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Certification Watch (Vol. 20, No. 21)

In this week's roundup of the latest IT certification news, Cisco Learning Network introduces you to a Cisco SME, a training professional makes the case for career development as a recruiting tool, and more.

How Do They: SMEs Dictate Certification Exam Content


CertWatch man developing careerIn politics, the saying goes that nobody really wants to know "how the sausage gets made," but taking a behind-the-scenes peek at other areas in life is often both educational and engaging. If you've ever wondered, for example, how a certification exam is created, then you'll want to plug into an informative post that appeared last week at Cisco Learning Network's VIP Perspectives blog. Guest blogger Mark Holm, a Cisco certification Subject Matter Expert, or SME, pulls back the curtain on the process of exam design and creation. Holm's stated intention is to describe the workload and qualifications demanded of a Cisco SME, for the benefit of any certified individuals who are thinking of joining the SME ranks. Whether or not you've considered entering the field yourself, however, anyone who has ever taken a certification exam is likely to enjoy the blow-by-blow perspective on what's involved in creating them. For the benefit of Cisco-certified individuals, in particular, Holm includes a link at the end of his post to Cisco's SME recruitment program.


CompTIA Books Mini-Boot Camp for New CSA+ Credential


Earlier this year in Feburary, IT industry association CompTIA added to its suite of information security certifications with the launch of the brand new Cybersecurity Analyst (CSA+) credential. Training providers have been in a bit of a scramble ever since, but now there's an opportunity for interested parties to take a five-hour deep dive into the newly minted CSA+ world. Coming up next month, CompTIA will be offering a mini-boot camp for aspiring certificants during the AFCEA International Cyber Operations Symposium in Baltimore. The mini-boot camp will take place June 15 from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the Baltimore Convention Center. Admission is free for active-duty military personnel; all others must pay either $270 (AFCEA members) of $295 (regular Joes and Janes). CSA+ occupies a middle ground for CompTIA security specialists between the foundational Security+ credential and the far more intensive CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP) credential. CSA+ holders are trained to detect information security threats and neutralize them before crippling attacks occur.


Thumbs Up for ISACA Certs from Recent Survey


At the end of last week, GoCertify's Ed Tittel took a long look at some of the big picture findings to emerge earlier this month in the detailed recap of the annual certification and salary survey conducted by Global Knowledge. Others have been perusing the details as well, and Global Knowledge marketing manager Casey Wasserman made a guest appearance at the ISACA Now Blog yesterday to discuss ISACA certifications in particular. Certifications offered by ISACA, the cybersecurity and governance industry association, were big winners in the Global Knowledge survey, and have consistently performed well in other similar settings. ISACA's popular Certified Information Security Manager (CISM) cert was recently featured in a detailed disclosure from the Certification Magazine annual Salary Survey.