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  Reply # 1076666 29-Jun-2014 19:56
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TimA:
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?


I got that from their Auckland City campus page. I checked other campus in North Shore, and it's around $8,000. Yeah, like you said, $30,000 is for international. Still. $8,000 is a lot of money to spend on sub par education.

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  Reply # 1076667 29-Jun-2014 19:56
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I can't speak for the current content of A+ and Network+ (or any of the other CompTIA "Industry Certifications") but as someone that passed them in 05/06 and have seen their update e-mails etc, as far as I'm concerned they aren't worth it (by that I mean, from what I've noticed, the only people that care about them, are marketing folk for CompTIA and educational places that offer them).

Yes, the courses do have some interesting things that are not covered in the Microsoft/Red Hat/Cisco exams (i.e. it may be useful when diagnosing a bad ATX PSU which pins to short and which pins should provide what output on your multimeter), but a certification that now expires on a 3-5 yearly basis if I recall correctly?

If you go with Computer Power, a tip, clarify exactly what external exam vouchers are included/excluded with your course fees and have it written down, good few years back I knew a few students that were under the impression that one exam that was included in their course fees turned out wasn't (was buried into the contract somewhere) - so many years ago I can't remember the full ins & outs now, but a word to the wise to just get the full clarification.

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1076695 29-Jun-2014 21:19
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nigelj: I can't speak for the current content of A+ and Network+ (or any of the other CompTIA "Industry Certifications") but as someone that passed them in 05/06 and have seen their update e-mails etc, as far as I'm concerned they aren't worth it (by that I mean, from what I've noticed, the only people that care about them, are marketing folk for CompTIA and educational places that offer them).

Yes, the courses do have some interesting things that are not covered in the Microsoft/Red Hat/Cisco exams (i.e. it may be useful when diagnosing a bad ATX PSU which pins to short and which pins should provide what output on your multimeter), but a certification that now expires on a 3-5 yearly basis if I recall correctly?

If you go with Computer Power, a tip, clarify exactly what external exam vouchers are included/excluded with your course fees and have it written down, good few years back I knew a few students that were under the impression that one exam that was included in their course fees turned out wasn't (was buried into the contract somewhere) - so many years ago I can't remember the full ins & outs now, but a word to the wise to just get the full clarification.


O yeah BTW,

I sat CompTIA in 2012 and the CompTIA book was on Vista and XP, Windows 7 was out and 8 in beta.
My cert is almost irrelevant.

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  Reply # 1076720 29-Jun-2014 22:03
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TimA:
nigelj: I can't speak for the current content of A+ and Network+ (or any of the other CompTIA "Industry Certifications") but as someone that passed them in 05/06 and have seen their update e-mails etc, as far as I'm concerned they aren't worth it (by that I mean, from what I've noticed, the only people that care about them, are marketing folk for CompTIA and educational places that offer them).

Yes, the courses do have some interesting things that are not covered in the Microsoft/Red Hat/Cisco exams (i.e. it may be useful when diagnosing a bad ATX PSU which pins to short and which pins should provide what output on your multimeter), but a certification that now expires on a 3-5 yearly basis if I recall correctly?

If you go with Computer Power, a tip, clarify exactly what external exam vouchers are included/excluded with your course fees and have it written down, good few years back I knew a few students that were under the impression that one exam that was included in their course fees turned out wasn't (was buried into the contract somewhere) - so many years ago I can't remember the full ins & outs now, but a word to the wise to just get the full clarification.


O yeah BTW,

I sat CompTIA in 2012 and the CompTIA book was on Vista and XP, Windows 7 was out and 8 in beta.
My cert is almost irrelevant.


Well yes, that is another point against CompTIA (i.e. out-of-date, at times),  the others are the relevance to what you are planning on doing, if you are going to do a lot of work with hardware, then it's possible that A+ may still be somewhat suitable, but apart from that I'd recommend an actual vendor certification/training any day of the week.   Even then, I'm actually no longer overly keen on the vendor certifications either these days, but they certainly do still fill a void.

