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SKILLSTRAIN SHOULD I or Should'nt I

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by stueyxxx, Jan 22, 2006.

  1. stueyxxx

    stueyxxx New Member

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    Hi All,
    I have no IT experience but have spoken to skills train rep.

    I am thinking of doing a A+ and N+ foolowed by an MCSE.
    The cost £3600 paybel over 36 months interest free. They also reckon they can guarantee getting me a job for £25K within 3 months of passing MCSE or my money back for the course.
    Because I am in security at the moment and can do course at work as well as at home they think I could pass in 10 - 12 months.

    I would like to know
    1/ has anyone else passed with skillstrain
    2/ has anyone got a job through their guarantee scheme
    3/ how quick have people passed
    4/ are there any hidden costs.

    I look forward to hearing your experience's with this type of training
    Regards
    StueyXXX
     
  2. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    Stuart, I would strongly urge you to spend a considerable amount of time reading through past threads in our Training and Development forum. You will be enlightened for sure. The truth is that using any training provider can turn out to be a success story or as is far too often the case, it can turn into a disaster.

    You are a newby to IT and they think you can do A+, N+ MCSE in 12 months :eek:

    I would think that is highly unlikely. Just the MCSE took me 3 years full time study. I was not a newby.

    These exams are tougher than they are letting on. Don't be fooled by salesman's tales of easy riches. Take what they say with a large pinch of salt.

    Do your own research on the company. Try and get in contact with other students that are studying with them now.

    The main reason I prefer self study is that my training provider went out of business half way through my MCSE, just as the going started getting tough. So, I had to self study, the instructors had gone and the building was locked up. This has happened to others too.

    Good luck,

    Pete
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  3. law123

    law123 Byte Poster

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    I would want that in writing yes they may find you a job but not at £25K. As I have said many times before at least do a bit of self study first A+ seem to be a good point to start find out if you even like IT before you pay out a lot of cash.
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: A+
  4. Jakamoko
    Honorary Member

    Jakamoko On the move again ...

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    Large dose.
     
    Certifications: MCP, A+, Network+
    WIP: Clarity
  5. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    stueyxxx,

    What is your background? Are you a somebody just entering the job market for the first time or have you already been working in some field of endeavor already?
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  6. stueyxxx

    stueyxxx New Member

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    I have hit a dead end in my career, and I am looking to retrain, i am middle aged, but not too old to learn new tricks.
    I am also after new skilss which would be recognised internationally.
     
  7. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    Welcome to the club. :rolleyes:
     
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  8. troubledtony

    troubledtony Bit Poster

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    hi all
    Stu i have just been down the same route as you, what to do who to get training from etc, most of the people i've spoken to have said that if you're dedicated and commited thst there is no reason not to get the A+ etc course specs, buy the excellent books, acouple of donor pcs and teach yourself, after all if you pay someone 3 grand essentialy thats what you'll be doing anyway. Thats the route i'm taking anyway, borrowed books from library until mine arrive and pitched in, loving it too, learnt so much already! There is another benefit of ITY ( IT yourself) is that if you find you don't like it you've only lost a small amount of cash and if like me you've got other domestic considerations thats a big plus. Good luck which ever way you do it.
     
    Certifications: none
  9. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    Well, then you know how long it takes to develop skills in a profession. IT is a highly skilled profession. Do you really think it's possible to attain the equivalent to the skills of several years of experience in a highly skilled profession in 12 months of training? If you have a college degree you know just how much your schooling really prepared you for the work place. It gave you very basic skills. The rest you developed through years of experience.

    What the "training providers" are trying to promise people is that they can give you the equivalent of several years of experience in 12 months. You and I know that's impossible no matter how much they promise.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  10. troubledtony

    troubledtony Bit Poster

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    The job garauntee thing.. I'm a marine engineer team leader at the moment and have just finished interviewing for two engineers and i did not take on the newly qualified apprentices because they have no real world experience especially for when it all goes very badly wrong and it does sometimes, simple things break in simple ways and complex things can be a nightmare, i'm not sure i'd risk my business on paper experience.
     
