CompTIA announces Continuing Education (CE) details for A+, Network+, Security+

June 30, 2010 at 8:32 am | Posted in CompTIA, Vendor news | 1 Comment

As you probably remember, back in January CompTIA announced that accreditation by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) would change the “lifetime certification” policy previously applied to these three CompTIA certifications in favor of a 3-year certification, with renewals based on continuing education (CE) credits. These changes take effect January 1, 2011. However, until yesterday, there was very little information available regarding the CE program.

Yesterday, I (and Robin, and other CompTIA certification holders) received an official e-mail answering many of our questions regarding continuing education! If you are certified and did NOT receive this email, please visit one of these two sites:

In a nutshell, starting in 2011 candidates will earn the new American National Standards Institute (ANSI) accredited versions of CompTIA A+, CompTIA Network+, and CompTIA Security+. These will be denoted by a CE following the certification (CompTIA A+ CE). What caught my eye is that this designation is a completely separate certification from the previous versions of A+, Network+, and Security+ (although CompTIA states that the objectives and content are the same as for the non-CE exam). Furthermore, although lifetime certification holders are not required to participate in the CE program, if they choose to do so, they will hold both certifications:

For example, if you were previously CompTIA A+ certified, you will retain that certification for life upon completion of the A+ CE program, and you will also receive a CompTIA A+CE certification. By enrolling and completing your CE program you will obtain this new CE certification.

There’s no risk to this approach; if you later choose to let the CE certification lapse, you will retain any previous “certified for life” status. This approach will enable anyone whose employer requires ANSI-accredited certification or other proof of continued study to meet those requirements.

CompTIA states they will make enrollment in the continuing education program available towards the end of 2010. In the meantime, a few more salient points to take away:

  • A+, Network+, and Security+ certifications are valid for three years as of January 1, 2011.
  • Qualified CE activities must occur within the 3-year certification period or within within 90 days prior to original enrollment in the CE program.
  • CompTIA A+ CE participation costs $25 per year ($75 total) and requires 20 CEUs.
  • CompTIA Network+ and Security+ CE participation both cost $49 annually ($147 total) and require 30 and 50 CEUs, respectively.
  • Renewal of higher-level certifications automatically renews lower-level certifications at no additional cost or CEU requirement.
  • Lifetime certification holders who choose to enroll in the CE program must do so before December 31, 2012 to avoid having to retake and pass the current exam.

Be sure to contact CompTIA Customer Support with further questions, and keep an eye on the CompTIA Blog for future updates.

–BM Ann

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  1. […] CompTIA has already started working with education institutions and industries to make the IT certifications mean something in the IT world. Areas of industry need to be pinpointed – such as green and entry level IT, and issues of security and networking. […]

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