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  Reply # 1076723 29-Jun-2014 22:07
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nigelj:
TimA:
nigelj: I can't speak for the current content of A+ and Network+ (or any of the other CompTIA "Industry Certifications") but as someone that passed them in 05/06 and have seen their update e-mails etc, as far as I'm concerned they aren't worth it (by that I mean, from what I've noticed, the only people that care about them, are marketing folk for CompTIA and educational places that offer them).

Yes, the courses do have some interesting things that are not covered in the Microsoft/Red Hat/Cisco exams (i.e. it may be useful when diagnosing a bad ATX PSU which pins to short and which pins should provide what output on your multimeter), but a certification that now expires on a 3-5 yearly basis if I recall correctly?

If you go with Computer Power, a tip, clarify exactly what external exam vouchers are included/excluded with your course fees and have it written down, good few years back I knew a few students that were under the impression that one exam that was included in their course fees turned out wasn't (was buried into the contract somewhere) - so many years ago I can't remember the full ins & outs now, but a word to the wise to just get the full clarification.


O yeah BTW,

I sat CompTIA in 2012 and the CompTIA book was on Vista and XP, Windows 7 was out and 8 in beta.
My cert is almost irrelevant.


Well yes, that is another point against CompTIA (i.e. out-of-date, at times),  the others are the relevance to what you are planning on doing, if you are going to do a lot of work with hardware, then it's possible that A+ may still be somewhat suitable, but apart from that I'd recommend an actual vendor certification/training any day of the week.   Even then, I'm actually no longer overly keen on the vendor certifications either these days, but they certainly do still fill a void.


I would have gone CCNA, MCP any day. Probably cost roughly the same and will get you further than tech support at an ISP.


gzt

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  Reply # 1076728 29-Jun-2014 22:13
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fxhans21:
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 :)

Because there is no 'class' as such, the actual ratio is unimportant. What does count is the interval between clicking 'request assistance' and the person arriving at your desk ; ). Because any question will relate to the material at hand, answering is not usually an issue as long as the tutor has completed that module or has the required level of experience. Different model. It's narrower in some places but that is part of the advantage also.



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  Reply # 1076729 29-Jun-2014 22:14
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nigelj: I can't speak for the current content of A+ and Network+ (or any of the other CompTIA "Industry Certifications") but as someone that passed them in 05/06 and have seen their update e-mails etc, as far as I'm concerned they aren't worth it (by that I mean, from what I've noticed, the only people that care about them, are marketing folk for CompTIA and educational places that offer them).

Yes, the courses do have some interesting things that are not covered in the Microsoft/Red Hat/Cisco exams (i.e. it may be useful when diagnosing a bad ATX PSU which pins to short and which pins should provide what output on your multimeter), but a certification that now expires on a 3-5 yearly basis if I recall correctly?

If you go with Computer Power, a tip, clarify exactly what external exam vouchers are included/excluded with your course fees and have it written down, good few years back I knew a few students that were under the impression that one exam that was included in their course fees turned out wasn't (was buried into the contract somewhere) - so many years ago I can't remember the full ins & outs now, but a word to the wise to just get the full clarification.


Then what certifications in your opinion would give one a solid grounding on basic PC operations (hardware and software) and network skills later down the line?

gzt

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  Reply # 1076733 29-Jun-2014 22:19
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TimA:
nigelj: I can't speak for the current content of A+ and Network+ (or any of the other CompTIA "Industry Certifications") but as someone that passed them in 05/06 and have seen their update e-mails etc, as far as I'm concerned they aren't worth it (by that I mean, from what I've noticed, the only people that care about them, are marketing folk for CompTIA and educational places that offer them).

Yes, the courses do have some interesting things that are not covered in the Microsoft/Red Hat/Cisco exams (i.e. it may be useful when diagnosing a bad ATX PSU which pins to short and which pins should provide what output on your multimeter), but a certification that now expires on a 3-5 yearly basis if I recall correctly?

