Microsoft offers training deals; Cisco launches IP Contact Center certification

* Certification and education offers from Cisco and Microsoft

Today, we have a round up of recent certification launches and current education offers from Cisco and Microsoft.

* Policy change for Cisco's security certification

Cisco last month changed the recertification policy for the Cisco Certified Security Professional level certification. In addition to passing any Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert written exam, or achieving the CCIE Expert level certification, the Cisco SAFE Implementation (CSI) exam can be used to recertify the CCSP professional level certification, says Cisco. CSI teaches network professionals the advanced level principles needed to implement and use the company's SAFE security blueprint.

More information can be found here:

* Cisco introduces IP Contact Center certification

Also last month, Cisco announced the IP Contact Center Express Specialist certification, which certifies that an individual can plan, install, configure, troubleshoot and manage the Cisco IP Contact Center product. The product is an integrated platform that provides automatic call distributor, interactive voice response services and computer telephony integration. 

Earning the certification requires holding the Cisco Certified Network Associate designation and passing one additional exam.

More information can be found here:

* Training deals galore from Microsoft

Microsoft is offering a number of deals that could help save you a few dollars as you continue your Microsoft education. All these offers expire May 31, 2005, and you can learn more about all of them at the Microsoft certifications Web site:.

* Microsoft gives you a second chance

Microsoft wants you to gain your certification and it is offering a free exam if you fail on your first try of taking any IT Pro or Developer exam. You will receive one free retake per exam you purchase and fail, but you need to have registered for this offer prior to taking the exam.

Learn more about the offer here:

* Take a Microsoft exam with a friend for free

Know anyone who wants to take the Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator on Windows Server 2003 exam? Microsoft is offering a 2-for-1 deal where two people can take the MCSA exam for the price of one. The offer is only for exam 70-270 though, says Microsoft. The Microsoft Certified Professionals Exam 70-720 measures your ability to implement, administer and troubleshoot information systems that incorporate Microsoft Windows XP Professional.

For more information and the fine-print go here:

* Microsoft offers free books to MCPs

If you have a Microsoft Certified Professional number through attaining the MCSA 2003 credential, you are entitled to receive a one-year access to Microsoft's electronic library of nine reference books valued at $550. You need to register for this offer  - and if you're new to the MCP program, you need to obtain your MCSA 2003 credentials - by May 31. Four of the books are applicable to MCSA job functions, says Microsoft. The remaining five cover topics pertaining to typical Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer job functions - a good deal if you want a sneak peek at what's involved at the MCSE level before you upgrade your certification.

* How will do you in your MCDST exams?

To help you better prepare for your Microsoft desktop exams, Microsoft is offering free practice tests and a certification readiness tool on its Web site.

If you register now for Microsoft Certified Desktop Support Technician exams (70-271 and 70-272), you will get free access to practice tests for each until May 31. The tests are provided by assessment and certification practice test company, MeasureUp, and Microsoft says the tests simulates the actual exam experience and includes in-depth questions, detailed explanations with references to the Microsoft Official Curriculum and various testing options.

Microsoft is also offering access to MeasureUp's MCDST readiness tool that includes 30 questions that will assess your competency for the Microsoft desktop exams.

To find out more about these test and readiness offers, go to:

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Copyright © 2005 IDG Communications, Inc.

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