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Training/Career Path Help

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by brothasmokes, Mar 13, 2009.

  1. brothasmokes

    brothasmokes New Member

    Hi everyone, Firstly I like to say I'm new here, I have been looking on the forum for the last couple of days now and decided to join and post. Also its an excellent forum and the users seem very good and helpful.
    Now on to my question - I have been working as a factory worker and food production op for some time now but have never been happy with what I do, so I decided it was time to pursue something I like!
    I have general computer skills, I've built a system and can confidently install software, hardware etc. but have no qualifications yet.
    I would like to pursue a career in networking and eventually get Cisco CCNA certified. I will be starting the CompTIA A+ cert soon which I would then look at getting a basic IT job while I study for the other certificates. After the A+ what certs should I go for?
    I have looked at TP and self studying, not sure which way I will go yet probably self study, but would really like to know what qualifications/certificates I would need and aim for. One course I have thought about is through Advent - called Advanced Networking Specialist with CCNA,(has anyone done this course through them) the certifications they list are:
    CompTIA A+
    Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP)
    Microsoft Certified Desktop Support Technician (MCDST)
    Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA)
    Microsoft Certified System Engineer (MCSE)
    MCSE: Security on Windows Server 2003
    MCSE: Messaging on Windows Server 2003
    Cisco CCNA Network Associate (CCNA)
    Are these really what I would need or is there other certs I would need or could do with instead? What about the CompTIA Network+ Certification?
    Any help/guidance would be greatly appreciated. Many Thanks
  2. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster


    I would start with the A+ N+ and think about the future as your studying. The CCNA is vendor specific and is of no real use unless you are working with Cisco kit.

    Try and keep your certs relevant to the job you are doing. Higher lever Certs (CCNA MCSE etc) without the related experience are pointless and can harm your chances of landing an entry level job.
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  3. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

    Hi Welcome:)

    A+, N+ and MCDST is usual starting certs and get a job whilst studying them. MOst people have to start at the bottom and not many people walk into a networking role as their first job.

    Also beaware that getting certifications past your experience level can do more harm than good as employers will expect you to know what to do without or very little training.

    The CCNA is for people who already work with CISCO kit and the MCSE is also for people who already support and manage a multi user multi server environment.

    You could go with advent but it will be expensive or you could self study and save yourself a ton of cash.
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  4. soundian

    soundian Gigabyte Poster

    My advice would be to start by self-studying the A+.
    At this stage I wouldn't commit to such an expensive and long term project, especially since most of the certs require prior experience to be considered valid. You don't know if you'll get that experience, or if you'll stick with the studying all the way, but you can be sure of one thing: you won't get a refund.
    Certifications: A+, N+,MCDST,MCTS(680), MCP(270, 271, 272), ITILv3F, CCENT
    WIP: Knuckling down at my new job
  5. brothasmokes

    brothasmokes New Member

    Hi, Many Thanks for the advice. I have one more question - which books should I get for studying the A+, I have seen in other threads that the following books are highly regarded.




    Or Instead of the above directly above should I go for this one....since it's newer?


    I just want to check that these are the most up-to-date books available and the best ones, before I purchase them? Is there any other books you would recommend instead? Thanks a lot again.
  6. Evilwheato

    Evilwheato Kilobyte Poster

    Definitely recommend doing the N+ after completing the A+, if you want to go into networking. Then, once you've got some experience you can start studying for the higher networking cert's.
  7. soundian

    soundian Gigabyte Poster

    I'd recommend buying this one only for the moment, it's pretty much the bible for A+ and there's plenty in it's 1000+ pages to keep you occupied while you investigate your revision options.
    But don't use only one study source, check out the free vids at Professor Messer while you're waiting for Amazon to deliver the goods.
    There are a lot of other free online resources, most either poor quality or illegal, but I got few good free trials of commercial testing software through this site, so keep your eyes peeled.
    Certifications: A+, N+,MCDST,MCTS(680), MCP(270, 271, 272), ITILv3F, CCENT
    WIP: Knuckling down at my new job

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