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A+ newbie question

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by drpiddleton, Jul 17, 2007.

  1. drpiddleton

    drpiddleton New Member

    I'm about to leave my lackluster job behind and am hoping to get into the IT industry. I have no prior IT experience except amateur dabbling with computers.

    I would like to get an entry level position in IT - preferably first level support or networking. A friend of mine advised me to earn the A+ and security+ certification first.

    If I study several hours per day, how long do you think it would take to complete the A+? Or security+.

    I know it depends on the individual but I'm just after a ballpark figure. My goal is to complete the A+ in just under three months since I might have some work experience arranged with a local IT company in four or five months time and I would really like to become certified first.

    I heard from a training provider that the A+ can actually take longer than the MSCE course. My instincts tell me this is not true! What do you think? In terms of making myself more employable, is the CCNP better than the MSCE or doesn't it make much difference?

    Do you think getting a couple of short term, unpaid work placements on my CV is a good way of beating that vicious catch 22 situation of being inexperienced?


    :D :D
  2. Wassup

    Wassup Byte Poster

    A+ and Security+ are quite different exams.

    If you self study for the A+ then you could easily take it within 3 months. Moreover you could go on a 3 or 5 day course and pass within a couple of weeks.
    After the A+, have a look at either the Network+ or MCDST route, I'm starting to look at Sec+ now as something to do after my next planned microsoft exam (70-292) and I reckon that will take me about 6 months given I am working full time now as well as "with wife and kids" ;)

    The CCNP and MCSE again are quite different in their structure and content but both are valuable certs to have on your CV. It doesnt have to be a decision you really have to make now in my opinion.

    Experience counts, paid or not, if you have it, then put it down on your CV. It shows you're ready and willing.

    In terms of making yourself more employable... that is entirely down to the whole package, ie if your paper CV looks great, but you have the personality of a psychotic tomato-eating caterpillar, you aint gonna get the job! :)

    all the best
  3. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

    In your case, I'd recommend going for the A+ first, then the Network+. If you don't have a significant background in basic computer maintenance and networking, you'll need it before tackling the Security+

    BTW, you don't absolutely need the Security+ to get an entry level job in IT. If you have a particular interest in IT security, it would probably be a good introduction, but do the A+ and N+ first.

    Whoever told you that the A+ would take you longer than the MCSE is full of it. You have to study for and take (and pass) seven exams and you'll never pass without hands on experience with the specific technologies. It takes years for most people unless they cheat. You could probably take and pass the A+ exams in a few months...six or so if you have little or no experience (just my guesstimate).
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  4. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

    I'd give my opinion, but the other two have summed it up nicely. I agree.
    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!
  5. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

    Sounds like a guy I work with! :biggrin
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Office 365, Server 2016, CEH
  6. drpiddleton

    drpiddleton New Member


    So the A+ exam can be done in two weeks if I do the five day course. That is good news.

    How long will the network+ exam take, roughly?

    I hope to complete both exams within 3 months. Or at least know enough by then to perform well in my placement.

    What self study course do you recommend for the A+ and Network+ certification?

    Do these self study courses provide good value for money?

    I would like the course to include lecture DVDS, practice exam questions, etc.


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