CWNA 2006 Train the Trainer
Last Post: March 23, 2006:
The five day CWNA train the trainer class in Atlanta in early February 2006 was outstanding. I went expecting a rehearsal of familiar material and was greeted with a wealth of new material plus improved means of presenting the old.
Rick Murphy did a great job developing new courseware in recent months, presenting it for the first time to the class, and managing the litany of compliments and criticisms.
The new CWNA courseware bulks up on security, voice, survey, power, and throughput, including material that previously would only have been presented in the more difficult CWSP and CWAP courseware.
Let's hope Rick gets to work on those next!
I hope this helps. Thanks. /criss
I would almost treat this class as an entirely new class. There is a significant amount of new material, and in order to be able to teach this class, you'll really need to be at the CWAP and CWSP level.
I say this because much of the material you'd kill to have available for the CWAP or CWSP classes. And if you're studying for them, you'd wish you could use them because many of the concepts are just much easier to learn with animations, etc. than reading a book.
The designers wanted to make sure this class would not get outdated in a hurry, so they've included a lot of information about not only today's trends, but future trends as well. E.g. PoE is expected to play a much larger role in networking in the near future, so there is a large emphasis on that, and how it affects wireless networks.
The designers also wanted to "raise the bar" again regarding what a CWNA certified person should know and be able to do. As wireless has matured, the skill-level needed as a wireless expert has increased. The exciting thing is that while the subject matter will force you to "raise your game", and stretch you, the content provided in the new courseware will be a significant help in providing that knowledge transfer.
The biggest concern will be time management. It will be very easy to drill down much further than necessary and lose time needed to cover all objectives. Rick has already created and included the material to discuss CWAP & CWSP topics in depth,and the temptation will be there to do so. It will be hard not to cover certain topics when you have such powerful material at your disposal to assist you. I really hope to see much of this material available soon in the CWSP and CWAP courses.
I'm really encouraged by what Rick has been able to do with the courseware. It is truly outstanding. I feel pretty confident you've not seen anything like it!
Awesome feedback guys - many thanks. As Rick is finalizing the chapters, he's showing his tremendous skill once again. All of the changes requested during the beta are coming out great. I'm excited to put this in the instructors' hands.
Thank you Rick and Planet 3 for sponsoring this recent TTT class - it was an intensive and fascinating week away from the normal pace of life - there was so much networking, and so much imparting of a new vision.
I don't so much relate to a feeling of Planet3 'raising the bar for CWNAs,' as I feel that the whole concept of what a CWNA is, has been redefined. It has been redefined to the level suggested last summer, when you first released the initial new test versions that so shocked the community.
The "superficial" definition of a CWNA probably still holds - "someone you hire, that stays with you, and manages your wireless networks and infrastructure interfaces" - - - "in the days of ole" when no one knew anything about wireless, a CWNA only needed to know a little bit to be the wiz bang kid. Now that wireless has become ubiquitous in sophisticated arenas (such as 'your next door neighbor' - ie, imagine living on Devin's street), people that weren't previously certified and growing with the industry, have a larger step to climb up onto in order to compete successfully.
I do think the curriculum is marvelous. It is NOT the best thing since sliced bread, but it is very appropriate based on the new definition of CWNA. I don't expect the timing of the delivery to be an issue - instructors always want "more in reserve" to be able to draw from. But, instructors will want to reherse, and be at the top of their game. There is plenty of depth that is easy to expound on, permitting you to be flexible to your audience's needs and prior knowlege/skills.
It may be too easy for an instructor to dwell on areas where they are most comfortable, permitting them to gloss over areas they are not comfortable with, and leave the student with the mild feeling of "geez, how should this have been fit into a week?" -- but, that same capacity of our new tools that could permit "sluffing", will also help new instructors getting started come up to speed with confidence. And, the bottom line will be the instructor's integrity to cover all topics equally.
