CCNP Balance...

cisco_troopercisco_trooper Too manyMember Posts: 1,442 ■■■■□□□□□□
Hello all. I'm wondering if anyone out there is having trouble finding contentment with the depth of the subject matter within the Cisco Press CCNP books. I personally am having trouble being content after having read the CCNP material and done the basic labs with that given material, etc. From a purely educational standpoint I have zero issues with getting my hands on higher level books to satisfy my need to establish a higher level of competency with certain exam topics, however I'm having trouble knowing when enough is enough. I do want to eventually take this damn exam and have some tangible evidence of progress through this certification track. Anyone feeling me on this?

I guess the jist of it is, where do you draw the line and move on to the next exam. Is everyone finding balance here? Do I simply have a misconception about the level of knowledge a CCNP should have? It just seems too easy, and I find myself expecting more of someone at this level. icon_confused.gif

Comments

  • dtlokeedtlokee Member Posts: 2,378 ■■■■□□□□□□
    The CCNP exam is what it is, a professional level certification. If you are finding it too easy and not at all challengin or interesting, then why not skip it and move onto the CCIE? It will save you the $600 on the exams.

    If something interests you there is nothing wrong with studying it in more detail than what the certification requires. They need to stop somewhere with each certification. Whould you have been upset with the CCNA if the objectives said "the entire Doc CD and every RFC ever written"? They need to limit it in scope somehow I guess. Study the topics as far as you want to study them, but it will make it take longer for each exam. There is nothing wrong with that, but just don't put yourself in a place where you never end up taking the exams because you're not studying the right things.
    The only easy day was yesterday!
  • CucumberCucumber Member Posts: 192
    So if you pass the CCIE written and lab exams you dont have to do the CCNP exams?
    I didnt know that icon_eek.gif
    I hate pandas
  • cisco_troopercisco_trooper Too many Member Posts: 1,442 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Requirements for Certification
    There are no formal prerequisites for CCIE certification; other professional certifications or training courses are not required. Instead, candidates must first pass a written qualification exam and then the corresponding hands-on lab exam. You are expected to have an in-depth understanding of the topics in the exam blueprints and strongly encouraged to have three to five years of job experience before attempting certification. You can review the exam preparation materials included on this page for more information.
  • AlanJamesAlanJames Member Posts: 230
    I agree, get the exams under your belt as quick as possible and move on to something more challenging, or something new. Maybe security or voice.
  • Paul BozPaul Boz Member Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
    My intermediate goal is the CCIE R&S. Many of the topics covered within the CCNP track align with the CCIE R&S' track. I have used studying for the CCNP as a barometer to gauge my progress towards the CCIE. Prior to pursuing the CCNP I did not have a very solid understanding of several of its subjects. I feel much more competent and prepared for the CCIE now that I have studied the CCNP material.

    I'd have to study the same material I am now to prep for the CCIE but at least by pursuing the CCNP track I get some resume fodder out of it in the short term.

    As dtlokee said though, $600 is a lot of money that can be saved by skipping the CCNP. If you have an employer that comps you for exams however, I don't see a reason not to obtain it if the CCIE is one of your goals.
    CCNP | CCIP | CCDP | CCNA, CCDA
    CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
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  • cisco_troopercisco_trooper Too many Member Posts: 1,442 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Paul Boz wrote:
    My intermediate goal is the CCIE R&S. Many of the topics covered within the CCNP track align with the CCIE R&S' track. I have used studying for the CCNP as a barometer to gauge my progress towards the CCIE. Prior to pursuing the CCNP I did not have a very solid understanding of several of its subjects. I feel much more competent and prepared for the CCIE now that I have studied the CCNP material.

    I'd have to study the same material I am now to prep for the CCIE but at least by pursuing the CCNP track I get some resume fodder out of it in the short term.

    As dtlokee said though, $600 is a lot of money that can be saved by skipping the CCNP. If you have an employer that comps you for exams however, I don't see a reason not to obtain it if the CCIE is one of your goals.

    Yeah, I know that it is technically possible to go right for the Gold with the CCIE, but is that really feasible for someone at my level? Just because I'm finding the CCNP book material easy as I come to it doesn't by any means suggest that it is beneath me - this is just the first book and practical experience is limited...

    I see the CCNP as a necessary benchmark for this simple fact alone...
  • networker050184networker050184 Mod Posts: 11,962 Mod
    I always learn above and beyond the required material for the exam. Like you said it sometimes leaves you wanting to know more. I just look over the exam objectives and when I have them all down I go for the exam. Also, just because you take the exam doesn't mean you have to stop learning the material. I have learned a lot more about routing after I have passed the BSCI.

    My goal is also the CCIE. Studying for the CCNP exams gives some structure to the material and a path to follow, thats why I am taking the CCNP exams. I also use the exams like benchmarks on the path to CCIE.

    Just knock out the exam, but never stop learning!
    An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made.
  • Mrock4Mrock4 Banned Posts: 2,359 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I ultimately want the CCIE, but look at the CCNP as a good way to show what you know in the meantime. By the time I complete the CCNP, I will be inching towards enough hands on experience to justify a lab attempt. It will won't be as much (it never is) as I'd like, but a decent bit. If I went for the CCIE now, even if I passed..I'd have no where near the real world experience a CCIE should have, which is truthfully more important to me than a piece of paper. The piece of paper just helps to show others. I think the level of experience I have is perfect for a CCNP candidate.
  • kryollakryolla Member Posts: 785
    just don't get burned out too quickly by trying to study everything
    Studying for CCIE and drinking Home Brew
  • TurgonTurgon Banned Posts: 6,308 ■■■■■■■■■□
    Paul Boz wrote:
    My intermediate goal is the CCIE R&S. Many of the topics covered within the CCNP track align with the CCIE R&S' track. I have used studying for the CCNP as a barometer to gauge my progress towards the CCIE. Prior to pursuing the CCNP I did not have a very solid understanding of several of its subjects. I feel much more competent and prepared for the CCIE now that I have studied the CCNP material.

    I'd have to study the same material I am now to prep for the CCIE but at least by pursuing the CCNP track I get some resume fodder out of it in the short term.

    As dtlokee said though, $600 is a lot of money that can be saved by skipping the CCNP. If you have an employer that comps you for exams however, I don't see a reason not to obtain it if the CCIE is one of your goals.

    Yeah, I know that it is technically possible to go right for the Gold with the CCIE, but is that really feasible for someone at my level? Just because I'm finding the CCNP book material easy as I come to it doesn't by any means suggest that it is beneath me - this is just the first book and practical experience is limited...

    I see the CCNP as a necessary benchmark for this simple fact alone...

    Seeing as how you are so far in, I think I would be inclined to get the CCNP done and draw a line on it. You may find the material easy but you still have to pass those tests. You will find that CCIE prep goes much deeper than CCNP but it's a good foundation. I cleared the four CCNP tests back in 2001 over a 5 month stint. I studied daily, worked with the equipment and put in many evenings and weekends. I found the process rewarding and useful for CCIE. The CCNP tests will show you if you have really got a lot of the fundamentals you will need going forward for CCIE written and lab prep so get that gap analysis done now and fill in those gaps before you embark on CCIE. One could even argue you are already preparing for the CCIE by doing just that.

    Just my 2 cents.
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