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 Post subject: Classes and help... 14 yr old.
PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2008 7:59 pm 
8086
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Hi everyone. I'm 14 years old and would enjoy becoming a computer technician... In other words being able to: build, service, fix and sell computers... I'm Currently Ateending Luther Collegiate an academic school (Parents shoved it down my throat) I'm not sure what I would/Will need to get my A+ or any other certification or degree.... I would appreciate a guideline on how to go through school and what i should/need to take for classes....

for University/other schooling such as University, Tech schools, College i have to choose from is:

University of Regina, Luther College, Siast Regina and University of Saskatoon...

Thanks for the help when it's recieved...


TaylorW


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2008 4:37 am 
TravBv2.0
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Well, it's good that you have an idea of what you want to do with your life. Most people twice your age don't. When I was your age, I wanted to be an auto mechanic, and I'm currently studying to become a UNIX/Linux Network Administrator....

Anywho, there aren't a lot of specific classes you need to take to get an A+. If all you want to do is general break/fix repair, than an A+ will be enough, but a MS cert for Windows XP and/or Vista definitely won't hurt any. To get your A+, the best way is to just start playing with computers, if you haven't already, which I'm sure you have :) Also, pick up one of the many available study guides for the A+ exam. It's a 2 part exam, one on hardware and one on software (IE, Windows). If you can build a computer, and do some basic hardware trouble shooting, you're golden for the hardware. If you can clean out malware, install Windows, and do some basic software troubleshooting, than you're golden for the software part too. You can take the test and some courses for it in most High Schools, and at nearly any Community College/Universtiy.

I've done the Computer Technician thing... it's fun, but it's hard to do as a career. Computers are so disposable to so many people, that the call to fix them is either for

-OEMs like Dell, HP, Gateway

-GeekSquad, or another retail shop

-running your own business out of it. Usually doing residential/professional on-site repair.

See, a lot of businesses keep their computers under factory warranties, and unless you're factory certified, you can't even open the case without voiding that warranty. Few shops, if any will employ someone specifially to work on computers. If you'd be willing to get into networking and servers, it's another story entirely.

Aside from that, to really make a living, you have to start your own small business doing PC repair, and it's not easy. You need tools, you need really really competitive prices, you need clients, and then you have to listen to things like "You know the screws that hold the memory? Well, I think I broke the monitor." It gets old; really old, very very fast.

Hope I've helped some


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2008 11:26 am 
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Yes it does help a lot, Like i say i work whenever i can with a guy I know who runs his own company. so i get a lot of experience from him and reading MPC.... Also I'm Add and they say computers are always changing, (i guess thats what keeps me intrigued...) and you are right! I took a computer apart once.... but fried the SH_ _ outta it..... oh welll.... Anyway thanks for the guideline... I do appreciate


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2008 11:39 am 
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If you just want to build / repair / sell PCs, you don't need any higher education. You only need certifications and experience.

There are many certs that you can get these days and you'll get lots of good advice here. The thing to keep in mind is that you won't be graduating HS for another couple of years .. and by then, the requirements and 'best' certifications are almost certainly going to change.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2008 11:47 am 
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exactly.... and with MS windows 7 coming out i think a lot of it is going to change... so your right it will probably change in the next couple of years considerably....


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 7:28 am 
TravBv2.0
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For now, all I can tell you is to keep up with different hardware and their quirks, and learn good trouble shooting. To fix anything, you must know how it works, inside-out, forwards and backwards. Learn as much as you can about computers and how they work, and you should be set.

Oh, and keep reading MaximumPC! :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 5:20 pm 
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I'm 14 as well, and I'm very interested in getting some of these certifications... From what I heard, the A+ tests aren't hard at all, but they look pretty good on a resume. I borrowed a book from the library, and the only things that confused me were components that went obsolete before I was born. :roll: Do I really need to know how the ins and outs of ISA slots in this day and age?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 09, 2008 11:27 am 
TravBv2.0
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The newer tests don't bother about the theoretical bandwith of ISA slots or IRQs. I've been doing computers for about 6 years and have never had to screw with IRQs, but my first couple PCs I built of my own were all second hand parts. ISA cards for everything, Pentium Pros, SCSI drives.... oh what memories.

The A+ aren't hard if you ask me. Any competent PC enthusiast should be able to pass with little studying IMO. It all just depends on what people are good at. Personally, the hardware is cake. If you can build a computer, it's not much past that. As for software, if you can install/troubleshoot Windows and or other software problems, then you're good for the software part.

