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Best Bang For The Buck

By Flask0969 ·
Recently I graduated with a Management Info Systems degree (MIS). This has given me a broad but not focused IT background; everything from IT Management concepts, E-Business, DBA(access&oracle) to Programming several languages. I have also interned as a web developer using a Unix box running apache and tomcat developing JSPs.

Currently I am in the USAF working as a engineer.
The only useful cert with my position would be a Cisco/networking cert, however I intend to exit the service in a couple of years for a bigger paycheck.

In short I am unsure what cert to invest my time in. I have tried to get a feel for everything from SCJP, CCNA, Oracle, MCSE & A+.

Is there anyone out there with a similar experience? Also, for lack of a better way to phrase it, which cert, or area of, is easiest to obtain? I.E. Programing, Hardware, Networking or DBA


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what do you want to do?

by deepsix In reply to Best Bang For The Buck

It is up to you to decide which part of IT do you want to follow.

The easiest certs to get are the ones within your career field. If you don't have any experience, then they will all be somewhat difficult.

The A+ isn't bad to start with. It will give you an idea of the inner workings of a computer. A+ is equal to 6 months as a PC tech. If you do not have any experience working IN a computer, don't bother with A+.

I would suggest getting a MS cert in a recent operating system. W2K Pro for example. This will give you a baseline and show that you have the basic skills to work in an IT department. Again, ensure you have valid experience before getting the cert.

Follow the path that you want to go. But remember, in an interview, the employer will know in an instant if you actually know your stuff, or if you just got a paper cert without experience.

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What NOT to do

by Oz_Media In reply to Best Bang For The Buck

If you take a bit of time to read some of thes discussions here, you will find that being an MCSE is about as valuable as saying you were a cashier at AMPM. EVERYONE and their dog is a "CERTIFIED MICROSOFT PROFESSIONAL", so what and why?
I would look into OTHER areas of computing such as alternate OS's, writing alternate code to the ever so boring and time comsuming C++ (Python is REALLY nice)and generally steer clear from what everyone else is doing.
Why would you be unique if everyone else rode a pony too?
Go learn how to ride a zebra instead, the zebra jockey's club has a lot more room for such specifically trained people and they pay more while offering better job security.

Microsnot, BLECCCHH !!!

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The reality is...

by RknRlKid In reply to Best Bang For The Buck

...that certain certifications are more widely known than others, so its good to have those too.

The line you will hear repeated by me, based on input directly from employers, is this: A+, Network+, Server+, and some MCPs. What is particularly "hot" here right now is Linux+ and Security+.

Research has shown that A+, Network+ and an MCP open the door. The others keep you employed. Linux+ and Security+ gets you the bigger money.

Whether we like it or not, certifications are the currency of the trade. While it is possible to do well without them, you can always do better with them (providing you know what you are doing in the first place, of course).

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