locked
not clear, not sure RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi,
    I graduated in Computing couple years ago, I wanted to pursue to an Msc course but didn't successfully enroll for this year ( a bit late) I heard about the MSCE, MSCA, A+ which I am not sure which is higher than the other, in other words:
     which is the best or highest of certificates?
    how long does it take?
    correct me if I am wrong that to be certified one must have passed 7 modules?
     does it matter in which order the exams to be taken?
    where and how and how long does it take to pass them?
    is there any online self study, books or is it advisable to be taught?
    is it easy? hard? or just challenging?

    I want to have a better view on what to do, i.e what to study, how long, how much and what to expect so I can plan it.


    thanks for your help
    Thursday, October 2, 2008 10:04 AM

Answers

  • Confusing, yes I agree.
    MCP the lowest level for a Microsoft Cert. Pass most any test and your MCP
    MCSA needs 4 exams. 3 core and 1 elective.
    A+ and Network+ are CompTIA certs not microsoft. But it you get the A+ and Network+ cert then that will count as the elective to MCSA.
    MCSE requires 7 exams. Many of these can be used when reaching MCSA.
    Start off with one exam. It you think you know a lot about XP then take the 70-270 Read about the exam requirements first here: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exams/70-270.mspx
    If your strong point is hardware maybe the A+ exam would be best for your first.
    www.comptia.com
    Pick one. Start slow. Build upon it.
    Don't feel overwhelmed.

    Tim
    • Marked as answer by salimnina Sunday, October 5, 2008 11:05 AM
    Thursday, October 2, 2008 5:55 PM
  •  
    salimnina said:

    thanks for the links, I visited them at one point I feel I want to go for MCSE and then MCP, now I am not quite sure, with computers I am literate but again not expert, this is where I am stuck
    for the MCSE it says that one needs 6-12 mth experience in a m/large company? now I don't have that though I played around with my PC operating sys. I am not sure if doing MCP would be unnecessary or it's better to by pass it and do something else in which I will automatically learn along such as MCAD or MCPD...I still don't have the right picture and not sure where to embark, any clarification would be useful.
    thanks


    I personally think you need to pause on the certification track for now. Not stop: pause. Certifications are designed to show proficiency in a particular technology (or field). The are for individuals with knowledge and experience (from 6 months to years of proficiency). I would ask yourself and research what exactly you want to do in the I.T. field. Research the different aspects, job functions, duties and responsibilities those positions require. The learn as much as you can about your desired (and chosen) speciality. From there, I would then recommend you looking into earning certifications. By earning any certification in the I.T. field it states in many cases that you are an I.T. Professional, Specialist, Engineer or Administrator of some sorts. Far to often however, holding a certification now only means that you simply read a book and managed to pass the required exam. The latter is sad and devalues the certification program altogether.
    Michael D. Alligood,
    MCITP, MCTS, MCSA, MCDST, MCP, A+, Network+

    The I.T. Classroom Blog
    Start. Research. Plan. Perform. End. Test. Evaluate.
    • Marked as answer by salimnina Sunday, October 5, 2008 11:04 AM
    Friday, October 3, 2008 5:42 PM
  • salimnina said:

    that's a wise choice, as a graduate I am not sure what to do as I did a lot of everything...The choice is mine but can I start for now with A+ and N+ which wouldn't be relevant to my specialization? and is there any online tutorials for each modules of the MS  certification so I can see what they're all about and even study from them?



    Like you say, the choose is yours for where you want to start. If the A+ and N+ are not relevant to your specialization why would you start with them? The nice thing about Microsoft is they have so many elective exams that you can find one that will be relevant to your specialization.

    Places like Preplogic, and Transcender offer practice exams but you will have to pay for them. Also check the Microsoft learning site. Each exam has objectives that are covered and the MS learning site lists those objectives. http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exams/70-270.mspx will show you the objectives for the 70-270 (XP).

    But like Michael said you should wait until you know what you want to do and than get experience in that area before you start certifications.
    Eric
    • Marked as answer by salimnina Sunday, October 5, 2008 11:04 AM
    Sunday, October 5, 2008 2:59 AM
  • salimnina said:


    I think you took me through this perfectly in this forum , I appreciate a lot your assistance.

