefull when applying for jobs in IT?

    Thanks to anyone who takes the time to reply
     
  2. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    Um, isn't this the same course that you asked about here?
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  3. andy404

    andy404 New Member

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    Yep same one!

    Figured that it might be better to post the question here, just hoping to get a few more opinions!
     
  4. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    I'm doing that one (I think - I went off on a tangent).
    I can't fault the OU on its material - the only problem is that it does take you a while to get anywhere - about 3 or 4 years for a diploma.
    That may be why many people choose the A+ N+ self study route.
    A diploma is also an odd qualification. What is it exactly?
    I've never seen a job ad saying 'must have a minimum of a diploma'.

    Oh well...
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  5. fsimeta

    fsimeta Nibble Poster

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    Now this is only IMHO, but I did M150 and T175 with the OU as a kind of taster for getting back into IT (even though I never really left :). Both courses were well presented and support was minimal (similar to any self-study course), but I found the assignments to be very abstract in relation to IT.

    In other words, a lot of waffle about IT subjects but not a lot of practical experience (such as learning and applying A+ or N+) so I stopped doing my course there and took up an MCSE track with NITLC.

    Just my opinion though, you may find it suits you well. Good luck whichever path you choose :biggrin
     
    Certifications: Comptia A+, Comptia Network+
    WIP: MCP, MCSA, MCSE, CCNA
  6. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    Fair point.

    I did find it odd that while studying object oriented software development I had to print out my TMAs and post them to my tutor. Then at the end of the year had to sit a paper based exam.

    Programming is complicated enough anyway, but at least in an IDE you get a clue is you go wrong (intellisense in Visual Studio even tells you what it is you are trying to write).
    But writing code on a piece of paper? Try de-bugging that!
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  7. andy404

    andy404 New Member

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    Thanks for the replies. I've already started to self study for the A+ cert which I want follow with Network+. I was planning on doing the OU course at the same time, but I dont want to spend 2yrs (and over a grand) on something thats of no benefit when applying for jobs. My thinking was that it can't hurt to have an extra qualification to add to the old CV! Not sure now though!
     
  8. Baba O'Riley

    Baba O'Riley Gigabyte Poster

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    I wouldn't take on two things simulaneously. Why not get the A+ out of the way first and see how you want to go on from there?
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+
    WIP: 70-270
  9. Sandy

    Sandy Ex-Member

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    Hi

    I am currenlty doing an OU B Eng (hons) degree, also plan to go onto a MSc in Information Systems, and the DipIT is included in my degree profile. I have found the teaching materials from the OU top class and the support from tutors outstanding.

    The Dip IT is an intimediate qualification so if you don't want to do a full 360 point degree you can walk away with a 120 point diploma at level 2 and 3.

    Doing any University course is quite diffrent than a, A+, N+ or MCSE, I am a W2K MCSE with both A+ and N+, in that it is taught from an academic view and not a vocational view, you learn about learning and how to write about a subject.

    For the job market A+ and N+ will serve you better in the short term.

    Good luck in what you do.
     
  10. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    Well, the dip is a stepping stone to a degree. It's an academic rather than vocational qualification, with different aims and different outcomes.

    Certification is vocational meaning it's suited to a practical end result, has a short lifespan and is pretty useless if you move industry.

    Academic accreditation such as a dip or degree is geared less towards specific procucts, and more on theory but is still considered beneficial even if you move industry.

    I've just completed an OU degree (am awaiting final results) but if I pass my degree will be of benefit even if I apply for a job at lidl as a trainee manager, whereas my certs wont!

    I guess it depends on what you want...
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  11. Fire guy

    Fire guy Bit Poster

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    I can't add much that has not been said by other people here already. I would like to say though that having done M206 and MT262 with the OU I can't recommend them highly enough. Those courses were very well written with all of the points explained clearly so that I ended up with a very good grounding in OOP programming concepts and the C++ language. It's worth baring in mind though that different courses are prepared by seperate teams and because of this the quality can vary.

    I agree with jonnyMX wholeheartedly about the written exam, I found that highly frustrating and not at all a good representation of what would happen in a real world situation.

    It is also true that the courses are not as flexible as other home study offerings I have seen as you only get 1 opportunity to start the course each year which I have to say is a bit odd for the country's largest provider of home study. Having said that I know that I have retained a lot more of the info from the OU courses than I will from self study for A+.
     
    Certifications: A+
    WIP: N+

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