Certification Watch: Security Certified Program Launched

Certification News regarding the 2001Global Training and Certification Study, Microsoft, Cisco, CompTIA i-Net+, and IBM online challenge exams.
Certification Watch is provided by GoCertify.com, a gathering place and resource center for people interested in computer professional certification.

Study Shows Certification Pays For Individuals And Employers
A just-released survey of nearly 18,000 IT managers, certification candidates and certified professionals reports that certification is critical to career development and quality control within IT departments. The 2001 Global Training and Certification Study was sponsored jointly by CompTIA and Prometric, and conducted by Gartner Consulting. According to the study, two-thirds of professionals certified reported a salary increase after becoming certified, and more than half cited increased productivity as a reason to pursue certification. From the managerial perspective, IT managers reported higher levels of service, competitive advantage, and increased productivity as key benefits of having certified staff. Read the full study online

Microsoft Revises Exam Retirement Policy
Microsoft has announced that all Microsoft certification exams will remain available for at least two years from the date they are released. In a slight terminology change, they will be discontinued (rather then retired). This reflects the fact that although the exam may no longer be available, it may still count toward current certification titles. Click to see list of discontinued exams and their effects on continued certification.

Past Issues of Certification Watch
Experience Now Required

Microsoft Adds XP, .NET Exams

Microsoft Builds Bridge To MCSE, MCSD

Novell Changes Tack

Security Certified Program Launched
If you haven't found a security focused certification that suits you yet, there's a new program developed by Ascendant Learning that may fill the bill. Level one of the two-tier program is the Security Certified Network Professional (SCNP) designation, and focuses on network defense, with emphasis on firewalls and intrusion detection. Level 2 Security Certified Network Architect (SCNA) covers trust, with a focus on Public Key Infrastructure (PKI). Each level requires passing two exams. The first exam (SCNP 401) became available November 15th. The rest will roll out through January 2002.

Cisco Changes Exam Pricing
As of November 1, 2001, the price for Cisco exams that begin with #640- and 9E0- increased from $100 to $125. This basically includes all but the CCIE exams. The other exception is the Foundation exam (#640-509), which jumped from $200 to $250. The price changes apply to the USA, Canada, and Puerto Rico.

Free Cisco Certification Practice Tests
Looking to test yourself before official exam day? Cisco has posted free "challenge tests" for you to gauge your readiness. The software includes a full-blow exam environment simulation for the CCNA exam and several CCNP exams. Each challenge contains 10 - 13 questions and can be found by clicking here.

Revised CompTIA i-Net+ Reaches Beta
If you've been waiting for a chance at the i-Net+ designation, but were reluctant to fork over the $132, now's the time. The newest version of the exam (#IK1-002) is now available in beta format through both Prometric and VUE for a reduced cost of $90. The exam includes 100 questions and you have up to two hours to complete it. Since it is a beta exam, you won't receive your score until early next year. If that's too long to wait, you can always take the current i-Net+ exam for the regular price.

IBM VisualAge for Java, Websphere Application Server Free Exam Offer
A different sort of beta opportunity comes from IBM. Until December 14 certification candidates can take free pre-assessment/sample tests related to product specific certification for IBM VisualAge for Java, IBM WebSphere Studio and IBM WebSphere Application Server, V4.0. Achieving a score of 75% or better does NOT earn certification, but, if you're one of the first 4,000 to do so, it does get you a voucher to take the final version of the exam for free. The assessments are conveniently available online via IBM's new ICE tool.

The complete current issue of Certification Watch can be found at GoCertify.com.

Anne Martinez is the author of Cheap Web Tricks: Build and Promote a Successful Web Site Without Spending A Dime and Get Certified and Get Ahead: Millennium Edition she is also the founder of GoCertify.com.

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