Working out the exact CCNA cost depends a great deal on how exactly you plan to study for the certification. Self-studying to gain the CCNA accreditation is undoubtedly cheaper, but depending on your learning style, you may prefer to attend a formal course.
Firstly you should budget around $100 U.S. (or your local currency equivalent) for books, though you may be able to reduce this if you purchase these materials secondhand.
You will also need to budget $300 or more towards the cost of Cisco equipment to practice on. Again, there is a potential to save money by buying a secondhand kit (equipment), or you may perhaps be able to arrange to borrow it.
Finally, you need to pay for the exams themselves, which at the time of writing cost a total of $250, whether you opt to take two separate exams, or the combined “composite” exam.
So, in total, you should allow for around $650 to self-study for a CCNA.
If you would prefer a classroom-based course, the prices of these can vary hugely from $500 to over $2,000. You may have to pay for the exam fees on top of this fee, and perhaps allow extra to buy books and test kit for revision purposes.
Is It Worth It?
Nobody would argue that the CCNA certification isn’t a valuable addition to your CV as an IT professional. But whether the CCNA cost is truly worth it depends on the type of technical work you are doing.
If you interact regularly with Cisco kit, you will get a chance to work with your knowledge. If, however, Cisco equipment doesn’t really feature in your working life, you may find yourself quickly forgetting what you’ve learned. If this is the case, it’s worth considering whether an alternative certification may be of more use to you.
What did your CCNA cost? If you have gained the certification, share your experiences in the Comments below.
And to follow-through on the ideas introduced in this short post, be sure to download your free copy of the quick reference guide to the Top 21 IT Certifications for Small Business VARs, SPs, and Computer Consulting Businesses.
Creative Commons Image Source: flickr Leonardo Rizzi