Recently, they changed the A+ tests to have a core exam, and then 3 specialized exams for things like DST, Depot techs, and something else. The A+ is good for a resume if you're applying for a job that will actually require to fix the computers. Like I've said before, most non-retail professional jobs won't require to do this. It'll definitely help you get into GeekSquad though!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 7:30 am 
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By pass the hardware Certs. Look into the Network Certifications. Unix, Linux, CCNA/CCNE, Microsoft... That's where the money is. Since your 14 you may also want to consider computer game design. The market for game designers is hot and will most like not change by the time you're ready for college, by then the Next Generation of Game Consoles will be out. There are a few summer camps out there for Computer Game Designing. If you still want to do Hardware Support though The A+ is good to have, just don't looked to make a lot of money fixing computers as a full time job. Firms like GeekSquad have a set rate they are willing to pay for their employees and it's not a whole lot.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 9:20 am 
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Did you miss the fact that he is 14 and looking to help people with their PCs?

How many CCNEs do you see working with PCs? MCSEs? How many 14-year olds do you know who can pay for the testing, much less pay for and attend the classes?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 11:00 am 
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Jipstyle wrote:
Did you miss the fact that he is 14 and looking to help people with their PCs?

How many CCNEs do you see working with PCs? MCSEs? How many 14-year olds do you know who can pay for the testing, much less pay for and attend the classes?


Nope. Didn't miss the point. Infact I stated the fact that since he's 14 he may want to consider Summer Camps that focus on Game Development.
If I can't afford to attend half the training for these Certs, I don't expect a 14 year old to. I'm just stating that this young mans best hope is networking certifications, which many high schools now offer, or Game Design which is also offered by High Schools and Summer Camps
.
I work in this industry supporting PCs, have for over 15 years, the last eight have been the worst for Hardware support in the Corporate World. Companies are cutting back on the number of onsite support techs that they have on site more or less 1 Tech for every 200+ users at minimum more like 1:400 is the norm. There are too many Mom and Pop Computer repair shops in todays market trying to make money servicing computers. Many go out of business within the first year. Plus with the cost of Laptops and Desktops now below the $500 mark; thecomputer has virtualy become a disposable item.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 21, 2008 7:37 am 
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another thing i want to say is that money is no matter for me... i can get sponsored by a local computer company, but i'd have to work for 3 years for em...... Instead of that they do let me work under the table to make money.... considering i only make 7/hr thats quite a bit........

but thank-you everyone for the input.... i got the mike myers A+ Cert. Guide.... i have read 1/4 through it in the last week. after i read it 3X I'm gonna take the test.... Thank-You Everyone.!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 1:27 pm 
Little Foot
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Actually working for a company for three year would not be a bad thing in the slightest. If the company treats its employees alright that is. Many people find it hard to get a job even after getting a certification, due to lack of experience. One thing you might also look for are internships, I know it is a bit early to be going out and getting one, but find out what is going to be needed if you decide to take one. The professor in charge of internships where I work always has several people apply, but many of them don’t fit the criteria. So he still has a ton of openings.

You might pick up some books on XP and Office 2007, even with the change in technologies, like Windows 7, many companies don’t upgrade until they have to. I know of banks that were just upgrading to XP a year ago, just because the software they were using was being replaced with something that would not run on 98. When you get out of school XP and Office 07 should be the old guard that some companies might still use.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2009 4:28 pm 
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To the person who asked about 14yo's with certs, maximumPC just had an article about about an 8 or 9yo MCSE just setting the new record. I also have a good friend who got his CCNA at 16. Going for certs at a young age is a good idea. I wish I had.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2009 3:02 am 
TravBv2.0
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Zombie thread.

On the topic.....

http://usat.gannett.a.mms.mavenapps.net ... =733915102


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2009 4:03 am 
Little Foot
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... You've got to be kidding me.

I'll have to get my hands on that guide then, and get my A+, if that's all that's really needed.

I've built computers, removed malware and installed XP/Vista/Windows 7, Linux... yeah.

Only problem is the money. But should things go correctly, I MAY be able to solve that problem.

I'm going to have to find where the guides are at.

Any hints as to where they are? :P


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2009 5:28 am 
TravBv2.0
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http://lmgtfy.com/?q=A%2B+Study+Guides

I've always gotten basic ones from Cramsession.com. Other than that, I've used actual books. The ExamCram2 series are great for the basic certs.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2009 5:30 am 
Little Foot
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I checked out ExamCram2 recently and passed the A+ prep tests.

Thanks for the link, that Linux guy!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2009 1:59 pm 
Northwood
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Get your IC3 test done. Then A+. With those tests if you apply to a guy who has no idea what certs are what they should be enough.

IC3 is a joke tbh. If you use computers daily you should have no problem with them.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2009 11:28 pm 
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read, read, read. but in order to retain what you've learned you have to practice. im taking an A+ prep class at a local college for ~$60. i would definitely recommend doing that because you learn A LOT. and it gives you a better idea of what you'll be doing in the field, you may decide its not for you, or you might love it. building computers and knowing how they work are two entirely different things. but if you interested its always worth a try.

and my textbook for that class is bigger than any ive ever had.
hahah

good luck and remember to have fun.


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