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  1. Junior Member
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    #1

    Default Cheapest path to VCP?

    I was planning on taking the VCP exam in February but after doing some quick research it looks like I'll need to take an instructor led class. According the VMware EDU website I might be spending in excess of $3K to get this party started. I was hoping to do this all self-study.

    Am I reading everything correctly or is there a cheaper method to attain the VCP410?
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  3. Senior Member
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    #2
    The class is mandatory to obtain the certification.
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  4. Junior Member
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    #3
    Is it possible to take the exam before taking the mandatory class?
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  5. Senior Member MentholMoose's Avatar
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    #4
    You can take the exam at any time, but even if you pass you still need the course to be certified.

    This thread seems to come up regularly. I understand where you're coming from since I was in the same situation. For the course, the cheapest option is to get your employer to pay for it. If that's not possible, and it certainly wasn't for me, the next closest thing to free is probably the VMware Academy Program.
    The VMware IT Academy Program is designed to introduce students to VMware technologies and equip them with VMware technical skills to compliment their chosen fields of study. VMware will provide selected academic institutions with course materials developed by VMware for this purpose. By instituting this program, VMware seeks to create a collaborative relationship with academic institutions whereby their students may obtain the VMware Certified Professional (VCP) status and other VMware certifications.
    Schools offering the VMware courses must offer them as regular semester or quarter length courses, so the cost should be the same as any course they offer. Of course being a regular college course, it is graded and you have to pass, so you will have to attend the lectures, probably do some homework, and likely take a midterm and final. There is a list of participating schools at the link above, though only a few offer any of the courses so far.

    If you pass the course then you get credit for it with VMware, and you get a voucher for 70% off the VCP410 exam (so about US $50 for the exam). The total cost will vary by school, of course, since tuition and fees certainly vary, but it's possible to get a good deal. For example, I took the ICM course at a community college, and the total cost of the course and exam was over 90% cheaper than just the regularly priced course through VMware. You can even recover some of that by selling the course materials on eBay when you're done (they are the official ICM materials).
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  6. DoWork
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    #5
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    #6
    Thanks Moose, that helps a bit. Seeing as I'm on an aggressive certification path enrolling in college classes will take too much time. My current employer will pay for the training but will only forgive 25% of the cost per year I am employed AFTER receiving the training. As the whole point of getting certified is to move on to another job I'll need to balance out if it's worth getting the VCP and buying out the remainder on the training with my current employer.
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    #7
    Hmmm, online might work out all things considered. Four months is a load of time though. :\
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  9. Certification Invigilator Forum Admin JDMurray's Avatar
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    #8
    I wish that I could find a UC or CSU (or extension program) in Southern California that offers VMware IT Academy Program vSphere 4 classes. I'd assume CSU Fullerton Extension would, but no such luck.
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  10. Member Amco's Avatar
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    #9
    Excellent, I might just sign up for this course.
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  11. Senior Member MentholMoose's Avatar
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    #10
    Quote Originally Posted by JDMurray View Post
    I wish that I could find a UC or CSU (or extension program) in Southern California that offers VMware IT Academy Program vSphere 4 classes. I'd assume CSU Fullerton Extension would, but no such luck.
    UCSC Extension may be an option. It's completely online. IIRC the cost was around $1000 for early registration for Fall 2010. If your goal is to do it in person, I've heard Irvine Valley College is trying to offer the course soon. Being a community college, it would be CHEAP. I will inquire again and let you know. Also, Coleman University in San Diego has offered the course in the past (but maybe that's too far south). I don't know what the cost would be there, though.
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  12. Certification Invigilator Forum Admin JDMurray's Avatar
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    #11
    Quote Originally Posted by MentholMoose View Post
    I've heard Irvine Valley College is trying to offer the course soon. Being a community college, it would be CHEAP.
    IVC advertises a VMware class, but there's no mention of it in their catalog or schedule. Coastline Community College also has a VMware class, but the description doesn't indicate v3 or v4. I have a suspicion it's not part of the VMware Academy program, and CCC just had an instructor throw a VMware class together as part of a certificate program. I'd like to take a VMware class in a school where they have a good hands-on VMware lab.
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  13. Senior Member MentholMoose's Avatar
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    #12
    Quote Originally Posted by JDMurray View Post
    IVC advertises a VMware class, but there's no mention of it in their catalog or schedule. Coastline Community College also has a VMware class, but the description doesn't indicate v3 or v4. I have a suspicion it's not part of the VMware Academy program, and CCC just had an instructor throw a VMware class together as part of a certificate program. I'd like to take a VMware class in a school where they have a good hands-on VMware lab.
    Earlier this year I contacted the professor at IVC who's apparently handling this and he said they were aiming for Spring 2011, but I guess it didn't happen. I emailed him today asking for confirmation. It may still happen, with the messed up economy and budget uncertainty everywhere you never know.

    The CCC courses indeed don't appear to be through VAP as far as I can tell, and the profs never replied to my emails, so I didn't mention it. I hear you about the lab, it's really a critical aspect of the course. Building a lab suitable for the VMware courses isn't cheap, so I bet that is a roadblock for some schools right now.
    Last edited by MentholMoose; 11-25-2010 at 09:28 AM.
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  14. Certification Invigilator Forum Admin JDMurray's Avatar
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    #13
    Quote Originally Posted by MentholMoose View Post
    Building a lab suitable for the VMware courses isn't cheap, so I bet that is a roadblock for some schools right now.
    It looks like CSU Fullerton and CSPU Pomona would be the best-equipped schools for this sort of thing. Maybe VMware isn't marketing (and discounting) their Academy Program hard enough to get these schools to budget for it in this tight economy. Probably in another two years we'll see some decent VMware classes offered in The OC.
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  15. Senior Member nhan.ng's Avatar
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    #14
    I was in the VMware sPhere 4.0 at Coastline Community College. When i said "was" meaning i dropped out at the last minutes as my work was putting too much stress for me and i just couldn't get home in time for the class.