    You said that I need to get experience in the area before starting, what do you mean? do I have to  get it, or would just some basic knowledge be ok?

    I've looked all over, I think I set my sight into MSCA, I choose these following:

    70-290
    70-291
    70-270
    70-620

    Is there any order to take them? 

    The other question is that in one thred someone said that I need to do the  70-270 then 70-620, also my concern is that the 70-270 which is and XP OS is something that will no longer be since Vista...? and my last question is how long would it take to get my MSCA considering my knolwedge and with at least 2 hours a day studies.
    much appreciated


    As Michael said: "Certifications are designed to show proficiency in a particular technology (or field). They are for individuals with knowledge and experience (from 6 months to years of proficiency)."
     
    Experience will make it easier to pass the exams, you can do it without experience but it will make it harder and that is not how the certifications are designed. Also passing it this way devalues the certification because you just read a book and don't have any real experience like Michael said.

    There is no order in which you have to take the tests. I would start out with what you feel most comfortable with and go from there, buy some books and set up a test lab and play around.

    If you choose to have the 70-270 as your core client OS exam and the 70-620 as your elective than you will have to take the 70-270 first (I may be wrong though I am not sure you might be able to take the 620 first and still have it count towards an elective). Keep in mind if you choose the 70-620 for your required Client OS exam it will only count towards that and you will have to find a different elective exam to take.

    The XP OS will still be around for awhile. Many companies are still using it and not switching over to Vista. Also I do not think the 70-270 exam will be expiring any time soon.

    There is no way to say for certain how long it will take you to get your MCSA. Everyone is different. It can take anywhere from a couple months to a year or more.


    Eric
    • Marked as answer by salimnina Tuesday, October 7, 2008 10:05 AM
    Monday, October 6, 2008 2:29 PM
  • The MS Training and Certification portal should address most, if not all, your queries.

    MS certification overview: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/default.mspx
    Getting started for MS certification: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/sixsteps.mspx
    For a list of available MS certifications: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/credential/default.mspx
    How to prepare for an exam: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcpexams/register/default.mspx

    Regards,

    Salvador Manaois III
    MCSE MCSA CEH MCITP | Enterprise/Server Admin
    Bytes & Badz : http://badzmanaois.blogspot.com
    Thursday, October 2, 2008 10:48 AM
  • Eric,
    http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/mcsa/windows2003/new.mspx
    This shows the full requirements for MCSA on Server 2003.

    CompTIA A+
    and
    CompTIA Network+

    or

    CompTIA A+
    and
    CompTIA Server+

    or

    Microsoft Certified Desktop Support Technician (MCDST)

    These fill the elective for the MCSA Exam. The bad news is that none of the electives are good towards the MCSE.  But, we are here to learn, not just gather up certs.

    MCSA, MCTS, MCITP, MCDST, MCP, A+, Network+



    Tim
    • Marked as answer by salimnina Tuesday, October 7, 2008 10:06 AM
    Monday, October 6, 2008 6:41 PM

All replies

  • The MS Training and Certification portal should address most, if not all, your queries.

    MS certification overview: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/default.mspx
    Getting started for MS certification: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/sixsteps.mspx
    For a list of available MS certifications: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/credential/default.mspx
    How to prepare for an exam: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcpexams/register/default.mspx

