What Is Comptia? What Does It Stand For? Which Certification Is Right For Me?
Chances are if you are here you have a good idea of what you want to be doing in the IT world. You are looking into getting some certifications and wondering what COMPTIA is? Basically COMPTIA stands for ” Computer Technology Industry Association“. Now you can win at Jeopardy 😉
I remember back in 2002 when I took my first Comptia A+ exam. I was super nervous, but also super excited! I passed the test of course, then I moved onto getting my Network + & Security +. I was never a great test taker, but this stuff always came pretty naturally to me and of course I enjoyed it so it was easy, but of course had its challenges!
One of the big challenges was support and feedback. I studied from a 2nd hand book and had to assume a lot of things. My goal here is to turn you onto some training that would have saved me time, frustration, and money if I had it all those years ago!
O.K. anyways back to Comptia. They offer a lot of certifications and they really are one of the top companies around! I never had any issues when scheduling exams and taking the tests!
The biggest questions I get asked are WHERE DO I START!? That is a good question. There is so much information out there today and you can get confused real quick.
First you can go here https://certification.comptia.org/certifications/which-certification and take a look at all the certs they offer. There is also a quiz you can take that will point you in the right direction.
Here is what I have told anyone that wanted to get into the Information Technology field or even Cyber Security since I have started. This really does also depend on what kind of background you have, but heck even if you think you “know” computers you still need to learn the basics and you do need certifications if you expect to get hired.
***Important NOTE: Also realize that a lot of this can be a catch22…. you need the Certifications to get certain jobs, but having experience is the biggest thing, but how do you get the JOBS without the experience? Just know that having all the certs in the world won’t compensate for real world experience, but know you are bettering yourself by getting them and you should be trying to get an internship or some job dealing with what you are learning whenever possible.
- Here… I wrote this blog post on >>> tips to get a job in information technology with no experience. <<< that will give you some ideas.
I am going to create full info pages for the certs below so click on the links to learn more, but here is the basic info.
Comptia A+ Certification: To me this is the foundation cert to have! Sure a lot of it can be silly and you will never use it which is on most exams, but the A+ cert is easy to get and good to have so get it! Not only that, but when you study you are going to learn a lot of things that make things click which in turn just helps you understand how systems work together which allow you to solve problems better. It is vendor neutral so you are learning the basic “how’s” of how things work which allow you to figure things out on any platform.
Basically you are going to learn a little bit of everything here and it will give you the ability to grow in your position and figure out what you really like and want to pursue. You might find you like the network aspect more so you will go more focused into the Networking field or same with Security, or a server admin etc…..
Comptia Network + Certification: I was real excited when I passed this one. It was a bit more technical, but was fun learning what I needed to know. Having the A+ beforehand was a big help. In a nutshell you are not learning how to manage or configure a single type of hardware you’re learning about network as a whole. You could then decide to go into a specific vendor like CISCO, but this will give you the foundation to grasp it.
Comptia Security + Certification: When I became a Network Administrator one of the biggest issues was security holes. Of course most of the time the security issues were because of users doing something stupid…. hehe…. that is why there should be filters in place to catch these things before it happens. You will learn about Cryptography, security protocols, system security, and network infrastructure. You think you might know a lot, but you will be shocked with how much is out there. Again since this is vendor neutral you are learning foundation security that you can use to understand and focus on other vendors if you decide to.
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