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NikolaT

A+ exam questions

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So, one day I decided to be more productive over the summer. I picked up Mike Meyer's A+ Study Guide (7th edition) and got through the first few chapters - I finished CPU's 2-3 days ago and have managed to ace the chapter review questions every time.

 

Obviously, I want the A+ certification. It's no amazing feat but that's not what I'm going for anyways - mainly I'm just genuinely interested in computers and just want to learn more. Also, I'd like to get a part time job as a technician with the goal of gaining some practical knowledge from experience while I'm still in high school.

 

I noticed the Mike Meyer's book is quite in depth - to the extent of listing a myriad of sockets, caches and speeds that he recommends you learn for the test. This brings me to my first question: do you really have to know all of these ancient caches/external speeds/multipliers for the exam?

 

A more generalized question is: how hard is the test? - some things come off as extremely easy while others seem to be focused around raw information (in example, the theory behind a CPU is extremely easy while the sockets/speeds can take a while to actually memorize)

 

And how difficult would it be to get a part time job as an entry level technician with the A+?

 

 

 

 

I just really can't tell whether I should memorize all of these little details and how much will be on the test. Thanks in advance :)

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When I took it, ages ago (it's since changed a bit), it had lots of archaic knowledge, which though fascinating (mostly), wasn't very useful in practice. (Like memorizing hardware IRQ assignments, which even back in the day when I took the test were being handled by most OSs). I dunno if they still are awful about printers or not, but if the review book goes on and on about printers, it would be a good thing to memorize. When I took the test, I scheduled the test for Monday on a Friday, got a big fat (huge) study book, bout 800 pages iirc. Started to read up a bit and realized that perhaps I'd been over confident--this was gonna be more difficult than I'd suspected. So I just stayed up and drank LOTS of coffee and read the entire book until I understood it and went to take the test on no sleep and passed with some room to spare.

 

Bruce

A+ Certified Since 2001

 

PS: Oh, and as far as getting a PC Tech job, I never found A+ helped me very much. Word of mouth about private in-home PC maintenance/repair did a lot more for me financially. Course I started working with Mainframes shortly after, so the A+ certification was never something I really tried to leverage very much.

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When I took it, ages ago (it's since changed a bit), it had lots of archaic knowledge, which though fascinating (mostly), wasn't very useful in practice. (Like memorizing hardware IRQ assignments, which even back in the day when I took the test were being handled by most OSs). I dunno if they still are awful about printers or not, but if the review book goes on and on about printers, it would be a good thing to memorize. When I took the test, I scheduled the test for Monday on a Friday, got a big fat (huge) study book, bout 800 pages iirc. Started to read up a bit and realized that perhaps I'd been over confident--this was gonna be more difficult than I'd suspected. So I just stayed up and drank LOTS of coffee and read the entire book until I understood it and went to take the test on no sleep and passed with some room to spare.

 

Bruce

A+ Certified Since 2001

 

PS: Oh, and as far as getting a PC Tech job, I never found A+ helped me very much. Word of mouth about private in-home PC maintenance/repair did a lot more for me financially. Course I started working with Mainframes shortly after, so the A+ certification was never something I really tried to leverage very much.

 

Very knowledgeable answer, thanks!

 

I've heard that A+ doesn't help much for job hunting - seems this just solidifies that.

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Just so you know the new A+ exams you have to renew every 3 years.

 

There are 2 exams you need to take to get the certification.

 

 

With that said, the exam isn't too terribly hard. There are a lot of questions that will put you in a role of a support agent troubleshooting a customers issue.

 

Overall it is a pretty general exam, so if you have good knowledge about a little of everything you should be fine. I think I almost got a perfect score on it, I took it right before they started that every 3 year thing so I have a grandfathered lifetime cert...

 

 

Certs are only really to buff your resume, they are basically eye candy on the resume to give it some bling

Edited by greengiant912

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Overall it is a pretty general exam, so if you have good knowledge about a little of everything you should be fine. I think I almost got a perfect score on it, I took it right before they started that every 3 year thing so I have a grandfathered lifetime cert...

Yes, me too and so glad. Cheers!

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Last summer I was looking for a job at some of the computer repair shops in town. One of them wouldn't even consider me since I don't have my A+ cert, so every so often you will come across a shop that expects you to have them. Not saying they all do since the other two in town didn't, but some do. I do agree with brooooooce though, word-of-mouth is generally a good way to go. It may take some time, but you fix a few computers for friends, they tell their friends, etc, and then you'll have some extra cash on the side.

