to start off your IT career Comptia A+ or CCNA?

blackrain10blackrain10 Member Posts: 2 ■□□□□□□□□□
i am having trouble deciding whether to get the A+ certification first or CCNA first .I know it would be a good thing to get both but i am new to the IT and would like an entry level job to start off. Any advice i would really appreciate it icon_exclaim.gif


  • tierstentiersten Member Posts: 4,505
    If you're new to IT then get A+. Most places that require a CCNA will also want you to have some experience.
  • Tyrant1919Tyrant1919 Senior Member Member Posts: 519 ■■■□□□□□□□
    A+ 4 life. Ditto above.
    MCSA:03/08/12/16 MCSE:03s/EA08/Core Infra
  • stlsmoorestlsmoore Member Posts: 515 ■■■□□□□□□□
    If you start with CCNA it may turn you off to certifications and IT all together because it's a pretty tough exam. I would def. start with A+ then the two exam route with CCNA (CCENT, CCNA) if you truly like dealing with routers and networking in general.
    My Cisco Blog Adventure:

    Don't Forget to Add me on LinkedIn!
  • nicklauscombsnicklauscombs Member Posts: 885
    I definitely also suggest A+ first then Network+, from there you can start to specialize more in what you want to do
    WIP: IPS exam
  • Daniel333Daniel333 Member Posts: 2,077 ■■■■■■□□□□
    There is no single sentence answer to that question.

    Tell me what your goals in IT are? A+ is the desktop side of things, CCNA is the network side. Follow the path that works for you best along your goals.

    I am not a huge fan of Comptia, but I see it's perceived value by the employers.
  • darkerosxxdarkerosxx Banned Posts: 1,343
    Instead of CCNA, go for CCENT as your entry-level certification.

    CCENT, although it is the very first entry-level cert for Cisco, is a Cisco cert. When people see that you know a little bit about Cisco and TCP/IP networking, they're far more likely to let you interview than if they only see A+.

    That's just my 2c.
  • NetAdmin2436NetAdmin2436 Member Posts: 1,076

    Learn to walk before you try running.
    WIP: CCENT/CCNA (.....probably)
  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    Go big or go home, CCNA!

    Seriously though, it's like others have asked, what do you want to do? Getting an A+ isn't going to help you with a CCNA, but it might help you get your foot in the door for a general IT position.
  • blackrain10blackrain10 Member Posts: 2 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Well as of right now i would like to get my foot in the door first , but for the future i would like to go towards network administration and security .I just don't want to get the CCENT or CCNA and then can't get a job because i have no experience , That's my main concern .
  • undomielundomiel Member Posts: 2,818
    From what I've seen in the job ads the A+ is the most desirable for getting your first entry level IT job, which would generally be help desk/tech support. Going from there for the CCNA will help you to specialize into a networking position though.
    Jumping on the IT blogging band wagon --
  • darkerosxxdarkerosxx Banned Posts: 1,343
    Well as of right now i would like to get my foot in the door first , but for the future i would like to go towards network administration and security .I just don't want to get the CCENT or CCNA and then can't get a job because i have no experience , That's my main concern .

    If that's your worry, definitely go with CCENT or A+ rather than CCNA. Again, I would suggest CCENT because it's much less of an investment, money-wise. Not only that, but until October, you can take the exam a second time for free if you fail.
  • Daniel333Daniel333 Member Posts: 2,077 ■■■■■■□□□□

    Networking is a good direction. So do yourself a favor and watch the free videos on Cisco and Network+ on (if you want to pay for them go ahead too, great site!) and ensure it's something you want.

    In that case CCENT is perfect, while you work on that you have to get some volunteer work in at your local library or senior center in computers. Something to talk about at your interview and write on the resume.

    Where you working now? Circuit City's Firedog and Geek Squad are a great place to get a little bit of experience if you can't get into a Network Operation Center/Help desk job just yet.
  • TryPingingTheServerTryPingingTheServer Member Posts: 51 ■■□□□□□□□□
    CCNA. No question.
    "His GPA is a solid 2.0. Right in that meaty part of the curve - not showing off, not falling behind."
  • CaptainCharismaCaptainCharisma Member Posts: 36 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I agree with others, that you should go with the A+ or CCENT first.

    I went for the CCNA as my first certification, and after my first attempt at the exam, I realized I should have worked up to it. It was a grueling exam, Cisco expects you to know alot for an entry level exam. I finally passed the exam on my third try.
  • cbigbrickcbigbrick Member Posts: 284
    Take a look at the TechNotes here on the site. They are excellent and you should be able to make a decision on which to pursue.

    But I have heard of stories of people getting fired because they did not understand the basics of hardware and the OS even though they had higher certifications. icon_eek.gif
    And in conclusion your point was.....???

    Don't get so's just ones and zeros.
  • stlsmoorestlsmoore Member Posts: 515 ■■■□□□□□□□
    A few years ago in Highschool there was an IT Competition where the Charter schools in the area that tought IT courses. I was in the Cisco Competition and my competiors mentioned they were glad that they were in the Cisco comp instead of the A+ Comp because they never even replace RAM before icon_eek.gif something to think about.
    My Cisco Blog Adventure:

    Don't Forget to Add me on LinkedIn!
  • Jaqmar2001Jaqmar2001 Member Posts: 27 ■□□□□□□□□□
    MCDST...most definitely...(70-271) (70-272)...

