As the network grows in complexity, so does the need for training for those who implement and manage network infrastructure and solutions. A skills gap emerges when technology outpaces professional skills development.
To fill this talent gap, Cisco continues to develop training and certification products that help our customers be more successful using the network and the solutions that ride on top of the network—solutions like voice communications, video services and collaboration environments.
Cisco realizes that the network professional increasingly must focus on design, configuration, and support responsibilities as the technical consultant, specialist or expert on a networking team. Therefore, the Cisco curriculum is specific to the best practices of network administrators, engineers, and experts using the latest Cisco.
Wireless Engineering is the area of networking which addresses the design and implementation of wireless communication systems and technologies. It includes a wide spectrum of application, most notably cellular networks where there is a vast career demand. Wireless innovations, such as increased network capacity, 4G and constantly improving network security technologies ensure a progressive and exciting career for the wireless specialist.
A wireless specialist must have a solid understanding of the physical layer they are working with – RF. Things like EIRP, dBm and bandwidth are foundational principles that must be understood, as is the electromagnetic spectrum. This base RF knowledge is a requirement in performing one of the most important tasks that a Wireless Engineer can have, performing a site survey.
Wireless networks are also often mobile. The engineer may be required to set up mobility groups on a controller or using WDS on an autonomous solution. Mobility is what makes wireless great. A wireless specialist is going to make sure that mobility is one of the basic functions of the WLAN and that it works well. Remembering that networks are unified, a wireless specialist will work with a security specialist to ensure security on the wireless network, or with a Voice expert to enable Voice over the WLAN.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: What is the best way for me to get my CCNA?
A: There are two paths to obtaining your CCNA:
- ICND1+ICND2 – Completing each 5 day course and the exams separately.
- CCNA Bootcamp – a 5 day combination option with a combination exam to match.
Which path you choose will depend on your level of experience and knowledge. If you are new to networking it is advisable to do the two courses ICND1 + ICND2 and complete the exams for each. These two courses comprise 5 days of classroom training each, giving you a total of 10 days of training. In this way you will benefit from the full detail when you need it most. Should you be an experienced network engineer now deciding to formalise your skills by obtaining the Cisco certification, you may only need to attend the 5 day CCNA Bootcamp to prepare yourself well enough to take the combined CCNA exam instead of each of the ICND1 and ICND2 exams.
Q: Do I need to have any pre-requisites to start CCNA?
A: No, there are no pre-requisites, but you might find it useful if you complete IP primer training first, that is free introduction networking course.
Q: Where can I take my CCIE Lab Exam?
A: Cisco run regular lab exams at their offices in USA, Europe, Dubai and Australia. In addition they run mobile lab exams in many locations around the world, including China, South Korea, Indonesia, Taiwan, India, Mexico, Canada, Saudi Arabia , South Africa, East Africa (Nairobi), West Africa (Lagos), United Kingdom and a number of locations in Europe. For current date and locations of the mobile lab exam venues, please follow this link: https://learningnetwork.cisco.com/docs/DOC-3224
Q: Do Cisco Certified Internet Engineers (CCIE) Get Special Privileges or special access From Cisco?
A: Benefits include:
- Bypass Cisco level 1 TAC
- CCIE special functions within events like Cisco Live
- Special CCIE branded clothing
- CCIE Discussion Forums
- CCIE Emeritus
Q: What are the typical daily demands of a CCIE?
A: The CCIE certification is an enabler, it helps the network engineer to obtain higher paying, but at the same time, higher demanding jobs. It is possible that the CCIE may be called out at 2 am to fix a critical network problem. But, it is your choice as to how you use your CCIE certification. It will open many doors for you, you can also become consultants, work in strategic or management roles, train candidate CCIE's, focus on design etc. Or you can maintain and support the infrastructure. The daily demands vary depending on the type of role you wish to take on.
Q: What is the recertification policy for CCNP Wireless?
A: Cisco Professional-level certifications (CCNP, CCNP Wireless, CCDP, CCSP, CCNP Security, CCNP Voice, CCIP, CCNP Service Provider, CCNP Service Provider Operations, and CCNP Data Center) are valid for three years. To recertify, pass ONE of the following before the certification expiration date:
- Pass any current 642-XXX Professional-level exam, or
- Pass any current CCIE Written Exam, or
- Pass the current CCDE Written Exam OR current CCDE Practical Exam, or
- Pass the Cisco Certified Architect (CCAr) interview AND the CCAr board review to extend lower certifications.
When using a higher level of certification to extend other certifications, the expiration date of other certifications will extend to the expiration date of the higher certification (i.e.: If you have one year left on your CCNA certification and you earn a CCIE certification (which has a two-year certification life) then both your CCIE certification and your CCNA certification will expire two years from the date you achieved the CCIE certification.
Q: Is their live equipment in the classrooms for CCNA and CCNP training?
A: Some wireless classes do have live equipment in the classroom, if this is necessary, but this is not the case for all classes. Check on the latest update for classroom equipment with your nearest NIL training consultant.