CCNA is one of the sought-after certificates from the Cisco certification program. The path covers various details and is designed for versatility and agility. This is an associate-level option that shows your skills in navigating the ever-changing landscape of IT. It also proves that you know how to manage and optimize the most advanced networks of today’s world. Due to the fact that this is an associate-level path, any individual can go for it. There are no formal prerequisites mentioned by the vendor, but you can get a good boost by having at least a year of experience. Knowing how to implement and administer Cisco solutions will greatly help you.
To obtain the CCNA certificate, it is necessary to take the Cisco 200-301 exam that will evaluate if you are ready to obtain this certification. The test lasts for 120 minutes and contains about 100 questions that you need to deal with during this time. It is available in English and Japanese, and the potential candidates should score about 800-830 points to pass the exam. To be able to get the highest possible score, you need to prepare for the topics of this test and master them. All in all, it is necessary to study for the following domains:
- Security fundamentals – This topic covers the details of the key security concepts and security program elements. It is important to know how to configure and verify access control lists and have the skills in configuring device access control with the use of local passwords. You should also know about the authorization, authentication, as well as accounting concepts;
- Network fundamentals – A potential candidate needs to know about the function and role of network components as well as characteristics of network topology architectures. This subject area contains the information about the interface and cable issues, IPv6 address types, and virtualization fundamentals. You need to have the skills in verifying IP parameters for Client OS as well as configuring and verifying IPv4 addressing with IPv4 subnetting and IPv6 addressing with IPv6 prefix;
- Programmability & automation – To master this section, you need to have the skills in comparing traditional networks with the controller-based networking and traditional campus device management with Cisco DNA. It is important to know about the characteristics of REST-based APIs, controller-based and software-defined architectures as well as the capabilities of configuration management mechanisms;
- IP services – This part evaluates one’s skills in configuring network devices for remote access while using SSH as well as configuring DHCP client and relay. An individual interested in the path has to know about the capabilities of TFTP/FTP and its function in the network, explain the function of SNMP in network operations, and describe the use of the syslog features, levels, and facilities;
- Network access – The next domain is all about VLANs spanning multiple switches, their configuration, and verification. You will need to know about interswitch connectivity, Layer 2 discovery protocols, EtherChannel, and physical infrastructure connections of the WLAN components;
- IP connectivity – The students should have the expertise in configuring as well as verifying single area OSPFv2 and IPv4 and IPv6 static routing. This objective also validates their knowledge of the components of routing table and purpose of the first hop redundancy protocol.
Further Career Path
Obtaining the Cisco CCNA certificate is an opportunity that can change your career and enhance it. This is the perfect path for those who want to become certified network engineers, help desk technicians, network administrators, and network support technicians. The certification will give you many opportunities and benefits that will help you shine among other candidates. However, it is important not to forget to recertify when it’s needed because Cisco CCNA is valid for 3 years. To renew your certificate, you need to complete the qualifying exam or earn 30 continuing education credits. This means that you can take the test from the same path, go for an advanced level, or use the credits that you can get from the education program.
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