comptia certification path

Navigating The CompTIA Certification Path: Your Guide To IT Career Success

Looking to navigate the CompTIA certification path? Our guide provides an overview of the different certifications offered by CompTIA, including the CompTIA A+, Network+, Security+, and more. Whether you’re new to IT or a seasoned professional, with this guide,  IT Exams will help you understand the requirements, benefits, and career opportunities associated with the CompTIA […]

April 28, 2023

Looking to navigate the CompTIA certification path? Our guide provides an overview of the different certifications offered by CompTIA, including the CompTIA A+, Network+, Security+, and more. Whether you’re new to IT or a seasoned professional, with this guide,  IT Exams will help you understand the requirements, benefits, and career opportunities associated with the CompTIA certification path.

What Is A CompTIA Certification? 

comptia certification path

A CompTIA certification is one of the most well-known in the IT business, and it is meant to educate and upskill IT specialists all over the country in order to assure success while maintaining and managing IT systems. The certificates are divided into four categories based on skill set: Core, Infrastructure, Cybersecurity, and Professional.

The CompTIA A+ is a famous entry-level certification produced by IT industry experts for PC repair technicians. It is acquired by completing two examinations and validates abilities required for most entry-level IT positions. It includes a wide variety of IT specialist expertise, such as customizing, operating, installing, and servicing personal computers. The credential is sponsored by the Computing Technology Industry Association and is relevant to numerous IT job roles nowadays that can be found on Field Engineer. The certification equips applicants to address problems in a wide range of areas such as mobile services, networking, operating systems, and security.

How To Get Comptia Certifications? 

comptia certification path

The following are the four steps to acquiring a CompTIA Certification, including the option of taking the test online or in person.

Step 1 – First, you must select your certification. It is helpful to explore the many IT certifications available in order to choose the one that best suits your interests and coincides with your future professional aspirations.

Step 2 – Before you begin training, you should familiarize yourself with your test and have a better grasp of the certification as a whole. Studying exam objectives and practicing test questions is a wonderful method to acquire a sense of the sorts of subjects and questions that will be addressed.

Step 3 – You may now begin studying and training for your certification. You have the opportunity to construct a learning experience that is best suited to your learning style with a broad choice of learning materials ranging from traditional study guides to online training, interactive laboratories, and online test prep.

Step 4 – After you’ve studied and feel prepared, register for and take your test. If you choose to take your exam online, you will have the extra benefit and convenience of selecting a quiet and safe place of your choice.

Other professional credentials include:

  • CompTIA Project+ Certification
  • CompTIA Cloud Essentials certification
  • CompTIA CTT+ Certification

CompTIA Certification Career Path

CompTIA certifications are distinguished mostly by IT sectors and skill sets. Some are designed for those with rudimentary computing skills. Others are designed for seasoned experts with years of expertise.

Exams for certification can be taken in any sequence. CompTIA does, however, advise beginning with branches that confirm core knowledge before progressing to certifications that strengthen your abilities in particular IT industries.

Let’s take a look at CompTIA’s four certification programs: Core, Infrastructure, Cybersecurity, and Professional.

Core Certifications

Core certifications encompass the fundamentals of the IT sector, concentrating on topics such as, but not limited to:

  • Computer hardware
  • Computer software
  • Operating systems
  • Networking
  • Cloud computing
  • Mobile devices
  • IT security

The examinations in the Core certification program are as follows:

comptia certification path


This entry-level test confirms an understanding of information technology fundamentals. It introduces fundamental topics such as operating systems, common software packages, online browsing, and computer security. CompTIA ITF+, which is designed for persons with little to no experience, may be beneficial in assessing whether a job in IT is suited for you.

It should be mentioned that if you are comfortable generating your own computer setups, basic troubleshooting, configuring a home router or new cell phone, installing and uninstalling software, and upgrading drivers, you may probably avoid this certification.

CompTIA A+

The following certification goes beyond the essentials. It goes on the fundamentals of the Windows operating system, peripheral devices, network architecture, client-side virtualization, and secure web navigation.

