Cisco Certification

Introduction

The networking sector is the subject of the well-respected certification program known as Cisco Certification. It was created to give people the knowledge and abilities needed to build, install, manage, and troubleshoot complex networking infrastructures by Cisco Systems, a pioneer in the networking industry.

From entry-level to expert-level certifications are offered under the Cisco Certification program. These levels consist of the following:

  1. Entry-level: Cisco Certified Entry Networking Technician (CCENT)
  2. Associate-level: Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA)
  3. Professional-level: Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP)
  4. Expert-level: Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE)

Candidates at each level must complete a series of exams that gauge their expertise in various facets of networking. The examinations are difficult in design, and passing them requires a solid grasp of networking principles and practical knowledge of Cisco tools.

Getting a Cisco Certification has several advantages. The first benefit is that it shows potential employers that a candidate has the qualifications. This certification is highly respected in the networking sector and may open doors to more excellent employment prospects, increased pay, and professional progression.

The Cisco Certification is the last indication of someone’s dedication to their work. The certification procedure is complex and takes a lot of time and work. A Cisco Certification demonstrates a person’s commitment to their field and willingness to make professional development investments.

What is Cisco Certification?

A renowned networking business, Cisco Systems, offers the Cisco Certification program to provide people with the knowledge and abilities to design, install, manage, and troubleshoot complex networking systems. The program offers several certification levels, from entry-level to expert-level. For each, a candidate must complete a battery of examinations assessing their knowledge of networking fundamentals and proficiency using Cisco equipment. A candidate for the entry-level Cisco Certified Entry Networking Technician (CCENT) certification must pass a single test covering fundamental networking ideas such as network protocols, IP addressing, and subnetting. The Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) associate-level certification tests a candidate’s understanding of LAN and WAN technologies, network security, and basic routing and switching principles.

The highest level of certification Cisco provides is the CCIE or Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert. It is intended for those with a great deal of networking knowledge who are in charge of planning, putting into place, and debugging intricate networking systems. A candidate for the CCIE must pass a challenging exam that assesses their expertise in a particular networking area, such as routing and switching, security, or wireless networking.

Types of Cisco Certification?

In the networking sector, Cisco offers a thorough certification program that is recognized internationally. The course equips students with the expertise to plan, develop, manage, and troubleshoot intricate networking systems. Five levels comprise the certification program, each with certificates, tests, and prerequisites.

  1. Entry-level Certifications: The Cisco Certified Entry Networking Technician (CCENT) is the company’s entry-level credential. This certification should be sought by those just beginning their networking careers. It covers fundamental networking ideas, including IP addressing, subnetting, and network protocols. To be certified, candidates must pass a single exam.
  2. Associate-level Certifications: The Cisco Certified DevNet Associate is Cisco’s associate-level certification. The CCNA includes LAN and WAN technologies, network security, and basic routing and switching principles. It is designed for those who have a basic grasp of networking. The DevNet Associate is geared towards software developers and covers network programmability, APIs, and software development and automation.
  3. Professional-level Certifications: The Cisco Certified DevNet Professional is Cisco’s professional-level certification. The CCNP is designed for professionals in charge of planning, implementing, and managing complex networking infrastructures and has a thorough grasp of networking. Network security, wireless networking, and advanced routing and switching techniques are all covered by the CCNP. The DevNet Professional is designed for seasoned software developers and covers network programmability, APIs, and software development and automation.
  4. Expert-level Certifications: The (CCIE) Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert is the company’s expert-level certification. The CCIE is designed for networking experts in charge of planning, putting into place, and debugging intricate networking systems. A candidate for the coveted and challenging CCIE certification must pass a demanding exam that measures their expertise in a particular networking area, such as routing and switching, security, or wireless networking.
  5. Architect-level Certifications: The Cisco Certified Design Expert (CCDE) is the architect-level certification from Cisco. The CCDE aims at those who create and execute intricate networking systems. Candidates for the CCDE must complete a demanding exam that measures their network design knowledge and abilities.

The Cisco certification program offers a variety of qualifications that are appropriate for people at different phases in their networking careers. Each certification level provides several advantages, including improved employment possibilities, higher income, and career progression. It is created to assess a candidate’s knowledge and abilities in certain networking areas.

