CompTIA’s Convergence+ in Beta

The Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) has announced the availability of a beta version of its newest certification, Convergence+. The upcoming credential, which will cover topics such as telephony, network engineering, applications, hardware, architecture, management and security, is aimed at a burgeoning area of IT.

“Virtually all market forecasts and research indicate that the demand for voice-over IP and other converged communications solutions continues to grow,” said Neill Hopkins, CompTIA vice president of skills development. “Deloitte Services says that two-thirds of the Global 2000 companies will have started deployment of voice-over IP to the desktop by the end of 2006. Just this month, IDC came out with a new report that projects that spending on equipment support services for voice-over IP deployments will reach $1.27 billion by 2010.”

Additionally, a recent CompTIA survey of more than 350 small and medium-sized businesses found two-thirds of those surveyed recognize the business value of converged communications solutions. About one-third of these organizations intend to invest in phone system upgrades over the next year.

The beta exam for CompTIA’s Convergence+ (CT1-001) is intended to assess candidates who have 18 to 24 months of experience in data networking, voice-over IP and other related convergence technologies. Individuals who pass the beta exam will be certified as a CompTIA Convergence+ professional.

“In that regard, the certification is more advanced than CompTIA A+,” Hopkins said. “But it is still a foundation-level exam that sets a baseline of the skills someone should have if they are planning to work with convergence technologies.”

Because the exam has been available for less than a week, Hopkins said CompTIA has not yet had large numbers of beta test takers.

“But we have received a sizeable number of inquiries on the convergence certification, and we anticipate good interest in both the beta exam and the permanent certification,” he said. “The beta exam period for CompTIA certifications lasts long enough for us to obtain a statistically valid sample size of beta test takers. Historically, this has been about a one- to two-month period before the required of beta tests are delivered. The number of beta test takers required is on the order of several hundred.”

Once the beta exam closes, the results will be analyzed, the best test questions identified and a passing exam score established for the final version, which can take between two to three months. CompTIA anticipates the permanent certification exam will launch during the first half of 2007.

For more information, see http://www.comptia.org.

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