Certification Survey Extra: Security certification training materials

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Certification Survey Extra is a series of periodic dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our most recent Certification Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Certification Survey data.

Lots of people like to study before taking a certification exam. But where should you look for the best training materials?There are a lot of different ways to prepare for a certification exam. Some tech professionals don’t really prepare at all: Many people come by the knowledge and/or skills needed to pass a certification exam in the course of doing whatever their IT day job is, or get up to speed on new technology by meeting with vendors, or dig into the latest trends by attending an industry conference.

For those who need it, one obvious source of exam preparation materials is whatever company or association is in charge of the credential in question. About 65 percent of the certified professionals who responded to our recent Security Certification Survey said that they used training material or study aids created by the certification provider to prepare for their most recent certification exam.

There’s also a robust market for training materials and study aids created by a third-party training provider. There’s not as much appetite for this brand of exam prep, but a still noteworthy 45 percent of the certified professionals who responded to our survey said that they used study materials created by a third-party provider to prepare for their recent certification exam.

People who are new to information security, of course, are probably more likely to rely on study and training to fill in the gaps in their knowledge. And some people, no matter the stage of their career, just feel more comfortable preparing before they take a test. For those who do prefer to use books, videos, training courses, and so forth, we asked where they got their training from.

Among certified information security professionals who prepared for their most recent exam using certification training materials created by the certification provider, the most popular sources of training are as follows:

1. ISC2
2. ISACA
3. CompTIA
4. Cisco
5. EC-Council
6. SANS
7. Fortinet
8. Symantec
9. IAPP
10. Amazon Web Services

Among certified information security professionals who prepared for their most recent exam using certification training materials created by a third-party training company, the most popular sources of training are as follows:

1. CBT Nuggets
2. Infosec Institute
3. Cybrary
4. Sybex
5. Skillsoft
6. McGraw Hill
7. Wiley
8. Logical Operations
9. Kaplan
10. Pluralsight

If there’s an information security certification in your future, and you’d like to have the benefit of some additional training, but haven’t been certain where to turn, well, now you have some options.

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CertMag Staff

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Certification Magazine was launched in 1999 and remained in print until mid-2008. Publication was restarted on a quarterly basis in February 2014. Subscribe to CertMag here.

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