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In the world of I.T. professionals certifications play a big role in the knowledge and understanding of Information Technology. It is just not beneficial from a knowledge stand point, but it makes you look more appealing to potential employers who values that you would take the extra time to get a certification in your craft. By getting certified it also could potentially open doors to vase range of employment opportunities and increase wages. If you want to learn how to get your certifications there are steps to take in reaching that goal.

One of the most common certifications that an I.T. professional should obtain is the A plus certification. You could possess this certification by taking the CompTIA A plus exam. You may ask, what does the A plus certification exam consist of? It helps validate that you have the common knowledge of hardware and software technologies in a business setting, and in an IT infrastructure. The A plus exam have two exam codes the 220-801 and 220-802. The 220-801 covers basic computer technology fundamentals, such as PC installation, configuration, mobile device management, and networking. Also safety procedures and prohibited content. The second half of the exam is 220-802 that covers the basics of installing and configuring PC and mobile operating systems. Also the common functions of networking, email, and security.

There are about ninety questions maximum that are on the exam, and they are all performance based, and multiple choice questions. The duration of the test takes about ninety minutes to complete. The passing score varies depending on the section of the test. For example, 220-801 section of the exam passing score would be six hundred and seventy five on a scale of nine hundred. In contrast to the 220-802 section of the exam, you would need to score a seven hundred on a scale of nine hundred to pass the section of the exam. The A plus exam comes in multiple different languages. The cost of the test is about $199.

You may ask what steps can I take to prepare for the A plus certification exam? You are in luck there are many steps that you can take to accomplish getting you’re A plus certification. Here are some of those steps that you could take to study for the A plus Exam:

Step 1.  Go online and look on the CompTIA website    The site initially gives you an overview of the benefits of having an A plus certification and how it would be a big career changer if you were to be certified. This site gives exam details of the exam codes, launch dates, descriptions, number of questions, type of questions, and length of the test, the passing scores, and the price. The site will give you some guide lines to what the objectives are on the exam and some of the practice question that you may see on the exam. To give you an idea of what the exam will consist of and guild you toward the right sources that you need to get you’re A plus certification.

CompTIA web

Step 2.  Go online for books and other reading material. There are many books out there that are being sold online that are very beneficial when studying for the A plus exam. CompTIA have their own study Guide called CompTIA A+ complete study guide second edition Exam 220-801 and Exam 220-802 by Emmett Dulaney. Another book is Exam Cram A+ 220-801 and 220-802 by David L. Prowse. In these books are lists of task that you would need to study:


  • Intro to Troubleshooting
  • Motherboards
  • The CPU (central processing unit)
  • RAM (Random Access Memory)
  • Power
  • Storage Devices
  • Laptops
  • Installing and upgrading windows
  • Configuring Windows
  • Maintaining Windows
  • Troubleshooting Windows
  • Video and Audio
  • Peripherals and Custom Computing
  • Printers
  • Networking
  • Security
  • Mobile Devices
  • Safety, Procedures, and Professionalism


Step 3. Find practice test that you can use to test your knowledge of what you know and get an idea of what the test may consist of. It is a vase verity of online practice test available to the public on different It certification websites:

  • 4Test A+ Core Exam
  • Exam Compass: CompTIA practice Exam
  • Crucial Exams
  • Pearson IT certification practice exam
  • Transcender IT professional certification

Step 4 Research other people experience of the exam just to get a better idea of what to focus and what not to put too much time in when you are studying for your exam. There are many IT professionals who have taken the exam and have had different experiences along the way of what the exam was like. Some said that it was easy and that their work experience before taking the exam helped a lot in passing the exam. Here is a person who wrote on a forum on about their experience on the A plus exam and she wrote,

’’ All in all, a lot of the things I had over studied were either barely included or not included at all on the exams. Seems like I got into my own head a lot of the time because I had put so much time into this. In my experience the first test was the easier one (it focused mainly on hardware components.) The second exam was a bit more difficult. As other people have said, the wording used in a lot of the questions on both tests is poor, and you really have to carefully go through the questions to make sure your providing the right answer (I experienced this in the practice exams also.) After I completed either test I would then, with the remaining time, go back and recheck my answers. Each test had 4 performance based questions that were not even that difficult. I recommend anyone that goes down the path I did simply purchase the Sybex study guide, use Exam Compass, and watch Professor Messor’s videos and you should absolutely be able to pass. Several people have said they don’t recommend taking the tests together, I disagree. I took both back to back with no issues, it most likely has more to do with personal preference.”


Step 5. Locate a place that the A plus exam may be given.  You can look on the CompTIA website where can type in and search for a location of a nearby test station that would be convenient for you. If you are taking classes that are teaching you what is going to be on the exam like at Milwaukee Area College you can take the exam there. From my own preference I would take the exam at MATC since I am a student there, because they offer discounts for the exam. When you look on the website it will show you a list of place like MATC, YWCA, UMOS.Inc, etc. It is a great tool to use if you are looking to for place near you to take any IT certification exam. There are discounts that are provided at MATC offers vouchers. The original price for the exam is $194.00 but with the discount its $89.00.

MATC post         YWCA

When studying for the exam, and pursuing your goal to get you’re A plus certification, you should consider the time line between studying for the exam and the date you plan on taking the exam. Make sure you set a time to study at least one to three hours a day. Schedule the date of the exam so you will know the cost and the location of where you be taking it, and to set a realistic goal for studying for the exam. When taking certification exams you are spending money, and you don’t want to waste your time and money so study hard and get certified, because like the saying goes, you need to spend money to make money.