December 13, 2016
A common question that many IT professionals ask when researching IT certifications is, “Is it worth it to become certified for this?” Certain certifications are intended for specific levels in one’s IT career, so it can be tricky to determine which certifications are appropriate, given your current role and future career goals. This month’s IT certification profile will shed some light onto the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) A+ certification.
What is the CompTIA A+ Certification?
If you’re just starting off in your IT career, or are currently working in technical support, becoming certified in CompTIA A+ is a great way to reflect a diverse skillset. This certification demonstrates knowledge across several avenues of technology, including security, networking, mobile devices, hardware, troubleshooting, technical support, Windows operating systems, and more! CompTIA A+ certifications reassure hiring managers of your ability to support the infrastructure of the business.
Computer technicians see the value in having this certification as more than 260,000 professionals are certified with CompTIA A+, also making it a popular entry-level IT certification. And, professionals who hold this certification can expect an average salary of $67,954.
How can I become CompTIA A+ certified?
CompTIA wants you to be successful in your IT career, so they provide many resources for professionals to become certified. The first step to being certified is to pass two exams in the same category: CompTIA A+ 220-801 and CompTIA A+ 220-802 OR CompTIA A+ 220-901 and CompTIA A+ 220-902. All of these exams consist of no more than 90 multiple-choice questions, with a time limit of 90 minutes. And, each exam costs $199 in the U.S.
While it’s not required, it is recommended that you have at least 6-12 months of field experience prior to taking the exams as this will only strengthen your knowledge of the testing material. However, if you don’t have much experience or want to be fully prepared for the exams, you can sign-up for a study course and also take practice tests for either of the exam series here. CompTIA also published a great article explaining various ways in which you can prep for an exam, such as training led by an instructor or self-study options.
Do I need to be re-certified with CompTIA A+?
CompTIA also offers a Continuing Education (CE) program to help you stay current with industry trends and renew your certification. The CompTIA A+ expires after three years from your exam date, but through the CE program, “You can participate in a number of activities and training programs, including higher certifications, to renew your CompTIA A+ certification. Collect at least 20 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) in three years, upload them to your certification account, and A+ will automatically renew.”
The CompTIA A+ certification is beneficial for any computer service technician who wants to gain additional training in their role or who wants to grow as an IT professional.
Explore our other IT certification profiles here!
Posted By: Jaclyn Roman