Cisco NEXT-LEVEL 2020 CAREER CERTIFICATIONS: Everything You Need to Know About First-Time Certification and Recertification Policies
In this article, I want to take a stab at Cisco’s upcoming exams (starting Feb 24, 2020) and how the certification and recertification rules or policies are changing for the better or worse. I will also summarize the existing Cisco CCIE and CCNP certification and recertification requirements.
Let’s first revisit the older or current format before Feb 24, 2020 to see how certification and recertification requirements worked when the dinosaurs roared the planet. All fees shown below are per-attempt and in USD.
Certification Requirements (Before Feb 24, 2020)
CCIE ($450 – $1,600)
- Pass one written ($450) and one Lab exam ($1,600) in your technology area
CCNP ($1,200 – $1,500)
- Option #1. Pass CCNA in your technology area ($300) OR possess a CCIE in any technology area
- Option #2. Pass 3-4 required exams ($900-$1,200) in your technology area
- Pass one associate exam in your technology area ($300)
Recertification Requirements (Before Feb 24, 2020)
CCIE (any of the options shown below is sufficient to meet Recertification requirements), every 2 years
- Option #1. Pass one written (any track), $450
- Option #2.Pass one Lab (any track), $1,600
- Option #3.Earn 100 or more CE credits
CCNP (any of the options shown below is sufficient to meet Recertification requirements), every 3 years
- Option #1.Pass one CCNP exam, $300
- Option #2.Pass one CCIE written exam, $450
- Option #3.Pass one CCIE Lab exam, $1,600
CCNA (any of the options shown below is sufficient to meet Recertification requirements), every 3 years
- Option #1.Pass one CCNA exam ($300-$325)
- Option #2.Pass one CCNP exam ($300)
- Option #3.Pass one CCIE written exam ($450)
- Option #4.Pass one CCIE lab exam ($1,600)
- Option #5. Pass one specialist exam ($300)
Let’s now fast forward to Feb 24, 2020 and review how the new requirements fare with the older ones.
Cisco Next-Level 2020 Certification Requirements (Starting Feb 24, 2020)
You can register to take any of the CCNP/CCIE core upcoming next-level exams starting Nov 22, 2019. Please note that CCNP/CCIE core (350 series) and concentration (300 series) exams are going to be priced at $400 and $300 respectively as per PearsonVue website.
CCIE (One Core Exam in your Track), 3 years validity
CCNP (One Core Exam + One Concentration Exam, in your Track), 3 years validity
- Pass CCNA exam ($300)
Cisco Next-Level 2020 Recertification Requirements (Starting Feb 24, 2020)
CCIE (any one of the 5 options shown below is sufficient to meet Recertification requirements), 3 years validity
CCNP (any one of the 4 options shown below is sufficient to meet Recertification requirements), 3 years validity
CCNA (any one of the 5 options shown below is sufficient to meet Recertification requirements), every 3 years
- Option #1. Pass one Associate exam ($300)
- Option #2. Pass one Core exam in your technology area ($400)
- Option #3. Pass one Concentration exam (any) ($300)
- Option #4. Pass one CCIE Lab exam (any) ($1600)
- Option #5. Earn >= 30 CE credits
All exam prices are taken from Cisco’s published exam fees schedule (Pearson Vue).
Now, let me summarize, the TLDR;
- Starting Feb 24, 2020, there will be NO “CCIE written” exam except the CCDE written exam. CCIE certification and recertification will require passing one or more CCNP level exams (300/350 series).
- CCIE initial certification requirement (or CCIE Lab qualification requirement) will now cost $400 per attempt, as opposed to $450 (400/352 series exams). Now, that’s a thumbs up!
- CCIE Recertification requirement will now necessitate passing at least 2 CCNP 300 series exams ($300/exam) as opposed to just one written exam ($450), so minimum cost for CCIE recertification will now be $600 except CCDE written exam ($450) which I also believe should be sufficient for recertifying any of the CCIE tracks.
- CCNP initial certification requirements now only require passing 2 exams ($700) as opposed to a CCNA ($300) and then another 3-4 exams @ $300 each. Again, that’s a thumbs up.
- CCNP recertification requirements now only require passing 1 core exam ($400) among other options, which means recertification cost is on par with the older format.
- CCNA initial certification or recertification, in both older and newer formats, only requires passing one Associate level exam ($300) among other choices, so there is no change in terms of cost. Please also note that there is just one CCNA exam come Feb 24 2020, so that is a step in the right direction (more horizontal knowledge at the Associate level, and specialization deferred to CCNP or CCIE levels).
Author:Muhammad Afaq Khan, CCIE #9070
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