How to Earn a CCNP

examseekerexamseeker Member Posts: 118
I am fairly new to the IT field (only a few years in). I went through the Cisco Academy at the community college (where I work) and got the CCNA after some time in self study. Now, I am studying for the CCNA:Sec (actually I am watching CBT Nuggets). The CCNP is next. My question is should I buy and build a home lab (over $1,200) and / or take a CCNP class from a local university for $1,045? The class has instructor led lectures and I can use their equipment for a year. Can I mention the site online? icon_lol.gif

Anyway, I think I should take the class and build what I can.. I can always use GNS3 and rent a 3550 later.

Sorry to through out my life's story, but I want to spend my money efficiently.



  • GT-RobGT-Rob Member Posts: 1,090
    For $1000 I would take the classes. How long do they run for?

    The one plus about buying a lab, is that you can sell if after and get some of that money back. Most people tend to hang on to them though lol
  • examseekerexamseeker Member Posts: 118
    The class is one year long self study..
  • mikej412mikej412 Member Posts: 10,086 ■■■■■■■■■■
    It's nice having access to a school lab if you don't want to equip a home lab. And if you don't have lots of networking experience now, it's nice to have an Instructor (and classmates) to get help from.

    Remember that taking the classes is no guarantee that you'll pass the certification exam on your first try. You still have to put in lots of time and hard work outside of class.

    If your classes are using the Cisco Network Academy Courseware, you still may want to buy the Cisco Press CCNP Certification Library. Then go though those Exam Certification Guides as you're doing the classes -- that gives you a 2nd perspective on the topics and hopefully some focus for the exams.

    Those PDF Quick Reference Sheets you can buy from Cisco Press would also be useful -- read them first to get an overview of the topics. Read the sections again as you go through the topics in class. Then read them again as a review (and time killer) the morning of your exams.

    Self-study is always an option if you're motivated and dedicated (and possibly already experienced with networking). But if you don't already have lots of networking experience (or motivation), then classes are a good alternative to self-study.
    :mike: Cisco Certifications -- Collect the Entire Set!
  • examseekerexamseeker Member Posts: 118
    Thanks for the info!

  • cisco_troopercisco_trooper Member Posts: 1,441 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Check out their lab before you write the check. Make sure it has the workings of a CCNP caliber lab, otherwise you're better off building your own.
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