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Exam Code: FC0-U61 Practice exam 2022 by team
FC0-U61 CompTIA IT Fundamentals+ Certification (ITF+)

EXAM NAME : CompTIA IT Fundamentals+ Certification (ITF+)
Number of questions : 75
Type of questions : Multiple choice
Length of test : 60 minutes
Passing score : 650 (on a scale of 900)

The CompTIA IT Fundamentals (ITF+) FC0-U61 exam will certify the successful candidate
has the knowledge and skills required to identify and explain the basics of:
• Computing
• IT infrastructure
• Software development
• Database use

In addition, candidates will demonstrate their knowledge of:
• Installing software
• Establishing basic network connectivity
• Identifying/preventing basic security risks
Further, this exam will assess the candidates knowledge in the areas of troubleshooting theory and preventive maintenance of devices. This exam is intended for candidates who are advanced end users, considering a career in IT, and interested in pursuing professional-level certifications, such as A+.
Note: This is a pre-professional certification for candidates seeking a career in IT.

1.0 IT Concepts and Terminology 17%
2.0 Infrastructure 22%
3.0 Applications and Software 18%
4.0 Software Development 12%
5.0 Database Fundamentals 11%
6.0 Security 20%
Total 100%

1.0 IT Concepts and Terminology

Compare and contrast notational systems.
• Binary
• Data representation
• Hexadecimal - ASCII
• Decimal - Unicode

Compare and contrast fundamental data types and their characteristics.
• Char
• Numbers
• Boolean
• Strings - Integers -Floats

Illustrate the basics of computing and processing.
• Input
• Output
• Processing
• Storage

Explain the value of data and information.
• Data and information as assets
• Importance of investing in security
• Relationship of data to creating information
• Intellectual property - Trademarks - Copyright - Patents
• Digital products
• Data-driven business decisions - Data capture and collection - Data correlation - Meaningful reporting

1.0 IT Concepts and Terminology

Compare and contrast common units of measure.

• Storage unit
- TB - Gbps
- Bit - PB
- Tbps
- Byte

• Throughput unit

• Processing speed
- KB - bps - MHz
- MB - Kbps - GHz
- GB - Mbps
Explain the troubleshooting methodology.
• Identify the problem
-Gather information
-Duplicate the problem, if possible
-Question users
-Identify symptoms
-Determine if anything has changed
-Approach multiple
problems individually

• Research knowledge base/ Internet, if applicable
• Establish a theory of probable cause
-Question the obvious
-Consider multiple approaches
-Divide and conquer

• Test the theory to determine the cause
-Once the theory is confirmed (confirmed root cause), determine the next steps to resolve the problem
-If the theory is not confirmed, establish a new theory or escalate
• Establish a plan of action to resolve the problem and identify potential effects
• Implement the solution or escalate as necessary
• Verify full system functionality and, if applicable, implement preventive measures
• Document findings/lessons learned, actions, and outcomes

2.0 Infrastructure

Classify common types of input/output device interfaces.
• Networking
• Peripheral device
• Graphic device
- Wired - USB - VGA
- Telephone connector (RJ-11) - FireWire - HDMI
- Ethernet connector (RJ-45) - Thunderbolt - DVI
- Wireless - Bluetooth - DisplayPort
- Bluetooth - RF - Mini DisplayPort

Given a scenario, set up and install common
peripheral devices to a laptop/PC.
• Devices - Camera
• Installation types
- Printer - External hard drive - Plug-and-play vs. driver installation
- Scanner - Speakers - Other required steps
- Keyboard - Display - IP-based peripherals
- Mouse - Web-based configuration steps

Explain the purpose of common internal computing components.

• Motherboard/system board - 32-bit
• Storage
• Firmware/BIOS - Laptop - Hard drive
• RAM - Workstation - SSD
• CPU - Server
- ARM - 64-bit
• Cooling
- Mobile phone - Laptop
- Tablet - Workstation - Wired vs. wireless
- Server - On-board vs. add-on card

Compare and contrast common Internet service types.
• Fiber optic
• Wireless
• Cable - Radio frequency
• DSL - Satellite
- Cellular

2.0 Infrastructure

Compare and contrast storage types.

• Volatile vs. non-volatile
- Flash drive
• Local storage types
• Local network storage types
- Hard drive - File server
- Solid state vs. spinning disk
• Cloud storage service
- Optical

Compare and contrast common computing devices and their purposes.