    Basically this is their first semester teaching the course, the instructor is very knowledgeable, and the class was packed. So packed that they had to create a 2nd class and it was also full. The school didn't know what type of machines they would need so they just use whatever they have on hand, couple dell/hp servers and workstations. The instructor got an approval to build/order his own lab equipments for all the students to use, but too bad it didn't get delivered on time for me to see it before i dropped the course.

    To answer the question, they're not on the Vmware Academy yet, but next semester they will be. I'll be back for it, as i'm sure all of his old students will come back to sit in a Vmware Certified's class, plus all the new one.

    best of all, class was 26 dollars a unit
    Last edited by nhan.ng; 12-07-2010 at 03:38 AM.
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  16. Certification Invigilator Forum Admin JDMurray's Avatar
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    #15
    Quote Originally Posted by nhan.ng View Post
    To answer the question, they're not on the Vmware Academy yet, but next semester they will be. I'll be back for it, as i'm sure all of his old students will come back to sit in a Vmware Certified's class, plus all the new one.
    Excellent! Thanks for the input. I think I know the instructor, Eric Chen. I remember him as the Cisco and Linux instructor at CCC from 5+ years ago. He's a real good guy.

    Quote Originally Posted by nhan.ng View Post
    best of all, class was 26 dollars a unit
    Oh yeah. I'm taking the full series of Computer Forensics classes at Cypress College for the same reason.
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  17. Senior Member nhan.ng's Avatar
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    #16
    yes, that him. Real good guy
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  18. Virtually Certifiable tbgree00's Avatar
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    #17
    I'm going to sign up for that UCSC course I think. It's a great price and it will be great in the job I'm looking at or any future job opportunities. If anyone else is in and gets any good stuff for referrals I'll do that, otherwise I'll sign up the traditional way.
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  19. Member Amco's Avatar
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    #18
    Quote Originally Posted by tbgree00 View Post
    I'm going to sign up for that UCSC course I think. It's a great price and it will be great in the job I'm looking at or any future job opportunities. If anyone else is in and gets any good stuff for referrals I'll do that, otherwise I'll sign up the traditional way.
    Are you taking the one in January? I'm seriously considering it if I can come up with the cash
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  20. Virtually Certifiable tbgree00's Avatar
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    #19
    Yeah I'll do the one in January. I got severance when I lost my job and tax returns will come before the end of the class so I should be fine to afford it. It seems pretty great, I just wonder about the pacing. Like is it all recorded and i can do 5 classes per week or if i have to wait for the live class to be recorded to do it on demand.
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  21. Senior Member MentholMoose's Avatar
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    #20
    It's online only, so no live class to record the lecture. However I think the lectures may be released on a schedule due to a VMware requirement on their Academy Program (they limit the hours per week of instruction). I posted about the UCSC course when I heard about it earlier this year and I think some forum members took it, so hopefully they can give some feedback.
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  22. Virtually Certifiable tbgree00's Avatar
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    #21
    The class is now in wait list. I didn't register early enough and am pretty bummed out about maybe not getting to take it.
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  23. Member Amco's Avatar
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    #22
    Quote Originally Posted by tbgree00 View Post
    The class is now in wait list. I didn't register early enough and am pretty bummed out about maybe not getting to take it.
    Are you planning on taking the one a few months from January?
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  24. Senior Member tdean's Avatar
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    #23
    ok, im confused. the list says these are "some" of the schools that participate, what about the others?... isnt there a way to type in a zip code to find out which is closest? i dont see anything in the Boston area....
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  25. Senior Member MentholMoose's Avatar
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    #24
    Quote Originally Posted by tdean View Post
    ok, im confused. the list says these are "some" of the schools that participate, what about the others?...
    Well all the schools listed are participating in the Academy program, but the program is more than just the courses, so not all of the participants offer them. Also keep in mind that at most educational institutions, it is a big deal to create a course, and budgets are constrained almost everywhere, so it takes a lot of time (from inquiring about the course at various schools, I found that it can take a year if not more).

    Quote Originally Posted by tdean View Post
    isnt there a way to type in a zip code to find out which is closest? i dont see anything in the Boston area....
    Unfortunately, not that I know of.
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    #25
    Quote Originally Posted by MentholMoose View Post
    Well all the schools listed are participating in the Academy program, but the program is more than just the courses, so not all of the participants offer them. Also keep in mind that at most educational institutions, it is a big deal to create a course, and budgets are constrained almost everywhere, so it takes a lot of time (from inquiring about the course at various schools, I found that it can take a year if not more).


    Unfortunately, not that I know of.
    You hit the nail in the head. Our college was accepted into the VMWare IT academy. There is huge but in there, hardware requirements for the lab. We in a process of going through production servers refresh cycle and don't think that we can afford to setup a whole new lab with ~15 servers at $3.5k a pop plus a SAN on top of that, besides, this lab will be idling most of the time. Basically not much of a return on our investment. Unless non-matriculated students willing to pay ~$500 per credit x 3 credits per course Wishful thinking.
    Last edited by JBrown; 12-24-2010 at 04:22 AM.
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