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 Post subject: IT certifications
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 1:58 pm 
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To make a long story short, in order to be able to get into the Master's program I want to get into, I've been advised I need to do some additional undergraduate work in order to remedy the less-than-impressive nature of my grades during my first time around.

I'm working with a professor at the university I want to attend for the Master's and he advised me that doing an additional Bachelor's program should get me to the point where I can qualify. He directed me to Western Governor's University as an economical method of doing this and one that will fit my personal schedule pretty well. However, you can't even enroll in their undergraduate IT programs without 1 of 4 possible qualifications:

• An associate’s degree in IT or equivalent (A.S. or A.A.S. in IT acceptable)
• High-level IT coursework completed within the last five years
• Transferable IT certifications earned within the last five years
• A resume showing three-plus years of verifiable IT work experience

I don't have any of these, but in speaking with a gentlemen there, he told me that certifications (bullet 3) can be obtained by enrolling in a certification program online and then going to a testing center and taking an exam.

Does anyone know of good certification programs of this nature, or have any experience or advice with this sort of thing? Any pitfalls to avoid?

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 2:36 pm 
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The CompTIA A+ cert is basically the IT starting point and is probably the easiest to get: https://certification.comptia.org/certifications/a

It basically means you can put a computer together and get a printer working.


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PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 3:30 pm 
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Is there a list of certifications they acknowledge/seek?

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 3:50 pm 
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Here it is

The man I spoke with advised me to call them and check before enrolling in a certification program as well, before spending money on it, in order to make sure it was acceptable.

This one is for the Software Development track

I am not entirely sure which one to do, either, so that's a further complication. Software development I find more interesting, but security seems more pertinent to my current work and likely future work, and the professor I'm speaking with seemed to indicate that. I suppose I could do one for this additional undergraduate work and the other for the Master's though.

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 4:41 pm 
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C393 and C394 list the A+ cert as a requirement anyway for both courses.


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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 6:49 pm 
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Lenas wrote:
C393 and C394 list the A+ cert as a requirement anyway for both courses.


Yeah.. and I discovered it's going to be almost $400 dollars to get both exams. Still, I suppose anything that gets me through the Bachelor's faster is a good thing.

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 9:05 pm 
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If you're looking to get certs, you might want to see if you qualify for this Syracuse program, DE. http://vets.syr.edu/education/employment-programs/

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Wed May 25, 2016 10:49 pm 
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Timmit wrote:
If you're looking to get certs, you might want to see if you qualify for this Syracuse program, DE. http://vets.syr.edu/education/employment-programs/


Interesting! That might be useful, although right now the point of getting certs is to qualify for that WGU Bachelor's program which in turn serves the purpose of getting into a Master's program rather than directly looking for a job change, but I'll check this out.

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2016 7:24 pm 
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Diamondeye wrote:
I am not entirely sure which one to do, either, so that's a further complication. Software development I find more interesting, but security seems more pertinent to my current work and likely future work, and the professor I'm speaking with seemed to indicate that. I suppose I could do one for this additional undergraduate work and the other for the Master's though.


I've been in the IT field for almost 20 years in various roles. I would highly recommend security, it seems to be one thing that doesn't get outsourced.

Also, your background recommends you for network / software security almost automatically. I don't recall you mentioning your math background, but cryptography is something you might want to look into.

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2016 9:45 pm 
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Kairtane wrote:
Also, your background recommends you for network / software security almost automatically. I don't recall you mentioning your math background, but cryptography is something you might want to look into.


My math background ends at me getting a D in calculus about 20 years ago. I need considerable refreshing in math.

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PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2016 10:28 pm 
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I think you already know this, but since one of your above posts suggested you may not: you don't have to take a class to get the A+ cert unless something has changed in recent years. A while back, I simply bought a book and took the test.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 7:04 am 
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Granted its been nearly 20 years since I took the A+, but I'm going to guess that the level of computer expertise you've demonstrated here on the Glade probably should be sufficient to pass the A+


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 8:33 am 
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TheRiov wrote:
Granted its been nearly 20 years since I took the A+, but I'm going to guess that the level of computer expertise you've demonstrated here on the Glade probably should be sufficient to pass the A+

With a bit of studying. ;)

Unless you actually do work in IT already, there's a bunch of bland memorization that "being good with computers with Google handy" doesn't necessarily ensure you have. Port numbers, a few legacy/obscure protocols they like to ask about, etc.

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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 11:11 am 
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Kaffis Mark V wrote:
TheRiov wrote:
Granted its been nearly 20 years since I took the A+, but I'm going to guess that the level of computer expertise you've demonstrated here on the Glade probably should be sufficient to pass the A+

With a bit of studying. ;)

Unless you actually do work in IT already, there's a bunch of bland memorization that "being good with computers with Google handy" doesn't necessarily ensure you have. Port numbers, a few legacy/obscure protocols they like to ask about, etc.