• Mobile phones
• IoT - Modern cars
• Tablets - Home appliances - IP cameras
• Laptops - Home automation devices - Streaming media devices
• Workstations - Thermostats - Medical devices
• Servers - Security systems
• Gaming consoles

Explain basic networking concepts.
• Basics of network communication
• Basic protocols - Switch
- Basics of packet transmission - HTTP/S - Access point
- DNS - POP3 - Firewall
- URL-to-IP translation - IMAP
- LAN vs. WAN - SMTP
• Device addresses
• Devices
- IP address - Modem
- MAC address - Router

Given a scenario, install, configure and secure a basic wireless network.
• 802.11a/b/g/n/ac - Encrypted vs. unencrypted
- Older vs. newer standards - Open
- Speed limitations - Captive portal
- Interference and attenuation factors - WEP
• Best practices - WPA
- Change SSID - WPA2
- Change default password

3.0 Applications and Software

Explain the purpose of operating systems.
• Interface between applications
• Memory management - Server OS and hardware
• Device management - Embedded OS
• Disk management
• Access control/protection - Firmware
• Process management/scheduling
• Types of OS - Hypervisor (Type 1)
- Kill process/end task - Mobile device OS
• Application management - Workstation OS

Compare and contrast components of an operating system.

• File systems and features - Permissions
• Processes
- File systems - Journaling
• Drivers
- NTFS - Limitations
• Utilities
- FAT32 - Naming rules - Task scheduling
- HFS • File management
• Interfaces
- Ext4 - Folders/directories - Console/command line
• Features - File types and extensions - GUI
- Compression - Permissions
- Encryption
• Services

Explain the purpose and proper use of software.

• Productivity software
- Word processing software
- Spreadsheet software
- Presentation software
- Web browser
- Visual diagramming software
• Collaboration software
-Email client
-Conferencing software
-Instant messaging software
-Online workspace
-Document sharing
• Business software
-Database software
-Project management software
-Business-specific applications
-Accounting software

3.0 Applications and Software

Explain methods of application architecture and delivery models.

• Application delivery methods - Network required
• Application architecture models
- Locally installed - Internet access not required - One tier
- Network not required - Cloud hosted - Two tier
- Application exists locally - Internet access required - Three tier
- Files saved locally - Service required -n-tier
- Local network hosted - Files saved in the cloud

Given a scenario, configure and use web browsers.

• Caching/clearing cache
• Private browsing
• Popup blockers
• Deactivate client-side scripting
• Proxy settings
• Script blockers
• Browser add-ons/extensions
• Certificates
• Compatible browser for application(s)
- Add - Valid
- Remove - Invalid
- Enable/disable

Compare and contrast general application concepts and uses.

• Single-platform software - Open source vs. proprietary
• Cross-platform software - Subscription vs. one-time purchase
- Compatibility concerns - Product keys and serial numbers
• Licensing • Software installation best practices
- Single use - reading instructions
- Group use/site license - reading agreements
- Concurrent license - Advanced options

4.0 Software Development Concepts

Compare and contrast programming language categories.
• Interpreted
• Compiled programming languages
- Scripting languages
• Query languages
- Scripted languages
• Assembly language
- Markup languages

Given a scenario, use programming organizational techniques and interpret logic.
• Organizational techniques
• Logic components
- Pseudocode concepts - Branching
- Flow-chart concepts - Looping
- Sequence

Explain the purpose and use of programming concepts.
• Identifiers
• Functions
- Variables
• Objects
- Constants - Properties
• Containers - Attributes
- Arrays - Methods
- Vectors

5.0 Database Fundamentals

Explain database concepts and the purpose of a database.
• Usage of database - Scalability
- Create - Speed
- Import/input - Variety of data
- Query
• Records
- Reports
• Storage
• Flat file vs. database - Data persistence
- Multiple concurrent users

Compare and contrast various database structures.

• Structured vs. semi-structured - Fields/columns vs. non-structured - Primary key
• Relational databases - Foreign key
- Schema - Constraints
- Tables
• Non-relational databases
- Rows/records - Key/value databases
- Document databases

Summarize methods used to interface with databases.
• Relational methods
- Data manipulation
- Select
- Insert
- Delete
- Update
- Data definition
- Create
- Alter
- Drop
- Permissions
• Database access methods
- Direct/manual access
- Programmatic access
- User interface/utility access
- Query/report builders
• Export/import
- Database dump
- Backup

6.0 Security

Summarize confidentiality, integrity and availability concerns.
• Confidentiality concerns
• Integrity concerns
• Availability concerns
- Snooping - Man-in-the-middle - Denial of service
- Eavesdropping - Replay attack - Power outage
- Wiretapping - Impersonation - Hardware failure
- Social engineering - Unauthorized information alteration - Destruction
- Dumpster diving - Service outage

Explain methods to secure devices and best practices.

