News Release

Cisco Introduces Simulation Based Training and Exams to Career Certifications Program

SAN JOSE, Calif., March 12, 2002 - Cisco Systems, Inc.., the
Mar 12, 2002

SAN JOSE, Calif., March 12, 2002 - Cisco Systems, Inc.., the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet, today announced the introduction of simulation-based exams to its career certifications program beginning with the CCNA. (Cisco Certified Network Associate) exam and courses.

With the adoption of simulations in certification training and exams, Cisco complements a growing trend in the IT industry to validate hands-on skills in addition to knowledge. Approximating the hands-on testing methodology of the CCIE. (Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert) lab exam - recognized in the industry as one of the most rigorous IT certification exams - the new CCNA exam with simulations models real-life networking scenarios for test takers by requiring them to apply troubleshooting and problem-solving skills to address realistic networking problems. Using simulations in exams will provide a more comprehensive measurement of the skill and knowledge level of certified individuals.

"At Cisco, we have an ongoing commitment to finding ways of ensuring that learning is relevant, skills-based and delivers value to our employees, customers, and channel partners," said Tom Kelly, vice president, Internet Learning Solutions Group, Cisco Systems. "Cisco certified professionals are already considered among the 'best of the best' in networking technologies in the industry. Adding simulations to our career certification program will give individuals, employers and the industry as a whole greater confidence in the competence of certified individuals."

On simulation-based exams, in addition to standard multiple choice and fill-in response questions, candidates will also be required to perform tasks on simulated Cisco networking devices. The simulations are designed to measure a candidate's ability to execute tasks appropriate to the level of certification. Because the scenarios used in simulations provide a more realistic environment, they are better able to measure degree of knowledge and skill; for example, that a candidate can complete a task with the right commands, in the right order, and understands when the task is complete.

"Simulations are a good example of using technology to more accurately assess what an individual can do," said Kevin Warner, senior director of marketing, Worldwide Education, Cisco Systems. "Continuous improvement of the exams will ensure that employers and employees continue to rely on Cisco certifications to meet the demand for technical skills in networking."

Training and Exam Availability

The simulations are introduced as part of the CCNA certification training and exam beginning March 12, 2002 and will be added to other Cisco certification exams and recommended courses over time.

Cisco recommended training is only available through Cisco authorized providers. Authorized Cisco Learning Partners with Cisco certified instructors provide the recommended courses with new simulations to prepare candidates for the exams. The recommended preparation for the CCNA exam is also available through the Cisco Networking AcademyTM Program in high schools, colleges, technical schools and other educational programs. Virtual University Enterprises (VUE) and Prometric offer Cisco certification exams at locations worldwide.