Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Guest
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.




20 posts

Geek


Topic # 148722 28-Jun-2014 20:20
Send private message


Hi guys,

I am thinking of going back to study next year as the first step of a career change and I've decided to study IT, specialising in networking. From research, it seems it's best if I obtained first comptia A+, then network+, security+, then get some vendor certifications (Cisco and Microsoft).

 

For the first two certifications which are vendor neutral, it seems they are covered in a level 5 diploma course. Now, there's a lot of education providers in Auckland alone offering level 5 diploma in computing like AMES, Unitec, DAS Training, Computer Power Plus, and more. Their course costs also vary, some charge close $30,000 while others charge only around $8000 for the same level of qualification.

So, I need some input from those who either have gone to these education providers or from those who have heard things about such providers. I guess I'm interested in which providers are respected in the industry in NZ and maybe even internationally, also which ones have got the best tutors and course delivery style, plus flexibility in class times would be great as I work full time and intend to do keep doing so while studying.

I'd appreciate any feedback you can give me :)

View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic
 1 | 2 | 3

gzt

9158 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 1290


  Reply # 1076288 28-Jun-2014 21:34
Send private message

I started off my IT career with Computer Power many years ago while working full time. The big positives: 90%+ CBT. After a hard day or night at a full time job the CBT style more or less guarantees progress every day towards the goal. After a day away or a month away you just start back where you left off, There were no fixed terms. At the time I had a mix of day/night/on call work, CP was very flexible around that. Assessment dates/times not set in stone etc Big negative: High cost.

Ames, no personal experience. A while ago I heard this is a tutor led classroom style thing. In that model the quality of the tutoring is critical. I met several people who were a bit frustrated with the quality and experience of the tutoring, +general organisational annoyances. Edit: But I think they passed ok.

Reputation. If you are getting the certifications and able to combine that with realworld experience then the reputation of the provider does not matter much imo.

If you are going for a more thorough theoretical grounding and a wider view of the field then reputation starts to matter. You are only going to get that at Unitech or higher imo.

Lastly if you can move your employment into any IT related (even slightly related) area while studying, that's a good thing for kickstarting your career.

Hope this helps, and good luck selecting the one that works for you with the best outcome.

5294 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 1498

Trusted

  Reply # 1076294 28-Jun-2014 21:54
Send private message

Not Avonmore, Thats all i can say.

 
 
 
 


2242 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 353

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 1076304 28-Jun-2014 22:27
One person supports this post
Send private message

I work with a past AMES networking tutor (up to CCNP level) and have watched him take a group of our L1 helpdesk guys through CCNA. If that is the level of tutoring AMES is still offering then I'd seriously consider going there as it was seriously good.

We've also had numerous helpdesk staff who have been through AMES, picked up their CompTIA, CCNA, MS Certs etc, with some going on to become network and systems engineers. 

You're not going to walk out of a place like that straight into some intermediate or senior role, you'll still need to start from a jnr position and put the time and effort in to progress, but it provides a good foundation.







20 posts

Geek


  Reply # 1076306 28-Jun-2014 22:32
Send private message

gzt: I started off my IT career with Computer Power many years ago while working full time. The big positives: 90%+ CBT. After a hard day or night at a full time job the CBT style more or less guarantees progress every day towards the goal. After a day away or a month away you just start back where you left off, There were no fixed terms. At the time I had a mix of day/night/on call work, CP was very flexible around that. Assessment dates/times not set in stone etc Big negative: High cost.

Ames, no personal experience. A while ago I heard this is a tutor led classroom style thing. In that model the quality of the tutoring is critical. I met several people who were a bit frustrated with the quality and experience of the tutoring, +general organisational annoyances. Edit: But I think they passed ok.

Reputation. If you are getting the certifications and able to combine that with realworld experience then the reputation of the provider does not matter much imo.

If you are going for a more thorough theoretical grounding and a wider view of the field then reputation starts to matter. You are only going to get that at Unitech or higher imo.

Lastly if you can move your employment into any IT related (even slightly related) area while studying, that's a good thing for kickstarting your career.

Hope this helps, and good luck selecting the one that works for you with the best outcome.


Hi gzt, thank you for your feedback, it's very useful. A few questions, if I may. What is CBT style? (sorry, as far as I know CBT means cognitive behavoural therapy, lol). As far as course cost goes, CP is one of the cheaper ones ($8000 vs $17,500 at AMES).

