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May 20 2010   2:13PM GMT

Cisco Pushes Cert Programs Out to Five Levels

Ed Tittel Ed Tittel Profile: Ed Tittel

It’s been a while since I dropped in on the Cisco Certifications Home Page, so I thought I’d pop in to see what was new and interesting. While I’d been aware of various new Cisco certifications, it’s been long enough since I visited that the program architecture struck me forcibly as I viewed this diagram (click on the thumbnail to see it in readable detail):

There are six levels, if you factor in all 38 specialist certs!

There are six levels, if you factor in all 38 specialist certs!

The last time I really paid attention to this architecture, the CCENT had yet to be introduced (it serves as single-exam entry level cert for the whole Cisco cert shebang). Likewise the Cisco Certified Architect had yet to appear, either, at the other (top) end of the Cisco cert hierarchy. With the CCENT available throughout the global Cisco Academy infrastructure — present in many high schools, as well as community colleges and technical schools — it’s taking over the bottom of the pyramid from the CCNA. As the latest and greatest pinnacle on top of the Cisco pyramid, the Cisco Certified Architect is really just getting the wind in its sails (I plan to talk to the Cisco cert folks and report back on this credential, which amplifies a growing trend to put architect certs at the top of many certification ladders).

Do yourself a favor, and check out the many credentials and offerings in the Cisco cert hierarchy. There’s lots of room here for learning, professional development, and career growth. Enjoy!

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