A new certification from CompTIA called CompTIA Data+ is looking quite interesting. In a new video on my YouTube channel, we are taking a look at this new IT certification. I will share with you what this certification is all about and who it is for. At the end I will also compare the CompTIA Data+ certification to other related certifications.
First of all, who or what is CompTIA? CompTIA is the Computing Technology Industry Association. They own several different IT certifications and are probably best known for the quality and value their certifications provide. It is probably safe to say that CompTIA has helped hundreds of thousands of people worldwide to get into information technology.
So, it is no surprise that CompTIA is coming out with the new CompTIA Data+ certification. What is this certification at all?
CompTIA Data+ is an early-career data analytics certification for professionals tasked with developing and promoting data-driven business decision-making. If you are working in an IT junior analyst type of role or want to become an IT analyst, this certification seems to be a great match. If you are already working in an analyst type of role, it may be a nice credential to have on your resume, but the overall value for you would be significantly lower than it would be for a junior analyst or somebody trying to get their first role as an analyst.
It is important to point out that this certification is not for a specific analyst type of role. So, this can be helpful for someone in cybersecurity or a generic information technology analyst role.
What will you learn when studying for the CompTIA Data+ certification? There are three key items that you will learn. At the end you will be able to better analyze and interpret data. You are going to be able to communicate the insights that you gain from your data analysis. And as a result you will be able to demonstrate competency.
What does that mean in more detail? You will be able to understand data concepts and environments. Boost your knowledge in identifying basic concepts of data schemas and dimensions while understanding the difference between common data structures and file formats. Then get a better understanding of data mining and how to grow your skills in data acquisition, data cleansing and to profile data sets. A big one to mention here is data manipulation – no, not changing data to your liking, but to get the data setup in a way that then allows to do proper data analysis. There you use appropriate statistical methods and in the end summarize data analysis and related techniques. With that at hand you will learn how to visualize the data in reports and dashboards. An important part is also to understand what data governance is and why it matters.
So, for me this sounds very appealing – especially if you are thinking about becoming an analyst. The knowledge and skills are not necessarily just IT specific, but work in other areas, too.
What can you expect from the CompTIA Data+ certification exam? The exam features multiple choice questions, 90 questions to be exact. CompTIA gives you 90 minutes to complete the exam. You will need to have a score of 675 points or more to pass the exam. They do recommend 18-24 months of related work experience, but we know from other CompTIA certifications that you can overcome the knowledge gap with appropriate studying. This would allow you to have a high chance of landing a junior analyst type of role.
How does the CompTIA Data+ certification compare to other, similar certifications? CompTIA is positioning the Data+ certification against the SAS Certified Specialist for Visual Business Analytics as well as the Tableau Desktop Certified Associate and last but not least the Microsoft Certified Data Analyst Associate. Interestingly enough, CompTIA is not comparing the Data+ certification against the Google Data Analytics Certification. I did review the Google Data Analytics certification and will place a link to this video up here (((Point to upper Left))) as well as place a link in the description below. The main difference is that the Data+ certification from CompTIA is vendor-neutral. CompTIA lists a handful of other differentiating criteria, but for you as the aspiring analyst it doesn’t really matter. Any of these certifications will add value to your resume and can be a potential ticket to an analyst role.
Depending on when you are watching this video, the CompTIA Data+ certification will not yet be available. All we know so far is that the release date will be in Q1 of 2022. The same applies to the cost for this certification. The final price will be released closer to the go-live date.
Should you hold off from obtaining other data analytics certifications and wait for CompTIA Data+? No, absolutely not. If you have the bandwidth to study and obtain data analytics skills, do not wait. You may gain enough knowledge along the way to land your first job as an analyst and maybe even breeze through the Data+ studies and pick up this CompTIA certification along the way. Let me know in the comments if this certification is of interest for you.