I agree with tutor style learning, the tutor better be good otherwise it's going to be hard to absorb the material.

I'm more interested in getting practical skills which will land me a good paying job and in longer term, well paying career. I don't have the luxury to quit my full time job and get back to 3-4 year bachelor's degree so I think industry certifications will be the way to go.

Do you have any tips on getting work experience (paid or not) while studying? I agree with you if I could get involved in the IT side of things at work it would be ideal, it's just my workplace does not have a dedicated IT support department, they hire contractors. 

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions.



20 posts

Geek


  Reply # 1076307 28-Jun-2014 22:40
Send private message

insane: I work with a past AMES networking tutor (up to CCNP level) and have watched him take a group of our L1 helpdesk guys through CCNA. If that is the level of tutoring AMES is still offering then I'd seriously consider going there as it was seriously good.

We've also had numerous helpdesk staff who have been through AMES, picked up their CompTIA, CCNA, MS Certs etc, with some going on to become network and systems engineers. 

You're not going to walk out of a place like that straight into some intermediate or senior role, you'll still need to start from a jnr position and put the time and effort in to progress, but it provides a good foundation.






Hi Insane, thank you for your answer. Yes, I agree since I'm starting a new career I'll have to start from a junior position and work my way up. Do you think it's better to obtain Cisco certifications first or Microsoft, after completing A+ and Network+ I mean?

I checked AMES' courses and it does not seems they offer a course which will prepare me for Network+



20 posts

Geek


  Reply # 1076308 28-Jun-2014 22:41
Send private message

TimA: Not Avonmore, Thats all i can say.


Hi TimA, would you mind elaborating why please?

gzt

9158 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 1290


  Reply # 1076310 28-Jun-2014 22:59
One person supports this post
Send private message

CBT = Computer Based Training. It's a good approach when it is good quality.

Nice to see that recent feedback on Ames above.

You can arrange a visit to nearly all of these places and have them show you around and the way they do things and talk over the course options. Meet the tutor(s) for your course etc. There is a lot of money involved so they expect it. Do that separate from the 'introductory evening' type thing if you can. Btw, they all say 95% of our graduates get jobs in the industry or something similar. I don't doubt it's true. But remember while there are many instant success stories and lucky breaks there are also many starting positions in there also.

5294 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 1498

Trusted

  Reply # 1076311 28-Jun-2014 23:01
One person supports this post
Send private message

fxhans21:
TimA: Not Avonmore, Thats all i can say.


Hi TimA, would you mind elaborating why please?


Right,

Management doesnt care about students, We had an issue with a tutor there doing N+ where it wasnt satisfactory and got no where. (Teacher just read from the book and had little knowledge on the subject)
Half of what was learnt was from Professor Messer.
Website advertises state of the art labs. They had a couple of old celeron boxes and pentium 4's in 1000 pieces that dont go with stuffed hardware.
They had no site licenses for Windows or any software. All pirated or in trial period.
The apparent state of the art PC's that we would work with each day were tired Dell tower servers with ancient Xeons and 8x 1GB DDR ECC ram with 160GB HDD's.
When they moved into a new building we had no air conditioning for 2 weeks in my class.
They were running off consumer grade Orcon unlimited ADSL broadband. Now its Consumer grade Orcon Unlimited Fibre.
No such thing as a firewall. Some students decided it would be fun to DDOS and mess with the network.
Pretty sure heaps of hardware was stolen too.
They make you get out $1000 for course related costs that go towards $50 of tools and 3 books and also the $1000 CRC's cover your 2 external exams (That should be bundled into original price)

Its a $8000 debt i REGRET.

2242 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 353

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 1076315 28-Jun-2014 23:12
Send private message

fxhans21: 

Hi Insane, thank you for your answer. Yes, I agree since I'm starting a new career I'll have to start from a junior position and work my way up. Do you think it's better to obtain Cisco certifications first or Microsoft, after completing A+ and Network+ I mean?

I checked AMES' courses and it does not seems they offer a course which will prepare me for Network+


Depends if you want to move into a Systems or Network role. I started down the CCNA path (self study) but switch to a career in systems when I realised that even large networks are driven by fairly few engineers, and good opportunities are hard to come by. Having a networking background has helped me tremendously as a systems engineer, but I haven't specifically needed a CCNA/CCNP/etc.

