Certification: CompTIA A+ - A+
CompTIA A+ certification is a leading and world-wide recognized IT accreditation program. The foundation of advanced IT career can be built with this efficient A+ certificate. The certification program is organized by American National Standards Institute and International Organization for Standardization. The Computing Technology Industry Association has started its program from 1993 and over this last twenty years, the CompTIA A+ certification program has gone through various significant changes and upgradations. The ordered reviews and updates of CompTIA are remarkably substantial and relevant to thenecessity of present IT sections.
CompTIA considers keeping its contents up-to-date and for which it updates its testing methods every three years. Up until august 30, 2013, 700 series exams had been the most updated version of CompTIA A+ certification program. But after that from October 2012, Computing Technology Industry Association has introduced the more imperative version of 800 series exam which is for now the latest update for A+ certificate exam. To learn clearly about the important updates for A+ certificate exam it is important to know the difference between the previous and present methods of testing.
About the recent past method (the 700 series)
Like the most updated series of 800, CompTIA used to test with the two different exams: 220-701 and 220-702. Both these two exams featured just the multiple-choice questions and their entire focus was on assembling, troubleshooting and setting computers. The examinee has to answer 100 questions in 90 minutes for each of the two exams. 675 is the lowest score on a scale of 100-900 to pass the 701 exam and 700 is the lowest score on an identical scale to pass the 702 exam. In this series, 220-701 exam is considered as essentials which examines the general knowledge regarding computer technology, communication, professionalism, security and networking. 220-702 examregards practical applications like hands-on tasks.
About the updated method (the 800 series)
At present, the 800 series considers two exams: 220-801 and 220-802. 801 features the multiple-choice questions and it covers the basics of computer technology, networking, installation and configuration of the hardware of personal computers and laptops. 802 deals with the practical skills and it tests the efficiency in installation and configuration of computer operating systems, and the configuration of the general structures of mobile operating systems like Android and iOS. The passing score and scale for the two exams of 800 series is similar to those of 700 series exam, and the time limit is also the same but unlike the 700 series, the questions of 800 series have variations. In 700 series there is the certain number of questions (100). But in 800 series, the examinee might face different number of questions, though up to a maximum of 90 questions. However, the examinee is notified about the number of questions before the exam starts.
The difference between question pattern of 700 series and 800 series
Emphasizing on the topic of Hardware the 800 series splits the topic in various fields including Printers and Laptops unlike the 700 series. In 701, 27% and in 702, 38% of the total exam is on Hardware and in 801, 40% is on PC Hardware. The topic of Networking covers 15% of the 701 test but in 801, it covers 27% which means the updated version of CompTIA exam has given importance on the networking section as the computing technology has been much more associated to the networking at present. Again in 701, 10% of examination is on Operational Procedures and in 801, this part covers 11% of the exam. Troubleshooting, Repair and Maintenance is one of the major parts of multiple-choice exam of 700 series but this section is covered by the exam of hands-on task in 800 series which means the section of trouble shooting is the part of 802 and it covers 36% of the exam. In case of the section of Security, the 800 series also includes it in the 220-802 exam and this part covers 22%, while in 701, this part covers only 8%and in 702, 13% of the exam. In 700 series, Operating System and Software (20%) is the part of essentials and in 800 series, Operating System (33%) is included in performance-based exam. Significantly, the updated version of CompTIA exam includes Laptop (11%) and Printer (11%) in 220-801 and Mobile Devices (9%) in performance-based exam (802).
Topics included in the updated series
- Windows 7 Enterprise
- Android and iOS 5 as the latest field regarding the mobile devices
- Virtualization is included as a key objective
- Wireless troubleshooting
- SOHO security and extended security troubleshooting
Windows XP and later are tested in the 800 series. However, this series does not include the questions on Windows 8 and iOS 6/7. The 800 series also includes so many other changes and supplementary add-ons.
Topics excluded from the updated series
- Windows 2000
- BTX and NLX motherboards
- AMR slots
The objectives of the latest updates
The objectives of the CompTIA 800 series exams are significantly changed from the 700 series. Troubleshooting purposes are more wide-ranging in this series which is systematized by particular hardware/software expanses and take in new troubleshooting objectives for wireless. In upgradation, the part of Security adds Office/Home. The changes and updates are made to keep track with the updated computer and mobile technology.
The most noteworthy upgradation in 800 series or the difference between the 700 and 800 Series exams is the initiation of the Performance-Based questions in 800 series. The exam taker needs to read a particular scenario in the Performance-Based questions and perform tasks in simulated computing environsin 800 Series CompTIA exams. Performance-Based questions are designed to examine the candidate’s aptitude to apply skills in real-world state of affairs.
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