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Confused on WGU Concentrations!

OK, I got ready to enroll in WGU last year and life happened. My mother got ill and passed away. My MIL was ill and had to give up her house and move in with her son. Now life has settled down and I AM going to enroll, no ifs, ands, or buts! I studied for and passed Security+ test. My main question remains about the concentrations. Looking at the website it shows the ND&M concentration being easier than the plain IT major as far as certs are concerned? The ND&M concentration must have more WGU internal tests? My apologies I just find the pdfs a challenge. Thanks all!
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    QordQord Member Posts: 632 ■■■■□□□□□□
    It looks like they have you take an in house, non-cert version of the MCSA 2008 exams.
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    slotzeroslotzero Member Posts: 68 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I think your best course of action is to talk to your Enrollment Counselor about the difference between the programs. Some of the PDFs are a little out of date since they changed things a few months ago. Last month Admissions told me they broke the classes down into a little more manageable pieces across all the IT programs. I believe that now that I see my new degree plan vs what I saw in Sep 2012. All good changes in my opinion.
    WGU BS:IT/SF In Progress...
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    Cisc0kiddCisc0kidd Member Posts: 250
    My last encounter with an EC was scary. If I didn't know more about WGU it would have scared me off the school. So has anyone here studied for and taken the new Win2008 in house examsTheir has to be a way to get accurate info on the concentrations preferably in print! Thanks again everyone.
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    QordQord Member Posts: 632 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I haven't asked my EC about it, I just surmised that from really reading the pdf...took me a couple reads before it clicked what they were saying/meaning. I decided to go generic IT instead of NDM, partly because of that. I'd like to get this done as quick as possible, and I'd rather not do all the learning/mental-work for a cert and not walk away with it. On my own time, yes, I'll do that. On WGU time, no thanks.
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    srabieesrabiee Member Posts: 1,231 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I chose the ND&M track because it seemed to be the most Microsoft-centric option, and because I wasn't interested in taking the programming courses that are part of the general IT track. I have been taking the Microsoft certification exams at the same time that I take the WGU in-house exams for a particular class, and it has been working out perfectly. Knocked out the 70-640 in November and the 70-642 in December. Looking to do both 70-643 and 70-647 this month before they are retired on Jan 31, 2014.

    My suggestion is choose whichever track interests you the most and will keep you engaged until the end. Obtaining a degree quickly is one thing, but you don't want to be bored to tears or feel like you aren't learning anything during the process.
    WGU Progress: Master of Science - Information Technology Management (Start Date: February 1, 2015)
    Completed: LYT2, TFT2, JIT2, MCT2, LZT2, SJT2 (17 CU's)
    Required: FXT2, MAT2, MBT2, C391, C392 (13 CU's)

    Bachelor of Science - Information Technology Network Design & Management (WGU - Completed August 2014)
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    Cisc0kiddCisc0kidd Member Posts: 250
    Qord wrote: »
    I haven't asked my EC about it, I just surmised that from really reading the pdf...took me a couple reads before it clicked what they were saying/meaning. I decided to go generic IT instead of NDM, partly because of that. I'd like to get this done as quick as possible, and I'd rather not do all the learning/mental-work for a cert and not walk away with it. On my own time, yes, I'll do that. On WGU time, no thanks.

    Any idea what the generic degree subsitutes for 2008 exams on the ND&M concentraton?
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    Cisc0kiddCisc0kidd Member Posts: 250
    srabiee wrote: »
    I chose the ND&M track because it seemed to be the most Microsoft-centric option, and because I wasn't interested in taking the programming courses that are part of the general IT track. I have been taking the Microsoft certification exams at the same time that I take the WGU in-house exams for a particular class, and it has been working out perfectly. Knocked out the 70-640 in November and the 70-642 in December. Looking to do both 70-643 and 70-647 this month before they are retired on Jan 31, 2014.

    My suggestion is choose whichever track interests you the most and will keep you engaged until the end. Obtaining a degree quickly is one thing, but you don't want to be bored to tears or feel like you aren't learning anything during the process.

    Sounds like a good plan. Not sure that would work for someone starting now.
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    srabieesrabiee Member Posts: 1,231 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I would imagine that WGU will be updating the ND&M track to either include the 70-646 material to correspond to the MCSA: Server 2008 cert, or switch completely over to material to correspond to the new MCSA: Server 2012 cert. Hopefully these changes will come sooner than later.
    WGU Progress: Master of Science - Information Technology Management (Start Date: February 1, 2015)
    Completed: LYT2, TFT2, JIT2, MCT2, LZT2, SJT2 (17 CU's)
    Required: FXT2, MAT2, MBT2, C391, C392 (13 CU's)

    Bachelor of Science - Information Technology Network Design & Management (WGU - Completed August 2014)
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    -hype-hype Member Posts: 165
    I'm currently enrolled in the Network Admin track.