• Securing devices (mobile/workstation)
• Device use best practices - Removal of unnecessary software
- Antivirus/Anti-malware - Software sources - Removal of malicious software
- Host firewall - Validating legitimate sources
- Changing default passwords - Researching legitimate sources
- Enabling passwords - OEM websites vs.
- Safe browsing practices third-party websites
- Patching/updates - Removal of unwanted software

Summarize behavioral security concepts.
• Expectations of privacy when using: - The Internet - Social networking sites - Email - File sharing - Instant messaging - Mobile applications - Desktop software - Business software - Corporate network
• Written policies and procedures
• Handling of confidential information - Passwords - Personal information - Customer information - Company confidential information

6.0 Security
Compare and contrast authentication, authorization, accounting and non-repudiation concepts.
• Authentication
- Single factor
- Multifactor
- Examples of factors
- Password
- One-time password
- Software token
- Hardware token
- Biometrics
- Specific location
- Security questions
- Single sign-on
• Authorization
- Permissions
- Least privilege model
- Role-based access
- User account types
- Rule-based access
- Mandatory access controls
- Discretionary access controls
• Accounting
- Logs
- Tracking
- Web browser history
• Non-repudiation
- Video
- Biometrics
- Signature
- Receipt

Explain password best practices.
• Password length
• Password expiration
• Password reset process
• Password complexity
• Password reuse across sites
• Password history
• Password managers

Explain common uses of encryption.
• Plain text vs. cipher text - Mobile device - VPN
• Data at rest
• Data in transit - Mobile application
- File level - Email
- Disk level - HTTPS

Explain business continuity concepts.
• Fault tolerance - Critical data
• Disaster recovery
- Replication - Database - Data restoration
- Redundancy - OS backups - Prioritization
- Data - Location - Restoring access
- Network - Stored locally
- Power - Cloud storage
- Backup considerations - On-site vs. off-site
- Data - Contingency plan
- File backups

CompTIA IT Fundamentals (ITF+) Acronyms

The following is a list of acronyms that appear on the CompTIA IT Fundamentals (ITF+) exam. Candidates are encouraged to review the complete list and attain a working knowledge of all listed acronyms as part of a comprehensive exam preparation program.
AC Alternating Current
ACL Access Control List
AES Advanced Encryption Standard
AIO All In One
APIPA Automatic Private Internet Protocol Addressing
ARM Advanced RISC Machines
ARP Address Resolution Protocol
ASCII American Standard Code for Information Interchange
BD-ROM Blu-ray Disc-Read-Only Memory
BIOS Basic Input/Output System
CAD Computer-Aided Design
CAM Computer-Aided Manufacturing
CD Compact Disc
CD-ROM Compact Disc-Read-Only Memory
CD-RW Compact Disc-Rewritable
CPU Central Processing Unit
CRUD Create, Read, Update, Delete
CSS Cascading Style Sheets
DC Direct Current
DDL Data Definition Language
DDoS Distributed Denial of Service
DDR Double Data-Rate
DHCP Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol
DIMM Dual Inline Memory Module
DLL Dynamic Link Layer
DLP Data Leak Prevention
DML Data Manipulation Language
DNS Domain Name Service or Domain Name Server
DoS Denial of Service
DSL Digital Subscriber Line
DVD Digital Video Disc or Digital Versatile Disc
DVD-R Digital Video Disc-Recordable
DVD-RW Digital Video Disc-Rewritable
DVI Digital Visual Interface


Electromagnetic Interference External Serial Advanced Technology Attachment Electrostatic Discharge End-User License Agreement File Allocation Table 32-bit File Allocation Table File Transfer Protocol File Transfer Protocol over Secure Sockets Layer Gigabit Gigabyte Gigabit per second Gigahertz Global Positioning System Graphics Processing Unit Graphical User Interface Hard Disk Drive High-Definition Media Interface Hierarchical File System Hypertext Markup Language Hypertext Transfer Protocol Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure Internet Control Message Protocol Intrusion Detection System Internet Mail Access Protocol Input/Output Operations Per Second Internet of Things Internet Protocol Intrusion Prevention System Infrared Internet Service Provider Kilobit Kilobyte or Knowledge Base Kilobit per second Local Area Network Media Access Control