    Then exam 70-270.
  • LifelongLearnerLifelongLearner Member Posts: 45 ■■□□□□□□□□

    Learn to walk before you try running.

    Totally agree. Get yourself equipted with the fundamentals and then go for higher certs. Even professionals that have been in IT for a while go for their A+ for the very reason that many employers find value in it.
  • CGN_SpecCGN_Spec Member Posts: 96 ■■□□□□□□□□
  • IA-DaigakuseiIA-Daigakusei Member Posts: 79 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Like many others, I would suggest that you learn A+ first. After that, try for Network+ and CCENT. If you feel comfortable with CCENT, then try for your CCNA afterwards. You can also try for MCDST, but first go for A+. No reason to get a CCNA if you don't understand what each piece of equipment is.

    Just my 2 cents..
    Working on: NOTHING
    Left To Do: EVERYTHING
  • joicejoice Member Posts: 2 ■□□□□□□□□□
  • NetAdmin2436NetAdmin2436 Member Posts: 1,076
    joice wrote:
    I don't understand

    http://www.*cheatsite censored*

    ....and you never will.
    WIP: CCENT/CCNA (.....probably)
  • LifelongLearnerLifelongLearner Member Posts: 45 ■■□□□□□□□□
    If I started with the CCNA I would have definately have been put off studying for more certs LOL. It's harddddddddddd. I would definately start with the A+. Get some all round knowledge into you before attempting something much more difficult. Besides, CCNA without any experience isn't the best combination either. icon_wink.gif
  • robertguessrobertguess Member Posts: 18 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I suggest A+ first

    Main reasoning. A+ is accepted certification. All computers under warranty in order to be worked on need A+ certified people to repair them.

    I think before taking Cisco you should have fundamental down of networking. That is why there is a Network + certification. This is basic networking 101. This will provide a nice bridge into deeper networking like Microsoft, linux, Cisco or security exams.

    A+ is most recognized Comptia certification but I believe the others like Network + and Linux and Security + are getting more accepted why posted the 8570.1 DOD directive.

    This is huge for people who took the time to do these other considered basic certifications.

    I see more and more jobs daily that ask for certifications mentioning Network + with A+ of course others but a few years ago this wasn't necessarily the case.

    Now I think the Network + has the recognition it deserves. I also believe that recognition and acceptance is only going to grow.

    One final note. If your already working IE: 6 months on routers for a telecom company and all you do is work with Cisco equipment. Do your CCNA or CCENT I suggest the CCNA basically because if you fail the second exam you can retake for free right now. Others have said the same for CCENT but think is a time limit on that.

    Good luck and congratulations to all who have achieve or are trying to achieve this certifications:)
    IT certification training adviser
  • Polsky82Polsky82 Registered Users Posts: 1 ■□□□□□□□□□
    What happend with the guy who started this 10 years ago?
  • thedudeabidesthedudeabides Member Posts: 89 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Maybe he couldn't decide, so he became a bachelorette party stripper instead.
    2019 Goals: CCNP R&S
  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb Member Posts: 3,298 ■■■■■■■■■□
    Polsky82 wrote: »
    What happend with the guy who started this 10 years ago?

    Your first post on here is reviving a 10 year old thread huh? Well played
  • thedudeabidesthedudeabides Member Posts: 89 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Your first post on here is reviving a 10 year old thread huh? Well played

    I'm guessing he was researching on Google, found the thread, and wanted to see what worked out best for the OP. Not too likely to get a reply from the OP at this point, but who knows.

    To address the reviver, I'd say it just depends on your background and goals. I had a rather extensive background in hardware, and I wanted to focus on networking. So going straight for CCNA made sense to me. It might not work well for someone with little to no computer experience at all.
    2019 Goals: CCNP R&S
  • mzx380mzx380 ITIL, ACA, CCNA, Linux+, VCP-DCV, PMP, PMI-ACP, CSM New YorkMember Posts: 453 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Assuming you've had no IT experience or training, I'd recommend A+
    Once you've learned the fundamentals from that, you can decide if networking is right for you by going with the CCNA or branch out into another IT field

    And I realize just now that this is from a thread from 10 years ago
    the advice still applies though :)
    Certifications: ITIL, ACA, CCNA, Linux+, VCP-DCV, PMP, PMI-ACP, CSM
    Currently Working On: Microsoft 70-761 (SQL Server)
  • PseudonymousPseudonymous Ninja Member Posts: 78 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Since this thread was revived, is it even worth getting CCNA first? I mean... I guess I can understand getting it at some point (maybe), but everything isn't Cisco like it used to be. I think you would get more value out of Network+ if your new to IT (after getting A+). Network+ teaches you a little of everything whereas CCNA does teaches you networking, but a lot of it is proprietary knowledge for Cisco equipment. The last 2 companies I worked for didn't use Cisco equipment and although I know CCNA is still popular it seems like a waste of time to me. Imagine spending all that time learning Cisco commands just to end up getting a job working for a company that does everything in the cloud with AWS or a company that doesn't use any Cisco equipment.
    Certifications: A+, N+, S+, CCNA: CyberOps, eJPT, ITIL, etc.
Sign In or Register to comment.