How to get Cisco Certification?

To become Cisco certified, people must complete several processes, including choosing the right certification track, studying for the examinations, and sitting for the exams. The general steps to obtain a Cisco certification are as follows:

1. Pick a Certification Track: The first step is to pick a certification track that fits your interests and career goals. Cisco offers a variety of certifications, including entry-level, associate-level, professional, expert, and architect-level credentials. Before choosing a certification track, candidates should learn about the specifications, prerequisites, and exam objectives for each one.

2. Prepare for the examinations: The next step is to prepare for the reviews after choosing the certification route. Cisco offers practice tests, online training courses, study guides, and other tools to aid students in their exam preparation. Candidates may also participate in instructor-led training sessions, offering Cisco hardware exposure.

3. Schedule the examinations: After studying, applicants can book them on the Cisco certification website or through Pearson VUE, the organization’s official testing service. The tests can be taken online with a remote proctoring system or in person at a testing facility.

4. Passing the examinations: Passing the examinations represents the last phase. The tests often consist of simulations and multiple-choice questions that assess a candidate’s knowledge of networking principles and proficiency with Cisco tools. To be certified, candidates must receive a minimum score. After a set amount of time, a candidate who fails the exam on their first try may retake it.

5. Maintain the Certification: Candidates must continue to meet criteria, such as passing recertification examinations or taking continuing education classes, to maintain their certification after receiving it. Cisco certifications are suitable for three years before needing to be updated to stay current.

Earning a Cisco certification takes much time and work, but it is a worthwhile professional investment. To keep current with the newest networking technology and innovations, candidates should choose the right certification track, study for the examinations utilizing various Cisco resources, and schedule, pass, and maintain the certification.

How Much Does Cisco Certification Cost?

The cost of Cisco certification depends on the level and type of certification. Cisco offers a wide range of certificates, and the cost of each certificate varies based on the exam fees, training fees, and study materials. Below are the approximate prices for each level of Cisco certification:

  1. Entry-level Certification: The Cisco Certified Entry Networking Technician (CCENT) certification costs around $165 for a single exam.
  2. Associate-level Certification: The Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) certification costs around $300 for a single exam. The Cisco Certified DevNet Associate certification costs about $300 for a single exam.
  3. Professional-level Certification: The Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP) certification costs around $900 to $1200 for three to four exams. The Cisco Certified DevNet Professional certification costs around $900 to $1200 for three to four exams.
  4. Expert-level Certification: The Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE) certification costs around $1600 for a single exam. However, additional costs may apply for travel, lodging, and lab equipment.
  5. Architect-level Certification: The Cisco Certified Design Expert (CCDE) certification costs around $1600 for a single exam. However, additional costs may apply for travel and lodging.

In addition to exam fees, candidates may need to pay for training courses, study materials, and lab equipment. These costs vary depending on the type of certification and the resources used for preparation.

Benefits of Cisco Certification

Cisco certification benefits individuals wanting to establish a networking industry career or advance their existing jobs. Below are some of the critical benefits of Cisco certification:

  1. Career Advancement: Cisco certification demonstrates a high level of expertise in networking and helps individuals advance their careers by qualifying for higher-level job roles. Cisco certification holders can pursue various job roles, such as network engineers, network administrators, security professionals, and technical support specialists.
  2. Competitive Advantage: Cisco certification provides a competitive advantage in the job market by differentiating certified professionals from non-certified professionals. Employers often prefer accredited professionals due to their skills, knowledge, and experience in the networking industry.
  3. Enhanced Credibility: Cisco certification enhances an individual’s credibility in the industry by validating their skills, knowledge, and experience in networking. It helps build trust among colleagues, employers, and clients and positions certified professionals as experts in their field.
  4. Increased Earning Potential: Cisco certification is highly valued in the networking industry and can lead to higher salaries and better job opportunities. According to the 2022 IT Skills and Salary Report by Global Knowledge, Cisco Certified Network Professionals (CCNPs) earn an average salary of $100,000 per year, while Cisco Certified Internetwork Experts (CCIEs) earn an average salary of $148,000 per year.
  5. Access to Cisco Resources: Cisco certification provides access to various resources, including online communities, discussion forums, and support groups, which help certified professionals connect with peers and stay updated with the latest networking trends and best practices.
  6. Expand Knowledge and Skills: Cisco certification requires individuals to acquire a deep understanding of networking concepts, protocols, and technologies, which expands their knowledge and skills in the industry. It provides hands-on experience with Cisco equipment and technologies, which helps individuals develop practical skills that are valuable in their careers.