If you go with Computer Power, a tip, clarify exactly what external exam vouchers are included/excluded with your course fees and have it written down, good few years back I knew a few students that were under the impression that one exam that was included in their course fees turned out wasn't (was buried into the contract somewhere) - so many years ago I can't remember the full ins & outs now, but a word to the wise to just get the full clarification.


O yeah BTW,

I sat CompTIA in 2012 and the CompTIA book was on Vista and XP, Windows 7 was out and 8 in beta.
My cert is almost irrelevant.

Imo this kind of thing, if they get you into the field they have served the purpose. After that your added experience counts for more. But yeah, you came in at the end of that generation of o/s.

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  Reply # 1076736 29-Jun-2014 22:28
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fxhans21:
nigelj: I can't speak for the current content of A+ and Network+ (or any of the other CompTIA "Industry Certifications") but as someone that passed them in 05/06 and have seen their update e-mails etc, as far as I'm concerned they aren't worth it (by that I mean, from what I've noticed, the only people that care about them, are marketing folk for CompTIA and educational places that offer them).

Yes, the courses do have some interesting things that are not covered in the Microsoft/Red Hat/Cisco exams (i.e. it may be useful when diagnosing a bad ATX PSU which pins to short and which pins should provide what output on your multimeter), but a certification that now expires on a 3-5 yearly basis if I recall correctly?

If you go with Computer Power, a tip, clarify exactly what external exam vouchers are included/excluded with your course fees and have it written down, good few years back I knew a few students that were under the impression that one exam that was included in their course fees turned out wasn't (was buried into the contract somewhere) - so many years ago I can't remember the full ins & outs now, but a word to the wise to just get the full clarification.


Then what certifications in your opinion would give one a solid grounding on basic PC operations (hardware and software) and network skills later down the line?


No certification - by all means read the A+/Network+ text books etc, but in my opinion the exams are a waste of money, the objectives of A+/Network+ (at least back when I did it, and I believe they haven't changed much) covered the important bits/fundamental bits, especially for Network+ (OSI model etc).

If you are then going for something more specialist get vendor certifications with what you are working with, i.e. CCNA, Microsoft certifications (what used to be MCP/MCSA - now MCITP(?)).

I will mention this though, one former advantage of A+/Network+ used to be that it counted against one of Microsoft's MCSA requirements and exempted the requirement of a 4th Microsoft exam as I recall - I may be wrong, but I do seem to recall having to go through a cross-certification process to get my A+/Network+ verified by Microsoft for the MCSA 2003 certification path.



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  Reply # 1076814 30-Jun-2014 08:25
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I got my A+ etc from AMES but that was 11 years ago....  the training portion was a waste of money. The tutor admitted A+ was not his area, he was just reading from the book (which had errors in it which my mates and I had to correct all the time), one of the books was a "For Dummies" book but with the cover replaced with AMES's own cover (probably dodgy dodgy) and the head tutor was a complete muppet IMHO (Argued with me about USB and drivers with PnP devices...even when proven wrong he still argued).

Hopefully things changed :)

For any of the Comptia stuff if you know the basics of the course, just buy one of the books, go through it yourself, then go sit the exam. Save a few grand.... 

I taught A+ plus for a few weeks at my old job to some of the students (when they did show up) and found A+ did cover a bit more than what I had done....

I contacted Seek a few years ago regarding the online training they were offering - I was offered a package containing things such as Linux+, Network+, Security+ (and one or two other things) for around $7000NZD - yet to get some even close over here was going to be $15k+. The sales rep I spoke to said that NZ was horribly expensive for IT training, hence why they were offering these packages..... was a really helpful and knowledgeable sales person for a change.