This leads into my concern for all subtopics to be covered equally (security, protocol analysis, QoS) - granted, not all sections are as mature - but, they are all as important. I perceive an important goal here as keeping the slide counts similar in different sections. Your slides are meaty, and I'm not interested in you cutting anything - as stated before, "you (Planet3)" are who sets the definition. It's just one of my "devil's advocate" thoughts.
I think the security class will remain very viable as a full week of training following this course - easily!
I'm not as comfortable saying that about CWAP. Obviously, I'm a product of the training I have done - but, my training has been to combine NA and AP in one week. I've always "sort of" taught them as one entity. Yes, if AP is taught a week by itself, there is more room for detail, regergitation, practice and re-practice when AP is taught in a week by itself - but - "talking meat" - the "AP" as designed in pretty short and succinct - beautifully designed - wonderfully functional - a masterpiece (umm, I'm referring to the protocol specification, not the course - but, the AP book does a great job in presenting the information -you notice it's the smallest book - not a lot to discuss - just wrote memorization and logical understanding). I teach the CWNA class with an emphasis on, "and you really need to understand the CWAP to give the learning real meaning."
Your new course embeds this insight into CWAP beautifully. Is there more detail outside of what you cover that could be garnered in a CWAP class? - sure! - is it worth paying for another class? - uhhhh - unless it's a bootcamp, I don't think so -(although - I hope students will still want to).
I think it is imperative that the CWAP also be re-written to cover the protocol changes offered by QoS. Without a doubt, QoS offers enough challenge to the community to warrant it's own class! But - all classes reference each other - and, the details of analyzing the protocol of 802.11e needs to be in the CWAP. - I see this as important as the re-creation of the CWNA.
I also see a need for a new class on QoS that covers the idiosyncrasies of merging QoS equipment into a non-QoS world - that teaches proper setups, expectations, problems encountered - etc. - just as the CWSP class currently teaches security. This class would not be redundant with material in the CWAP anymore than the CWSP is.
Rick, you've done a truely phenomenal job - I wish I could be using your curriculum tomorrow, but - I'll suffice with pacing until it's available. Planet3, - you've taken hold of a beast that is just starting to be born - documentation is going to be in hardy demand throughout the process - and, I do realize an occassional hour of sleep can do wonders for people.
History and English were never my favorites - because they involved too much opinion, which changed daily (substitute freely with "Security" and "QoS").
Math and [real-]Science are pure and perfect. (substitute with "protocol" and "analysis").
A proper education requires a balanced ability in all of these, and a degree assures a certain proficiency in all("CWNA certification").
Global community improvements require math and science to be accurately and promptly documented, shared, and pushed amongst the intelligentsia ("wireless professionals"). Ergo - [honestly, this is] my last encouragement to update CWAP at your earliest opportunity.
But - please don't let any of this belaboring diminish my intended applaud to the new curriculum, and your efforts, Rick, in bringing it about. Kudos!
The new course material for the CWNA class is goundbreaking on several fronts. First the material is more in line with the new exam, in fact it probably includes more difficult material than the exam. Secondly the manner is which the material is presented is certainly much improved. I have taught all types of classes, MOC, Comptia, Element K, Cisco, you name it and this could be the most effective material from a presentation standpoint I have ever seen. Anyone who has used the old static presentation is going to be both impressed and grateful for what it brings to the table. My only issue with the class was the inclusion of a lot of material I felt more in line with CWSP and CWNA. It will a challenge to keep from getting bogged down in this advanced material during the class but the prevailing opinion seemed to be that it also could serve as a teaser for the other courses. I think how that plays out remains to be seen. Rick has done a fantastic job, however making this dry material come alive and I think all will be glad to have this new material.
After the recent TTT class taught in Denver by Rick (the previous class being both a beta and TTT), anyone want to provide feedback on the final version?
I tremendously enjoyed both the class given by Rick Murphy and also the new courseware that he has written. The graphics in it help tremendously to allow students to visualize very complex and technical subjects in a way that will help students to grasp and remember the material. The material and Rick have the ability to communicate at a level to make it understandable.
This is the best set of class materials from CWNP yet.