I have no MS certs at all either, but then I haven't needed those either given I'm all into virtualization and storage. There's SO many WINTEL admins/engineers out there that the $$ isn't that great.

If you're concerned with having to quit full-time employment to pursue your IT career, you could try self-study

Pickup the two books required for a CCNA (ICND1 and ICND2 from memory), buy someone's CCNA / CCNP lab off Trademe like this nice one which will consist of a couple switches and routers.Then also buy the monthly subscriptions to CBT Nuggets. (CBT - Computer Based Training), they have some pretty good Cisco material which will help you at a fraction of the price of doing it through AMES.

This way you're not investing too much and you can do it at your own pace and back out if it's not for you. CBT Nuggets also has hundreds of training videos for MS certs which you could also self study as needed.








20 posts

Geek


  Reply # 1076325 29-Jun-2014 00:10
Send private message

insane:
fxhans21: 

Hi Insane, thank you for your answer. Yes, I agree since I'm starting a new career I'll have to start from a junior position and work my way up. Do you think it's better to obtain Cisco certifications first or Microsoft, after completing A+ and Network+ I mean?

I checked AMES' courses and it does not seems they offer a course which will prepare me for Network+


Depends if you want to move into a Systems or Network role. I started down the CCNA path (self study) but switch to a career in systems when I realised that even large networks are driven by fairly few engineers, and good opportunities are hard to come by. Having a networking background has helped me tremendously as a systems engineer, but I haven't specifically needed a CCNA/CCNP/etc.

I have no MS certs at all either, but then I haven't needed those either given I'm all into virtualization and storage. There's SO many WINTEL admins/engineers out there that the $$ isn't that great.

If you're concerned with having to quit full-time employment to pursue your IT career, you could try self-study

Pickup the two books required for a CCNA (ICND1 and ICND2 from memory), buy someone's CCNA / CCNP lab off Trademe like this nice one which will consist of a couple switches and routers.Then also buy the monthly subscriptions to CBT Nuggets. (CBT - Computer Based Training), they have some pretty good Cisco material which will help you at a fraction of the price of doing it through AMES.

This way you're not investing too much and you can do it at your own pace and back out if it's not for you. CBT Nuggets also has hundreds of training videos for MS certs which you could also self study as needed.







What's the difference between systems engineer versus network admin role? and in your opinion, what is the current growth trend in the IT industry which will remain strong in the next decade or possibly more? People say that the hardware side of things is dying off and software is the way to go, but I am not sure what this means. 

2242 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 353

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 1076329 29-Jun-2014 00:48
One person supports this post
Send private message

I'll let you do some research into what a network and systems engineer does :)

Overall there's a huge desire for automation in general, and as far as IT and networking is concerned the buzzword "the software defined datacenter" can be sen all over the place.

In the server space we moved back to server virtualisation where we place many virtual servers inside of a single server (simplified), now that some principle is coming to networking in network virtualization. - Google VMWare NSX.

Technologies such as VXLAN is changing the way we build layer two network segments within virtualised environments. I no longer need to trunk each vlan all over the place manually, which is somewhat time consuming and prone to human error, but instead now I simply provision layer 2 'sudo-wires' at the click of a button which all transit through a single transport vlan, meaning traditional network admins are needed less and less over time as these technologies mature.

On the bright side we're just changing the tools we're using. Like everyone in IT, network engineers will just need to learn new tools as they have been doing for years, and overall the concepts of switching, routing and security won't disappear overnight.






20 posts

Geek


  Reply # 1076647 29-Jun-2014 19:06
Send private message

insane: I'll let you do some research into what a network and systems engineer does :)

Overall there's a huge desire for automation in general, and as far as IT and networking is concerned the buzzword "the software defined datacenter" can be sen all over the place.

In the server space we moved back to server virtualisation where we place many virtual servers inside of a single server (simplified), now that some principle is coming to networking in network virtualization. - Google VMWare NSX.

Technologies such as VXLAN is changing the way we build layer two network segments within virtualised environments. I no longer need to trunk each vlan all over the place manually, which is somewhat time consuming and prone to human error, but instead now I simply provision layer 2 'sudo-wires' at the click of a button which all transit through a single transport vlan, meaning traditional network admins are needed less and less over time as these technologies mature.

On the bright side we're just changing the tools we're using. Like everyone in IT, network engineers will just need to learn new tools as they have been doing for years, and overall the concepts of switching, routing and security won't disappear overnight.