While it sticks to the fundamentals, CompTIA A+ delves into the aforementioned topics in sufficient depth to make it one of the most sought-after certifications among beginners. Because of its emphasis on hardware and operating systems, it is in high demand for technical support roles and those requiring hardware installation.

Check out our CompTIA A+ Cheat Sheet if you’re studying for this certification. This certification involves the completion of two different tests, so prepare appropriately.

A CompTIA A+ certification will assist you in obtaining entry-level employment in the IT industry. These are usually support positions like:

  • Technical support agent: Installs hardware and software, monitor IT systems and networks, answers technical-related customer inquiries, assesses new technologies, and does other activities to keep operations operating smoothly.
  • Field service engineer: Installs and maintains IT-related equipment. Field service engineers must have both technical capabilities and people skills since they engage with customers on a daily basis.
  • Data support technician: A person who collects, stores, manages, retrieves, and recovers information. Data support technicians, who are valued for their ability to maintain an organization’s most valuable asset, are just as crucial as IT managers and senior-level executives.
  • End-user computer technician: Has extensive experience in installing, managing, updating, and repairing desktop PCs and related components. While they may not directly interact with customers, the hands-on duties they perform

CompTIA Network+

This certification focuses on the networking aspect of information technology. It demonstrates your understanding of fundamental networking concepts such as network management, configuration, troubleshooting, and security-related protocols.

There are no eligibility criteria for Network+, however, CompTIA recommends at least nine months of verified IT experience.

The CompTIA Network+ certification might assist you in obtaining entry-level employment in computer networking. These jobs may include:

  • Network administrator: Handles the setup, installation, and maintenance of supporting components, as well as other day-to-day network management activities.
  • Network analyst: A network analyst’s functions and responsibilities overlap with network administration in many ways. They may, however, be expected to utilize analytical insights to solve challenges on the business side as well as in the IT environment. Working with hardware manufacturers and acquiring new gear and software are examples of this.
  • Network support specialist: Provides maintenance and support services to improve the network’s health and security. Duties may include everything from answering customer service questions to putting in place measures to protect the network from malware and other dangers.

CompTIA Security+

This certification is appropriate for those interested in a career in cyber security. You’ll get experience detecting and responding to security assaults, monitoring the network for possible threats, evaluating existing security measures, and providing insights to assist firms to improve their security efforts.

Cyber security is essential in all aspects of information technology. As a result, the CompTIA Security+ certification can help you secure jobs in a variety of IT fields, including but not limited to:

  • Cyber security technician: Uses problem-solving skills throughout the IT ecosystem to boost security. They may be in charge of troubleshooting hardware, software, network infrastructure, and other components that, if not handled promptly, might threaten security.
  • Cyber security consultant: Provides specialist advice to enterprises in order to safeguard them from information security dangers. Their duties may include everything from evaluating and validating existing security procedures to creating and implementing security solutions.
  • Systems administrator: Oversees application installs, hardware and software maintenance, user account management, and system upgrades, all of which have an underlying security component.

Because the material builds on enterprise networking fundamentals, a Network+ or equivalent knowledge level is strongly recommended before pursuing this certification. If you’re studying for this certification, check out our free Security+ Exam Cheat Sheet and 10 exam-passing recommendations.

The most thorough CompTIA certification path is to take the aforementioned tests in the sequence listed above. You may also base your selection on your abilities, ambitions, and stage in your personal journey.

Infrastructure Certifications

comptia certification path

Infrastructure is the foundation of every business that relies on information technology. To guarantee that the organization’s IT environment continues to function on all cylinders, data centers, network operations, and everything that goes into them requires a mix of set standards, efficient procedures, and skilled professionals.

The CompTIA Infrastructure certification route consists of the following certifications:


CompTIA Linux+

Linux is the server operating system king. According to statistics, Linux powers around 96 percent of the top one million web servers. Linux powers Android phones, smart-home and IoT devices, and many other IT infrastructure components.