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So, one day I decided to be more productive over the summer. I picked up Mike Meyer's A+ Study Guide (7th edition) and got through the first few chapters - I finished CPU's 2-3 days ago and have managed to ace the chapter review questions every time.

 

Obviously, I want the A+ certification. It's no amazing feat but that's not what I'm going for anyways - mainly I'm just genuinely interested in computers and just want to learn more. Also, I'd like to get a part time job as a technician with the goal of gaining some practical knowledge from experience while I'm still in high school.

 

I noticed the Mike Meyer's book is quite in depth - to the extent of listing a myriad of sockets, caches and speeds that he recommends you learn for the test. This brings me to my first question: do you really have to know all of these ancient caches/external speeds/multipliers for the exam?

 

A more generalized question is: how hard is the test? - some things come off as extremely easy while others seem to be focused around raw information (in example, the theory behind a CPU is extremely easy while the sockets/speeds can take a while to actually memorize)

 

And how difficult would it be to get a part time job as an entry level technician with the A+?

 

 

 

 

I just really can't tell whether I should memorize all of these little details and how much will be on the test. Thanks in advance :)

 

I took the A+ exam a few years ago so I don't know how much they've changed it since then but what I can remember is the A+ there were a some key concepts that they would ask about which you should know and the rest of the the question tended to be like trivia questions meaning unless you studied everything you needed to know about cpus or printers or whatever they were asking you or didn't know it specifically it would be a hit or miss

 

I would get at least 1 more book and some good practice questions and that should give you the feel of what you need to know for the exam

Edited by fire_storm

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A+ won't really help much. Everyone and their mother has A+ in the IT field. It doesn't really carry much clout. Like someone else said it's just fluff for a resume. It won't hurt having it of course but don't just stop there. Theres Net+ and Sec+ that are a little better. But look into MCSE or Cisco certs as they will get you even further.

 

And yeah they're no longer lifetime certs. Luckily my work paid for my Sec+ last year when it was still lifetime.

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the test is very easy, although i never took the real exam every practice one i've tried i usually got 1/50 wrong. the hardware is wicked easy because well we are always on OCC troubleshooting issues with people. but when they ask on he exam how to change the screen resolution they give a few options

 

correct being : Control Panel > All Control Panel Items > Display Screen resolution but who remembers that...just right click on desktop >Screen resolution, simple. it seems A+ doesn't want the easy way to do things but the long pointless way. oh and that was for Win7/vista, they ask stupid questions like what is it in XP over Vista. common just right click....

 

anyways rant over. its easy unless they trick you up with pointless questions that are outdated. one question asked "what port does a Dot Matrix printer use". comon those printers are from like 1990...

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the test is very easy, although i never took the real exam every practice one i've tried i usually got 1/50 wrong. the hardware is wicked easy because well we are always on OCC troubleshooting issues with people. but when they ask on he exam how to change the screen resolution they give a few options

 

correct being : Control Panel > All Control Panel Items > Display Screen resolution but who remembers that...just right click on desktop >Screen resolution, simple. it seems A+ doesn't want the easy way to do things but the long pointless way. oh and that was for Win7/vista, they ask stupid questions like what is it in XP over Vista. common just right click....

 

anyways rant over. its easy unless they trick you up with pointless questions that are outdated. one question asked "what port does a Dot Matrix printer use". comon those printers are from like 1990...

 

Yeah, I decided to not take the test - it seems I'd be better off just studying the useful parts of the book, seeing as the certification doesn't do much for an individual anyways. Like this I'll become more proficient without loading up on useless facts on the way.

 

On an unrelated note, are there any good books for modern PC troubleshooting? Not installation (as if I don't know how to download drivers..) but rather methods for dealing with problems you could realistically encounter while working with computers.

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Back in '99 when I took my tests, I thought it was pretty much a joke and that opinion really hasn't changed much. Keep in mind that the certification is only intended to demonstrate that you have a basic understanding of service technician and troubleshooting skills. Having experience behind you is better, but adding certifications to your resume certainly doesn't hurt. If nothing else, it could give you a slight edge over someone else or help you get that entry level job where you can start building up your experience.

 

The new CE requirement for it (as well as the Network+ and Security+) may actually help improve the view of the certification over the next few years. Regardless, I'm glad I have a lifetime cert for them all. :D

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