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General Chat Thread, Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc.... in General; Hi all, im very new here. Ive spent the last 2 hours tonight searching through all you'r post trying to ...
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    Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    Hi all, im very new here. Ive spent the last 2 hours tonight searching through all you'r post trying to find the answers to my question. I have picked up many of your thoughts and suggestions but they're no good right now because im lost.

    Im 23, working in lower management in retail. And i've had enough of it all. I really want to get into computers seeing as I seem to know so much already, due to years of trial & error from hardware setups down to boot.ini and system software repairs.
    For months now i have been researching companies claiming to give you the right qualifications and set you up with the right job. Some seem too good to be true and others are asking for silly money. I have narrowed them down to ones that the Microsoft Website considers 'a partner'.
    i.e. computeach and joskos, etc.
    What im finding confusing is the route that all the companies advertise. They all seem so very different and im worried if i choose one i might miss out on some very important knowedge..
    What i would like to know is what course/qualification should i expect to do first. What is the next step and the next step and the next step.

    thank you, if you can help.

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    meastaugh1's Avatar
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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    I recommend whichever certification route you choose, you try and get some experience at the same time. Imo, certification without experience isn't worth much.

    The cheaper option (for the Microsoft certification at least) is to buy the books, self-study then pay the £80 to sit each MCP exam (which can eventually make up MCSA/MCSE).

    When I've seen job ads that are asking for commerical qualificaitons, they've tended to look for CCNA (Cisco) and/or MCSA/MCSE (Microsoft).

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    A lot of the courses that are advertised online only go as far as teaching you what you need to know - they don't actually provide the exam or give you the qualification. That may explain why some of them are really cheap.

    One way of finding out which qualification to get is to look at the job adverts. Find one you would like to apply for, and see what qualification they are looking for.

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    What certification you decide on should reflect in what area of computing that you want to specialise in.

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    I agree with kestrel1 there.

    I'm currently 1/2 way through a CCNA (Literally, CCNA1 and CCNA2) but by the end of next year I should be most way into a CCNP and I'll also have done some modules for other cisco stuff like the VoIP.

    Think about where in computing you want to go whether it's networks, desktop support, server support etc etc then choose the qualification best suited to you.

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    ^ same as you mate, abit further through my ccna though, and like you im learning my ccnp at the same time.


    Megabyte - you want to figure out what you want to do.

    CCNA- Network type stuff, programing routers, setting up and managing physical networks etc. Id say get this program, some cisco IOS images, and some learning material.

    MCSA/A+/N+ - Network tech/manager, running the network and its software. Id get VMware workstation, a copy of win server2003, learning material.

    Programming - Massive field here from games to OSs. Ive just read recently that MS C# is free so i guess that and learning material.


    Try the above out and see how they go. You might think now that you want to design and build networks but i can tell you the course isnt as fun as it may seem. Figure out what you like and then pay for the course. And like people have said you *need* experiance.

    Personally id start with the MCSA/A+ route and get playing with server2003 as much as possible, see what it can do. If youo like it get on a course.

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    Another thing to remember is that most certificates require you to take the exams again after two or three years or so.
    None of the courses mentioned will be easy or cheap & you normally have to pay for the exam seperately.
    As mentioned above, experiance is essential.

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    If you really think you know a reasonable amount and want to do IT in education, try and get a job as a techie.
    Six years ago I did just that with no experience at all, and I have never looked back
    If you could, it would make it easier to decide what you need to study to progress (and if you are REALLY lucky, they might pay for your training)

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    thanks for the posts. A bit more jargon than what i was expecting. I've never heard of CCNA before.

    I will be aiming to get a basic techie job, but first i want to get an idea what level of knowledge im at now.

    Im thinking of taking up comptia A+ at the local college costing about £400.00. Then Netowork+ (self teach), maybe security+ (self teach).
    According to the many posts i read last night MCDST is the next step to follow. I do not understand which comes next... is it MCSE then MCSA or vise versa?

    Can i ask, is this sector worth it all.
    Because i have given up on retail and would much rather sit quietly in an office or lab

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    If you want to sit quietly, then education aint it. In my experiance (22 years, 7 in ICT) you don't get a chance to sit quietly for very long, if at all.
    I should have been off for most of the summer hols, but this hasn't happened. I have been in practically every day, but it is more enjoyable without the kids & teachers getting in the way.
    I would say that MCSE would follow, as this is more hardware based. MCSA is more for system admins.
    Good luck with what ever you get into.

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    If you want to sit quietly in an office, you will want to be in management.

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    I was in a similar position to you 9 years ago. I read the A+ but never did the certificate. I then got an it job which paid marginally better than the job I was doing then stuck with that for a few years while I got a career development load and did an MCSE course.
    Its all bene worth it end the end. I am alot happier and of course getting paid alot more money.

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    Quote Originally Posted by Megabyte
    Can i ask, is this sector worth it all.
    Because i have given up on retail and would much rather sit quietly in an office or lab
    as someone who made the same transition i can heartly recommend it. Working with computers and people of a certain education is much nicer than working with people who are probably horrible ( 90% were when i left) and having a client base that feels free to abuse you!.

    My recommendation is to find a job where they embrace your service skills and are willing to develop your skills. I was lucky to find a job where they threw me in at the deep end and supported me while i found my feet.

    You will probably have to take a small pay cut for a few years, but longer term the money is better and the job is much more rewarding.

    good luck!

    oh, and i did A+, N+, ms 270. Soon i'll do ccna and the rest of the mcsa.

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    hi all. In the last month i have signed up for a+ and ABC book keeping at the local college. Thats £770 that could have gone to a car ive been eyeing up; so im really going to have to put my head down and make this worth while. Im off to purchase a couple books from amazon to get a head start.
    takecare

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    Re: Where do I start? A+, MCSE, ECDL, etc....

    Quote Originally Posted by Megabyte
    and would much rather sit quietly in an office or lab
    In IT in education?! ROFL.

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