    And am enrolled to take the MCSA 2008 server cert exams as part of my degree plan. I believe MS was getting ready to retire the exams last year, but didn't because no one has really upgraded their infrastructure to 2012 completely. This is why WGU probably made the in house exams, but now that it's not being retired you will have to take the cert exams. They probably haven't updated their course descriptions. I would confirm with your EC.

    Mind you, for the MCSA 2008 you have to take 70-640, 70-642 and 70-646.

    70-643 is NOT part of the MCSA 2008.
    WGU BS IT:Network Administration
    Started: 10-1-13
    Completed: 9-21-14
    Transferred: 67 CU Completed: 54 CU
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    srabieesrabiee Member Posts: 1,231 ■■■■■■■■□□
    The in-house exams are here to stay. WGU made the decision to switch to in-house for these courses because of the high failure rate for the Microsoft cert exams. Students were failing the cert tests multiple times and being forced to switch to different degree tracks to graduate. This information comes straight from my student mentor who was briefed on this last year when the changes were made.

    The 70-643 and 70-647 certification exams are both retiring on Jan. 31, which affects the ability to obtain the MCITP: Enterprise Administrator cert. (as I'm sure you already know)

    Because of the in-house exams, WGU has no real obligation to alter any of the courses or curriculum, however. At the very least, the Test-Out videos and labs provided by WGU for the courses pertaining to the 70-643 and 70-647 still teach students quite a bit of useful information on Server 2008 & R2 administration.

    To the OP, I wouldn't let any of this information outright dissuade you from choosing any particular track. As i suggested before, go with the track that you find most interesting. Which track contains the largest amount of classes relating to topics that you want to study and learn about? If you dont know or cant decide, consider the general IT track.
    WGU Progress: Master of Science - Information Technology Management (Start Date: February 1, 2015)
    Completed: LYT2, TFT2, JIT2, MCT2, LZT2, SJT2 (17 CU's)
    Required: FXT2, MAT2, MBT2, C391, C392 (13 CU's)

    Bachelor of Science - Information Technology Network Design & Management (WGU - Completed August 2014)
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    -hype-hype Member Posts: 165
    Wait, is this just for the ND&M ? Or for all tracks?

    When I go to my assessment details for Directory Services, it says I have to take the 70-640 exam.
    WGU BS IT:Network Administration
    Started: 10-1-13
    Completed: 9-21-14
    Transferred: 67 CU Completed: 54 CU
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    srabieesrabiee Member Posts: 1,231 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I'm presuming it affects all tracks but don't hold me to that.

    Many courses changed for the ND&M track since I started in June. I had to request a mid-course catalog change last September to switch over from the old courses to the new courses. You can tell the new courses apart because they have new 4-digit course codes. You should be able to reference your existing course codes with the information listed on the public WGU site to see if anything has changed for your track. If so, ask for an immediate catalog change to replace all older courses with newer courses if you feel you will benefit from the changes.

    This may help but I don't know how current it is for your track:
    http://www.wgu.edu/wgu/institutional_catalog.pdf

    I checked the pdf document for your track listed on the public WGU site and it appears that Directory Services is now an in-house exam. You may have to call your student and course mentors to get a definite answer on that.
    WGU Progress: Master of Science - Information Technology Management (Start Date: February 1, 2015)
    Completed: LYT2, TFT2, JIT2, MCT2, LZT2, SJT2 (17 CU's)
    Required: FXT2, MAT2, MBT2, C391, C392 (13 CU's)

    Bachelor of Science - Information Technology Network Design & Management (WGU - Completed August 2014)
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    swildswild Member Posts: 828
    After taking a fresh look at all of the tracks, they have really stepped down the certifications from when I was enrolled. They still have the CCNA, but there isn't any MS exams above the MTA level, which really reduces the usefulness of the "getting certs while earning a degree" part of the program.

    It looks like the NA track has one test towards the MCSA: Server 2008 certification but lacks the other 2 and they have dropped the MCTS: Windows 7 cert for something in-house. I do understand this move, as those exam vouchers must be costing them a fortune. When I was enrolled, the price of the vouchers I used added up to more than my tuition.

