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Does embedding an ICT certification help align tertiary programs with industry?: A study of CCNA workplace perceptions

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Author(s): Dileep Rajendran

Journal: Journal of Applied Computing and Information Technology
ISSN 2230-4398

Volume: 15;
Issue: 1;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Industry Alignment | Embedding Industry Certifications | Networking | CCNA | Cisco

ABSTRACT
In the last decade there has been an international drive to determine the needs of the ICT industry and skills required by graduates. The intention is to ensure tertiary education is aligned with industry and to suitably prepare students for employment. Among the various initiatives, embedding of industry certification training is one method commonly used to help achieve this. This paper first looks at the literature on industry alignment and the embedding of ICT certifications. It then gives an overview of the changes in the networking courses taught at Wintec over the last ten years. A study of workplace perceptions of the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) courses at this institute is also described, with conclusions drawn about the effectiveness of embedding this certification. In particular the paper investigates how well the courses meet the needs of the ICT industry in the Hamilton/Waikato region. CCNA course topics that are found to be most useful in the workplace are highlighted, as well as the perceived value of the courses for new employees, employers and for people in their career.
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