Cisco Systems, Inc. is responsible for specializing in communications and networking services as well as products. The company has a reputation for business routing as well as switching products, which are responsible for directing data, voice, and most importantly, video traffic across various networks spread over the entire world. Cisco further offers applications for telepresence, collaboration, and unified communications along with various other services. This helps in completing the solutions for not only the data centers but also cloud management. In order to ensure that each and every IT professional has all the necessary skills and knowledge for supporting the Cisco products as well as solving the technical problems of the customers, the Cisco certification program is crucial. This starts right from the entry-level and moves on to the advanced level, the professional level, the expert level, and the architect level. You need to know about the Cisco certification levels in detail.

Each level of certification is responsible for offering more than one credentials. Obtaining the credentials involve passing more than one certificate examination. For the high-level credentials, candidates need to meet certain other prerequisites as well. The higher levels are responsible for more prerequisites as well as credentials, which are obtained by an individual for meeting the requirements.

The Entry Level Certifications

Cisco primarily has two entry-level certifications, which include the Cisco Certified Entry Networking Technician and the Cisco Certified Technician. No additional prerequisites are needed for obtaining these credentials, but it is crucial that the candidates pass a particular exam for earning the credentials.

The CCENT professionals are responsible for installing, maintaining, and troubleshooting the small networks or a group of the enterprise network. They are also responsible for implementing the basic security of the network. The CCENT credential is an important prerequisite for the associate level CCNA solutions.

A CCT is responsible for working in the diverse customer locations, diagnosing the issues and also repairing and replacing the network related equipment. An individual who has received this kind of certification can also choose from numerous specialty tracks, which is currently known to include Routing and Switching and Data Centre.

The Associate Level Certifications

The associate level certification includes the Cisco Certified Design Associate and the Cisco Certified Network Associate. An individual should pass either one or both the exams for achieving the CCDA or CCNA credential, which is primarily dependent on which track he is going to choose.

The CCNA is responsible for recognizing the basic skills associated with installing, supporting, as well as troubleshooting both the wired as well as the wireless networks. An individual has the option of choosing from several tracks, which include cloud, data center, industrial, Cyber Ops, routing and switching, service provider and wireless, and security. This certificate is necessary for obtaining the professional level CCNP certification. All these solutions tracks normally require one or two examinations.

Cisco created CCDA for identifying individuals who are capable of designing the basic wired as well as wireless networks. They also incorporate voice solutions as well as security. This certification is the prerequisite for a CCDP certification. In order to obtain a CCDA certification, the candidates need to possess a CCIE certification or CCENT certification. He also needs to pass only one additional examination.

The Professional Level Certifications

The professional level credentials are responsible for including two programs, the Cisco Certified Network Professional as well as the Cisco Certified Design Professional. In order to obtain the latter, three certification exams are required and the individual also needs to have both the CCNA routing and switching credential as well as the CCDA. He can also have the Cisco CCDE or CCIE certification.

All the CCNP solutions, except routing and switching, require the candidates to go through four exams. The prerequisites for the CCNP certification include the primary level CCNA credential or a CCIE credential. The CCNP credential will also accept the CCIP credential as an important prerequisite.

The CCNP certification is responsible for recognizing the professionals, who can plan, deploy, as well as troubleshoot both the local and the wide area networks. You can move on to the Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert from this certification.

The CCDP is responsible for designing as well as deploying the scalable networks as well as multilayer switched networks. From this certification, you will have the opportunity of moving to the Cisco Certified Design Expert certification.

The Expert Level Certifications

The expert level credentials from Cisco are responsible for embracing two significant certifications, which are the Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert and also the Cisco Certified Design Expert. They do not impose any prerequisites, but individuals have to pass written exams as well as a strict practical exam for earning these credentials. In the year 2016, Cisco has updated the expert level examination to include the evolving technology domain. According to, this new domain was responsible for 10% of the entire examination score. The topics included network programmability, Cloud, and most importantly, the Internet of Things.

Cisco can also change these topics for reflecting the technologies that are currently emerging. For most of the professionals, achieving a CCIE certification is considered to be the main highlight of their professional careers. The CCDE is responsible for identifying the experts, who are designing infrastructure solutions for the huge enterprise environments.

The Architect Level Certifications

Individuals, who are looking for positions like data center architects or network architects, need to get the Cisco Certified Architect Certification. This is the highest possible level of certification that is offered by Cisco. This credential is responsible for validating all the unique skills of the senior network infrastructure architects, who are capable of planning as well as designing the IT infrastructures, which are based on various business strategies.

In order to get this certification, individuals have to design network solutions for implementing a particular strategy. Then, he needs to appear before the Cisco appointed panel for explaining and defending that particular solution.


It does not matter if you are following the path of network designing or network operations; all the above-mentioned Cisco certifications have been positioned in a unique manner for assisting the IT professionals to fulfill the different Cisco related career roles. Regardless of the career path that you are choosing, you will get plenty of job opportunities.

Author Bio –

Kristen Smith is a blogger and content writer who write many articles on Social Media and Technology. She enjoys reading a new thing on the internet. She spends a lot of time on social media.