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Oct 09, 2012

CompTIA Updates Flagship CompTIA A+ Certification

Changes reflect expanding responsibilities of IT support technicians in mobility, security, virtualization and other emerging technologies 

Downers Grove, Ill., October 9, 2012CompTIA, the leading provider of vendor-neutral skills certifications for the world’s information technology (IT) workforce, today launched updated exams for CompTIA A+, its flagship certification for IT support technicians.

The new exams reflect the expanding responsibilities IT technicians have within their organizations.

“The IT technician’s role is increasingly more complex and sophisticated than in the days of the break-fix PC repairman,” said Terry Erdle, executive vice president, skills certification, CompTIA. “Today they are responsible for a myriad of technologies, from mobile devices and wireless to security and virtualization. The new CompTIA A+ exams reflect this reality.”

CompTIA A+ is an ISO/ANSI accredited certification that validates foundation-level knowledge and skills necessary for a career in IT service and support. More than 900,000 IT professionals have earned the CompTIA A+ credential since it was introduced in 1993.

The updated CompTIA A+ exams are available now worldwide in English. Exams in other languages will be introduced in the coming months.

The exams include multiple choice, multiple selection and calculator-assisted questions, as well as performance-based questions that require certification candidates to perform a task or solve a problem within a simulated IT environment. To prepare for exams with performance–based questions, CompTIA encourages candidates to review the exam objectives, in addition to engaging in their preferred methods for study and training. CompTIA recommends individuals have 12 months of experience before sitting for the new exams.

Individuals must pass two exams to earn CompTIA A+ certification, The first exam (220-801) covers PC hardware, networking, laptops, printers and operational procedures; the second (220-802) covers operating systems, security, mobile devices, troubleshooting and integration of computing devices in a network. Complete exam objectives are available on the CompTIA certification website. Exam vouchers and training materials are available in the CompTIA Marketplace.

The previous versions of the CompTIA A+ exams (220-701 and 220-702) remain available through Aug. 31, 2013. Individuals currently studying for these exams are encouraged to continue their studies and to test on the 701 and 702 exams.

Benefits of Certification
Employers rely on certifications when hiring IT staff because certified IT workers have a greater ability to understand new and complex technologies; are more productive and bring more insightful problem solving to the workplace. A 2011 CompTIA research report found that 64 percent of IT hiring managers rated certifications as having extremely high or high value in validating the skills and expertise of job candidates. Eight in ten HR professionals surveyed believed IT certifications will grow in usefulness and importance over the next two years.

Additionally, a 2012 study by the Illinois Community College Board, Illinois State Board of Education and Northern Illinois University found that earnings for community college students with a CompTIA certification increased 12.26 percent within nine months of earning the credential, compared to a 2.71 percent earnings increase for students without a certification.

“CompTIA A+ is the best, first step an individual can take to launch a career in IT,” Erdle said. “It’s a comprehensive measurement of core competencies and knowledge that should be in any IT professional’s skill set. It also establishes a solid foundation for future career advancement.”

Courseware, Training Materials for New Exams
Educational materials and training resources to support the new CompTIA A+ exams are available from a number of CompTIA Authorized Partners, including:

These materials have been reviewed by industry experts and approved by CompTIA through the CompTIA Approved Quality Content (CAQC) program.

About CompTIA
CompTIA is the voice of the world’s information technology (IT) industry. Its members are the companies at the forefront of innovation; and the professionals responsible for maximizing the benefits organizations receive from their investments in technology. CompTIA is dedicated to advancing industry growth through its educational programs, market research, networking events, professional certifications, and public policy advocacy. Visit http://www.comptia.org/home.aspx or follow CompTIA at http://www.facebook.com/CompTIA and twitter.com/comptia.

Contact:
Steven Ostrowski
CompTIA
630-678-8468
sostrowski@comptia.org