Mb Megabit
MB Megabyte
Mbps Megabit per second
MHz Megahertz
MITM Man in the Middle
MP3 Moving Picture Experts Group Layer 3 Audio
MP4 Moving Picture Experts Group Layer 4
NAS Network Attached Storage
NDA Non-Disclosure Agreement
NFC Near Field Communications
NIC Network Interface Card
NTFS New Technology File System
OEM Original Equipment Manufacturer
OS Operating System
PB Petabyte
PC Personal Computer
PCI Peripheral Component Interconnect
PCIe Peripheral Component Interconnect Express
PII Personally Identifiable Information
PIN Personal Identification Number
POP Post Office Protocol
POP3 Post Office Protocol 3
PSU Power Supply Unit
PXE Preboot Execution Environment
RAID Redundant Array of Independent Disks
RAM Random Access Memory
RF Radio Frequency
RJ Registered Jack
RJ-11 Registered Jack Function 11
RJ-45 Registered Jack Function 45
ROM Read-Only Memory
SaaS Software as a Service
SATA Serial Advanced Technology Attachment
SD Card Secure Digital Card
SFTP Secure File Transfer Protocol
SID System Identifier
SMB Server Message Block
SMTP Simple Mail Transfer Protocol
SNMP Simple Network Management Protocol
SOHO Small Office, Home Office
SQL Structured Query Language
SSD Solid State Drive
SSID Service Set Identifier
SSO Secure Sign-On
SSL Secure Sockets Layer


Terabit Terabyte Terabits per second Transmission Control Protocol Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol Temporal Key Integrity Protocol Thread Local Storage Uninterruptable Power Supply Uniform Resource Locator Universal Serial Bus Video Graphics Array or Video Graphics Adapter Voice over Internet Protocol Virtual Private Network Wide Area Network Wireless Access Point Wired Equivalency Privacy Wireless Fidelity Wireless Local Area Network Wireless Protected Access Wireless Protected Access 2

CompTIA IT Fundamentals (ITF+) Proposed Hardware and Software List
CompTIA has included this trial list of hardware and software to assist candidates as they prepare for the CompTIA IT Fundamentals (ITF+) exam. This list may also be helpful for training companies that wish to create a lab component for their training offering. The bulleted lists below each course are trial lists and not exhaustive.
• Workstations – unpackaged workstations
• Wireless router
• Cable modem
• Laptop
• Basic printer
• External storage devices
- Hard drive
- Solid state drive
• Tablet/smartphone
• Power strip/UPS
• Physical networking devices

• Flash drive (for backup)
• Various cable types

• ESD wrist band (for demonstration)
• Internet connectivity

• OS media
- Windows
- Linux
• Unconfigured OS images
• Anti-malware software
• Productivity software
• Collaboration software
• Browser software
• Backup software
• Database software
• Software development packages (IDE)

CompTIA IT Fundamentals+ Certification (ITF+)
CompTIA Fundamentals learn
Killexams : CompTIA Fundamentals learn - BingNews Search results Killexams : CompTIA Fundamentals learn - BingNews Killexams : Grab a 4-in-1 Bundle of Entry-Level IT Training for $29

The information technology field is ripe with opportunity, but if you want to chase these career options, you'll need to learn IT fundamentals and get certified. And The 2022 CompTIA Trifecta Course Bundle is an excellent jumping-off point.

This four-course collection contains just shy of 75 hours worth of on-demand certification prep material. Lessons are led by online learning platform ITProTV, which presents content in a fun, engaging talk-show-esque format.

Get started with the CompTIA A+ Core 1 (220-1101) and Core 2 (220-1102) courses, which introduce entry-level IT skills such as installing, configuring, and troubleshooting network hardware and operating systems. Users also get a surface-level understanding of concepts like cybersecurity, virtualization, cloud technologies, and more. Once you've built a solid foundation, you should be able to tackle CompTIA's A+ exams on your first try.

After earning a certification and practical work experience, pursue the next step with CompTIA Network+ (N10-008) training. This course covers software-defined networking, network integrations, how to secure networks, and how to protect business data—a collection of skills companies like Intel and Apple search for. Then there's the Security+ (SY0-601) course, which focuses on risk management and detecting threats and vulnerabilities in a network.

With the amount of growth projected in the IT sector over the next five years, certified professionals will be in high demand. The 2022 CompTIA Trifecta Course Bundle can help you dive headfirst into the field. PCMag readers can snag the bundle on sale for $29—87% off the $236 MSRP.

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Sun, 17 Jul 2022 20:53:00 -0500 en text/html
Killexams : Cybersecurity Bootcamp

Become a Cybersecurity Professional

Across nearly every industry, cybersecurity skills are in demand to ensure the secure handling of data online and protect it from attacks, amongst other essential duties.

This online Cybersecurity Bootcamp is designed to empower the next generation of cybersecurity professionals to tackle advanced and critical threats. No previous experience is needed—just your dedication and eagerness to learn. By the end of your Bootcamp, you will gain the fundamental skills and knowledge needed to succeed in IT security and earn today’s most sought-after certifications.

