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Mocking the A+

By stephenboddy ·
Whats the problem with some people?
I achieved my A+ 7 months ago, after alot of hard work. I was proud of myself and felt like I had accomplished something. I passed the Net+ last month, the same again.
Yet people come on here dissing it, saying how it is'nt needed, its a waste of paper, its rubbish, I have lah-lah certification which is way higher anyway......etc, etc.
Yes the A+ does ask daft questions, I failed by Half a question on my first attempt at the hardware exam, yet aced my operating systems exam.
Yes the questions do not really apply to the real world and the real working environment.
But we all have to start somewhere.
I know people who drive cars whilst un-insured, but hey, they can drive, so why go for the piece of paper that says they can, who needs a license when you can do the job without learning correctly. Who keeps their hands at the 10 - 2 position on the wheel once they pass? But millions of people still sit their driving exam.
I apologise for the rant, but it gets annoying when people who have no or 'better' qualifications laugh at people just starting and learning.


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Well put Steven

by imacdude In reply to Mocking the A+

I have not taken the A+ yet as my current job does not require it,
but I applaud your achievement. Some levels of achievement come
easier to some than to others. Seems that for every one of those
people there are ten people that truly struggle to reach the same
point. The front runners should be both supportive and
encouraging. That?s what leadership is all about.

So cheers! to your accomplishment, and good luck on your next

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Some are not mocking or laughing

by j.lupo In reply to Mocking the A+

at you for doing what you are. Many are just giving you the advise of experience from what the real world expects. BTW: You should be proud of yourself. YOU achieved a goal that YOU set for yourself. It doesn't matter what others think about that. Their opinions do not lesson your achievement.

On the flip side though the general perception of certifications versus degrees, and education in general does influence people.

Let me put it to you this way. A person has the papers (cert, degree I don't care which), but no actual hands on real world experience, Do I want want this person over someone with, let's say, 3 years experience and a degree/cert?

The point is, get all the papers you want but make sure you have the actual experience. That experience is more important in the real world. As a manager I don't care if you can teach me the difference between an abstract class and a class. I care whether or not you know how to use both in a program.

Personally, I feel all learning, no matter the direction, is valuable. It is never wasted and it can never be taken away from you. It adds value by helping you to think in new ways and to learn how to learn. That is, education teaches you how to find answers (not always. Depends on the type of training).

One of the reasons Degrees hold more value (at least by perception) is because the theory is that a degree teaches you how to learn, how to find your own answers. A certification teaches you specific solutions to specific situations. Now this is the general perception. It may not be the reality.

I know certain certifications build only a foundation, but a lot of students of them don't know how to take that foundation and build on it. No one can teach you everything you need to know. You need to learn how to take what you are taught and apply it to new situations or different situations. What you were taught may not even apply, so where do you go from there? Do you know where to find answers if what you were taught doesn't solve the problem?

Please do not take this negatively. I am simply trying to give you an idea of the perceptions that exist. It is very commendable that you are learning. A+, Net+, etc. All important. Experience is just more important. Also, in the real world, unfortuantely, perceptions are reality. Until certifications can prove their value to be at least equal with the education of a degree, they will be considered not reason enough.

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Problem with certs

by jbaker In reply to Mocking the A+ that there are so many people out there with certs and no practical experience. Whether it is A+, Net+, MCSE, CNE, or whatever, the market is saturated with "paper" engineers. That alone devalues the certifications in most employers eyes. That being said, congrats on your accomplishments. It is an achievement to go forward and complete a goal that you set for yourself.

I personally do not have any certs. Has it kept me from getting any jobs? Perhaps, it has, but I cannot say for certain. I know that I have gotten jobs where they stated they wanted a certified person, but I was able to prove my knowledge and experience and thereby eliminate that requirement.

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by stephenboddy In reply to Problem with certs

Well, I actually got my job first, without any certs in actual IT. I am getting them now because a)work pays for them
b)personal development
c)because I always liked a challenge
d)because I want to get to the top of my field :).

I agree that experience is worth more, but, like in my old job, (steel fabricator), you tend to get sick of being turned down for a job because you have no experience. It ends up being a Catch 22 situation. I complete a 4 year apprenticeship and struggle to get work because I have no experience.

Anyway, thanks for your replies and reading my rant

Best Regards


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about certs

by BHunsinger In reply to

Good on you! Know that there are requirements for working on systems that require the certs you are getting for doing warrentee work. Also there are companies who use the fact that their employees have these things as sales tools. No tickee no washee.

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Last time I looked...

by pgm554 In reply to Mocking the A+

to get a drivers license ,you need to take a practical as well as written.

If all you had to do to get a drivers license was to pass a written test, think of how many more problems we would have with drivers.

Would you really want a driver on the road who hadn?t taken a road exam to prove they are at least marginally competent?

A paper test is just a paper test. There should be practical hands on component to the testing methodology.

I have said it once and I will say it again, most certs are like shine on a car bumper, looks good, but you can?t tell from the shine how well it will work.

Cisco has it for the CCIE and it is the reason why you don't see many of them.
The same can't be said for MSCSE's and the like.

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by stephenboddy In reply to Last time I looked...

Thats my point though! I know people who drive with NO license. So they have NOT proven they are marginally competent. That is my point in the analogy I used. No matter how naturally gifted the person is, unless they can show a tiny piece of competence in their skills then....
Believe me if someone has been doing something for years without a piece of paper then kudos to them and I will not bother them, (especially if they can pass a 'basic test' without any hassle.
All I want is people like me to get recognition for the work they have put in to get started in the IT industry.
I have had some decent replies so far, which are appreciated. :)
I admire the people to whom it comes natural and I wish you all of the success you get but its not natural to everyone.

Best Regards

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Certs vs Experiance

by KennethL In reply to

Despite what others may or will say, there are many companies out there that will not even talk to you if they want the certs and you don't have them.
I have been doing IT work for 25 years, I am only just now getting all of my certs and degrees, because the companies in my area want them and won't talk to you if you don't have them (no matter HOW much experiance you have in the field!) Bravo to you! DON'T let anyone discourage you!

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My 2 cents...

by mrafrohead In reply to Mocking the A+


I hear you. Loud and clear.

I have my silly little A+. I honestly think it's a farce. I didn't take a class or study to get it. I just walked in and took it and got it. Funny thing is for some reason I'm worth a little more now than I was before I took it, yet I know no more than I did previously... BS IMO.

Anywho - if YOU hold value in it, then screw them all!

It only matters what you think, no one else. They didn't earn that piece of paper for you.

Me personally, I think all certs are rubbish. Half the MCSE clowns I know did a crash course and don't know jack about the box. Yet I'm just the monkey with an A+ so somehow I'm not as smart. Yet those clowns are the ones asking me questions.

Funny huh?

The moral of the story, hold your head up high, and **** on the rest of the people that talk the smack. They aren't worth your time or your energy!

Keep on truckin'!!!


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by stephenboddy In reply to My 2 cents...

Thank you my Friend

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