CWNP - A Vendor-Independent Certification Path
CWNP – A nice wireless networks certification program created by Planet3 Wireless. A very subjective certification path that is vendor-independent in the field of wireless networks.
Planet3 Wireless is a creator and provider of IT training, courseware, and certification exams for wireless LAN technologies in the computer networking industry. Planet3 employs contract Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) from around the world to create and validate the content that is used to train and certify IT professionals in wireless networking technologies.
Planet3 Wireless is a privately held Georgia Corporation. Planet3 was incorporated in 1999.
This certification program has six certificates; Wireless#, CWNA, CWSP, CWAP, CWNE, and CWNT. These six certifications cover to a great extent the modern wireless technologies that represent the trend in today’s wireless markets. We will go through these certificates briefly.
Wireless# is a brief introductory to a wide range of wireless technologies. It covers many topics but in a brief way. Following are the technologies covered in the Wireless# certificate:
The good thing about Wireless# is that there are free official practice exams on CWNP website itself. And PrepLogic gives a free brief exam guide too. The exam, PW0-050, costs $125.
The CWNA® (Certified Wireless Network Administrator) certification is a foundation level wireless LAN certification for the CWNP Program. CWNA certification will get you started in your wireless career by ensuring you have the skills to successfully administer enterprise-class wireless LANs.
CWNA focuses mostly on Wi-Fi. So, for a wireless networks’ starter, I recommend that you take all the way starting from Wireless# even if you are going to end up working with Wi-Fi only. The background given in Wireless# is full of “good to know” things.
CWNA exam, PW0-100, costs $175 and an official exam guide can be bought through the guidelines of the CWNP site.
The CWSP® (Certified Wireless Security Professional) certification will advance your career by ensuring you have the skills to successfully secure wireless networks from hackers.CWSP is an advanced level wireless LAN certification for the CWNP Program.
CWNA is a prerequisite for the CWSP certification. And the CWSP exam, PW0-200, costs $175 also. CWNP site gives you the directions to buy the Certification guide for this exam too.
The CWAP® (Certified Wireless Analysis Professional) certification will advance your career by ensuring you have the skills to maximize the performance of a wireless network and reduce the time spent troubleshooting problems. Do something new for your career today.CWAP is an advanced level wireless LAN certification for the CWNP Program.
This exam also requires CWNA certificate as a prerequisite. The exam cost, PW0-205, is also $175.
The CWNE® (Certified Wireless Networking Expert®) credential is the final step in the CWNP Program. By successfully completing the CWNE requirements, you will have demonstrated that you have the most advanced skills available in today's wireless LAN market.
CWNE assures that you have mastered all relevant skills to administer, install, configure, troubleshoot, and design wireless network systems. Packet analysis, intrusion detection, performance analysis, and advanced design are some of the areas of expertise you will need to know.
CWNE candidates are required to pass 1 exam. And the CWNE certification is not yet available. But it is already set that valid CWSP and CWAP certifications are prerequisites.
Certified Wireless Network Trainers (CWNT®) are qualified instructors certified by the CWNP Program to deliver CWNP training courses to IT professionals. CWNTs are technical and instructional experts in wireless technologies, products, and solutions.
To ensure a superior learning experience for our customers, CWNP Education Partners are required to use CWNTs when delivering training using Official CWNP Courseware. To be considered for the CWNT certification, applicants must meet the following requirements:
1. For the CWNP Level you wish to teach, you must attend an official class.
2. Pass the appropriate level exam with a minimum score of at least 80%.
3. A minimum of 12 months of documented IT industry training experience
4. Current technology training certification/degree, such as:
Cisco CCNI or CCSI
JEB Level 3 Certificate
Current certification as an instructor by any branch of the Armed Forces
College or University Professor
5. Complete the application form and pay the $200 annual review/certification fee. This fee will be refunded if your application is declined for any reason.
Baring in mind that Cisco wireless certificates are retiring soon, CWNP seems a very feasible certification path for people wanting to master wireless networks.
Cisco Wireless LAN Design Specialist, Cisco Wireless LAN Sales Specialist, and Cisco Wireless LAN Support Specialist is retiring July 29, 2006.
This leaves CWNP in the lead for wireless certifications. And I think that being a vendor-independent certification path gives them the right to be there.
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