Linux+ certifies the foundations of the world’s most versatile operating system and is recommended for persons with at least 12 months of Linux administration experience. As previously stated, we are discussing the abilities and expertise of someone who has worked with Linux for 12 months rather than someone with proven professional experience. You will get there via study and practice.

The test covers day-to-day maintenance, configuration, security, and how to operate the system using command line utilities, as well as deploying and configuring multiple Linux distributions.

According to LightCast research cited by Dice, Linux is one of the fundamental skills required to land a job in the cybersecurity profession. A CompTIA Linux+ certification can also assist you in obtaining employment in the following positions:

  • Linux system administrator: Manages Linux-based systems and servers. Setting system configurations, installing software libraries, maintaining user roles, and assessing security processes are all part of the job.
  • A Linux engineer handles conceptual factors such as creating software and helping other departments in implementing system solutions in addition to administration. Because of these added duties, most businesses need a degree in computer science as well as an extensive understanding of the Linux platform.
  • Linux database engineer: Creates and manages databases for use with the Linux operating system. As an engineer, you are in charge of assigning and managing storage needs, improving performance, monitoring use for compliance with defined security and recovery policies, and documenting all database-related operations.

CompTIA Server+

Server+ is designed for IT professionals that want to grasp server administration. It looks into server management, storage, and networking, as well as troubleshooting, security, and disaster recovery.

Because this is an advanced-level certification, it is strongly advised that you have at least 18 months of server administration experience before taking the exam.

CompTIA also suggests taking the A+ CompTIA test, which is an unofficial extension of that certification program. We both tend to agree.

CompTIA Server+ validates your knowledge and abilities in dealing with IT at the core of the infrastructure. Obtaining a certification can help you land a job in a variety of fields, including:

  • Server administrator: oversees the server’s hardware and software. A server administrator is in charge of deploying software, troubleshooting technical issues, and enforcing security standards.
  • Data center technician: Provides hands-on help in a data center facility. Because the role entails responsibilities other than server administration, a Bachelor’s degree in computer science or engineering is typically required.

CompTIA Cloud+

This test is designed for IT professionals who wish to expand their horizons in the rapidly expanding cloud computing field. You’ll be able to demonstrate a fundamental understanding of the industry and its different market areas, as well as the technologies and solutions designed to help it function as efficiently and securely as possible.

The cloud is a complicated notion that relies on several components cooperating. As a result, the CompTIA Cloud+ certification requirements are more complex than others. You will, for example, be quizzed on the major cloud providers (Azure, AWS, and Google Cloud) as well as other virtualization technologies.

Prior to taking the test, CompTIA recommends at least two to three years of hands-on experience in network or system administration, as well as a solid grasp of the key topics of its Network+ or Server+ certifications.

In our view, a networking background can be beneficial, but cloud computing is a self-contained subject in many aspects. Time would be better spent experimenting with AWS or Azure services to have a better understanding of what cloud technology can do.

Cloud+ can improve your employment eligibility for occupations such as, but not limited to:

  • Cloud specialist: Uses their experience to assist enterprises in making the move to a cloud computing environment. Duties include anything from selecting an appropriate platform to actively maintaining data across numerous cloud environments.
  • Cloud architect: Uses creativity and technical expertise to design bespoke cloud infrastructures. A cloud engineer may create cloud-support software or assist in the development of disaster recovery solutions that support business continuity plans.

Starting with Linux+, followed by Server+ and Cloud+, is a good CompTIA certification route if you are just starting out in IT infrastructure.

Cyber Security Certifications

In this stream, CompTIA examines several aspects of IT security. The curriculum contains three tests that cover the offensive, defensive, and managerial sides of security. It is based on ideas that blend fundamental knowledge and technical abilities with forward-thinking techniques.

comptia certification path

CompTIA PenTest+

The PenTest+ test approaches cyber security from an aggressive standpoint. It is designed for aspiring ethical hackers who want to learn the art of penetration testing. You will leave with the tools needed to detect and close cyber security weaknesses before they are exploited.

While there are no precise requirements, CompTIA recommends three to four years of expertise in IT security. We feel that studying test content and playing with hacking labs will suffice.