Cisco certification benefits individuals wanting to establish a network or advance their careers. It enhances credibility, provides a competitive advantage, increases earning potential, and expands knowledge and skills in the industry.

Cisco Certification Education Partners.

Cisco has a network of education partners who offer training courses, study materials, and exam preparation resources for Cisco certification. Cisco authorizes these education partners to provide official Cisco training courses and certifications. Below are some of the education partners authorized by Cisco:

  1. Global Knowledge: Global Knowledge is a leading provider of Cisco training courses and certifications. They offer instructor-led, virtual, and on-demand training courses for various Cisco certifications, including CCNA, CCNP, CCIE, and DevNet certifications.
  2. New Horizons: New Horizons is another authorized education partner of Cisco that offers training courses and certifications for Cisco technologies. They provide a range of Cisco courses, including CCNA, CCNP, CCIE, and DevNet certifications.
  3. Learning Tree: Learning Tree is a global education partner of Cisco that provides training courses for Cisco certifications. They offer various Cisco courses, including CCNA, CCNP, CCIE, and DevNet certifications.
  4. Fast Lane: Fast Lane is an authorized education partner of Cisco that provides training courses and certifications for Cisco technologies. They offer instructor-led, virtual, and on-demand training courses for various Cisco certifications, including CCNA, CCNP, CCIE, and DevNet certifications.
  5. NetCom Learning: NetCom Learning is a Cisco-authorized education partner that offers training courses and certifications for Cisco technologies. They provide instructor-led, virtual, and on-demand training courses for various Cisco certifications, including CCNA, CCNP, CCIE, and DevNet certifications.

In addition to these education partners, Cisco offers official training courses and certifications through their Cisco Learning Network (CLN). Overall, working with an authorized education partner of Cisco can provide individuals access to official Cisco training courses, study materials, and exam preparation resources. It can also help them stay up-to-date with the latest networking technologies and advancements, essential for success in the networking industry.

How to Prepare for Cisco Certification

Preparing for a Cisco certification can seem daunting, but it can be a manageable and rewarding process with the right approach. The following advice will help you get ready for Cisco certification:

  • Choose Your Certification: Selecting the Cisco certification you wish to seek is the first step in preparing for it. It’s critical to determine which certificate, among those offered by Cisco at various levels, best suits your career objectives.
  • Review Exam Topics: After choosing the certification you want, review the exam objectives and topics. By studying, you can understand the skills and information needed to pass the exam.
  • Select a Study Method: There are many ways to learn, including classroom instruction, self-study, online learning, and study groups. Pick a study strategy that works for your schedule and learning preferences.
  • Use Official Study Materials: Cisco offers official study materials, including books, practice exams, and online courses, designed to help individuals prepare for Cisco certification exams. Study exam topics and gain practical experience with Cisco technologies.

  • Hands-On Practice: Practicing Cisco equipment and technologies is essential for developing the practical skills required for the exam. Use labs or virtual environments to practice implementing and troubleshooting Cisco technologies.
  • Join Study Groups: Joining an online community can provide a supportive environment to ask questions and get help with challenging topics. It can also offer the opportunity to network with other professionals in the industry.
  • Take Practice Exams: You may evaluate your knowledge and determine what needs more study by taking practice examinations. Use official practice examinations and simulators better to grasp the test’s format and difficulty level.
  • Schedule Your Exam: Once you feel confident in your knowledge and skills, schedule your exam. Planning the slot will provide a clear deadline and motivate you to focus on your studies.

In conclusion, preparing for a Cisco certification requires a focused and disciplined approach. Determine your goal, review exam topics, choose a study method, use official study materials, practice hands-on, join study groups, take practice exams, schedule your exam, and stay up-to-date. You may efficiently prepare for a Cisco certification and boost your career in networking by following these steps.

 

Author

  • Jessica

    Jessica is a computer science developer with 5+ years of experience in C, C++, JavaScript frameworks and SAP.

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