XPD / Gavin / DemiseNZ

 

Home Of The Overrated Raccoons

 

 




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  Reply # 1076911 30-Jun-2014 11:14
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xpd: I got my A+ etc from AMES but that was 11 years ago....  the training portion was a waste of money. The tutor admitted A+ was not his area, he was just reading from the book (which had errors in it which my mates and I had to correct all the time), one of the books was a "For Dummies" book but with the cover replaced with AMES's own cover (probably dodgy dodgy) and the head tutor was a complete muppet IMHO (Argued with me about USB and drivers with PnP devices...even when proven wrong he still argued).

Hopefully things changed :)

For any of the Comptia stuff if you know the basics of the course, just buy one of the books, go through it yourself, then go sit the exam. Save a few grand.... 

I taught A+ plus for a few weeks at my old job to some of the students (when they did show up) and found A+ did cover a bit more than what I had done....

I contacted Seek a few years ago regarding the online training they were offering - I was offered a package containing things such as Linux+, Network+, Security+ (and one or two other things) for around $7000NZD - yet to get some even close over here was going to be $15k+. The sales rep I spoke to said that NZ was horribly expensive for IT training, hence why they were offering these packages..... was a really helpful and knowledgeable sales person for a change.




My workmate who did A+ 7-8 years ago showed me some video lessons from Mike Meyers. I thought the material, even though some outdated was very useful to me. I've been mainly a typical user who knows just enough basic to operate a computer.

I could do online self study, but I was thinking if I went to a physical place to learn, I would have access to equipment and have hands on practice more often. How was the lab facility in AMES back when you were studying?

xpd

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  Reply # 1076992 30-Jun-2014 12:31
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Lab facility ? I wish....  we had network access (only had internet when they plugged the cable into the router), and we (friends and I) got told off by the head tutor because "youre killing the network" - we were just sending messages to each other using "net send" :)

Everything was read out of the book page for page. Then we finally got to assemble the PC we had been "given" as part of our course fees.....  even then we were only given one part per class to assemble at our desk.  

It was all very basic back then, no "labs", no equipment to play with before you broke your own gear etc.... 

The videos used were interesting enough for those who were new to the PC world, but for anyone with a bit of experience it was pretty boring. Things have changed with the videos now though, they realized they were boring people to death so have spiced them up a bit to keep you awake ;)

If you want parts to practise on, pick up some old PC's from TradeMe and use those.... self teach :)





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  Reply # 1077045 30-Jun-2014 14:08
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xpd: Lab facility ? I wish....  we had network access (only had internet when they plugged the cable into the router), and we (friends and I) got told off by the head tutor because "youre killing the network" - we were just sending messages to each other using "net send" :)

Everything was read out of the book page for page. Then we finally got to assemble the PC we had been "given" as part of our course fees.....  even then we were only given one part per class to assemble at our desk.  

It was all very basic back then, no "labs", no equipment to play with before you broke your own gear etc.... 

The videos used were interesting enough for those who were new to the PC world, but for anyone with a bit of experience it was pretty boring. Things have changed with the videos now though, they realized they were boring people to death so have spiced them up a bit to keep you awake ;)

If you want parts to practise on, pick up some old PC's from TradeMe and use those.... self teach :)



Lol....I don't whether to laugh or cry. Hopefully things have improved signficantly. I'll pay them a visit this week. I also contacted Seek learning about their courses and the costs. Works out cheaper if I did a self study online, but it has to be upfront which I don't have the money for at the moment ($ AUS 1,995 per course), so I may have to attend a provider so I can be eligible for a student loan.

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  Reply # 1078877 2-Jul-2014 21:10
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I wanted to extend a bit more on what I've posted in response to the OP as I bit rushed (multi-tasking etc) in my earlier responses and also wanted to think about what I wanted to say etc.

First off, to be perfectly frank I'm not 100% sure if there is a fantastic PTE* with a focus on IT, proof is kind of in the number of acquisitions, failings and downsizings in the last 10 or so years, the so called 'boon' for IT.

Secondly, I have a bit of a conflict of interest, I once studied, and at a later point, actually used to be employed by Computer Power, now a reasonable long time ago.  I'm not actually sure who is still there from my time there/what has changed.