The PenTest+ exam expands on the concepts covered in CompTIA Security+ by requiring you to show your knowledge in a variety of scenarios. On this issue, we agree with CompTIA: Security+ provides a good basis for moving on to this certification.

PenTest+ can assist you in securing jobs common to penetration testers and security auditors. Here are several examples:

  • Junior penetration tester: Evaluate the security of a network, website, or other assets by simulating attacks on them and offering remediation and security solutions.
  • IT security analyst: Assesses current security posture to identify weaknesses and offer changes.


The CompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+) exam focuses on the complex aspect of information security to emphasize your abilities. It goes into the use of intrusion detection systems to identify threats, as well as the significance of data analytics in analyzing malevolent behavior and forecasting assaults.

CySA+, like PenTest+, has no qualifications, however, CompTIA recommends three to four years of expertise in the IT security industry. As with the Pentest+, we recommend that you have Security+ and spend time studying strong study materials.

CySA+ can lead to a variety of job prospects, including:

  • Analyst for the Security Operations Center (SOC): Monitors the IT infrastructure for potential cyber security threats. A SOC analyst is among the first to respond to an attack, taking on tasks such as threat assessment, risk management and mitigation, and developing plans to assist prevent future assaults.
  • IT Security Engineer: Uses their imagination and talents to create a safe IT environment. Designing security solutions, developing corporate security policies, and managing compliance or legal challenges affecting IT security are all possible responsibilities.

CompTIA CASP+ (CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner)

The CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP+) exam is designed for professionals who want to confirm their expert-level expertise. It delves into advanced corporate security subjects such as architecture, encryption, systems integration, and incident response.

CASP+ is suggested for professionals with at least 10 years of IT expertise and at least five years of hands-on experience in information security. This level of expertise is required since the exam has both multiple-choice and performance-based questions that will assess your ability to deal with security challenges in a real-world situation.

In another post, we compare CISSP with CASP+, delving deeper into the certification and suggested background.

CASP+ credential holders are in great demand for roles such as:

  • IT security risk analyst: Predicts the possibility of a security breach through critical thinking and actionable insights. Monitoring the larger threat landscape for trends, analyzing the network for potential vulnerabilities, and developing organizational security standards are all part of the job.
  • Manager of the Security Operations Center (SOC): The security operations team is led by a SOC manager. In addition to hiring, training, and recruiting team members, they are in charge of all responsibilities connected to threat monitoring and management, responding to security occurrences, and enabling communication.

The Cyber Security certificates reflect specific fields of information security. You can take the examinations in the sequence listed above, or you can consider your experience and goals.

Additional Professional Certifications

comptia certification path

CompTIA provides a range of professional certifications tailored to certain IT areas. These tests include the following:

CompTIA Project+

Project+ is designed for project managers and covers the whole project lifecycle, from communicating with team members to documenting and managing resources. You will demonstrate your understanding of the function of project management in managing risks, time, money, and other elements required to streamline projects in diverse fields of information technology.

CompTIA recommended that you have at least six to twelve months of project management experience in an IT context. After passing the exam, you will be qualified for a variety of positions, including but not limited to:

  • Junior project manager: Coordinates and supervises the basic parts of IT projects. Project planning, training project team members, and maintaining contact with other departments are all responsibilities to guarantee that projects are finished on schedule.
  • Project manager: In charge of guiding the team through the completion of IT projects. While the role is similar to that of a project manager, project leads place a greater emphasis on direct communication with team members and the promotion of a positive work environment.
  • Project control analyst: Develops project-specific rules for budgeting, planning, coordination, and financial analysis, among other things. Project control analysts frequently collaborate with project managers and team leaders.


The Certified Technical Trainer test is intended for professionals looking for accredited certification in their field. It confirms that you are familiar with the tools and procedures required to pass on your knowledge to others in organized learning situations. It is open to all experience levels. It ensures that you are fully prepared to train, from preparation and presentation through facilitation and assessment.