Did some research into the duties behind IT job titles, and I get the gist that network engineers are generally more experienced than network administrators.

Thank you for explaining the current growth trend in IT, if indeed automation is the way then yeah network admins jobs will not be as valuable as they are now. I'm sticking to my plan of doing A+ and Network+, then from there I'll see what direction I want to take.

For getting the education, I think I would do better going to an actual physical learning centre, I just may have to cut my work hours to part time and make a few temporary sacrifices here and there. I'll start visiting these education providers and ask them a lot of questions :)

Thank you for your advice so far, this is a great forum with lots of supportive members.



20 posts

Geek


  Reply # 1076648 29-Jun-2014 19:07
Send private message

TimA:
fxhans21:
TimA: Not Avonmore, Thats all i can say.


Hi TimA, would you mind elaborating why please?


Right,

Management doesnt care about students, We had an issue with a tutor there doing N+ where it wasnt satisfactory and got no where. (Teacher just read from the book and had little knowledge on the subject)
Half of what was learnt was from Professor Messer.
Website advertises state of the art labs. They had a couple of old celeron boxes and pentium 4's in 1000 pieces that dont go with stuffed hardware.
They had no site licenses for Windows or any software. All pirated or in trial period.
The apparent state of the art PC's that we would work with each day were tired Dell tower servers with ancient Xeons and 8x 1GB DDR ECC ram with 160GB HDD's.
When they moved into a new building we had no air conditioning for 2 weeks in my class.
They were running off consumer grade Orcon unlimited ADSL broadband. Now its Consumer grade Orcon Unlimited Fibre.
No such thing as a firewall. Some students decided it would be fun to DDOS and mess with the network.
Pretty sure heaps of hardware was stolen too.
They make you get out $1000 for course related costs that go towards $50 of tools and 3 books and also the $1000 CRC's cover your 2 external exams (That should be bundled into original price)

Its a $8000 debt i REGRET.


That does not sound good....not at all. For the price they charge (close to $30,000 for a lv 5 diploma) I expected better.



20 posts

Geek


  Reply # 1076650 29-Jun-2014 19:10
Send private message

gzt: CBT = Computer Based Training. It's a good approach when it is good quality.

Nice to see that recent feedback on Ames above.

You can arrange a visit to nearly all of these places and have them show you around and the way they do things and talk over the course options. Meet the tutor(s) for your course etc. There is a lot of money involved so they expect it. Do that separate from the 'introductory evening' type thing if you can. Btw, they all say 95% of our graduates get jobs in the industry or something similar. I don't doubt it's true. But remember while there are many instant success stories and lucky breaks there are also many starting positions in there also.


Yes, I'll start visiting these places starting next week. CBT may suit my learning style better, as long as they have tutors present when I have questions. I just checked Comp Power Plus website in more details, and that's exactly their style. I'll need to find out the student vs tutors ratio.

Thank you :)

5294 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 1498

Trusted

  Reply # 1076658 29-Jun-2014 19:40
Send private message

fxhans21:

That does not sound good....not at all. For the price they charge (close to $30,000 for a lv 5 diploma) I expected better.


30k?

Where that figure come from? You international student?

 1 | 2 | 3
View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic



Twitter »

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:





News »

UFB connections pass 460,000
Posted 11-Dec-2017 11:26


The Warehouse Group to adopt IBM Cloud to support digital transformation
Posted 11-Dec-2017 11:22


Dimension Data peeks into digital business 2018
Posted 11-Dec-2017 10:55


2018 Cyber Security Predictions
Posted 7-Dec-2017 14:55


Global Govtech Accelerator to drive public sector innovation in Wellington
Posted 7-Dec-2017 11:21


Stuff Pix media strategy a new direction
Posted 7-Dec-2017 09:37


Digital transformation is dead
Posted 7-Dec-2017 09:31


Fake news and cyber security
Posted 7-Dec-2017 09:27


Dimension Data New Zealand strengthens cybersecurity practice
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:27


Epson NZ launches new Expression Premium Photo range
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:26


Eventbrite and Twickets launch integration partnership in Australia and New Zealand
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:23


New Fujifilm macro lens lands in New Zealand
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:16


Cyber security not being taken seriously enough
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:13


Sony commences Android 8.0 Oreo rollout in New Zealand
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:08


Revera partners with Nyriad to deliver blockchain pilot to NZ Government
Posted 5-Dec-2017 20:01



Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.



Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.