From a technical point of view, Computer Power were pretty on to it in terms of smarts of deploying courseware, used to be each part of course you were on was defined a profile of virtual machine images and upon logging into to the workstations they'd grab your changes to the VMs and then just boot the environment you needed.  Accidentally cripple Windows?  Tell the instructor, they just click a button and on logout the system just discards your changes to the images (but not your home drive) that session) - or depending on when you notice, just redeploys your VMs.

From an actual course ware point of view though, well... in 2006 their 'Linux 3'/'Advanced Web Servers' (part of the RHCT path of the DNE course) modules were using Red Hat Linux 7.3 still, and the Web Servers module stated that form validation should be done on the client side instead of server side (we all know how well that works don't we), was a bit disappointing since I'd paid extra so I could do both paths (RHCT/MCSA).

From a previous staff point of view I'd also add that generally while I was there the way requests flowed the effort was to answer requests by who knew the content (obviously) the best, personally I always dreaded the questions that popped up on the system from the business computing students that were on the office applications, that had a 50% chance of been about pivot tables which would have me running back for the staff manual on them.  Likewise there were instructors that were more programming grounded or more business applications grounded, generally if they start grasping at straws they'll go get someone else that knows area the best to follow-up, the simple act of talking a question over with someone else I always found was enough to clear a lot of questions up - odd but true.


*PTE: Private Training Establishment - This is the 'official' term for any privately owned company that gets funding for courses that do meet the NZQF standards



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  Reply # 1081214 4-Jul-2014 21:27
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nigelj: I wanted to extend a bit more on what I've posted in response to the OP as I bit rushed (multi-tasking etc) in my earlier responses and also wanted to think about what I wanted to say etc.

First off, to be perfectly frank I'm not 100% sure if there is a fantastic PTE* with a focus on IT, proof is kind of in the number of acquisitions, failings and downsizings in the last 10 or so years, the so called 'boon' for IT.

Secondly, I have a bit of a conflict of interest, I once studied, and at a later point, actually used to be employed by Computer Power, now a reasonable long time ago.  I'm not actually sure who is still there from my time there/what has changed.

From a technical point of view, Computer Power were pretty on to it in terms of smarts of deploying courseware, used to be each part of course you were on was defined a profile of virtual machine images and upon logging into to the workstations they'd grab your changes to the VMs and then just boot the environment you needed.  Accidentally cripple Windows?  Tell the instructor, they just click a button and on logout the system just discards your changes to the images (but not your home drive) that session) - or depending on when you notice, just redeploys your VMs.

From an actual course ware point of view though, well... in 2006 their 'Linux 3'/'Advanced Web Servers' (part of the RHCT path of the DNE course) modules were using Red Hat Linux 7.3 still, and the Web Servers module stated that form validation should be done on the client side instead of server side (we all know how well that works don't we), was a bit disappointing since I'd paid extra so I could do both paths (RHCT/MCSA).

From a previous staff point of view I'd also add that generally while I was there the way requests flowed the effort was to answer requests by who knew the content (obviously) the best, personally I always dreaded the questions that popped up on the system from the business computing students that were on the office applications, that had a 50% chance of been about pivot tables which would have me running back for the staff manual on them.  Likewise there were instructors that were more programming grounded or more business applications grounded, generally if they start grasping at straws they'll go get someone else that knows area the best to follow-up, the simple act of talking a question over with someone else I always found was enough to clear a lot of questions up - odd but true.


*PTE: Private Training Establishment - This is the 'official' term for any privately owned company that gets funding for courses that do meet the NZQF standards


Thanks for the feedback. A lot of people I've been asking both online and offline tend to recommend self study at this stage. With A+, it seems very doable. With network+, I guess I could buy some cheap PCs and network them. I found a website which offers free study guides for IT certifications, www.proprofs.com I'll start going thru their guides this weekend. If I really can learn all the skills without having to go to a physical education provider, it will be much cheaper in the long run.

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