Whats the deal with bootcamps?

brad-brad- Posts: 1,218Registered Members
First, I don't know what they are...and wikipedia does not have an entry related to this...but they often seem mentioned with braindumps.

Second, what are they and why are they frowned upon here?

Comments

  • SchluepSchluep Posts: 346Registered Members
    A lot of the bootcamps have a reputation as being designed to prepare you to pass the examination as opposed to really learning the material. Many of them are over a three day to 1 week time frame and they often will host the exam for you on the last today. It is essentially an instructor-led cram session with some other people.

    One nice thing I have heard about some of them is instrctors who are willing to stay late and assist with any questions you may have. I know people that have been to them and found them to be helpful. Personally I do not think a week is long enough to truly understand and apply what you are learning, but I can't speak from experience since I have never attended one.

    I am sure like anything there are some good ones, bad ones, and average ones. I think a lot of the negativity surrounding them could be a lot of the bad/average ones not being worth the money invested. Another thing could be people with no experience in the subject matter expecting to attend a boot camp and have no trouble understanding all of the material as well as passing the exam (which is how many are advertised). Perhaps some of them also use question/answer training based on actual test questions and actually are cheating similar to the people downloading the information, but I couldn't name any names personally off-hand.

    I could see legitimate ones as being very helpful for people with a thorough understanding of the subject matter that needs a strong review before taking the exam. Personally, it is not something that I have ever considered attending.
  • dynamikdynamik Posts: 12,314Banned
    They're not like **** in the sense that they're cheating. They're essentially intense training sessions that cover a lot of material in not that much time. I've seen people post about some on here that move through an exam every 3 weeks at only 4-8 hours per week. The criticism is that it's too much too fast, and while you may be able to pass the tests, you don't genuinely learn the material. I think they can be valuable tools if you're familiar with the material, and you just want some lab time with a knowledgeable professional to brush up and ask any remaining questions.
  • brad-brad- Posts: 1,218Registered Members
    Huh, thanks for the reply guys.
  • determinedgermandeterminedgerman Posts: 168Registered Members
    Bootcamps are a very helpful thing if done right.

    A lot of people are attending bootcamps after already having studied on their own and use it to prepare for the certification.

    A bootcamp is a very good idea to take before the CCIE to refresh on things and answer questions that come up during self study.

    There are the bootcamps that are used to get the certification in a couple days without ever having done self study on the topic but those are senseless and a lot of times instructors will give out braindumps to pass because they will guarantee a 100% pass. Not all are like that but there is a good share of these bootcamps.

    Hope this helps!
  • janmikejanmike Posts: 3,076Registered Members
    I have been to boot camps for 2 different certificates, because the company paid for them. They sent everyone of all levels of experience. I do not believe that the boot camps helped any of us.
    As stated above--too much, too soon.

    I would never take a boot camp by choice. I think the money could be much better spent by taking training over a longer period of time at a college.

    Also, it seems to me that folks probably get just a little too anxious to get certified without the equivalent amount of experience.

    Just my opinion.
    "It doesn't matter, it's in the past!"--Rafiki
  • Univ3rs@l[email protected] Posts: 25Registered Members ■□□□□□□□□□
    Kevin, my co-worker talks about this all the time. He said that a few years ago our company sent him off to one of these bootcamps and learned nothing out of it. He often talked about the range of understanding greatly effected it cos the teacher kept slowing down and backpeddling. I agree with the post early that you should study the material and then go into the bootcamp to gear up for the exam. My friend jeff did that with his sun cert. It was pretty cool.
  • bencairneybencairney Posts: 76Registered Members ■■□□□□□□□□
    I took a boot camp back in 2003 for the 210/215 MCP exams and found it to be very useful.

    Once you signed up they sent out some self study material and over the 8 weeks prior to the bootcamp I used these to study. They also gave you access to an instructor who send out e-mails covering topics you needed to learn.

    The boot camp itself lasted 5 days with exams at the end of day 3 and day 5. We didn't use any course notes on the bootcamp, the instructor just went through each topic and we took notes and learnt the material. I found this to be an excellent way to learn and found the exams to be quite easy as the knowledge was fresh. I think this was a great way to learn but it depended on us having a excellent instructor and doing the self study in advance. Also knowing that the bootcamp was comming up pushed me to study hard in advance, whereas since then I've been a bit slack at studying and doing exams.
  • garv221garv221 Posts: 1,914Registered Members
    brad- wrote:
    First, I don't know what they are...and wikipedia does not have an entry related to this...but they often seem mentioned with braindumps.

    Second, what are they and why are they frowned upon here?

