Steps to Success: How to Ace the CompTIA Security+ Training

While everyone’s path to passing CompTIA Security+ Training is unique, the following is a series of steps that will position you for the greatest chance of success. Before you dive in, make sure to check out part one, a top-level overview introduction to the CompTIA Security+ Training.

Step 1: Survey and Learn About the Topics Covered on the Test

Before you can ace a test, you have to become familiar with what’s on it. Approximately half the test will address:

Security threats

Attacks

Vulnerabilities

Technologies

Crypto-malware

Stego-malware

Ransomware

RATs

APTs

Zero-days

Malware-as-a-Service

You would be wise to assume that mastery of these topics would be a good place to start.

CERT NEWS: CompTIA Security+ SY0-501 is Coming

Step 2: Create a Study Plan

Disciplined preparation requires a written study plan. With a study plan, you can realistically and reasonably cordon off chunks of time to dedicate to preparing for the test so as not to interfere with work or family time. The study plan should include:

Baseline assessment of your current knowledge and expertise

Key milestones in terms of topic mastery

Practice score threshold goals

Financial resources available to support your preparation

Identification of the preparation and training methods that best suit your learning style

Actual test date or dates

This Study Plan should be designed with an honest assessment of your own mastery of topics as outlined in Step 1 above.

take the it certification exam Step 3: Become Familiar with the Structure of the Test

CompTIA’s site provides a slew of helpful information regarding the Security+ exam. In addition to offering links to training providers, test resources, exam topics, practice questions and study materials, the site also goes into detail with respect to the types of questions posed, time management, and prerequisites. The more you know what to expect, the less surprised you will be on the day of the actual test.

Step 4: Take a Few Practice Tests

For many, test-taking last reared its ugly head with college entrance exams, either SATs or ACTs. If this is the case for you, or if you still harbor nightmares from that experience, it’s wise to get back in the practice of simulating real-life test-taking environments, to eliminate surprises and minimize anxiety.

Importantly,  taking practice tests repeatedly will help reinforce muscle/brain memory with respect to the amount of time you have to answer each question, allowing you the chance to get in a groove and proceed with accuracy and haste.

It’s advised that you take practice exams covering a single domain in clumps so you can demonstrate mastery. This helps to build confidence, easily paving the way to the next domain. After you have mastered each domain, then it’s appropriate to practice full tests so you can piece together all in one unit. You can try CompTIA Security+ Training practice questions to prepare.

Regardless of your level of expertise, keep your early expectations in check. It’s not uncommon for many to struggle in the early stages of preparation only to rally near the end. Again, discipline and practice are essential.

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