    If I were doing it again, I would still go for the Security track or the NA track just because of the CCNA and my desire to get into Networking. However, if I wanted to do programming (which can be much more lucrative in my area) the Software track is pretty nice with that Oracle cert and all the CIW which exposes you to various languages. If I just wanted a quick degree, I would go for the regular IT track because the ND&M track doesn't offer anything more and your degree still just says BS:IT regardless of your concentration.
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    eansdadeansdad Member Posts: 775 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Wow, pulling the certs for proctored exams is horrible. The most attractive thing about WGU was the certifications with the degree. If they have such a high failure rate on exams then maybe they should look into the materials provided and not blame the exams. Sure the exams are hard but they are industry recognized and standard knowledge level for someone that is looking for that type of job. They should realign the tracks to reflect the path the student is working on instead of just tossing classes out and having the same classes across multiple tracks.
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    Cisc0kiddCisc0kidd Member Posts: 250
    swild wrote: »
    After taking a fresh look at all of the tracks, they have really stepped down the certifications from when I was enrolled. They still have the CCNA, but there isn't any MS exams above the MTA level, which really reduces the usefulness of the "getting certs while earning a degree" part of the program.

    It looks like the NA track has one test towards the MCSA: Server 2008 certification but lacks the other 2 and they have dropped the MCTS: Windows 7 cert for something in-house. I do understand this move, as those exam vouchers must be costing them a fortune. When I was enrolled, the price of the vouchers I used added up to more than my tuition.

    If I were doing it again, I would still go for the Security track or the NA track just because of the CCNA and my desire to get into Networking. However, if I wanted to do programming (which can be much more lucrative in my area) the Software track is pretty nice with that Oracle cert and all the CIW which exposes you to various languages. If I just wanted a quick degree, I would go for the regular IT track because the ND&M track doesn't offer anything more and your degree still just says BS:IT regardless of your concentration.

    I read somewhere, here or the wgustudents site, that the ND&M concentration still includes the 2008 MCSA. That they changed it when MS showed the 2008 MCSA expiring Jan 2014 and changed it back when that was corrected? No idea if that is true or not.
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    srabieesrabiee Member Posts: 1,231 ■■■■■■■■□□
    The ND&M track still includes the MCITP: Enterprise Administrator material. However all of the exams are currently in-house. These changes were made around June/July/August of 2013.

    Network Design Degree | Online IT Degree | WGU College of Information Technology
    http://www.wgu.edu/wgu/prog_guide/BS_IT_NTDM.pdf

    You can see from the ND&M site and documentation that the MCSA/MCITP certs have been dropped and the courses now list the final exams as proctored objective assessments.
    WGU Progress: Master of Science - Information Technology Management (Start Date: February 1, 2015)
    Completed: LYT2, TFT2, JIT2, MCT2, LZT2, SJT2 (17 CU's)
    Required: FXT2, MAT2, MBT2, C391, C392 (13 CU's)

    Bachelor of Science - Information Technology Network Design & Management (WGU - Completed August 2014)
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    swildswild Member Posts: 828
    Also, don't let the EC's scare you off. Mine was pretty horrible.
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    eansdadeansdad Member Posts: 775 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Just look at the pdf course guide for NA and ND&M. Most of the M$ exams have been removed in favor of in-house exams.
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    joemysteriojoemysterio Member Posts: 152
    Its a bummer but as long as it gets me prepared and able to pass the actual certification exam, I can deal with in house exams. I'm thinking of doing Network Admin but the Security one looks good too... we'll see, but still waiting to get an answer on if they'll let me in or not. >_<
    Current goals: CCNA/CCNP
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    DoubleNNsDoubleNNs Member Posts: 2,015 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Since when did the Network Admin emphasis get the MCSA replaced w/ the in-house exams? I thought only the ND&A emphasis included in-house exams, and the Network Admin track kept the MCSA 2008 certification?
    Goals for 2018:
    Certs: RHCSA, LFCS: Ubuntu, CNCF CKA, CNCF CKAD | AWS Certified DevOps Engineer, AWS Solutions Architect Pro, AWS Certified Security Specialist, GCP Professional Cloud Architect
    Learn: Terraform, Kubernetes, Prometheus & Golang | Improve: Docker, Python Programming
    To-do | In Progress | Completed
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    srabieesrabiee Member Posts: 1,231 ■■■■■■■■□□
    There's conflicting information provided by WGU regarding the NA track. The track information page lists both the MCSA: Server 2008 certification and the MCTS: Windows 7, Configuring (70-680) certification, however the PDF document updated in June 2013 shows that all of the corresponding classes have been changed to in-house exams except for the 70-686 cert. Very, very strange.

