In today’s world, the effective running of an organization relies on the performance of its computer network. These networks require specific knowledge to establish, maintained, and repaired to guarantee smooth running. The skillset of a Network Engineer is growing and is becoming more essential.
Cisco is a leading organization in the IT field. It produces products and services regarding networking hardware, telecommunications, and other high-level technology. Among this, Cisco also awards some well-known and globally trusted certifications comprising certain technologies.
CCNA Routing and Switching certification
Among the nine leading technologies presented by Cisco certifications, routing and switching is one necessary technology. It addresses the expertise required to work with controller-based architectures. As a qualified and skilled routing and switching professional, you will be able to save operating expenses, strengthen security, reinforce customer service, and much more. As with all certifications, you are expected to successfully attempt the exam/s to earn CCNA R&S certifications. For CCNA R&S, you have two exam options you can choose from:
But before we dive into details, let’s take a look at the benefits that come with CCNA Routing and Switching certification.
Why should You Become CCNA Routing & Switching certified?
As stated before, the networking industry is growing fast with the advancement of technology and the practice of computerized systems in organizations. Organizations are looking to hire employees with excellent skills and knowledge, and certifications are a great indicator of how skilled you are in the industry. But why should you get CCNA R&S? Here are a few reasons to earn CCNA Routing and Switching Certification:
- Cisco is a network industry innovator. Cisco’s products are a massive part of the networking industry nowadays, and the organization expands its services furthermore. Being Cisco certified brings a more impactful skill set into the field and so becomes more valuable as a professional.
- Cisco includes all the necessary skills that you require in routing and switching. To be more accurate, Cisco comprises 97% of the skills demanded by recruiters in their certification program.
- You can become a member of the robust group named the Cisco Learning Community. This community has millions of professionals who interact to give valuable support and share resources such as video lessons, study groups, exam strategies, etc. Being a member allows you to gain access to these resources.
- Achieving the highly in demand CCNA R&S certification indicates that you will be qualified to fill in skill gaps of your organization and so move up the ladder of the management to avail from higher pay and improving job satisfaction.
- The Cisco certifications are thoroughly monitored by professionals so that they satisfy the standards and include the concepts of the most advanced technologies and hardware. Therefore, you can be confident about your expertise in routing and switching even years after earning the certification.
CCNA Routing and Switching Exam Options
As stated above, to obtain the CCNA Routing and Switching certification, you have two exam options you can select from based on what you think fits you best. Here is a breakdown of each exam, and a summary of the content thone will be assessed.
Option 1: 200-125 CCNA
200-125 CCNA is a 90-minute exam comprising 60-70 questions that need to be answered in 90 minutes. You will be measured on your expertise in the following main categories:
- Network Fundamentals (15%)
- LAN switching technology (21%)
- Routing technologies (23%)
- WAN technologies (10%)
- Infrastructure services (10%)
- Infrastructure management (10%)
- Infrastructure security (11%)
Option 2: 100-105 ICND1 and 200-105 ICND2 Exams
ICND1 Exam Details
100-105 ICND1 is, a 90-minute exam, comprises 45-55 questions. Your knowledge of the following key topics will be evaluated:
- Network fundamentals (20%)
- LAN switching fundamentals (26%)
- Infrastructure services (15%)
- Routing fundamentals (25%)
- Infrastructure maintenance (14%)
ICND2 Exam Details
200-105 ICND2is a 90-minute exam consisting of 55-65 questions. Your knowledge of the following key topics will be measured:
- LAN switching technologies (26%)
- WAN technologies (16%)
- Routing technologies (29%)
- Infrastructure maintenance (15%)
- Infrastructure services (14%)
How to Prepare for CCNA Routing and Switching Certification
Familiarizing yourself with the exam structure is essential, but it is just the initial step to success. Thorough preparation and practice are what defines how well you will do on the day of the exam. Here are a few tips that will help you prepare and practice more effectively:
1. Get Practical Experience
You need both theoretical and practical information to pass the CCNA Routing and Switching exam. When you’re preparing for the exam, you will have to practice theoretical knowledge in real-world troubleshooting and networking issues. For instance, IP is considered to be unreliable to some degree, but the main difficulty is defining alternative communication troubleshooting between IP nodes.
2. Obtain Appropriate Study Materials
CCNA preparation involves obtaining the appropriate study materials. You have to make sure to incorporate all the different topics and lab exercises. Before you start with the books, you should learn binary mathematics. This understanding will help you in passing the CCNA exam(s).
3. Perform CCNA Routing and Switching Practice Tests
Perform practice tests before your actual exam date. Make sure you set a firm deadline for yourself and check what you have acquired in that duration. This is going to help you in identifying areas where you have to get better.
4. Revise the Information You Know Before the Exam
A great way would be rereading the Cisco books before the date of your exam because this is going to help you refresh your memory. This is also going to help you in recognizing anything you might have missed. The last days before the exam needs to be spent solving practice questions and practicing what you have learned. You can always get new questions by browsing Internet forums and practice test platforms.
5. Practice with Switches and Routers
It is necessary to practice real equipment to learn how you can solve them when the cables become loose and learn the difference between right and default cables. The only way you can learn how routing works is by practicing on real equipment in a lab.
As the IT industry keeps extending its horizons, organizations tend to depend evermore on computerized systems. Thus, if you plan to develop your career as a Network Engineer, the opportunities are infinite. Getting CCNA R&S can be a significant boost to your professional career in terms of credibility, marketability, and efficiency. Follow the tips listed above for your preparation, and you will accomplish your goal as a network engineer. Moreover, with CCNA R&S certification, you will be qualified to apply for higher-level CCNP R&S (professional level) and become even more sought-after specialists.