    Certifications: none
  11. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    Why not do one thing at a time?
    A+, N+ and MCSE is comitting yourself to many years of study. What if you struggle on A+ and decide that this IT malarky isn't for you after all?
    Why not just start off with A+ and see how you get on?
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  12. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    This is sound advice for sure!
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  13. Muir

    Muir Bit Poster

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    As the others said, take it slow, learn at your own pace and you'll find it a lot more rewarding. These courses are not easy and you need to put in a lot of work to pass so the best bet is learn at your own leisure as the 'training provider' will keep pushing you and if you don't pass it time then you'll lose all your money and any change of the mythical job guarantee. Self study all the way
     
    Certifications: Degree, HND, MCP (305, 306, 229)
    WIP: MCDBA
  14. stueyxxx

    stueyxxx New Member

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    Hi all you lot, I am listening, and taking on board what ya saying.
    But please keep the comments coming
    But thank you for comments so far
     
  15. stueyxxx

    stueyxxx New Member

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    ok then I will go for a self teach A+ and maybe an N+ can anyone recommend a the best books to get, and advise where the best place to go abd get these books
    Thanks gang in advance of your answers
     
  16. ffreeloader

    ffreeloader Terabyte Poster

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    Get the Mike Meyer's book for A+ and N+. I would also recommend outside reading so you get very good fundamental knowledge.

    The best book I know for teaching the fundamentals of networking, tcp/ip, is to be found here. Having a strong understanding of this will put you head and shoulders above many people in your networking knowledge and ability to troubleshoot networking problems.

    I would also recommend that you get to know Google very well. It is probably the one indispensable resource in your studies. Learn how to phrase searches. Learn how to research. It will pay big dividends.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCDBA, CCNA, A+
    WIP: LPIC 1
  17. darrenecm

    darrenecm Bit Poster

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    I am on this Skillstrain course for A+ N+ certification.

    First of all that £3600 price you have been given is incredible. I am paying £2000 for apparently the same course you are considering. Such a disparity is unnerving. However during my talk with the so-called course advisor I did mention the fact I was looking at other course providers before we even started talking about course fees so maybe he was swayed to give me a good deal from the off. This goes to show that these course advisors who visit your home are primarily sales people.

    I've also seen posts in these forums about whether the fees you pay include the CompTIA exams. After speaking to Skillstrain I am told that these exams are indeed included in the course fee. However, what they do not make clear is that after you complete the course, you have to again shell out cash yourself for the CompTIA exams after you have registered for them, but Skillstrain reimburse you the cost of this later. I asked the Skillstrain rep on the phone where in the documentation the advisor left me is the reference to this reimbursement procedure and she pointed me to a single addendum leaflet that comes with the Netpro: Plan of the Course booklet. She explained that paragraph 7 explains this reimbursement process. Oddly enough my addendum leaflet does not have a paragraph 7. She is sending me this 'updated' documentation.

    You will also likely find that the course advisor/salesperson who visits you will go to great pains to point out that Skillstrain guarantee that (in the words of my advisor) "If you fail the exam you will be able to retake it at no extra cost."

    What he/she doesn't tell you is that this doesn't refer to being able to retake the CompTIA A+ N+ exam again at no extra cost. Apparently it misleadingly and implicitly refers only to some exam which is internal to Skillstrain - presumably the pass/fail tests that you take as you progress through the various TMA (Tutor Marked Assignment) stages of the course. There is some brief paragraph in the mass of documentation you get that says the following:

    "Both the CompTIA A+ and CompTIA N+ examinations are proprietary and are outside the Skillstrain guarantee scheme".

    So in effect this guarantee is worthless as it seems to have nothing to do with the actual CompTIA exam you are taking this course for in the first place.

    If anyone else out there is on a Skillstrain course you can send me a Private Message or email to (darrenecm@hotmail.com) and we can share experiences and clarify things.
     
    WIP: A+, N+
  18. law123

    law123 Byte Poster

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    I hope the link here can answer your questions on what book and where to get it.
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: A+
  19. Arroryn
    Honorary Member

    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

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    This is information that should be highlighted to whoever has a Skillstrain interview. I know salespeople give the 'hard sell'. My £3500 course fee covers A+, N+, CCNA and CCNP, which in the world of training providers, isn't too bad.

    I was 'lucky' in that I knew the score on the exams. The 'salesperson' that visited me didn't give any hard sell on that area. I wasn't expecting the course fees to be paid for me up front.

    But a good point, well made.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, 70-410, 70-411
    WIP: Modern Languages BA
  20. darrenecm

    darrenecm Bit Poster

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    How far into your course material are you Arroryn? In all honesty I do not expect to fail the CompTIA exams as I already have extensive knowledge so this whole issue of the guaranteed free resit of exams my be moot for me.

    My only concern about this though is that it may form a loophole to any complaints should Skillstrains' course content, and the competency of its tutors, turn out to be woefully inadequate in preparing a student for the official exam.

    Maybe you and others who are some way into their course material can give those of us who have just started some reassurance that what you are recieving seems adequately comprehensive and appropriate for the CompTIA exam demands?
     
    WIP: A+, N+

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