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Road To MCSE: Microsoft MCT Program Goes Into Underdrive

By ServerWatch Staff (Send Email)
Posted Oct 30, 2000


Thomas Shinder

"Cha cha cha cha changes...learn to face the strain". I suppose that could be the fighting song for IT workers around the world. Change is the lifeblood of the IT industry. If there isn't a lot of change in your environment, you're stagnating, and there's an up and comer right behind you nipping at your heels to grab your job.

'Cha cha cha cha changeslearn to face the strain'. I suppose that could be the fighting song for IT workers around the world. Change is the lifeblood of the IT industry. If there isnt a lot of change in your environment, youre stagnating, and theres an up and comer right behind you nipping at your heels to grab your job.

At least this is the current mindset. If you're not changing, you're not growing. And if you're not expanding, you're contracting. I would say the majority of change we see in this industry is for the best. But sometimes, change takes place for the sake of change and not to improve a product or service. You run into this sort of situation when someone takes a new position in a company and wants to differentiate himself from his predecessor. He wants to be seen as a "mover and shaker". However, not all moving and shaking is created equal.

The Microsoft Certified Trainer Program

Which brings us to our current subject, the Microsoft Certified Trainer Program. A Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT) is someone who has been certified by Microsoft to present the Microsoft Official Curriculum (MOC) courseware. This courseware is developed in-house by Microsoft, and can only be taught at Microsoft Certified Technical Education Centers (CTECs) and Authorized Academic Training Centers (AATPs). Only MCTs can teach the MOC, and the MOC can be be taught only CTECs and AATPs.

What does it take to be an MCT? An MCT must pass a special "Train the Trainer" course, which is typically a two or three day event where the prospective trainer learns about effective teaching techniques, and then practices those techniques in front of the instructor and the other students in the class. After passing the Train the Trainer course, the next step is to take at least one MOC course. You only need to take one course, regardless of the number of courses you expect to teach in the future.

How Are They Certified to Teach Courses?

Right now, to be certified in a MOC course, you must review all the course materials, and fill out a checklist, which is sent to Microsoft. This checklist confirms that you have read the MOC, studied all the ancillary materials, successfully setup the classroom and performed the labs, and that you have passed the corresponding certification exam. Not all courses have a corresponding certification exam. In that case, other stringent prerequisites must are set.

This process of being certified to teach a particular course insures that the instructor has the knowledge and insight required to teach the subject effectively. Students taking courses from an MCT can be assured that the instructor has at least a minimum level of expertise in the subject because he has studied and passed the certification exam.

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