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Should there be a practical exam for the A+?

Discussion in 'A+' started by jo74, Apr 3, 2009.

  1. jo74

    jo74 Byte Poster

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    It could involve a virtual PC where you have to partition and format a hard drive, for instance or configure networking.
    And you'd have to install a physical hard drive or put together a PC but having to choose from different types of RAM, hard drives.
    I wonder what book could be used as preparation :biggrin
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, Sec+
    WIP: CCENT, CCNA
  2. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    It would be hard to implement as well as expensive, imo. The Comptia A+ is vendor neutral so they would have to produce virtual machines for Linux (which version would they use?), Microsoft (3 or 4 different versions), Apple OS, etc. Which would pump up exam costs due to licensing. Then for the actual physical part, you would have to employ someone techical to supervise the build, again bumping up the cost of the exam.

    While in theory a good concept, in practice I very much doubt that it'd be workable.

    On a totally different subject the book and CBT Ken's AiO is due for release..., :lol:

    -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
  3. del_port

    del_port Byte Poster

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    If you attend college you do all this already as part of the A+,you are then tested on it and points award in an exam scenario.

    In fact a lot more is done than the few things you have mentioned,we got over 20 hours hands on experience installing and using hardware.We were also tested on our ability to build a pc.
     
    Certifications: A+ and MCDST 70-271
    WIP: mcdst 272
  4. Pheonicks56

    Pheonicks56 Kilobyte Poster

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    Wagnerk, I agree that it is vendor neutral, I however disagree that you would have to have anything other than a MS machine. How much is Linux/Mac OS is covered in study material, and how much is on the test? A negligible amount, so why would this change if doing a physical lab portion for the exam?
     
    Certifications: BSIT, AAIT, A+
    WIP: Network+
  5. wagnerk
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    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    Granted other Operating systems aren't covered as much, and while I can't speak for the new A+ exams, when i did my A+ I did have questions on Linux (I can't remember if there were any questions on Apple).

    If you're only going to be soley tested on MS products, then it would be called Windows+ (just like Linux+), but then again there's the MCDST... Can you be vendor neutral but only concentrate & test on 1 vendor?

    -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
  6. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    ...but most people don't take a course before taking the A+. Where does that leave the majority? CompTIA'd still have to charge extra to cover those costs.
     
    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!
  7. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Still, that's another Windows license... multiple, if you are tested on multiple Windows-based OSes.

    And that still doesn't cover all of the extra costs involved, not only with grading, but also coming up with the changes to the exam, the exam interface, and the exam program itself. These things aren't free... and unlike Microsoft and Cisco, CompTIA makes NOTHING off the sale of hardware or software - they have to pay for their expenses mostly through revenue generated by the exam cost itself.

    The CompTIA exams are already expensive enough as it is... in my opinion, CompTIA'd be cutting it's own throat if they increased them any further.
     
    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. soundian

    soundian Gigabyte Poster

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    The only good thing about a practical exam, imo, is that it might weed out a few more braindumpers.
    Unfortunately, I think the increase in exam cost would be prohibitive.

    Hang on, I've just thought of another good thing; it's easier for me to remember where to go to configure things when I have a PC in front of me so a virtual PC test would be just dandy.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+,MCDST,MCTS(680), MCP(270, 271, 272), ITILv3F, CCENT
    WIP: Knuckling down at my new job
  9. Pheonicks56

    Pheonicks56 Kilobyte Poster

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    This is very true, it's costing me $220/exam and you have to take two. This is a huge expense, especially with the economy today. This is supposed to be an entry level cert, so most people taking this exam either A) are looking to break into IT and probably aren't making sqwat or B) in entry level IT and aren't making sqwat. So either way $440 bucks at the minimum just for exams is expensive. Adding a hardware setup for each prospect to piece together would add at least $10/exam in my opinion which might not seem like much but it would still help to chap my behind.
     
    Certifications: BSIT, AAIT, A+
    WIP: Network+
  10. greenbrucelee
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    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    if you were going to use a book then PC Technician street smarts would come in handy for this.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  11. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    ...until the braindumpers figure out which "practical knowledge" things they need to know for the exam. Then they'll study that, and nothing more... and the braindumping problem would STILL not be solved.

    Case in point, the CCIE exam. Think it's dumped? Oooh, yes, my friend... it is.
     
    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!
  12. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Add $10 per exam? I'd guess more like $100, if not more. You're not just paying for the dude to grade it (and that dude is likely gonna cost more than $10). You've also got to pay for all the other stuff I mentioned earlier.
     
    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!
  13. Josiahb

    Josiahb Gigabyte Poster

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    Which is why of course those IT certifications which have a practical lab exam are god awfully expensive to get!
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, MCDST, ACA – Mac Integration 10.10
  14. del_port

    del_port Byte Poster

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    college is cheap,under £400,or free of charge for some.


    You get a practical exam,and hands on training.
    I should say all this exam will do for you is get you a college pass,not a comptia pass.

    But in terms of knowledge you'll be further ahead than someone who hasn't handled any hardware as part of their training.
     
    Certifications: A+ and MCDST 70-271
    WIP: mcdst 272
  15. greenbrucelee
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    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    you can get hands on lab experience by getting a book that tells you how to do things and a cheap pc too
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?

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