Designing a network is a different task than configuring networks. CCDA or Cisco Certified Design Associate targets support engineers, technicians and network design professionals who are experts in fundamental network design. CCDA certified individual shows the ability to design data center, basic campus, and voice and wireless networks and of course, data center security.
The required exam for CCDA is 640-864 DESGN. This exam specifies a foundation knowledge of network design for the Cisco converged networks. CCDA enables you to design routed and switch network infrastructures, LAN, WAN services, and broadband access for businesses and organizations.
This exam covers the following major topics:
- Describe the Methodology used to design a network
- Describe network structure and modularity
- Design Basic Enterprise Campus Networks
- Design Enterprise Edge and Remote Network Modules
- Design IP Addressing and Routing Protocols
- Design network services
You will be required to answer 50-60 questions in 75 minutes. Multiple-choice, multiple options, drag and drop and fill in the blanks are some of the types of questions you will encounter during the exam. Achieve a minimum of 825 out of 1000 to pass this fantastic exam.
CCDA certification is valid for three years after which you have to recertify by either passing the current CCDA exam or passing any professional level certification.
How can becoming CCDA certified help you? Not only will it allow you to strengthen your skills in the design, configuration, and maintenance of small to medium sized Cisco networks, it can also enhance your employment opportunities. With the designation of CCDA, you will establish credibility in the eyes of your employer or potential employer, leading to more job opportunities and the potential for promotion.
One important thing to note is that beginning October 1, 2013, the CCENT certification will become a prerequisite prior to achieving the CCDA certification. Prior to this time there are no prerequisites.
Getting the CCDA has led to a lot of additional opportunities in my career. I have been assigned to more prestigious projects, and have received a big promotion since obtaining this designation. I would highly recommend anyone in the designing aspects of Cisco networking to obtain this certification, and can really mean a big boost to your career, and I am now a proud member of the Cisco certified community.
James Anderson, IT director at Total Network Solutions, Inc.