    Like others have said, useful for experienced IT professionals for filling in the gaps and refreshers.
  • MishraMishra Posts: 2,468Registered Members ■■■■□□□□□□
    The study material is extremely close to the real questions and labs... If you don't like legally cheating you shouldn't do bootcamps.
    My blog http://www.calegp.com

    You may learn something!
  • dtlokeedtlokee Posts: 2,381Registered Members
    Mishra wrote:
    The study material is extremely close to the real questions and labs... If you don't like legally cheating you shouldn't do bootcamps.

    That would depend on who is delivering the camp, some schools want to inflate their pass rates so they do nothing but teach **** to the students. Some (like mine) are designed to be a refresher for people prior to taking the exam. The assumption is you alread yhave most of the required knowledge and are looking to fill in the gaps (ie, you are an all OSPF shop and don't use EIGRP much). Bootcamps are never intended for somone with little to no experience, you will not get much out of them. We NEVER use any form of real test question in the boocamps, only what comes with the authorized course material.
    The only easy day was yesterday!
  • JammywanksJammywanks Posts: 127Registered Members
    I took the CCNA 640-801 exam almost a year ago (May 07) and only got a 796. Somewhat close to passing but it was still a big fat F. I did good on most of the parts of the exam but failed on troubleshooting. I had 75%, 80% on all the other sections of the exam but troubleshooting was in the 60% range. I can read out of the book for a while to get myself up to this point, but troubleshooting was something I couldn't prepare myself on my own. Because of the scenarios involved I was not able to setup a "broken" lab, with the way I approached it.

    I would like to take a boot camp just to freshen up on my material since its been so long, and I've been working a busy schedule with my current job at the moment (Desktop/service desk support with phone and in person service calls). I do talk to the networking guys at work but they do most of the grunt work, I only report problems due to the scope of my duties. This should be enough in "experience" in IT, especially when it comes to customer service.

    I was thinking of a boot camp but I know its a trade off, with how much I would have to pay, and now reading this thread I feel like a "cheater", however I can assure you most of my knowledge was studying BY MYSELF. Also I heard they have already updated the exam to include IPV6 or some other part that I will get nailed on if I study the same books I have which are slightly outdated (about 2-3 years old)

    I also want to know of a legit boot camp in NJ within a reasonable price, that is, under 3 grand. Is AV Tech any good?
    CCNA Lab: Two 1720's, one 2520, two 2924XL switches
    [IPCop box] PIII 1GHz | 512MB RAM | 1 Gig Compact Flash HD
    Errors in your CCNA text book? Never mind, the authors don't care.
  • JammywanksJammywanks Posts: 127Registered Members
    Anyone have an answer?
    CCNA Lab: Two 1720's, one 2520, two 2924XL switches
    [IPCop box] PIII 1GHz | 512MB RAM | 1 Gig Compact Flash HD
    Errors in your CCNA text book? Never mind, the authors don't care.
  • Mrock4Mrock4 Posts: 2,360Banned
    dtlokee is in NJ right? I don't know which bootcamps he offers but he's more than qualified.
  • ClaymooreClaymoore Posts: 1,637Registered Members
    I took a bootcamp for my CCNA about a year ago from CCPrep here in Tampa and found it very helpful - not only for passing the test, but for filling in the gaps on subjects I had been studying on my own. Because of time constraints there wasn't as much hands-on as I would have liked, but the exercises did help with the exam.

    However, it was not the kind of bootcamp that promises to take you from zero to CCNA in 4 days - you need to have some experience prior to the class if you really want to get the most out of it and pass the test. There were 5 of us in class: 3 who were fairly new to networking, me with a little Cisco experience but a solid TCP/IP background, and one other guy with several years of experience. As far as I know, I was the only one who took the test that week and I passed it on the first try. Even better, two weeks after I took the class I was able to solve a SAN replication/connectivity problem that previously had HP support and our network consultants stumped for two months.

    My instructor said that the reason his company offers boot camps rather than regular classes for CCNA/CCNP/CCVP is because they are shorter. The CCNA bootcamp is 2 weeks of instruction condensed into 1 - that way companies don't have to be without employees as long or pay for extended hotel stays. I am sure there are some bootcamps out there that are just certification factories, but most bootcamps are just trying to offer training in a way that fits corporate training budgets.
  • TalicTalic Posts: 423Registered Members
    Is testing centers the place they push for boot camps? I was recently called by a local testing center and they probed me about my prospected career paths. The guy said for me to contact some employers and they could set up some training for a CCNA (I'm unemployed right now and going to college). He made it sound like the training would be free if the employers liked me.

    Is this guy just trying to sell me boot camp training? I'm half way in my Network+ and I doubt I would be able to pass a crash course in Cisco certs. I'd rather have credits toward my degree so I doubt that these classes would give me those either.
  • billybob01billybob01 Posts: 504Registered Members
    a friend of mine attended a boot camp over in the states last year and he said all he was given were the braindumps to read, some papers contained over 380 questions and answers!!, i mean how can anyone even remember that many ? He was well pi**ed off as it was advertised to him that full hands on training would be given, although he did come back an MCSE2003, and continued to study, good for him in that respect.
  • JammywanksJammywanks Posts: 127Registered Members
    That is pretty sad about the two posts above mine.