“This Bootcamp removed any doubts I had about my career choice as I was able to solidify that cybersecurity is what I wanted to do for a living. I am grateful to my teachers and the experience the course gave me.” – Samuel Webb.


Job Outlook for Cybersecurity Professionals

The global market for cybersecurity professionals is expected to grow from 217 million in 2021 to $345 million in 2026, according to market research firm MarketsandMarkets, which means job opportunities are on the rise. The Cybersecurity Bootcamp will prepare you for in-demand job roles like cybersecurity analyst, cybersecurity engineer, penetration tester, vulnerability analyst, digital forensics analyst, and cybercrime investigator.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median yearly salary for information security analysts was $103,590 in 2020—with this profession expected to grow 33% from 2020 to 2030, which is much faster than the average for all occupations.


What You Will Learn

In our Cybersecurity Bootcamp, you will explore:

  • Key concepts of popular communication protocols, the configuration of routers/switches, and TCP/IP implementation
  • Fundamentals of data security and auditing
  • How to identify, evaluate, and mitigate security risk
  • How malicious hackers attack systems and tactics to thwart online attacks
  • How disparate components connect to form complex networks
  • The role played by cybersecurity analysts and the skills required


How Bootcamps Work

  • Six months of interactive, self-paced training that requires 15 to 25 hours a week to complete the curriculum
  • Prepare to pass one of the following certifications: CompTIA A+, Network+, Security+, CySa+, Pentest+, or EC-Council CEH
  • Get five 1-hour online coaching sessions with your instructor
  • Complete multiple course projects and a final capstone to help you prepare a professional-level portfolio to show prospective employers



William Clark
William Clark has extensive experience in the professional and education industry. He holds numerous cybersecurity certifications and is a CompTIA Certified Technical Trainer. He has also worked with many organizations in senior technical roles and now has his own consulting firm.


FAQs About Cybersecurity Bootcamp


Learning is entirely online and self-paced to suit your schedule. You’ll have access to interactive video lessons, labs for real-world practice, discussion boards to engage with peers, and live one-on-one coaching sessions with an industry expert instructor.


You will have about five coaching sessions that the instructor might schedule for you. In these sessions, you can seek help from your coach for a course you want assistance in.


The Cybersecurity Bootcamp is not just about learning theory. We have designed practical exercises to teach students the concepts of different fundamentals. You will be required to perform those exercises in the class, and the results will be shared with you right away. This course will enable you to learn via exposure to a virtual lab environment, which will help you gain hands-on skills and a deeper understanding of the practical aspects of the course.


Yes, this Bootcamp will prepare you to take the following exams:

  • CompTIA A+
  • CompTIA Network+
  • CompTIA Security+
  • CompTIA CySA+
  • Certified Ethical Hacking
  • CompTIA Pentest+


The students will be required to complete multiple projects based on syllabus they have been studying. Each project will be discussed during the mentoring sessions.


If you are unable to complete the course, contact your student advisor to help you work out a suitable completion date. Please note that an extension fee will be charged. If you are funded through a third-party organization, approval may also be required.


The course instructor will be available by email to answer any questions you may have and provide feedback on your performance. Occasionally, a team of industry experts may support your course. You will also be assigned a student advisor for academic support.


Registration and Enrollment

This course is a self-paced course that can be completed 100% online. Open enrollment means that you can register and start the course whenever you are ready. Access to your course can take 24-48 business hours.

Sat, 19 Feb 2022 19:33:00 -0600 en-US text/html
Killexams : Developing a career in cybersecurity

Currently, IT jobs and careers are very competitive, and the better individuals get the best career offers. But there is still ample space for anyone interested in moulding a career in the digital sector. There are enough opportunities for those entering an IT career and those already in IT but who would like to change their job role.

The financial payload in cybercrime goes into trillions of euros, and the demand for cybersecurity professionals is growing exponentially, perhaps even higher than in other areas. The only areas to compete with cybersecurity are the areas in software development and data science. It is estimated that by 2022, there will be a global shortage of between 1.8 to two million cybersecurity professionals. Other studies put this figure even higher.

By 2022, there will be a global shortage of 1.8 to 2m cybersecurity professionals

Cybersecurity is a highly interesting subject and has the potential of attracting many prospective IT professionals. The is a wide range of roles within cybersecurity, so one’s career development will always depend on the role. They include those cybersecurity analyst, cybersecurity architect, cybersecurity engineer, cybersecurity researcher, cybersecurity instructor, cybersecurity technician, forensic computer analyst and penetration tester, to mention a few.

But to make it simple, let’s focus on the cybersecurity analyst career. If one is embarking on an IT career in cybersecurity, then at a minimum, one should have basic knowledge about operating system security, such as Windows, Linux, etc. After this, one should learn about network technology to acquire a good knowledge of the network basics. Having access to hardware would be essential to get the right experience. In the meantime, one should take up basic industry certifications. 

