Hardware Reference
In-Depth Information
A technical school is a great way to learn the “technician” tools of the trade. Most schools
offer programs that are two years or less, and some programs are designed so that a student
can transfer credits to a four-year college if needed.
The courses offered at technical schools vary, but many provide training in electronics and
information technology that can be of great value and marketability. They will teach you
actual skills in addition to theory. Most technical school programs maintain a workplace
environment as opposed to a traditional classroom environment, where attendance is oblig-
atory and professional conduct is maintained. The instructors at technical schools are typ-
ically trained professionals in the field with experience in a related field.
Many of these schools will provide a certificate upon completion, and tuition costs are typ-
ically less than those at most state colleges or universities. Depending on the job skill to
be studied, traits that are important for students pursuing technical school training include
good manual dexterity, eye-hand coordination, physical stamina, and strong mechanical
Technical schools also prepare students for professional certification exams. In the elec-
tronics industry, a popular certification that a technical school can prepare its students for
is the CompTIA A+ Certification. This is an entry-level certification for computer service
technicians. The exam is designed to certify the competency of entry-level PC computer
service professionals in installing, maintaining, customizing, and operating personal com-
CompTIA is a large trade group, founded in 1982 and made up of resellers, distributors,
and manufacturers. It sets voluntary guidelines dealing with business ethics and profession-
alism, and is involved with many issues including product returns, warranty claims, and
price protection.
Historically, A+ Certification was a lifetime certificate, but starting in 2011, the A+ certi-
ficate must be renewed every three years by retaking the A+ test.
The A+ exam contains situational, traditional, and identification types of questions. All of
the questions are multiple choice, and there is only one answer for each question. The A+
exam is open to anybody, although it is designed to be taken by those with at least six
months of job experience as service technicians. Since you'll be starting your business this
is a great way to become familiar with some of the intricate work that you'll be studying.
Currently, A+ is the only major non-vendor-specific hardware certification available for
Microsoft Windows-compatible computer systems and can be a valuable addition to your
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