Replay: Not quite a Second Shot, rather like buying Exam Insurance.

Microsoft certifications are worth the money... but there is certainly money involved.  You are paying USD$165.00 to sit an exam, whether you pass or fail. Some time ago, Microsoft started offering Second Shot vouchers.  As long as you pre-registered for it, you would get the chance to re-sit an exam in the event that you did … Continue reading Replay: Not quite a Second Shot, rather like buying Exam Insurance.

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To Recertify, or NOT to Recertify… THAT is the question.

I was definitely a proponent of expiring certifications when the topic came up.  Why?  Because my value as an MCSE was diminished by others who held the same title… from Windows NT.  By making professionals renew their certifications we obtained the ability to differentiate between someone with current value and skills and knowledge and someone … Continue reading To Recertify, or NOT to Recertify… THAT is the question.

Gee thanks…

This is one of those situations I laugh at… because even great organizations like Microsoft Learning Experience is going to make the occasional mistake.. especially when it’s systems are all automated and unmonitored. I received the following e-mail today congratulating me on passing my exam yesterday: I was reasonably sure that I already had that … Continue reading Gee thanks…

Certification Questions from a reader

I often get questions from readers and followers about different aspects of the IT Pro world.  If the answer is a simple one- or two-liner then I answer directly, but when the question is complex and the answer could benefit others I like to share that with the blogosphere.  This week I received this question: … Continue reading Certification Questions from a reader

How Do I Become an MCT?

Recently I wrote a piece on the Benefits of Being a MCT.  I got an interesting comment from one reader that they keep moving the bar.  I know that I have spoken with this reader before, and she lamented the extreme costs associated with becoming certified, especially in North America.  She also asked if it … Continue reading How Do I Become an MCT?

Clarity: MCSA vs. MCSE: the what and why

This article was originally published in June, 2012. Due to the relevance and current interest in certifications I decided to republish. -MDG When I found out that Microsoft Learning was (again!) revamping the certification stack, I thought to myself that after all these years it might be time to stop chasing certifications.  After all, when … Continue reading Clarity: MCSA vs. MCSE: the what and why

Getting Certified: Things have really changed!

This article was originally published to The Canadian IT Pro Connection.Boy has it been an exciting year… Microsoft’s busiest release year ever!  On the IT Pro side we have System Center 2012 (a single product now, but truly seven distinct products for managing your environment!), Windows Server 2012, Windows 8… we have Windows Azure (which … Continue reading Getting Certified: Things have really changed!

MCSE Private Cloud… Not easy, but valuable!

This morning before I started teaching I came into the training centre early to sit an exam.  It is not the ideal way to take exams – I showed up at 7:30, knowing I had to start teaching at 9:00 – but sometimes it is the only way that you can make it work, and … Continue reading MCSE Private Cloud… Not easy, but valuable!

Quoted by Microsoft Learning!

It is kind of cool when I find out that Microsoft Learning wants to feature a quote of mine on one of their pages.  Veronica Sopher and I met in Redmond (well, Bellevue actually) in February and discussed at length some of the steps that Microsoft Learning is taking to engage the community, specifically MCTs.  … Continue reading Quoted by Microsoft Learning!

Congratulations on Your Microsoft Certification!

I received the following e-mail earlier in the week: Congratulations on earning your Windows Server® 2008 Core certification! We hope you enjoy the benefits of your certification and of membership in the Microsoft Certified Professional community. WHAT IS NEXT? Visit the MCP member site (www.microsoft.com/mcp) to download your new logo, certificate, view and share your … Continue reading Congratulations on Your Microsoft Certification!

Microsoft Renews the Certification Plan

I remember the day that I earned my first senior certification, the Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA) on Microsoft Windows 2000.  It was a proud day for me, May 27, 2005.  I would later earn my MCSA on Microsoft Windows Server 2003 (June 30, 2006), and I was thrilled beyond belief.  Interestingly, although my original … Continue reading Microsoft Renews the Certification Plan

Certifications Alone Do Not Make the Pro

An interesting post appeared in a newsgroup that I monitor today. A desktop support technician in the United Kingdom lamented a colleague who had attended a two week MCSE boot camp and indeed earned that certification. Unfortunately he later encountered a number of simple issues that he could not resolve, including one with regard to … Continue reading Certifications Alone Do Not Make the Pro