I would suggest CompTIA Fundamentals, CompTIA A+, CompTIA Network+, and CompTIA Network+. This will give one enough knowledge breadth to jump-start a career in cybersecurity. As a foundation, one would need to have one to two years of experience. Going one step up to the intermediate level, one should consider CompTIA CySA+. Additionally, I would recommend the CREST Practitioner Threat Intelligence Analyst certification. Supplemented by CompTIA Cloud+ and CompTIA Server+, and with two to three years’ experience, one would make an excellent cybersecurity analyst.

Carrying on with up to five years of experience and getting certified even further with something like the CREST Registered Threat Intelligence Analyst would enable the person to get an advanced position. And if one would like to become an expert, I would suggest going in for the (ISC)2 CISSP and CREST Registered Threat Intelligence Manager.

Developing a career through industry certifications would make a professional complete and ready to meet industry requirements. Of course, there is an academic route by going in for a computer science degree that emphasises cybersecurity or for a computer science degree and master’s in cybersecurity. This is another career door one can open. One can then complement the career with some of the above-mentioned industry certifications. As mentioned, different job roles require different certifications and emphasis, but this applies to any career route.

This article was prepared by collating various publicly available online sources.

Independent journalism costs money. Support Times of Malta for the price of a coffee.

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Sat, 04 Dec 2021 18:20:00 -0600 en-gb text/html
Killexams : Students get hands-on learning with Dell's Student TechCrew

Students participating in Dell's Student TechCrew program complete about 40 hours of training and earn Dell's TechDirect certification.

North Augusta High School

Hundreds of thousands of digital devices flooded into American students' hands in exact years. 

Some went directly to students in the Aiken County Public School District in South Carolina. The district's 41 schools, which serve about 22,500 students, include North Augusta High School. North Augusta expects to welcome about 1,800 students this academic year.

At the height of the pandemic, Aiken County school leaders decided to embrace 1:1 technology. 1:1 technology, or 1:1 computing,  means every student has a personal computing device to support their learning. Supporting over 22,000 devices is a big task for any organization.

It was an ideal opportunity for North Augusta High students in Dell's Student TechCrew program to step in, Michelle O'Rourke told ZDNet. She's the school's business education and computer repair teacher. She also facilitates the TechCrew program. 

Dell's Student TechCrew program offers pro-level hardware repair training and certifications for high schoolers. Students earn a Dell TechDirect certification. They also get hands-on learning experience repairing their peers' devices. 

The program's flexibility allows schools and teachers to offer TechCrew as a standalone program or integrate it into the academic curriculum as a for-credit class. That's the approach that North Augusta uses. It's part of the school's computer repair and service program. 

"So in the two years in the course, the first thing that they do is they get their Dell certification. And then the next year and a half, they're repairing laptops and they're also working through getting their CompTIA A+ and their TestOut PC Pro certifications," said O'Rourke.

That means students can graduate with three industry-standard tech certifications and two years of experience in hands-on device repair, which is "a really cool thing to do."

SEE: Five tech jobs for someone without a college degree

'They know what they're doing'

O'Rourke said she expects 140 students in the TechCrew program at North Augusta this fall. About a dozen will be new to the program. The rest will be second-year students in the program, which is mostly comprised of 10th and 11th graders. 

North Augusta students must take a prerequisite course in the fundamentals of computing before enrolling in TechCrew.

Students get lots of practice repairing cracked LCD screens, faulty power ports, and keyboards. Screen bezels and device cases also take a lot of abuse when they're in students' hands, explained Kim Boutwell. She created Dell's TechCrew program and continues to run it today.

Students start with about 40 hours of training to earn Dell's TechDirect certification.

"Once they finish that, they're certified. They know what they're doing. I shouldn't be able to tell the difference [between] a 9th grader and a 20-year veteran tech at that point," Boutwell said. "They know what they're doing, and they are also certified in our portal, our self-maintenance portal at Dell."

TechCrew's in-school adult facilitators complete an eight- to 10-hour course to lead the program. Boutwell said the facilitators usually hold other roles at school. They may be teachers, librarians, parent volunteers, or even a principal.

Boutwell stressed that TechCrew students don't have to piece together a working device by cannibalizing the remains of old devices stacked up in a closet. Instead, they use the online self-maintenance portal to order new parts, just like a regular enterprise customer.

"They're in the same tool. We didn't make a fake tool. They're in the industry tool," Boutwell said. "They are industry certified. Within that tool, they put in the serial number of their friend, they have been trained to run diagnostics, then they're given a parts list. They know which parts to ask for. And they're sent to them overnight."

