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Certification Watch (Vol. 22, No. 8)

In this week's roundup of the latest IT certification news, CompTIA ennumerates points to ponder when deciding whether or not to get a certification, Google launches new cloud credentials, and more.

To Certify or Not to Certify: That Is the Question


It's not always easy to decide whether or not to get a certification.As we learn from the 1993 blockbuster Jurassic Park, it's always good to question whether it makes sense to do something, and not just whether that thing is possible. As scientist Ian Macolm memorably lectures park developer John Hammond, "Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should." As with reintroducing to the planet giant reptilian monsters who died out hundreds of millions of years ago, so with getting a certification. For those deciding whether to certify in the near future, tech industry association CompTIA has provided a handy checklist of reasons why it (potentially) would or would not make sense to move forward. A new post to the IT Career News blog suggests 10 self-interrogatory points to ponder, such as, "Does this IT certification align with my career goal," "Does this skill relate to my current job," and "Will this IT certification increase my salary," with brief notes about how and why each question applies to your decision. The post provides a thoughtful template for your next big certification decision. If you can't make up your mind, then this would a good place to turn to for introspection and clarity.


Women in Cybersecurity Have More to Offer than They May Realize


It's hard enough for many women to feel like they belong in the information technology (IT) realm. The degree of difficulty at feeling welcomed and fitting in can be much higher in the most male-dominated niches of a male-dominated industry. A prime example of an IT nook that many women likely view as having a sky-high gender barrier to entrance is the cybersecurity field. For women intrigued by, yet also wary of, the possibility of working in cybersecurity, there's an excellent post at the ISACA Now Blog of cybersecurity and governance association ISACA. Guest blogger Charlotte Osborne offers a valuable woman-to-woman perspective on the struggle that many women have to find their footing in cybersecurity. Osborne has a strong belief that women have more to offer to cybersecurity than many of them may suspect, and notes that, while the immense gender gap in the global cybersecurity workforce has narrowed in recent years, there is still immense opportunity for women IT professionals to make their mark.


Does Getting a Certification Mean Getting a Bigger Paycheck?


The question is essentially as old as IT certification itself. Since the proliferation of certifications that exploded across the IT industry in the 1990s, industry observers and talking heads have argued passionately about whether certifications drive salary, as well as how and why that might be true, and to precisely what extent it might be true. Surveys are regularly conducted that attempt to draw a correlation between certification and salary, and there's a great deal of data floating around. Now, in an article from the January issue of Certification Magazine that recently appeared online at, certification guru and sometime GoCertify contributor Aaron Axline offers his own perspective on the troublesome question. Without really attempting to settle the issue once and for all, Axline draws on his personal experience to size up the multifaceted issue and formulate his own conclusion.


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