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JuryDuty's CIW Master Designer Q&A (Stuff I've Learned)

Discussion in 'CIW Certifications' started by JuryDuty, Jun 26, 2007.

  1. JuryDuty

    JuryDuty Bit Poster

    OK, so I haven't yet taken any exams, but I've been doing a TON of research on the Internet and forums like this one the past few weeks (this is the best forum for certifications BTW). It would have helped me tremendously had all this info I found been in one place...so here it is for future CIW MD's!

    How do I get the CIW Site Designer certification?
    First, pass the CIW Foundations 510 exam. This makes you a CIW Associate.
    Then pass the Site Designer 520 and E-Commerce Designer 525 exams. This makes you a Master CIW Designer. (Pass just one and you're coined a CIW Professional.)

    What does each certification teach?
    Foundations = Internet Business Foundations, Site Development and Network Technology. Details here.

    Site Designer = Site Development, Site Design and Web Technologies. Details here.

    E-Commerce Designer = E-Commerce Site Development, Tech and Security, Business, Marketing and Legal Issues. Details here.

    Obviously, there is some overlap. To get the best overview (IMO), download the following "free study guides," from cramsession.com (in association with computerprep.com). Though I can't vouch for the thoroughness of their materials for study, these guides provide a GREAT, detailed outline of everything you need to prepare for: Foundations 510 - Site Development 520 - E-Commerce Development 525

    What's the best and cheapest way to study?
    It really depends on what you already know. Most people recommend you have a bit of web design experience (have created a few sites). You can also sign up with schools (just check out the threads in this forum for more info), but they are more expensive. If you're on a very tight budget and are a good self-motivator, you can't go wrong with CIW's Self-Study Kits. You get 2-4 thick books (depending on the course) plus a CD with hundreds of practice questions and quizzes from AssessPREP. You can also opt to buy your test vouncher at the same time and save a few. In short, these are considered the "best" and most thorough study materials available, directly from the source. (Note: You might also see the same kits from Prosoft and ComputerPrep...because they're all the same company.)

    Why not just use the practice questions or quizzes available for cheap all over the net?
    Because 99% of the time, they're illegal. Basically, CIW has offered official questions only to Assessprep. Besides, most of these "braindumps" are just a way to quickly cram for the exam, which is not only cheating, but you cheat yourself by not really learning the material. And this is the stuff you'll be expected to know if you've been certified.

    Yeah, but I've seen books on ebay and Amazon covering these tests.
    No, you've seen books covering the LAST VERSION of the tests. They've been upgraded to v5 and most agree that studying with the older books won't properly prepare you. Unfortunately, publishers haven't updated their books since CIW went through some financial struggles, a merge and a split and have done little to market their certifications.

    Does this mean CIW certifications aren't any good?
    On the contrary! You'll learn a lot preparing for these exams and the certification is a title that can't be taken away from you. Certainly, the certifications aren't in demand near as much as IT certifications, but that's because many companies will hire web developers based on their portfolios, not their certifications, whereas IT professionals need certifications as proof of their knowledge. Still, several people have reported that they've edged out the competition based on their certification. (I recommend if you have a resume, spell out "Certified Internet Web Professional: Master Designer," not just "CIW Certified" so your prospective employer knows what you mean.)

    Anything else I should know?
    Yes! Many have reported that when you pass the CIW Foundations exam, you should take the CompTIA i-Net+ exam. It's actually easier and covers the same stuff. Two certs for the study-time of one. (Note: The iNet+ certification will be retired in Dec 2007, so get it before time runs out!)

    I'll add more as I learn more. Feel free to add your own Q&A below!
    WIP: CIW Site Designer
  2. nellyp123

    nellyp123 Byte Poster

    Wow!.....you certainly have been doing alot of research. Can't say much more then that....well done!:thumbleft

    One thing i will add though is that if you do buy the material from the ciw web site ( prosoft learning ) then you will be given a study guide that's as thorough as any study guide you can get. But i can vouch for the thoroughness of cramsession though, especially when it's free.
    Certifications: CIW Professional
  3. JuryDuty

    JuryDuty Bit Poster

    Another update about the CIW/ComputerPrep Self-Study Kits.

    It seems there are TWO kits they offer:

    1. CIW Foundations Student Manuals--spiral-bound, used for classroom teaching, and have a matching manual for instructors.

    2. CIW Foundations Self-Study Kits--perfect-bound, used for individual consumption

    The difference is the environment they were created for and how they would be used. For self-study, you want to be sure to get the Self-Study Kits--not the student manuals. They're different, and the latter is created to work with an instructor in a classroom setting.
    WIP: CIW Site Designer

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