Student devices sometimes have hard knock life

In terms of repairs, Boutwell said LCD screen replacements are pretty common in schools.

"Kids will put their pencil on the keyboard and close it when the bell rings. …Or they're walking down the hall and they reach out to say hi to their friend and the laptop slips out. Or they're running to get to class and they go to open the door and they forget they've got their laptop in their hand."

Boutwell said school-issued devices also fall victim to spills and water damage. This might happen if a student walks somewhere or rides a bike home in the rain and their digital device unintentionally gets wet.

Existing service contracts cover repair costs. The program itself is also free for schools. Boutwell said Dell funds it through an annual grant agreement with each school.

But mastering the technical aspects of digital device repair is only half the program, said Boutwell. 

"The focus of this program is 50% technical and then 50% what I call career skills," Boutwell told ZDNet. 

The career aspect includes aspects like customer service and communication — valuable skills for anyone, regardless of what kind of career you pursue. 

"And that's where the soft skills part of the program comes in," O'Rourke said, "and that's something that I think is more important than knowing how to repair a laptop, is knowing how to start up a conversation with someone. Or how to keep a level of professionalism when someone is not listening to what you're telling them. These kids are learning how to do that."

"The career skills [aspect], that one's hard to get kids into," Boutwell said. "They don't want to read 'Chapter three: communication, how to communicate effectively with your team.' Gen Z is like, 'Can you put that in a TikTok for me?' I had to find a way to make that career skills [component] cool and fun.

Students helped shape a newly revamped TechCrew curriculum that launched last month.

"It turns out they don't like videos more than a minute and a half long," Boutwell explained. And, she added, students don't like to read long passages of text before having an opportunity to go hands-on with what they're learning. 

The updated course also takes into account another important point of student feedback: Kids like learning from each other. So as part of the revised curriculum, students in the program created videos that help other students learn important ideas.

Dell has also partnered with the Conrad Foundation to help students learn and connect.

Supporting education's continuing digital transformation

Boutwell established the TechCrew program to address an issue she experienced firsthand. 

She's a former middle school teacher. In 2015, she was also a Dell customer. That year, her district decided to move to a 1:1 technology model. Back then, the idea — and the ability and best practices to implement it — was still new.  

Said Boutwell:

I was so excited to give out 35,000 devices to kids in my community and transform education that I forgot a little piece of it, and that is that high schools are crowded, kids run really fast, they ride bicycles, they forget to tie their shoe strings. Things happen, and they drop their devices.

She realized potential hardware repair technicians were in the classroom: The students. 

Boutwell later began working for Dell and pitched the idea to the company. It officially launched in the 2019-20 school year. The pilot program proved successful even with the introduction of an unexpected variable — the COVID-19 pandemic — which accelerated remote learning. 

"It was an interesting time to have piloted a hardware support program, and I honestly didn't know how it would be affected," Boutwell said. "It turned out that more than ever, schools needed that support and kids needed that place to belong. It's gotten more successful since that."

Boutwell said she likes the path her career has taken so far. "It's been an amazing journey. And I think my path from education to corporate helps me stay relatable to both people from the corporate world and people from the classroom. I like not being one or the other."

Even without the pandemic, Boutwell said, school systems were still moving toward a 1:1 technology model for students. As a result, "we knew that education was still transforming. And we knew that the opportunity gap was closing for the students who didn't have their own devices." 

Right now, there's a big push to get kids into coding. That's a valuable skill. But O'Rourke said it's important students get to learn about the hardware that software and apps will live on. 

"Coders' laptops break too. Their hard drives go out too," she said.

Students at North Augusta High School in South Carolina get hands-on experience repairing devices through the Dell Student TechCrew program.

North Augusta High School

Early success and global growth of Dell Student TechCrew

The 2021-22 school year was the North Augusta TechCrew program's first.

"I had all 25 students get their Dell certification before Thanksgiving," O'Rourke said. "My goal was to have it done in the first eight weeks of school, but with quarantines and Covid was still happening, a few of them took a little longer."

By Christmas break, the students were handling 98% of repairs "not just for our school but our two feeder middle schools and the elementary schools around us," she said. 

Taking care of devices is a big responsibility for the district's full-time, adult technicians. On some Monday mornings, the crew would arrive to find a dozen or more students whose laptops needed repairs.

"And that is a lot for one person to do, especially when some of our school technicians support more than one school and the 1:1, the laptops, is just one part of their job," O'Rourke said. 