    Regards,

    Salvador Manaois III
    MCSE MCSA CEH MCITP | Enterprise/Server Admin
    Bytes & Badz : http://badzmanaois.blogspot.com
    Thursday, October 2, 2008 10:48 AM
  • thanks for the links, I visited them at one point I feel I want to go for MCSE and then MCP, now I am not quite sure, with computers I am literate but again not expert, this is where I am stuck
    for the MCSE it says that one needs 6-12 mth experience in a m/large company? now I don't have that though I played around with my PC operating sys. I am not sure if doing MCP would be unecessary or it's better to by pass it and do something else in which I will automatically learn along such as MCAD or MCPD...I still don't have the right picture and not sure where to embark, any clarification would be useful.
    thanks
    Thursday, October 2, 2008 4:16 PM
  • Confusing, yes I agree.
    MCP the lowest level for a Microsoft Cert. Pass most any test and your MCP
    MCSA needs 4 exams. 3 core and 1 elective.
    A+ and Network+ are CompTIA certs not microsoft. But it you get the A+ and Network+ cert then that will count as the elective to MCSA.
    MCSE requires 7 exams. Many of these can be used when reaching MCSA.
    Start off with one exam. It you think you know a lot about XP then take the 70-270 Read about the exam requirements first here: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exams/70-270.mspx
    If your strong point is hardware maybe the A+ exam would be best for your first.
    www.comptia.com
    Pick one. Start slow. Build upon it.
    Don't feel overwhelmed.

    Tim
    • Marked as answer by salimnina Sunday, October 5, 2008 11:05 AM
    Thursday, October 2, 2008 5:55 PM
  • I think I start to have a clearer idea now, so if I pass 70 270 then not only I gain the MCP but it will count toward MSCA then MSCE. Now how about  A+ and N+ you said if I do them both   then it will count as ONE elective ? is that correct ? how about just taking the  N+ only or A+ though i don't see my self into more  hardware than software.
    I did a test ( to see how it goes) on MCP and found most of it ok, so what would it be best, to do the 70 270 and more or try to do A+ or N+  as well if you think they're a kind of relevant to MSCA and MSCE.
    thanks
    Friday, October 3, 2008 10:26 AM
  • You only need to pass either the A+ or the N+ to count as an elective, not both. If you do the A+ or N+ you will still have to do the 70-270(XP) or one like it, 70-620(Vista) because it is a required exam.

    What I would recommend doing is taking 70-270(XP) as your core client OS exam and than take the 70-620(Vista) as your elective exam, that way the 70-620 will count towards your MCSA as well as give you a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist certification and will count towards the 2008 MCITP.

    But if you feel more comfortable with A+ or N+ over Vista than I would take one of those for you elective, but in the end it is up to you which path you choose.


    Eric
    Friday, October 3, 2008 2:24 PM
  •  
    salimnina said:

    thanks for the links, I visited them at one point I feel I want to go for MCSE and then MCP, now I am not quite sure, with computers I am literate but again not expert, this is where I am stuck
    for the MCSE it says that one needs 6-12 mth experience in a m/large company? now I don't have that though I played around with my PC operating sys. I am not sure if doing MCP would be unnecessary or it's better to by pass it and do something else in which I will automatically learn along such as MCAD or MCPD...I still don't have the right picture and not sure where to embark, any clarification would be useful.
    thanks


    I personally think you need to pause on the certification track for now. Not stop: pause. Certifications are designed to show proficiency in a particular technology (or field). The are for individuals with knowledge and experience (from 6 months to years of proficiency). I would ask yourself and research what exactly you want to do in the I.T. field. Research the different aspects, job functions, duties and responsibilities those positions require. The learn as much as you can about your desired (and chosen) speciality. From there, I would then recommend you looking into earning certifications. By earning any certification in the I.T. field it states in many cases that you are an I.T. Professional, Specialist, Engineer or Administrator of some sorts. Far to often however, holding a certification now only means that you simply read a book and managed to pass the required exam. The latter is sad and devalues the certification program altogether.
    Michael D. Alligood,
    MCITP, MCTS, MCSA, MCDST, MCP, A+, Network+

    The I.T. Classroom Blog
    Start. Research. Plan. Perform. End. Test. Evaluate.
    • Marked as answer by salimnina Sunday, October 5, 2008 11:04 AM
    Friday, October 3, 2008 5:42 PM
  • that's a wise choice, as a graduate I am not sure what to do as I did a lot of everything...The choice is mine but can I start for now with A+ and N+ which wouldn't be relevant to my specialization? and is there any online tutorials for each modules of the MS  certification so I can see what they're all about and even study from them?
    Saturday, October 4, 2008 8:42 AM
  • salimnina said:

    that's a wise choice, as a graduate I am not sure what to do as I did a lot of everything...The choice is mine but can I start for now with A+ and N+ which wouldn't be relevant to my specialization? and is there any online tutorials for each modules of the MS  certification so I can see what they're all about and even study from them?



