A Plus

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For information on the A+ array processing language, see the article entitled A plus (note the lower case "p"). For the American rapper, see A Plus (rapper). For grading system based on the first six letters of the alphabet, see Grade
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A Plus (A+) is a certification that states the holder is nominally qualified to be a personal computer technician. The certification exams are administered by CompTIA (The Computer Technology Industry Association).

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CompTIA A+ Certification CompTIA A+ certification is an international industry credential that validates the knowledge of computer service technicians with the equivalent of 500 hours of hands-on experience. Major hardware and software vendors, distributors and resellers accept CompTIA A+ as the standard in foundation-level, vendor-neutral certification for service technicians. The exams cover a broad range of hardware and software technologies, but are not bound to any vendor-specific products. The skills and knowledge measured by the CompTIA A+ exams were derived from an industry-wide and worldwide job task analysis. To date, more than 500,000 individuals have obtained CompTIA A+ certification.

Earning CompTIA A+ certification proves that a candidate has a broad base of knowledge and competency in core hardware and operating system technologies including installation, configuration, diagnosing, preventive maintenance and basic networking.

To obtain an A+ certification, one must pass two exams: the A+ Core Hardware Exam and the A+ Core Operating System Technologies Exam. The core hardware exam deals with identifying, installing, and upgrading common computer hardware such as motherboards, CPUs, and hard drives. The OS technologies exam covers operating system installation and maintenance with a heavy bias towards Microsoft Windows.

In its current revised avatar, released in Nov 2003, The A+ certification requires candidates to pass the 'Core Hardware' (Exam Code: 220-301) and the 'Operating System Technologies' exam (Exam code: 220-302). As with previous versions of the certification, it is valid for a lifetime. It is recommended, although not mandatory, to gain a minimum of 6-months experience in Computer Hardware Service/Support prior to achieving this popular certification.

A+ certified techs are preferred in jobs involving IT Helpdesk, Computer Repair/Service, Basic Network Support etc. It is also a good stepping stone to more advanced certifications like CompTIA's Network+, Server+, etc.

Industry Support for CompTIA A+ The technology community identifies CompTIA A+ certification as the perfect entry into an IT career. Technology and certification companies including Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, Cisco, Novell and Certiport recognize CompTIA A+ certification as part of their certification tracks. Top technology companies including CompuCom, CompUSA and IBM have also made CompTIA A+ certification mandatory for their service technicians. Additionally, more than 100 companies now require CompTIA A+ certification as a prerequisite to qualify for their corporate and vendor-specific training programs.

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