"They still have to take care of the teachers, and the other things that are going on. So those [full-time] technicians were able to scoop up those laptops and bring them in to us. My kids would take them in, troubleshoot them, order the parts, get the parts the next day, repair the laptops and then I'd send the technician a text and say, 'Hey — you got laptops ready,' and they'd come and get them."

O'Rourke said students had repaired more than 500 devices by the end of last school year.

Boutwell said she expects that 175 schools in the U.S., Australia, and Ireland will participate in TechCrew this year. The students connect virtually to share their experiences and insights.

Aiken County students at three other high schools can also enroll in TechCrew.

As the program's creator and leader, Boutwell also stays connected. She acknowledges it's sometimes a challenge with students in so many different time zones. Sometimes she starts her day by connecting with students in Ireland and ends her day by connecting with students from Australia.

"As a teacher, talking about all this is fun, but I really like talking about the kids," Boutwell said. "That's what gets me really excited. We're changing their trajectory, and it's exciting to be a part of their opportunities."

Thu, 04 Aug 2022 07:00:00 -0500 en text/html
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Thu, 04 Aug 2022 08:27:00 -0500 en-US text/html Killexams : CompTIA Spark helps young people unlock their potential and imagine new possibilities through technology

Independent social impact organization, formerly known as Creating IT Futures and founded by CompTIA, will offer an innovative online tech learning hub to middle school students

DOWNERS GROVE, Ill., Aug. 1, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- With a new, exclusive focus on youth programming and a single-purpose commitment to helping young people unlock their potential through technology, Creating IT Futures has changed its name to CompTIA Spark, the social impact nonprofit organization announced today.

CompTIA Spark is a social impact organization that works to unlock people's potential though technology. It aims to bringing high quality tech education to youth — whatever their background — making tech exciting, accessible and inclusive, and building skills and confidence for life.

"We want to show students that tech is for everyone — and about so much more than just coding or computer engineering."

CompTIA Spark will focus on delivering high-quality tech education and resources to middle schoolers through an innovative online learning hub. Building on the success of TechGirlz, a program that provides tech-centered learning opportunities for girls ages 11-14, CompTIA Spark aims to make technology engaging, accessible and inclusive for middle school students who are at a critical age to explore their interests.

"Our mission is to spark an interest in tech because in today's digitally driven world, tech fluency is just as important to future success as reading, writing, and math," said Charles Eaton, chief executive officer of CompTIA Spark. "Young people have their sights set on big and varied dreams, but what's clear is that whatever path or passion a young person chooses, technology education will play a critical part in their journey."

The CompTIA Spark middle school program, scheduled to be piloted during the 2022-23 school year, will be delivered through an online learning hub that can be accessed from anywhere, anytime. The hub is designed as a one-stop shop for students and teachers to access a range of fun, inspiring tech-related courses and resources, spanning syllabus from artificial intelligence and cybersecurity to mobile app development, podcasting, graphic design and more. Programs serve a diverse range of learning preferences and interests and can be taught by any adult who wants to bring high-quality tech education to their students or community, whether they have tech experience or not.

A unique feature of the learning hub allows content to be mapped to students' existing interests and curated across different "careers clusters" — from finance to manufacturing and marketing to the arts. Students can discover career paths and future learning opportunities that align with their passions, strengths, and growing capabilities and confidence.

"Nearly every career is a tech career in today's digital world. There are so many great job opportunities out there that require tech knowledge and not enough skilled people to fill those roles. Thousands of rewarding, well-paying jobs will go unfilled unless an expanded pipeline of new, diverse talent is created," said Eaton. "That's why CompTIA Spark's middle school programming will have a big impact on thousands of young people's lives regardless of whether they ultimately choose a career in the tech industry. We want to show students that tech is for everyone — and about so much more than just coding or computer engineering."

Alongside the middle school program, CompTIA Spark will continue to support other programs with a focus on youth, including TechGirlz, acquired by CompTIA in 2019, CyberPrep Explore and CyberPrep ITF+.

While an independent nonprofit, CompTIA Spark operates as the social innovation and impact arm of CompTIA — the leading nonprofit association for the IT industry and workforce— which founded the organization. This unique connection to CompTIA means CompTIA Spark is plugged in to developments in the industry, keeping pace with its constant evolution. Additionally, its curriculum has ties to real certifications, helping to provide clear future pathways for students who want to take their interest to the next level.

About CompTIA Spark

CompTIA Spark is a social impact organization that works to unlock people's potential though technology. It aims to bringing high quality tech education to youth — whatever their background — making tech exciting, accessible and inclusive, and building skills and confidence for life. The organization was founded in 1998 by CompTIA, the nonprofit association for the IT industry and workforce. Formerly known as Creating IT Futures, CompTIA Spark is a registered 501 (c)(3) nonprofit. Learn more at

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