View Full Version : CISCO Network Cert?
I spoke with an employer today who said they want people with CISCO Network Certs. Are these very hard to get? Can y'all give me some realistic details on this cert? Thanks!
Most of the guys I know with Cisco certs were in the industry a few years before they got them.
They also have for the most part, Microsoft certs too.
There are many companies that offer training in order to pass the cert exams. I'd take a course from a 2 year college that offers Cisco training as part of a general networking curriculum.
That is if you are planning on going into Networking as a career.
Not networking as a career--this is a law enforcement agency I'm looking at.
How long would you say it'd take to get up to speed enough to get the Cisco cert? I mean...is it like an EMT cert that you can do in three or four months, or does it basically require a CompSci degree?
I'd say if you have a strong background in computers and networking then you can pass the tests, and get the cert and have some faith that you will be able to do the job the cert implies you can do.
Someone with a smattering of experience and knowledge may be able to cram for the exams, and pass them, but once on the job, will not have the experience to do actuall day to day operations.
Everything a person needs to know to actually keep a network up is not learned in preperation to pass an exam.
Prerequisite for the basic Cisco cert, the CCNA, is summed up well from one company that offers a 6 day cram course.
"Students need to have basic computer skills before attending this class, as well as a basic understanding of networking. Students must also have a fundamental knowledge and experience base with TCP/IP, including configuration of client systems and basic routing knowledge. Students need to dedicate time and effort before class towards the assessment process."
The most important sentence in the above, is, "Students must have a fundamental knowledge and experience base..."
Experience cannot be learned out of a book or even in a week long hands on intense lab sessions working with routers and servers, etc... It really has to come from working in the field.
This is why I mentioned that most of the guys I know with Cisco certs already were working as admins and network techs. They got the Cisco certs to improve their jobs, not to land one.
I guess if I knew your computer background and experience better I could offer more specific advice.
The deal is, those courses and seminars that offer cert training are not cheap, and if you are putting up your own money, I'd make darn sure that I could do the job that the cert requires me to do, and not just forget all the cram work a few weeks after I got the cert.
Well it's really not for anything important, Sojurn. It's just the FBI. ;P ;i ;)
I did my CCNA and CCDA certs on my own. If you have experience networking, its do-able. There are online router sims, or you can go on ebay and buy a couple routers to build a lab with. It will still be cheaper than going to a school.
Do CCNA first
Buy the Cisco books from Cisco press. Intro and ICND. Buy the red exam cram book with practice tests. Know subnetting inside out and upside down!
The CCDA is basically a "gimme" once you get your CCNA. The test is quite differerent though. scenario based. There will be a page or two of scenario, then you have to select the best solution.
Once to pass your CCNA, IMMEDIATELY get the CCDA book, while the other stuff is fresh in your head. I read the the CCDA book once thoroughly, and once again for my rough spots, and passed that test a week after the CCNA.
2-3 hours a day, 5 or 6 weeks is about what it took me.
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