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Please explain A+ hardware courses to me?

Discussion in 'A+' started by LGS, Sep 17, 2008.

  1. LGS

    LGS New Member

    Hey everybody.

    I'm leaving college soon and I was told about the A+ course, and how it would give me a good qualification for passing it.

    I literally know nothing about the A+ course. The person who told me about it only knew a little, which wasn't much.

    So I have a few questions:

    1. I've seen something called CompTIA that relates to the A+ course, what is it?

    2. What kind of qualification does passing an A+ course give?

    3. I want to do a computer hardware A+ course, is it basically buying books and revising until I feel am I ready to do the test, or something else?

    4. Do you have to take classes for it or something similar? I think I heard that you teach yourself from the books / practical experience, is this right?

    5. When are the tests taken for the A+ course?

    7. Where would I get the books and other things needed?

    6. Would an A+ course be the best thing regarding computer hardware, or is there a better one I could be doing?

    Thanks in advance to anybody who replies.
  2. Dullage

    Dullage Byte Poster

    More specific detail is available by searching this forum but I will do my best at a quick reply...

    CompTIA serves the IT industry as the world's largest developer of vendor-neutral IT certification exams. They 'for want of a better way of putting it' the makers of the A+ Cert (and alot of other certs) and the governing body behind its objectives.

    The A+ 'Tests' will give you an CompTIA A+ certificate which from what I hear is well recognised among the IT industry. NB You do not have to attend a course for the A+, infact most people on CertForums will recommend self study.

    Nope, what you said sounds great. Most people would reccomend the Mike Meyers A+ AIO
    As above; most people here would say so but you can take courses if you wish.

    Whenever you want, you just book them on Pearson Vues website. You can get a voucher from Gracetechsolutions.com which will save you quite a but of money compared to buying the test direct. Make sure you get the one valid for your country!
    Amazon is good for this but their widely available.

    The A+ is a great cert but I don't know alot about what's available, hopefully another wiser member can step in.

    Good luck and check out my A+ Reviewed post as I passed mine on Tuesday.
    Certifications: A+
    WIP: Network +
  3. onoski

    onoski Terabyte Poster


    Hi LGS, and welcome to CF:)

    In relation and answer to some of your questions, the A+ hardware is a generic certification that covers the hardware components of a computer i.e. motherboard, video card, cd-rom drive etc.

    The cert is very hands on and also covers the theoretical aspects of basic computing as well. You can basically purchase the A+ all in one book by Mike Meyers and study at home till your confident and book the exam which is all multiple choice a,b or c type questions.

    Lastly, I'd also strongly advice you buy one or two pentium 3 computers to carry out the hands on aspect as in break and fix put theory into practice. Cheerio and hope this helps:)
    Certifications: MCSE: 2003, MCSA: 2003 Messaging, MCP, HNC BIT, ITIL Fdn V3, SDI Fdn, VCP 4 & VCP 5
    WIP: MCTS:70-236, PowerShell
  4. LGS

    LGS New Member

    Thanks for the reply.

    I recently found out the A+ course is basically on par with what I would get once I finish my BTEC National Diploma in ICT, would anybody know of another self-study hardware related test which would get me more beneficial degrees?
  5. del_port

    del_port Byte Poster

    compared to the btec the a+ is miles behind when it comes to hands on stuff,i've just been talking to someone doing the btec and they are getting amazing amounts of hands on experience,and 1 day every week is spent working for a computer company like IBM for a full year,they take laptops and pcs apart frequently.

    You just won't get this level of experience in the A+ ,if you go to college you will roughly get 20 hours hands on experience over a period of 17 weeks,equivalent to an hour a week,btec folk are doing a year or two and hundreds of hours of hands on experience.So for hands on the btec is miles ahead,for written word and studying documents the A+ looks the best.

    They won't let you rip apart laptops in a college,they will in btec,they will also be carefull about what they allow you to do on the A+,some of these people are beginners after all with next to no computer knowledge the btec allow you to do what you want.

    if you believe the a+ literature you would think the a+ is more hardware hands on than it actually is,the reading and tests take up the majority of time,hands on is secondary.

    I would like it to be the other way around,where hands on takes up most of the a+ but that isn't the reality.

    Even if you are doing self study you could pass this exam just by reading books and never opening a computer,not suggesting anyone should do it that way,i'm just pointing out that hands on is not important to the college.

    for fun i'd do the btec,for the hands on experience,and do the A+ afterwards.
    Certifications: A+ and MCDST 70-271
    WIP: mcdst 272
  6. Markyboyt

    Markyboyt Kilobyte Poster

    TBH LGS, as far as im aware, you can self study for the majority of quals and certs in IT, you could study for a cert that would be relevant to server administration if you wish, you wont get a job off it due to lack of experience though. I would advise (as would everybody else) that you get the basics in place first. Look at A+, Microsofts MCDST and maybe CompTIA's N+ but no further without relevant experience within an IT role.
    WIP: A+
  7. LGS

    LGS New Member

    Thanks for the help, but you've kind of confused me.

    You're saying it would be better to get a job from my BTEC ND course and gain experience before trying for another qualification?

    I also have another question:

    What courses would be better suited for computer hardware for when I leave college other than A+ then, if I want to do jobs suchas repairing, building etc?

    I would prefer one I could do myself, so if there are any like that out there it would be great to know about them!
  8. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

    I would say go for the A+ anyway, BTEC or degree doesn't mean you are up there. Being told that was the kind of crap I was told when I did my HND.

    Another qualification can't help even if it is easier than you BTEC. I am not sure on any other hardware related certs but like I said getting both A+ exams can't hurt your chances of employment.
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?

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