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New to A+ training. Need advice.

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by DrRinse, Feb 5, 2011.

  1. DrRinse

    DrRinse New Member


    My name is Anthony. I am intent on getting myself the A+ and N+ qualifications. I've always had an interest in IT and getting these exams is long overdue. I'm someone who you might say is "good" with computers. I used to build / fix my own desktops but never sealed my knowledge with a proper cert. I have all the recommended course study material and took a few of the A+ practice exams this week to see where I'm at. I'm averaging 50% on the most recent ones I can find. My question is this:

    What would be the most efficient way of topping up my knowledge? I don't mind putting in the effort but at over 1200 pages in the Mike Meyer's AIO book, I don't want to have to waste time reading things I already know. Should I just focus on the chapters in which my knowledge is weak or would it be best to just start from page 1 and work through anyway?


  2. cosway

    cosway Nibble Poster

    Hi Anthony

    If you can afford it get the CBT nuggets videos (I’m not on commission, BTW, but they helped me so much). Like you I had a lot of real-life knowledge and experience, but no qualifications or certs.

    The A+ exam doesn’t care if you can repair a PC or not, what it tests you on is your knowledge of BEST PRACTICE and what all the different technologies are called and how to distinguish between them. For example…
    If I was given a HDD to replace a damaged HDD I would just check to see if the connectors where the right size and away to go…

    A+ expects you to look at the old HDD know it’s an IDE/SCUSSI/etc.. know its power usage, know how many your power supply can support, know how many you can link together, know the best practice for naming them, know how long the connector cable can be before the system suffers, etc…

    Read though the book twice and don’t assume you know a subject just because you know it (at £160 per exam) it can be an expensive schoolboy error. I missed my N+ by less than 10 points (out of 1000) and now I’m £180 out of pocket, and missed the lifetime certification status that I would have had if I’d paid more attention whilst studying.
    Certifications: MCDST, MCSA, A+
  3. cosway

    cosway Nibble Poster

    Forgot to say also that most UK employers prefer MCP where most USA employers prefer Comptia. Best to get at least 1 Microsoft and 1 Comptia on you CV.
    Certifications: MCDST, MCSA, A+
  4. quuuaid

    quuuaid Nibble Poster

    Hi Anthony, welcome to CertForums!

    I'd always recommend starting by reading the book cover to cover like a novel, as Meyers suggests. If you hit any chapters or sections that you already know, just skim through those bits more quickly. That way you're neither reading in detail subjects you already know nor potentially missing important gaps in your knowledge by ignoring areas altogether.

    Since you've got some system build experience already, you'll probably breeze through the hardware\OS installation stuff and be done before you know it!

    I really enjoyed the A+ AIO so I hope you find it a good read! Have a look through the A+ section of the forum as well. There's loads of good advice in there regarding how to study, recommended study materials, etc.
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST
    WIP: Drupal, PHP
  5. alexdc12

    alexdc12 Kilobyte Poster

    HI, i read the book once, a lot of it you may know but its good to read it all i say. Its not so much what you know but its the methods used to troubleshoot that may catch you out. I studied any chapters which caught me out in a bit more detail i.e Printers.
    Another good resource is www.professormesser.com
    Good Luck!
    Certifications: GNVQ Advanced IT, CompTIA A+, CompTIA N+, 70-680
    WIP: 70-685, ITIL v3 Foundation

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