What is a CCNA ?

By | December 10, 2009

Learning_Learning_87px_72_RGBCisco is the leading supplier of networking equipment and network management technologies for the internet.  They have a range of products including network switches, routers and firewalls.  Many large Companies use Cisco products as they are known to be one of the best networking equipment manufacturers in the world.

Similarly to Microsoft having their own range of Technology certifications, Cisco have a range of certifications designed to show that a certified individual is highly skilled in general network technology and Cisco products in particular.

The most popular Cisco certification is the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) which is awarded after passing exams in Interconnecting Cisco Networking Devices (ICND) Part 1 and Part 2.  CCNA examines the knowledge and skills required to install, operate and troubleshoot a small to medium size enterprise network.

Topics on this course include:

  • Connecting to a wide area network (WAN)
  • Network security
  • Network types
  • Network media
  • Routing and switching
  • TCP/IP
  • OSI Model
  • IP Addressing
  • WAN Technologies
  • Virtual Local Area Connections
  • Access Lists

A CCNA certification is seen as a highly desirable quality for employers.  It shows that the holder is highly qualified and experienced in networking technologies.  Most importantly it shows an employer that the holder’s knowledge is current and up to date as the CCNA must be renewed every three years to remain valid.

Cisco have a range of other certifications available including telecoms and security specialisms, however most other Cisco certifications will require CCNA as a prerequisite.


Jonathan Cummings is a Microsoft Certified Trainer and IT Manager for New Horizons Ireland.  He is a Microsoft Subject Matter Expert (SME) with many years experience within the IT industry and with large infrastructure-related projects.
He holds a wide range of Industry certifications including Microsoft Certified IT PRofessional (MCITP): Enterprise Administrator, Enterprise Messaging Administrator and Enterprise Support Technician.  Jonathan is also a Chartered Professional Member of the British Computer Society.

New Horizons is the world’s largest independent IT training company With over 300 centers in 60 countries.  Over the past 25 years, New Horizons has delivered a full range of IT training and business skills training through innovative learning methods that have transformed businesses and helped over 25 million students reach their goals.


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