Cisco offers many professional level certifications like CCNA and CCNP. Since CCNP is a level higher than the CCNA, it is more complex and asks for greater knowledge and effort. In case of wireless certification, the wireless networking principles and theory are used to build a foundation for the professionals to meet the wireless networking needs. With the knowledge gained through the certification, the professionals can successfully translate the business needs into a practical installation. Let us now see the certification in detail.
What is CCNP Wireless certification?
The Cisco Certified Network Professional Wireless certification focuses on wireless networking technology using Cisco products. It was introduced in 2009 to cater to the needs of the changing industry. The Cisco certifications cover deploying, designing, securing and troubleshooting the wireless networks of Cisco.
CCNP Wireless covers topics like conducting site surveys, obtaining customer requirements, implementing wireless networks, securing wireless LAN infrastructure and many other high level topics. Professionals having this certification are recognized worldwide as having advanced hands-on experience with wireless devices of Cisco. This is the best certification for professionals looking for better jobs and higher pay. Given below are the steps to take the certification.
Step 1: See if you are eligible to take the certification
Wireless networking professionals like network architects, network administrators and network engineers can take the certification to improve their knowledge and skills. Those who are seeking these positions can opt this to become eligible for related job opportunities. It is estimated that jobs will increase by more than 20% between the years 2008 and 2018. The percentage of employment growth is expected to be about 30 making it beneficial for professionals in this field. Future sees a lot of job opportunities coming their way once they earn the certification.
Step 2: Earning the certification
A person who wants to get certified should possess either CCNA Wireless or CCIE certification. This means that to earn the wireless certification of CCNP, he or she has to first take the Cisco Certified Network Associate Wireless or the Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert certification in any track.
There are four exams for the wireless certification. These are the 642-731 CUWSS, 642-741 IUWVN, 642-746 IUWMS and 642-736 IAUWS. Each of the exams contains 50 to 60 questions that have to be completed in 90 minutes. For each exam, there is a training course of 5 days. These courses train the candidates to set up a wireless network, integrate various features like Voice over Wireless Local Area Network services, mobility services and secure the network against possible threats.
Step 3: Renewing the certification
Every professional certification offered by Cisco remains valid for up to a period of only three years. After this time period, the certification expires and the certificate holder is no longer eligible for the professional benefits. He must apply for re-certification to continue enjoying them. He has four options to choose from. He should pass any professional level exam before the certification expires or should pass any of the current CCIE exams. A third option is to pass the currently offered Cisco Certified Design Expert (CCDE) written or practical exams. The last option is to pass the board interview and review requirements for the Cisco Certified Architect (CCAr) certification which re-certifies him for all the lower level certifications.
CCNP Wireless is a higher level certification which requires that the candidates taking the exam should have good base in the area. This involves both theoretical and practical knowledge because once certified, they are going to work in a real-world networking scenario. This will put to test whatever hands-on expertise they have got through the certification.