Popular Cisco Certifications

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Cisco is the global leader in issuing IT certifications worldwide. Cisco certifications acknowledge a professional’s skills in a specific Cisco technology, such as data center networking, application services, and voicemail and messaging. 

CCIE – Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert

CCIE (Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert) is an expert-level certification. It is one of the most respected in the industry and will demonstrate your level of Cisco networking expertise, design-savvy, and trouble-shooting ability for large, diverse networks.

The CCIE is widely regarded as having one of the toughest and most demanding Cisco exams.

How to become a CCIE (Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert)?

To obtain a CCIE certification you must first pass a written qualification exam and then the corresponding hands-on lab exam.

The written part is a two-hour exam and contains a series of multiple-choice questions. You must select and pass one of the below certification tracks:

  • CCIE Collaboration
  • CCIE Data Center
  • CCIE Routing & Switching
  • CCIE Security
  • CCIE Service Provider
  • CCIE Service Provider Operations
  • CCIE Voice
  • CCIE Wireless

Cost:  The written portion costs approximately $350.

The lab exam is a hands-on eight-hour lab exam.

Cost: The lab exam costs approximately $1400.

re-certification every 2 years by passing the CCIE re-certification exam.

CCDA – Cisco Certified Design Associate

CCDA (Cisco Certified Design Associate) is a certification designed for professionals who design simple routed LAN, routed WAN, and switched LAN networks with fewer than 100 nodes that utilize Cisco routers and switches.

Cisco Certified Design Associate (CCDA) validates the ability required to design a Cisco converged network. A CCDA certified network professional demonstrates the skills required to design basic campus, data center, security, voice, and wireless networks.

How to become a CCDA (Cisco Certified Design Associate)?

To obtain Cisco Certified Design Associate (CCDA) you must:

  • Earn the CCENT certification.
  • Pass the Designing for Cisco Internetwork Solutions (DESGN) exam.
  • Sign the Cisco Career Certifications Agreement.

There are no prerequisite certifications for CCDA, however, knowledge at the CCNA level is recommended to pass the CCDA exam.

Cost: The exam costs approximately $125.

CCDP – Cisco Certified Design Professional

CCDP (Cisco Certified Design Professional) certification indicates an advanced knowledge of the design of routed and switched networks involving LAN, WAN, and dial access for larger networks. It is the second stage of the Network Engineering and Design track and teaches network design, configuration, and installation

A CCDP certification is designed for individuals who design complex routed LAN, routed WAN, and switched LAN networks of 100 to more than 500 nodes, that utilize Cisco routers and switches.

A network professional with CCDP certification can discuss, design, and create advanced addressing and routing, security, network management, data center, and IP multicast complex multi-layered enterprise architectures that include virtual private networking and wireless domains.

How to become a CCDP (Cisco Certified Design Professional)?

To obtain a Cisco Certified Design Professional you must:

  • Earn the CCDA and CCNA certifications.
  • Pass the Cisco Routing exam.
  • Pass the Cisco Switching exam.
  • Pass the Remote Access exam.
  • Pass the Cisco Internetwork Design (CID) exam

You have the option of taking a single, composite exam called the Foundation R/S exam in place of the routing, switching, and remote access exams.

Recertify every 3 years by passing the CCDP recertification exam.

Cost: Each exam costs approximately $125.

CCNA – Cisco Certified Network Associate

CCNA is a professional qualification accredited by CISCO for network professionals.

CCNA certified professionals can install, configure, and operate LAN, WAN, and dial access services for small networks (100 nodes or fewer), including but not limited to use of these protocols: IP, IGRP, Serial, Frame Relay, IP RIP, VLANs, RIP, Ethernet, Access Lists.

How to become a CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate)?

To earn the CCNA certification you must:

  • Have a valid Cisco CCNA Routing and Switching certification or any Cisco CCIE
  • Pass the following exam: Implementing Cisco IP Routing (ROUTE), Implementing Cisco IP Switched Networks (SWITCH), Troubleshooting and Maintaining Cisco IP Networks (TSHOOT)

Topics covered on the CCNA exam include LAN and WAN design (including the OSI model), IP addressing, routers and routing protocols, VLAN (virtual LAN) and WLAN (wireless LAN), network security and management

Additional to the CCNA certification you have the option to get a specialization taking one of the below tracks:

  • CCNA Routing and Switching
  • CCNA Data Center
  • CCNA Security
  • CCNA Service Provider
  • CCNA Service Provider Operations
  • CCNA Video
  • CCNA Voice
  • CCNA Wireless

Cost: The exam costs approximately $250.

Re-certification every 3 years by passing the CCNA re-certification exam.

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