News Release

Cisco Introduces CCNA Program Enhancements

CCNA Offers New Exams for Those Entering Networking Field
Jun 24, 2003

ORLANDO, Florida, June 24, 2003 - Cisco Systems, Inc. ® announced today three enhancements to the CCNA® (Cisco Certified Network Associate) Program at Networkers 2003 in Orlando, Florida. As the entry-level certification of the Cisco Career Certifications Program, CCNA represents a strong foundation and understanding of IP networking and troubleshooting. The enhancements are based on customer feedback, the need for an accessible entry path into the certifications and upgrades to the exam for addressing emerging networking technologies.

The enhancements include a new two-step exam path for new candidates entering the networking field, revisions to the existing CCNA exam and the option for candidates to apply one of the new exams for CCNA recertification.

A Two-Step Approach:

The two-step approach introduced in the CCNA program offers candidates the ability to certify at their own pace and skill levels. The two step approach does not replace the existing one exam option, but enables candidates to achieve the certification in two stages by passing a new Introduction to Cisco Networking Technologies (INTRO) exam and a new Interconnecting Cisco Network Devices (ICND) exam to achieve CCNA certification.

"Given the popularity and success of the CCNA program, we continue to enhance CCNA to meet our customers needs through skills assessment aimed at today's rapidly-evolving job requirements," said Don Field, senior manager, Internet Learning Solutions Group, Cisco Systems, Inc. "The two-step approach offers those new to the networking field the option to test their networking knowledge in stages."

The two-certification paths for CCNA include:

    - Passing the CCNA 640-801 exam (available on June 30, 2003); or
    - Passing the INTRO 640-821 exam (currently as beta exam 641-821) and ICND 640-811 exam (available on June 30, 2003). Each exam will be valid for three years for the candidate from the date of passing.

Revisions to the CCNA content:

The revised CCNA 640-801 exam replaces existing CCNA 640-607 exam and is designed to better assess the networking skills of entry level candidates. CCNA curriculum includes understanding the functions and operations of local area networks (LAN), Cisco IOS fundamentals, wide area networks (WAN), virtual private networks (VPN), and Storage Area Networks (SAN). Other topics covered in the CCNA curriculum are IP Addressing, Cisco Command Line Interface (CLI), Routing and Switching technologies and protocols. CCNA certification content, technology and testing remains focused on real-world skills assessment with labs and exam simulations being key components of CCNA courses and exams.


With the introduction of our new exams, we now offer an additional way for those who hold a CCNA to recertify. The new ICND exam now qualifies for recertification, providing a new option for CCNA certified individuals. CCNA certifications are valid for three years. To re-certify, candidates can also pass the new ICND 640-811 exam, the current CCNA exam, or any exam at the Professional or Cisco Qualified Specialist level bearing the prefix 642. The existing CCNA 640-607 exam will retire on September 30, 2003.

New Training and Availability:

The recommended training for the CCNA certification is available from a global network of Cisco Learning Partners and the Partner E-Learning Connection. Training may be purchased via Cisco Learning Credits and are redeemable at Cisco Learning Partner locations worldwide. VUE and Prometric offer Cisco certification exams at locations worldwide.

For training and certification information, visit
For Cisco Learning Credits information, visit