That's true. I can work through most of my own computer problems at home using internet resources (such as the cooler I replaced a while ago) but I have never attempted to assemble an entire computer from scratch, never replaced a motherboard, or anything like that and I approach this sort of computer surgery with considerable trepidation.

I'm going to try to avail myself of that Syracuse program that Timmit linked; I don't want to try to take any shortcuts and then find out I can't enroll in the programs I want.

*sigh* why can I not just go get a motorcycle for a midlife crisis like a normal person?

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 1:57 pm 
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The resource Timmit linked seems pretty valuable, but A+ cert isn't a shortcut, it's the foundation of basically all IT-related certs. It is both the easiest to earn and the most fundamental to have.


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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 3:19 pm 
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Lenas wrote:
The resource Timmit linked seems pretty valuable, but A+ cert isn't a shortcut, it's the foundation of basically all IT-related certs. It is both the easiest to earn and the most fundamental to have.


I'm sure it's quite important, but in this case its purpose is to qualify me for the Bachelor's program I'm trying to get into.

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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 7:54 pm 
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*sigh* why can I not just go get a motorcycle for a midlife crisis like a normal person?

I feel ya. But nothing worth doing is easy.


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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2016 9:47 pm 
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TheRiov wrote:
Quote:
*sigh* why can I not just go get a motorcycle for a midlife crisis like a normal person?

I feel ya. But nothing worth doing is easy.

There's a mom joke waiting to be made here.

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2016 2:27 pm 
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Diamondeye wrote:
Lenas wrote:
The resource Timmit linked seems pretty valuable, but A+ cert isn't a shortcut, it's the foundation of basically all IT-related certs. It is both the easiest to earn and the most fundamental to have.


I'm sure it's quite important, but in this case its purpose is to qualify me for the Bachelor's program I'm trying to get into.


My point with every post has been, if you only want a cert so you can qualify for this bachelors program, the A+ is the cheapest, easiest, fastest certification to get.


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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2016 2:36 pm 
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Lenas wrote:
Diamondeye wrote:
Lenas wrote:
The resource Timmit linked seems pretty valuable, but A+ cert isn't a shortcut, it's the foundation of basically all IT-related certs. It is both the easiest to earn and the most fundamental to have.


I'm sure it's quite important, but in this case its purpose is to qualify me for the Bachelor's program I'm trying to get into.


My point with every post has been, if you only want a cert so you can qualify for this bachelors program, the A+ is the cheapest, easiest, fastest certification to get.


I see, I misunderstood you then. I'll have to call them back and find out if that cert (by itself) is enough to get in although I suppose it's a good starting point for any others.

Sadly, it seems that the Syracuse program wouldn't have started up until October and enrollment for that is closed so.. January would be the earliest. Guess I'll have to use another alternative to get it.

About how long does it take to get through the program for one of those?

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2016 2:45 pm 
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When it comes to certifications, as long as you're reasonably bright and test well, it's generally more cost effective to just study on your own and take the test. Transcender used to be the top of the line practice test suppliers, they may still be. You may have educational reimbursement you can use for the certification tests, as well, which makes the practice tests more attractive to purchase out of pocket. The A+ cert is baseline, unless you're talking the networking side of things. It's interesting that the WGU people don't accept any Juniper certifications. Seems fairly obvious who has paid them money. Either that, or they don't have a good handle on current networking, which makes them somewhat suspect.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2016 3:36 pm 
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shuyung wrote:
When it comes to certifications, as long as you're reasonably bright and test well, it's generally more cost effective to just study on your own and take the test. Transcender used to be the top of the line practice test suppliers, they may still be. You may have educational reimbursement you can use for the certification tests, as well, which makes the practice tests more attractive to purchase out of pocket. The A+ cert is baseline, unless you're talking the networking side of things. It's interesting that the WGU people don't accept any Juniper certifications. Seems fairly obvious who has paid them money. Either that, or they don't have a good handle on current networking, which makes them somewhat suspect.


I usually have no problem on tests, especially multiple choice tests. I'm not sure on educational reimbursement; I don't want to start burning GI Bill until I'm in the actual collegiate programs so I'd have to look at other avenues.

I don't have any idea what Juniper is, or why that's significant, but I do feel pretty confident in the recommendation of the university. The professor is someone our family is connected with on a personal level.

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2016 4:11 pm 
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Usually a cert boot camp is 1-2 weeks of 8 hour days.


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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2016 6:05 pm 
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Timmit wrote:
Usually a cert boot camp is 1-2 weeks of 8 hour days.


Haven't got the leave from work to undertake something like that, unfortunately.

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 Post subject: Re: IT certifications
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2016 6:24 pm 
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Yeah, I've only got 20 hours myself...the 30 days of leave a year is the only thing I miss from the AF ;)

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