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Taking MCSE with the NITLC

Discussion in 'General Microsoft Certifications' started by bentleyboy, Aug 6, 2006.

  1. bentleyboy

    bentleyboy New Member

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    Hi all,

    I've been speaking to one of the guys from the National IT Learning Centre (NITLC) just recently about embarking on the MCSE course with them.

    Now, firstly, is anyone familiar with their training style and also the route they propose to attaining the MCSE? Having been shown the course outline and more details besides, it goes something like: -

    http://www.nitlc.com/CourseMCSE.aspx

    Now, in addition to that, the CompTIA certs come before the MCP and between the MCSA and MCSE stages, there is a study towards the CCNA.

    The training advisor I spoke with from the NITLC suggested that two years was plenty time to complete this programme. I'd like to hear from seasoned IT-types whether they think that is realistic.

    Just for your info (If it makes any difference, but at least may save you time when writing your replies) i'm 26, highly (self) motivated, have NO IT qualifications whatsoever but do like to 'faff' (as my other half likes to call it) at my PC every night!

    Any feedback would be most helpful to me (As long as it's appropriate)

    Thanks,
    Andy
     
  2. zimbo
    Honorary Member

    zimbo Petabyte Poster

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    Hi, i havent been on this *course* but i am working on MCSA. I had some support experience as well as A+ and one year later after studying properly im still not MCSA - so no i dont think in 2 years you will be able to cover all that!:blink

    2nd i want you to pick up this from that link
    - this means you all by yourself at home reading the books right? And this *studying* at home is going to cost you and arm and a leg right? then give this a read.

    Also i suggest you do the A+ first then the Network+ before diving into the MCSE... which by the way could take more than 2 years on its own!
     
    Certifications: B.Sc, MCDST & MCSA
    WIP: M.Sc - Computer Forensics
  3. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    The MCSE took me three years and it was much harder than I expected or had been led to believe prior to signing my life away :eek:
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  4. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

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    I’m studying towards the MCSE with NITLC as well, it cost me FA as I used the redundancy cash from my last job to pay for it.

    I’ll make a bold statement and say there is absolutely no way whatsoever you will be able to do the A+, Network+, MCSE and CCNA in two years. My advice? Ask the guy who is selling you the course to add an extra year onto the tutor support. After two years you will have to pay an extra 10% to keep training with them.

    Zimbo makes a fair point that the self study route is an option. NITLC do provide additional materials from what he has listed as usable study guides and also there are workshops included up until MCP 70-270, handy if you are not working in IT and need to speak to other students. Furthermore you can download some practise questions from their website which are very useful. So far I’ve just used the materials provided from NITLC to gain my certs (apart from my degree!) along with Technet and other free resources on the net. 8)
     
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  5. Boycie
    Honorary Member

    Boycie Senior Beer Tester

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    I agree with Sparky. In my opinion, for someone who is <clued up> but isn't certified would be hard done to do all said in two years.

    Si
     
    Certifications: MCSA 2003, MCDST, A+, N+, CTT+, MCT
  6. bentleyboy

    bentleyboy New Member

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    Well, thanks for the extremely rapid response there you lot! That's certainly given me food for thought.

    I kinda thought two years was unrealistic for ALL of that, given the way these certs are discussed on this forum. So, I'll go back to the advisor and see what he says. I know that that is what I want to work towards, but I don't want to find myself struglling at EVERY step because of time restrictions.

    I have my PDR (Development Revew) at work tomorrow and I'm going to mention them funding me for this course! Now, I know that i'm going to need all sorts of luck to pull that one off and come out with a positive result!

    So, to complete the A+ and network+, how much should I expect to pay for courses/exams? I apologise if this has been discussed to death on another thread somewhere, but there are that many of them... ...just sending me a link to the thread would be great/time-saving.

    Thanks again :biggrin
     
  7. zimbo
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    zimbo Petabyte Poster

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    Certifications: B.Sc, MCDST & MCSA
    WIP: M.Sc - Computer Forensics
  8. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    bentleyboy, a quick question - Do you know what an MCSE is?

    You might think that it sounds a bit patronising, but before you sign up for any training you really ought to know what it is that you are signing up for.

    Training companies are all too quick to offer people courses and take their money from them, but they very often under state what will be reqiured of you, or just how indepth the subjects go.

    8)
     
  9. bentleyboy

    bentleyboy New Member

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    Hi Simon, yeh, I understand your point. Of course, it is easy to be blinded by the sales pitch of the training advisor (Well, salesman really isn't it). I do understand that the path offered by the NITLC covers all certifications covered in the few forum threads I've had time to read. I spoke to the 'salesman' again this evening and explained my concern that the 2 years wasn't long enough. He seemed confused slightly but kept trying to reassure me that it was perfectly possible for students to complete the lot in 1 1/2 years. Anyway, I've told him I'd think about it. It's so difficult to decide what to do. I spoke to an IT "professional" who works for my local council and he said something along the lines of 'qualifications don't stand for anything'. And continued to tell me that 'employers only want experienced IT staff'. Like all opinions, I took it on board but was reluctant to share his view...why would there be certs available otherwise? For me, who has a BA hons degree (In a non-IT related subject) and who has a good understanding of IT and PCs/macs in general, I just want to get further into the world of IT. Since graduation, I don't have any 'professional' qualifications, and so the first thought into my head was, check out the internet for training academies / distance learning type courses.

