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A+

The CompTIA A+ certification is for entry-level IT technicians and covers preventative maintenance, basic networking, installation, troubleshooting, communication, and professionalism. This exam is revised about every three years to make sure that the objectives reflect the most current employment requirements. The most current exams were released in late 2012. If you are new to IT, this is an excellent first certification to pursue. The experience requirement requires 500 hours of lab or field experience, and the knowledge tested on these exams is foundational to continued study and work in the IT field. These new exams now have Performance-Based Questions, so it is critical to have hands-on experience. There are many major employers who require this certification for employment, and more than 900,000 people have been A+-certified since 1993. Two exams are necessary to be certified: 220-801 and 220-802. The older exams, CompTIA A+ Essentials (220-701) and CompTIA A+ Practical Application (220-702), will be retired on August 31, 2013.

Read the A+ Exam ProfileCompTIA A+ InformationTest at Pearson VUE

Articles

This article provides you with a good understanding of key IT job roles and the kinds of skills and knowledge that go with them to help ensure the most positive experience for applicants, no matter what kind of IT work you are after.

In this article, you’ll take a look at how annual self-assessment and planning benefits your professional career along with some things to consider when developing or refining your career and certification plans.

In this article, you’ll learn how to construct a personal certification plan to reflect both long- and short-term certification goals.

In preparation for the CompTIA A+ exam, this chapter covers many important details regarding the safe assembly and disassembly of your PC, voltage and power checks, working with and replacing the power supply, and power-saving tips.

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Blogs

Ed Tittel

Earlier this week, it was my pleasure and privilege to moderate a webcast for Pearson IT Certification (PITC) and InformIT from the inimitable Zed Shaw, programmer extraordinaire and the inventor of the terrific "The Hard Way" series of programming books. In preparing for this and upcoming PITC webcasts -- I'll be your relentlessly cheerful moderator for the foreseeable future for such delights -- I found myself poking around the current library of such offerings, and thinking about new items that will be added to this growing collection.

Ed Tittel

In late June, CompTIA announced the opening of a vendor-neutral IT careers portal named "Skillsboost" that targets parents, teachers, and students. The goal of the site is to provide one-stop online resource for IT careers and training information aimed at secondary (high school) and post-secondary (trade school, community college, university) students interested in what the organization describes as "a vocational route into the IT industry," with special emphasis on hands-on IT training and apprenticeships.

Ed Tittel

Over the past month, the folks over at Certification Magazine (who also own and run the excellent GoCertify.com site) have been mining their recently published end-of-year (2014) salary survey. As I chew over the numbers they report and the implicit career guidance they can dangle in front of current and aspiring IT professionals, I'm reminded of that old aphorism, often erroneously attributed to American humorist Samuel Clemens/Mark Twain: "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics." Read on for further musings on what CertMag found and what it can, but doesn't have to mean, when it comes to crafting career plans.

Jamie Shoup

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