What is A+ Certification?
A+ is an enormously popular certification , A+ certifies skills in entry-level PC technology. It is a vendor-neutral certification, with an emphasis on the expertise needed to work as a computer service technician, troubleshooting and repairing PCs.
Among the certifications available for computer professionals, A+ is probably the one cited most often as a starting point for careers in the industry. It is viewed as a way to find jobs as computer service technicians or to gain enough skills to move on to further training.
A+ Certification is open to anyone who wants to take the tests. No specific requirements are necessary except payment of the fee. Individuals may retake the test modules as often as they like, but the Core and the Specialty Exams must be passed within 90 calendar days of each other in order for and individual to become certified.
For a number of years, the CompTIA A+ Certification objectives were divided into a hardware exam and an operating systems exam. Starting with the 2006 exam, the exams were restructured so that knowledge of hardware and operating systems were needed for both exams. This design continues with the current 2009 objectives with the addition of:
- Windows Vista has been incorporated into the new objectives
- Older operating systems such as Windows 95, 98, Me, and NT have been removed
- Newer multi-core processor technologies such as Core 2 Duo have been added
- Newer hard drive and memory technologies have been added
- The A+ troubleshooting process has been updated
- Increased amount of networking and security topics, with increased difficulty
We’ll cover all of these changes and more within these covers. For more information about how the A+ certification can help your career, or to download the latest official objectives, access CompTIA’s A+ webpage at http://www.comptia.org/certifications/listed/a.aspx.
One method used by many A+ certification instructors is to simply follow the objectives step by step. The problem is that because different parts of the computer— such as hard disk, display, Windows, and others—are covered in many different objectives, this approach creates a lot of overlap between chapters and does not help students to understand exactly how a particular part of the computer fits together with the rest.
- Eat before a test. Having food in your stomach will give you energy and help you focus but avoid heavy foods which can make you groggy.
- Don't try to pull an all nighter. Get at least 5 hours of sleep before the test.
- Put the main ideas/information/formulas onto a sheet that can be quickly reviewed many times, this makes it easier to retain the key concepts that will be on the test.
- Go to the bathroom before walking into the exam room. You don't want to waste anytime worrying about your bodily needs during the test.
- Keep a positive attitude throughout the whole test and try to stay relaxed. If you start to feel nervous take a few deep breaths to relax.
- Don't rush but pace yourself. Read the entire question and look for keywords.
- Always read the whole question carefully. Don't make assumptions about what the question might be.
- If you don't know an answer, skip it. Go on with the rest of the test and come back to it later. Other parts of the test may have some information that will help you out with that question.
- If you have time left when you are finished, look over your test. Make sure that you have answered all the questions, only change an answer if you misread or misinterpreted the question because the first answer that you put is usually the correct one. Watch out for careless mistakes.
- Qualifiers like "never, always, and every mean that the statement must be true all of the time. Usually these type of qualifiers lead to a false answer.
- Qualifiers like "usually, sometimes, and generally" mean that if the statement can be considered true or false depending on the circumstances. Usually these type of qualifiers lead to an answer of true.
- If any part of the question is false, then the entire statement is false but just because part of a statement is true doesn't necessarily make the entire statement true.