CompTIA channel e-learning
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May 9, 2013

CompTIA’s new e-Learning certificates a step in right direction

By e-learning

On April 1, CompTIA began offering some of its channel learning courses in cloud, mobile and security via its e-Learning platform. These courses are focused on solution providers, value-added resellers (VAR) and consultants who are attempting to leverage modern technologies to improve their specific business objectives. Once the e-Learning objectives have been met, CompTIA will issue certificates of completion. This article covers two things: a brief look at the new e-Learning Channel certificate programs, and some insight on why it makes sense to offer these.

CompTIA Executive Certificate programs

The initial programs that are being offered by CompTIA focus around three very popular and growing industries: cloud computing, mobility and information technology (IT) security. Keep in mind that these programs are focused on those who work in channel roles (sales) and have a balance of technical and useful sales information.

Cloud Computing

While it seems a bit odd, the cloud computing program that is currently available completely via e-Learning is the Executive Certificate in Cloud (Intermediate); whereas the foundations version (Executive Certificate in Cloud (Foundations)) of the certificate is not yet available via e-Learning. The three courses that make up the certificate program include:

  • Building Cloud Solution Success
  • Developing Cloud Playbooks
  • Transforming Your Business

Once these courses have been completed, the student must complete a Capstone session to finish the program. This Capstone program can be completed either via live webinar or face-to-face during a CompTIA or CompTIA member event.

Mobility

The mobility program that is offered is called the Executive Certificate in Mobility (Foundations). The three courses that make up the certificate program include:

  • The Mobility Market
  • Developing Mobile Management Solutions for Customers
  • Building Mobile Application Solutions for Customers

Once these courses have been completed, the student must complete a Capstone session to finish the program. This Capstone program can be completed either via live webinar or face-to-face during a CompTIA or CompTIA member event.

IT Security

The IT Security program that is offered is called the Executive Certificate in IT Security (Foundations). The three courses that make up the certificate program include:

  • Transforming Your Business Through IT Security
  • Assessing and Managing Risk
  • Solution Selling Strategies

Once these courses have been completed, the student must complete a Capstone session to finish the program. This Capstone program can be completed either via live webinar or face-to-face during a CompTIA or CompTIA member event.

Are the CompTIA Executive Certificate programs useful?

There are a number of different vendor-specific certifications that exist.  The advantage of these programs is that they give specific skills to the channel employee to sell that specific vendor’s products and services, or other products and services that are based on that vendor’s technologies. The disadvantage is that the knowledge it typically very specific, and while very useful for that vendor, it may not translate all that well if another vendor becomes available with a competitive product.

This is where CompTIA comes in with a very successful list of vendor-neutral technical certifications; it is able to build on the idea of vendor-neutral training and certification. While it does not get around the need for some vendor-specific training, it does give a channel employee a way to get up-to-speed about the direction and possibilities of specific markets without going too deeply into the vendor-specific available technologies. This type of training can be very useful, just like the A+ certification is very useful for those getting started in the computer business.

One thing to note about these certificate programs is that they require CompTIA membership (~$250 per year) to access the resources. This has a number of other advantages as well, and if so inclined, take a look at its site where it details all of the potential benefits.

The problem that has existed up to this point is that the majority of CompTIA’s available programs require physically going to a class (typically at group meetings). While this is helpful for those with the budgets and the time to go to these meetings, it does not help those who are limited in their resources, which in the slowly recovering market, is quite a few. Providing these courses via its e-Learning platform is certainly a good idea and will give a number of partners the ability to gain this knowledge without having to spend a good amount of money on travel. While the offerings currently are rather minimal, it is a start and hopefully CompTIA will see the success of the programs and provide e-Learning options for a number of their other programs.

Want to learn more about CompTIA? See our library of CompTIA training and sign up for a 3-day free trial to access all of our courses.

About the Author

is an accomplished networking consultant for SR-W Consulting (http://www.sr-wconsulting.com) and writer/editor for infoDispersion (http://www.idisperse.info). Sean has been in the IT field for over 15 years, working with companies like Cisco, Lucent, Verizon and AT&T as well as several other private companies. Sean holds certifications with Cisco (CCNP/CCDP), Microsoft (MCSE) and CompTIA (A+ and Network+). His educational accomplishments include: a Master’s of Science in Information Technology with a focus in Network Architecture and Design, a Master’s of Science in Organizational Management, a Master’s Certificate in Network Security, a Bachelors of Science in Computer Networking, and an Associates of Applied Science in Computer Information Systems.

Author's Website: http://www.sr-wconsulting.com


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