    Like you say, the choose is yours for where you want to start. If the A+ and N+ are not relevant to your specialization why would you start with them? The nice thing about Microsoft is they have so many elective exams that you can find one that will be relevant to your specialization.

    Places like Preplogic, and Transcender offer practice exams but you will have to pay for them. Also check the Microsoft learning site. Each exam has objectives that are covered and the MS learning site lists those objectives. http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exams/70-270.mspx will show you the objectives for the 70-270 (XP).

    But like Michael said you should wait until you know what you want to do and than get experience in that area before you start certifications.
    Eric
    • Marked as answer by salimnina Sunday, October 5, 2008 11:04 AM
    Sunday, October 5, 2008 2:59 AM

  • I think you took me through this perfectly in this forum , I appreciate a lot your assistance.

    You said that I need to get experience in the area before starting, what do you mean? do I have to  get it, or would just some basic knowledge be ok?

    I've looked all over, I think I set my sight into MSCA, I choose these following:

    70-290
    70-291
    70-270
    70-620

    Is there any order to take them? 

    The other question is that in one thred someone said that I need to do the  70-270 then 70-620, also my concern is that the 70-270 which is and XP OS is something that will no longer be since Vista...? and my last question is how long would it take to get my MSCA considering my knolwedge and with at least 2 hours a day studies.
    much appreciated

    Monday, October 6, 2008 9:47 AM
  • salimnina said:


    I think you took me through this perfectly in this forum , I appreciate a lot your assistance.

    You said that I need to get experience in the area before starting, what do you mean? do I have to  get it, or would just some basic knowledge be ok?

    I've looked all over, I think I set my sight into MSCA, I choose these following:

    70-290
    70-291
    70-270
    70-620

    Is there any order to take them? 

    The other question is that in one thred someone said that I need to do the  70-270 then 70-620, also my concern is that the 70-270 which is and XP OS is something that will no longer be since Vista...? and my last question is how long would it take to get my MSCA considering my knolwedge and with at least 2 hours a day studies.
    much appreciated


    As Michael said: "Certifications are designed to show proficiency in a particular technology (or field). They are for individuals with knowledge and experience (from 6 months to years of proficiency)."
     
    Experience will make it easier to pass the exams, you can do it without experience but it will make it harder and that is not how the certifications are designed. Also passing it this way devalues the certification because you just read a book and don't have any real experience like Michael said.

    There is no order in which you have to take the tests. I would start out with what you feel most comfortable with and go from there, buy some books and set up a test lab and play around.

    If you choose to have the 70-270 as your core client OS exam and the 70-620 as your elective than you will have to take the 70-270 first (I may be wrong though I am not sure you might be able to take the 620 first and still have it count towards an elective). Keep in mind if you choose the 70-620 for your required Client OS exam it will only count towards that and you will have to find a different elective exam to take.

    The XP OS will still be around for awhile. Many companies are still using it and not switching over to Vista. Also I do not think the 70-270 exam will be expiring any time soon.

    There is no way to say for certain how long it will take you to get your MCSA. Everyone is different. It can take anywhere from a couple months to a year or more.


    Eric
    • Marked as answer by salimnina Tuesday, October 7, 2008 10:05 AM
    Monday, October 6, 2008 2:29 PM
  • Eric,
    http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/mcsa/windows2003/new.mspx
    This shows the full requirements for MCSA on Server 2003.

    CompTIA A+
    and
    CompTIA Network+

    or

    CompTIA A+
    and
    CompTIA Server+

    or

    Microsoft Certified Desktop Support Technician (MCDST)

    These fill the elective for the MCSA Exam. The bad news is that none of the electives are good towards the MCSE.  But, we are here to learn, not just gather up certs.

    MCSA, MCTS, MCITP, MCDST, MCP, A+, Network+



    Tim
    • Marked as answer by salimnina Tuesday, October 7, 2008 10:06 AM
    Monday, October 6, 2008 6:41 PM