The greatest brands in IT have adopted CTT+. Microsoft, IBM, Cisco, and Adobe are among the IT behemoths that consider credential holders qualified to manage their own training programs.

Earning a CTT+ certification can lead to employment prospects in both virtual and conventional learning contexts. These jobs may include:

  • Instructors of technical training: Teach IT-related programs aimed to assist learners gain particular knowledge and abilities.
  • Developer of training programs: Uses their expertise and abilities to create a curriculum that allows instructors to give training materials to students.
  • Training consultants: use their skills to assist firms in optimizing their training activities. Training consultants may create new learning programs, analyze current programs, or assess how such programs match company goals.

CompTIA Cloud Essentials+

This test, as the name implies, covers the foundations of cloud computing. It goes into market offers, architecture, networking, security, and other cloud-related issues.

While there are no CompTIA prerequisites for the Cloud Essentials+ test, it is beneficial to have six to twelve months of experience working in an IT setting before taking the exam.

Cloud Essentials+ is suitable for anybody searching for a job in the rapidly expanding cloud computing area. This certification can lead to professions such as, but not limited to:

  • Systems architect: Creates technologies and standards for systems in complicated IT settings. A systems architect’s analytical and hands-on design knowledge may assist both traditional and cloud-based setups.
  • Senior network administrator: In charge of handling the day-to-day chores that keep the network running smoothly. Their professional understanding of fundamental and advanced networking principles often necessitates more proven experience than that of a network manager.

Professional Certifications from CompTIA span specific topics with no clear link. We propose that you take these examinations depending on your own experience and goals.

Stackable Certifications


CompTIA supports stacking certificates, which when combined produce a new credential. These hybrid certifications offer considerable value to people wishing to demonstrate a variety of abilities in the ever-changing IT field.

In terms of stackable credentials, the CompTIA certification route is divided into two fundamental categories: Infrastructure and Cyber Security. The certificates in these categories, which are distinguished by Specialist, Professional, and Expert experience levels, can be combined to form the following stacks:



Cyber Security2

Whether you want to work in IT infrastructure or cyber security, CompTIA stacking certifications will help you confirm your adaptability and open up more job prospects than a single certification can.

Choosing the Right Path

At first sight, the multitude of alternatives available might make the CompTIA certification path appear overwhelming. You might find consolation in the idea that there is no incorrect way to begin the certification process. The optimal course of action is determined by your skill set, experience, and objectives as an IT expert.

How Much Can You Earn After A CompTIA Certification? 

comptia certification path

When studying wages and focusing your career on certain job titles with a CompTIA certification, keep in mind that you may notice a variation in earnings for the same profession since some organizations and areas pay more than others.

Companies that pay more may also have higher expectations in terms of experience or responsibility. As a result, there is a range of conceivable pay for each given job title, as well as the reality of mean salary percentiles.

  • $54,500 for an IT support expert
  • $46,000 for a field service technician
  • $60,000 for a desktop support analyst
  • $45,000 for a Help desk tier 2 support

Is A Comptia Certification Worth It?

A CompTIA certification is absolutely worth it, as it can help you gain entry-level positions with the A+ and more prominent industry roles with the extra industry-specific certifications that are available. A CompTIA certification, regardless of the one you pick, will provide you with core IT knowledge and help you to secure bigger and better responsibilities, allowing you to advance in your IT career.

CompTIA certifications are well-respected and recognized in the IT sector, and they are an excellent way to advance in your profession and climb up the ladder. Providing you with a world of information, any CompTIA certification, or a combination of more than one, will make you useful to any organization and will undoubtedly set you apart from competitors.


comptia certification path

Final Words

In conclusion, a CompTIA certification can be a valuable asset to your IT career. It can help you stand out in the job market, demonstrate your knowledge and skills to employers, and potentially lead to higher salaries and job opportunities. By understanding the different CompTIA certification paths and choosing the right one for your career goals, you can set yourself up for success in the IT industry. Remember to keep learning and stay up-to-date with the latest technology trends to continue advancing your career. Good luck on your CompTIA certification journey!