    A cold call to you would sound like sales to me. They make it sound free until they get you to the very point of stepping in the classroom "hey, by the way, do you have $4000 to spare?"

    A bootcamp that gives you braindumps? That sh!t is illegal dude. I can't believe how crooked and corrupted the IT training industry has gotten.

    As a personal update to my situation, I did not sign up for the bootcamps, I'd rather save money for a real course in CCNP studies. Not a bootcamp either, since I should take my time with the CCNP.

    Luckily I no longer sweat the interviews and know how they work. I don't think a brain dumper can **** an interview. HAHAHA. Imagine a guy who dumped his way to "success" and said the same response over and over again during an interview. Thats what it does to you folks.
    CCNA Lab: Two 1720's, one 2520, two 2924XL switches
    [IPCop box] PIII 1GHz | 512MB RAM | 1 Gig Compact Flash HD
    Errors in your CCNA text book? Never mind, the authors don't care.
  • pookerpooker Posts: 130Registered Members
    If I ever get to the point where I am ready for ccie I would like to go to one to freshen up but never for any other test. 4 grand is alot to spend for a test specially for things like ccna etc my opinion.
    I wanna be ccie
  • JammywanksJammywanks Posts: 127Registered Members
    You also forgot the cost of the CCIE exam itself icon_lol.gif
    That plus a bootcamp is a considerable percentage of your yearly income LOL. UNLESS of course your employer is paying for it.

    How much is the cost of the CCIE exam these days, anyways?
    CCNA Lab: Two 1720's, one 2520, two 2924XL switches
    [IPCop box] PIII 1GHz | 512MB RAM | 1 Gig Compact Flash HD
    Errors in your CCNA text book? Never mind, the authors don't care.
  • c0d3_w0lfc0d3_w0lf Posts: 117Registered Members
    $1400 I believe to sit for the lab. That doesn't include your room and board or plane tickets, either. :P
    There is nothing that cannot be acheived.
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Posts: 2,475Registered Members
    My boss just went to a boot camp that cost 12k and lasted 24 days. He got his CCNA,CCDA,CCNP,and CCDP. I've been doing self study for the first test in the CCNP path and it took me four months. My boss had no cisco experience prior to the camp. I'd be careful about going to pass guaranteed camps. You'll just memorize a bunch of questions and not really learn anything.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • cisco_troopercisco_trooper Posts: 1,439Registered Members
    Waste of money man. You'll get the cert but you'll still be as worthless as you are now.

    Grr, not that your worthless, but you wont' gain anything.
  • TurgonTurgon Posts: 6,313Banned
    Schluep wrote:
    A lot of the bootcamps have a reputation as being designed to prepare you to pass the examination as opposed to really learning the material. Many of them are over a three day to 1 week time frame and they often will host the exam for you on the last today. It is essentially an instructor-led cram session with some other people.

    One nice thing I have heard about some of them is instrctors who are willing to stay late and assist with any questions you may have. I know people that have been to them and found them to be helpful. Personally I do not think a week is long enough to truly understand and apply what you are learning, but I can't speak from experience since I have never attended one.

    I am sure like anything there are some good ones, bad ones, and average ones. I think a lot of the negativity surrounding them could be a lot of the bad/average ones not being worth the money invested. Another thing could be people with no experience in the subject matter expecting to attend a boot camp and have no trouble understanding all of the material as well as passing the exam (which is how many are advertised). Perhaps some of them also use question/answer training based on actual test questions and actually are cheating similar to the people downloading the information, but I couldn't name any names personally off-hand.

    I could see legitimate ones as being very helpful for people with a thorough understanding of the subject matter that needs a strong review before taking the exam. Personally, it is not something that I have ever considered attending.

    It's true. I know one coworker (a permy) who got his bootcamp paid for and the instructor read the paper while the students went over distributed material from Pass4****. So some bootcamps are just cert mills with time on works time paid for to cram d**ps

    Sad but there you go. The instructor gets paid..and the permy gets the cert he has been told to get. The permy says certification is a con anyway. I have tried to reason with him about that but it's hopeless. He's fairly skilled and timeserved, but his whole argument is..this CCIE you are doing..its a money making con by cisco..beat these guys at their own game..after all..in the real world you wouldn't have just a few hours to make things work..you would have time to research things on the web..if it wasn't for the time constraints you could get it all working in the end if you had a couple of weeks to figure things out and that's what it's like in the real world.

    Gotta love it :)
Sign In or Register to comment.