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Big Data Training and Certification Keeps On Rolling

Over the past couple of years, if not longer, Big Data has been on IT's radar as a fountain of opportunity at many levels: for companies and organizations to extract added profit and value from their customer and client interactions, for IT to demonstrate value and get to the bottom line, and for IT employees to boost their visibility and find more and better job opportunities. In looking at this trend myself, I've blogged and written articles. This morning, I was delighted to find an article from Kachina Shaw at ITBusinessEdge that confirmed and amplified what I've been reporting all along.

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Savings All Over on Pearson Cert Deals

Every now and then, I have to toot my sponsor's horn for this blog. It's not because they pay me to write these posts (which they do): no, it's because Pearson sometimes offers such terrific deals on items they create or sell that it would be a disservice to my readers not to clue them in as to what's going on. Curious? Cert funds to spend?

Continue reading to learn more about deal details...

More info on Cisco Cert-related Subscriptions

A few weeks ago, right here in this very blog, I alerted readers to the excellent values available when purchasing a Cisco subscription of some kind to gain access to certification prep, study, training, practice exams, and virtual labs. Though my information was correct, Cisco has gone a couple of steps further, and put together a terrific table of information about the duration of such subscriptions, how their countdown clocks work, and some important tips to help subscribers extract the greatest value and utility from them.

Continue reading to learn more about Cisco subscription details...

Rackspace Expands OpenStack Curriculum

As one of the "parents" of the OpenStack cloud software collection, Rackspace has long been active in training on this subject matter. A quick visit to the company's training pages this morning shows they've not been idle of late, and now offer no less than eight courses around OpenStack technologies.

Continue reading to learn more about Rackspace OpenStack course offerings......

Another Great Bundle Offering, for CertPrep ... and Beyond!

After last week's blog post about on-again, off-again discounts on certprep bundles, it occurred to me that readers may want to check into the excellent offerings available at Safari Books Online, a joint venture that involves O'Reilly Media and Pearson among other publishers, and that provides ready online access to over 20,000 technical books via a subscription program. Basically, if you buy 6 or more computer technical books or certification study guides/exam crams per year, you can do better by spending the same (or similar) money to get a Safari subscription instead.

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Sometimes, MORE really is better

For certification candidates pursuing exams, particularly those who take the self-study route to exam preparation, I strongly recommend assembling a battery of preparation materials to get ready for the test (or tests) that usually come near the conclusion of the certification process. That includes books, practice tests, simulators (where applicable) and more. Often, cert candidates must research these items on a one-off basis, which can be time-consuming and sometimes even frustrating. Pearson makes this easy for certain exams with a variety of bundled products for exam prep, and even offers substantial discounts on those bundles from time to time.

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MS Exam in Your Future? Check Out Their Study Groups

When people prepare for any IT certification, I recommend taking a self-study approach for those who may be strapped for funds, with a classroom or online training based approach for those who can afford it. Either way, the run-up to the exam should also include books like those from the Exam Cram or Cert Guide series, one or more practice exams, perhaps some flash cards, and more. Another key ingredient is the focus of today's blog: a study group, which brings together a community of past, present, and future exam-takers to voice and answer questions, address concerns, talk exam strategy and so forth and so on.

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CCHIT Cert To Be Withdrawn from Market

Just recently, Healthcare IT News/HEI Watch published an interview with Alisa Ray, CEO of the Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology (CCHIT) in which she revealed that her organization is exiting the Electronic Health Records (EHR) certification business, and will concentrate on advisory services and though leadership going forward. This confirms a strong suspicion I'd formed when recently updating a survey of leading Healthcare IT (HIT) certifications for Tom's IT Pro, and shows that despite strong demand and rapid growth in Healthcare IT, not all certifications (or the programs they inhabit, or sponsors who deliver them) are made alike.

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MS Learning Explains "Rapid Technology Updates"

The introduction of Windows 8.1 and Windows Server 2012 R2 not only provides new grist for the certification mill, it also represents a major change in the way MS handles (and will handle) certification updates going forward. Senior Product Manager at MS Learning Erika Cravens offers a fascinating blog post on this subject at Born to Learn, and I dissect and analyze that post here in mine.

Continue reading to understand the new MS take on rapid technology updates...

By Ed TittelCommentsFebruary 12, 2014
Topics: Browse by Cert, MCSE, Microsoft, MCSA

Pondering Certification's Value and Worth

Branding and career expert Dan Schawbel shares a unique and interesting perspective on professional certification in a recent blog post. That post's title "Certification -- Is It Worth It?" gives its perspective away in the second sentence, when the author proclaims  that "Over the next 20-30 years, I believe we will see a shift from getting advanced college degrees to getting certifications." But it all really depends on figuring out the value of credentials vis-a-vis their costs in time, effort, and money to decide if earning one or more of them is advantageous or otherwise.

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CompTIA Reports on 2014 IT Outlook

The start of the year is a traditional time for all kinds of players to prognosticate about what the new year may bring. CompTIA jumped onto this bandwagon on January 21 with the release of its IT Industry Outlook 2014. Their forecast falls into a sadly familiar vein that I've often characterized in my discussions of the monthly employment figures from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics in recent years as "slow growth mode." The short version of their forecast is "We're growing in IT, but slowly, and a little more slowly in the USA than across the globe writ large."

For more 2014 forecast deails, please keep reading

A Tale of Two Driving Licenses

Once upon a time, a European consortium sponsored a basic computer literacy credential called the International Computer Driving License, or ICDL. I'm not sure if it was a matter of uptake outside Europe, or if it's because various European -- especially British (these credentials are the brainchildren of the British Computer Society, or BCS, a veritable fountain of standards and guidelines for computing across the Commonwealth) -- interests have decided to invest in ECDL as part of local competency and capability guidelines and requirements. Whatever the case may be, you'll now find both ICDL and ECDL tracks available around the world and in Europe, respectively. If you dig around right here at PITC, in fact, you'll even find an ICDL Exam Cram to read, though it's probably at least a little out-of-date by now (it published in 2004).

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