Cisco certifications have gained immense popularity over the last couple years. In the IT industry, these certifications have great value. If you have a Cisco ccna certification or are certified in any of the other valuable certifications, you’ll have an advantage towards your IT career. These certifications will help you break into the tech industry in a competitive job market. If you wish to stand out from the crowd, the stakes are definitely high, but various Cisco certifications can help you head in the correct direction.
Cisco provides a wide range of certifications and offers a couple of certifications for professionals as well.
What is CCNA?
Cisco CCNA certification stands for The Cisco Certified Network Associate. This certification is amongst the top preferences of many IT aspirants and is a highly reputed entry-level networking certification in the industry. This certification is designed for those people who have at least 1 or 2 years of network engineering experience. The advantage of CCNA training is that it is very affordable and easily accessible. The training consists of installation, maintenance, and troubleshooting of medium networking devices. Students interested in CCNA courses online need to undergo testing and training in the troubleshooting and installation of end-to-end networking as well.
The CCNA certification provides the aspirants with several benefits-
- It provides the opportunity to gain more knowledge about the basic concepts of Cisco networking.
- Provides knowledge regarding the operation of IT equipment without facing any problems.
Those who have this certification can apply their knowledge in several different situations, and they can also increase their marketability across numerous areas. It also helps engineers to improve their networking careers. CCNA offers you a choice to select between two kinds of examinations. There are no compulsory prerequisites for this certification. This certification will help you will manage, configure and install a medium-sized network.
What is CCNP?
CCNP stands for Cisco Certified Network Professional Certification. This certification is for professionals who have at least one year of experience in professional networking. It is for IT professionals who want to get trained in implementing, maintaining and planning high-end network solution products of Cisco. It is an advanced certification than the CCNA certification. The curriculum of this certification includes several other courses that cover basic IT networking knowledge. A few of these are-
- Cisco remote access
- Cisco advanced routing
- Cisco multilayer switching
- Converged network optimization
- Scalable Internet works
People who select this certification achieve training in troubleshooting, installation and maintenance of both WAN and LAN. The certification’s main aim is to prepare professionals for the CCNP examination. To test the student’s understanding and knowledge, a number of practice tests are conducted. They test the ability of the student to troubleshoot, maintain and test several techniques. The candidate should have a high school certificate or an equivalent to get this certification. The CCNP certification exam consists of numerous modules.
Difference Between CCNA and CCNP
CCNA certification is the associate-level certification, whereas CCNP is a more advanced certification. CCNA certification tests individuals on switching and routing fundamentals, and CCNP require a deeper understanding of LANs and WANs and how they both work with each other.
Out of these two certifications, CCNP is considered a more advanced certification as it provides in-depth knowledge into the workings of networking and introduces you to advanced networking technologies.
Another difference between CCNA and CCNP certification is the career path. CCNA certification is perfectly suited for those who are looking to boost an entry-level career such as-
- Network support engineer
- Network technician
- Help desk engineer
- First and second line support
CCNP suits professionals who wish to go further with their career including-
- Third line support
- Network analyst
- Systems engineer
- Network specialist
- Network engineer
- Leader of an IT team
The main difference lies in their depth of learning. Basically, CCNA is an associate-level certification and is the foundation certification for any other networking course CCNP provides more knowledge about the network environment. Students pursuing this course are focused on a specialized program. The CCNA certification cost is not much different from the CCNP certification cost, but there is a slight difference as CCNP is a higher-level certification and provides better opportunities to the candidates.
Cisco certifications will help you boost your IT career. Both CCNA and CCNP certifications will definitely add some value to your career. You can choose whichever certification is suitable for your background. You can also choose both of these certifications. However, we recommend you go for CCNA first and then CCNP certification. It would be beneficial for you to have adequate certifications and seek opportunities in your career.