    God I go on for hours... (Definitely getting old :( )

    Hey, don't mean to nag too much...I hope one day I can be answering some of your queries! (Do you need anything translating english<>german? - that's about as far as I can go I'm afraid :) )
     
  10. Boycie
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    Boycie Senior Beer Tester

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    It seems they have plenty of people who have completed it in less than two years. Maybe he can put you on to one of them.

    I have an old school friend who is middle management (IT) for a local council and although he doesn't feel they are worthless, he mentioned the other day, that he knew no-one (including himself) that had IT certs in his department! They go on the <track record> like a lot of other jobs. Annoying, but when you are trying to get somewhere it all helps.

    Si
     
    Certifications: MCSA 2003, MCDST, A+, N+, CTT+, MCT
  11. Sparky
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    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

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    Boyce makes a fair point, ask the sales guy to put you in contact with some of the students who passed all the certs in 18 months, and you want to speak to more than one person! :biggrin

    As for the guy who works for the council, again I question his remarks. When he has he ever tendered for a big project? When has he gone on-site to a new business and assessed their IT infrastructure and suggested a potential upgrade? Not very often I’m guessing. That’s the kind of job I’m in and I’m constantly asked about certification as this can give me the edge over the competitor. 8)

    Bottom line is you will get more knowledge for studying for certs and it will look great on your C.V. :biggrin

    As for the NITLC the course they offer is attractive as it is logically staged from A+ to Network+ and then onto the MCSE with good resources provided. I just think obtaining all the certs in a 2 year period is questionable. :blink
     
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  12. zimbo
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    zimbo Petabyte Poster

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    what worries me is that how long does it take to get to the 1st MCP? I mean they could make the poor guy spend months and months trying to do these pointless courses just to waste time? Also they offer the HARDEST electives! If you have never seen SQL or Exchange there is no legal way to pass either of those exams alone in 6 months! :eek: Im a year down the line and only got 270, 290 and MCDST and people say im heading fast....
     
    Certifications: B.Sc, MCDST & MCSA
    WIP: M.Sc - Computer Forensics
  13. Boycie
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    Boycie Senior Beer Tester

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    You are a fast learner :thumbleft
     
    Certifications: MCSA 2003, MCDST, A+, N+, CTT+, MCT
  14. Bluerinse
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    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    It is possible, if you 1) you cheat or 2) you are brilliant

    If you are just a mere smart mortal, and you want to learn the material (not cheat) then you will find that time period very difficult to keep within.

    This is partly true but the key to making yourself very employable, is to have experience and qualifications. The same can be said for all professions.
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  15. zimbo
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    zimbo Petabyte Poster

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    Well said pete! 8)
     
    Certifications: B.Sc, MCDST & MCSA
    WIP: M.Sc - Computer Forensics
  16. MarkN

    MarkN Nibble Poster

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    If you have the right aptitude and attitude then I see no reason why you could not do A+, N+ and MCSE in 18 months. I did my first MCSE (NT4) in 12 months self teach and took Exchange as an elective. I have also worked with people, new to the industry, who completed A+ and MCSE within 12 months. That not withstanding it is experience that really counts...
     
    Certifications: MCSE NT4\W2K,CNE,CCEA,ASE
    WIP: CCNA
  17. Bluerinse
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    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    That is because you are one of those brilliant people I mentioned Mark 8)
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  18. bentleyboy

    bentleyboy New Member

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    [BR]
    Thanks MarkN, very interesting. Are these course completion times based on full- or part-time study? I am working full-time at the moment and would be during my study towards the MCSE (If I do decide to do it) but plan to do a solid two hours studying every day. How did you go about it? What were your circumstances?

    Andy
     
  19. zimbo
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    zimbo Petabyte Poster

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    i took 4 hours a day for 70-270 and it took me 3 months.... you have to remember that its not a race these things can take time
     
    Certifications: B.Sc, MCDST & MCSA
    WIP: M.Sc - Computer Forensics
  20. Boycie
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    Boycie Senior Beer Tester

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    Mark,

    If you are a newbie to computing in general then i would say you would have to be exceptionally clever to gain A+, N+ and MCSE in two years.
    You could have a photographic memory and remember every fact you have learnt from the course material but you will get questions that unless you have been in that position will find it difficult to answer, even more so if you get a <tick all that apply>.
    I am not trying to put you off in any way, shape or form, but just trying to offer honest advice. Have you asked their policy on taking exams? For example, you might feel 100% ready for the A+ core exam but what if they say you aren't and won't book your exam? This is one example of how 2 years could be eaten away at.

    Best of luck :thumbleft
     
    Certifications: MCSA 2003, MCDST, A+, N+, CTT+, MCT

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