    Bachelor Degree in IT Network Administration | WGU College of Information Technology Online
    http://www.wgu.edu/wgu/prog_guide/BS_IT_NETW.pdf
    WGU Progress: Master of Science - Information Technology Management (Start Date: February 1, 2015)
    Completed: LYT2, TFT2, JIT2, MCT2, LZT2, SJT2 (17 CU's)
    Required: FXT2, MAT2, MBT2, C391, C392 (13 CU's)

    Bachelor of Science - Information Technology Network Design & Management (WGU - Completed August 2014)
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    -hype-hype Member Posts: 165
    Here is my course description:





    I haven't yet taken the class, but looks like for the Net Admin track, it still is a cert exam. I will confirm with my mentor next week and update the thread.
    WGU BS IT:Network Administration
    Started: 10-1-13
    Completed: 9-21-14
    Transferred: 67 CU Completed: 54 CU
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    QordQord Member Posts: 632 ■■■■□□□□□□
    The NetAdmin documentation still lists the actual certs, but the Network Design does not. Looks like the ND&M is the only one whose pdf's say it's an internal assessment and not the cert test.
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    edicwhunedicwhun Member Posts: 20 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I hope you guys are right...long time lurker here and about to start WGU as well with the IT-NA emphasis. The sole reason I'm choosing this course is because of the certs achieved and what I want to do but if it's not accurate as to what is reflected through the website I would not even bother with WGU and just self study, but I'd love to have that BS as well. I have a call scheduled with my EC next week so I will clear that up, but if they have in fact removed the MCSA and the 70-680 (which I just recently passed) I'm going to strongly reconsider my plan.
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    DoubleNNsDoubleNNs Member Posts: 2,015 ■■■■■□□□□□
    I'm pretty sure if you pass the certs before-hand, you can still transfer them in to cover the classes. But I'm not too sure whether they kept the certs in the degree program itself - meaning I don't think they'll give you the voucher to take the exam.

    When you talk to your EC, let us know what the update is.
    Goals for 2018:
    Certs: RHCSA, LFCS: Ubuntu, CNCF CKA, CNCF CKAD | AWS Certified DevOps Engineer, AWS Solutions Architect Pro, AWS Certified Security Specialist, GCP Professional Cloud Architect
    Learn: Terraform, Kubernetes, Prometheus & Golang | Improve: Docker, Python Programming
    To-do | In Progress | Completed
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    coralreefguycoralreefguy Member Posts: 98 ■■□□□□□□□□
    You can definitely transfer in your certs before hand to cover classes. I started the enrollment process and spoke with an enrollment counselor. I decided that I would hold off on enrolling and nab a few more certs via self-study prior to hitting up WGU for my BS. While using material provided by WGU may help me pass several cert exams I'd rather do it on my own time for free than pay for a semester at WGU. I'll be transferring in a handful of MS certs and my CCNA to help me cover more classes. Combined with my existing three years of state schooling I'm hoping that I"ll be able to rip through a BS program at WGU in less than two terms, possibly even one.
    System Administrator / DevOps guy

    2015 passed: CCNA R/S, CCNA Sec, Project+, VCP5-DCV
    2016 goals: MCSE Server 2012; continue to use/learn more Chef w/Ruby and Powershell on Azure
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    DoubleNNsDoubleNNs Member Posts: 2,015 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Well, I specifically meant concerning the ND&M track - even tho the Microsoft Classes are now in-house proctored exams, if you take the corresponding MCTS certs prior to enrolling, you will still be able to bypass the classes centered around the in-house exams.
    And if they took the certs out of the Net Admin track too, you should be able to do the same for that emphasis as well prior to enrollment.
    Goals for 2018:
    Certs: RHCSA, LFCS: Ubuntu, CNCF CKA, CNCF CKAD | AWS Certified DevOps Engineer, AWS Solutions Architect Pro, AWS Certified Security Specialist, GCP Professional Cloud Architect
    Learn: Terraform, Kubernetes, Prometheus & Golang | Improve: Docker, Python Programming
    To-do | In Progress | Completed
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    edicwhunedicwhun Member Posts: 20 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Just got off the phone with my enrollment counselor - she claimed that you do indeed still take the MS certification exams to get your MCSA and not in-house proctored ones. Keep in mind, this is for the IT:NA track, I can't speak about the ND&M.
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    zidianzidian Member Posts: 132
    I'm sure they are still accepted as transfer credit in case the curriculum has changed to only internal tests. If it has changed permanently, you could finish the MCSA before you enroll so that you can transfer it in as credit for the in house classes.
    WGU BS-IT Software | Completed 9/30/2014
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    -hype-hype Member Posts: 165
    edicwhun wrote: »
    Just got off the phone with my enrollment counselor - she claimed that you do indeed still take the MS certification exams to get your MCSA and not in-house proctored ones. Keep in mind, this is for the IT:NA track, I can't speak about the ND&M.

    Was going to say the same thing and update the thread like I promised.

    If you want to go for certs, you wanna go for the NA track.
    WGU BS IT:Network Administration
    Started: 10-1-13
    Completed: 9-21-14
    Transferred: 67 CU Completed: 54 CU
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