Some credentials you earn can last a lifetime. Some credentials will last a lifetime, while others you must renew, especially in an industry that is fast-paced and constantly changing like IT. CompTIA ensures that their certifications are current. This means that certain exams may need to be taken again at specific times.
Potential job opportunities could disappear if your certifications are lost. Employers love to see certificates on resumes, especially when they are current. For cybersecurity professionals, this is a must.
Here’s everything you need to know about CompTIA certification renewal.
Good for Life Certification
These certs are good for life (GFL), or lifetime certification if earned before January 1, 2011.
These certificates do not expire. You will need to pass the new certification exam to keep them current and up-to-date. You will receive two types of certifications: the Good For Life (GFL), and the Certification Renewal(CE).
Certification Renewal Period
CompTIA launched the Continuing Educational Program on January 1, 2011. Nearly all their certificates have a three year expiration date starting the day they are earned. They must be renewed before the expiration date.
You must earn enough CEUs (Continuing Education Units) to renew your cert. Each cert requires you to have a certain number of CEUs in order to renew it. CEUs can be earned by performing certain tasks. You have two options:
Renew with a Single Activity
Any of the following activities can be used to renew your CompTIA certification:
- Pass the most recent CompTIA exam. If you have passed the A+ exam in the 901/902 cycles, you can take it again in the 1001/1002 cycles.
- Get a CompTIA higher level certification. A higher-level CompTIA certificate automatically renews any cert below it. This is illustrated by the fact that your A+ certificate is automatically renewed if you pass Network+. If you have A+ or Network+, Security+ will renew them both.
- Get an IT industry certification other than CompTIA. CompTIA certifications can be renewed by obtaining similar certifications elsewhere. CEU points can be earned by renewing your CompTIA A+ certification by passing the Google Cloud Architect exam, Cisco’s CCNET, CCDA or any other similar certification.
- CompTIA CertMasterCE. You can learn at your own pace with the CertMaster CE e-learning course. The CertMaster CE is only currently available for the A+ Network+ and Security+ exams.
Renew with Multiple Activities
You can choose to complete multiple activities if you aren’t interested in any of these. This will allow you to get the CEU points that you need.
You can choose to combine these options:
- Earn another CompTIA certification. Different CompTIA exams have a different number CEUs. To meet the requirement, you must pass more than one exam.
- You can earn multiple certifications beyond CompTIA. You don’t have to choose one cert that will earn you many CEUs. Instead, you can choose to earn several certificates. To earn points, you could pass certifications such as the IBM, Cisco, Google or Google Certifications.
- Get training and higher education. CEUs are also available if you attend a webinar, a conference or take a college course.
- Take part in IT industry activities. CEUs can be earned by participating in activities such as mentoring, teaching, writing instructions manuals and being a subject matter expert at a CompTIA Exam Development Workshop.
- Create an article, blog post or book.
- Get related work experience
You should verify the required number of CEUs for each renewal before you make a decision about how to renew your certification. Each CompTIA exam will require a different amount of CEUs.
Submit Your Activities
After you’ve determined how many CEUs are required and completed the activities that will renew your certificate, you have two options to submit them to CompTIA.
- Manual submission Most cases require you to submit the work you have done manually. You could have work experience, a training program, a conference, or published writing. To submit your activities for CompTIA’s CEUs, you will need to log into your CompTIA account.
- Automatic submission – CompTIA will renew your certificates in certain cases, such as when your exam has been updated or when you have obtained a higher-level certification.
Do your research before you submit. This will help you avoid being caught off guard. You may be required to give your name and current job title in order to submit work experience. It is possible that you will need to include the year you are submitting your work experience, the tasks you performed, and the signature of your supervisor.
CompTIA certifications were able to last for a decade ten years ago. CompTIA certs must be renewed every three years. There are many ways to renew your CompTIA certs. All of them include the ability to collect CEUs. CEUs are Continuing Education Units that you earn when you accomplish specific tasks such as obtaining a higher-level certification or college degree, attending a live webcast, or a CompTIA IT certificate.
CompTIA can submit the CEUs you have earned either automatically or manually depending on what type of activity you are involved in. To be able to determine the steps required for recertification, it is a good idea to do some research.