What is the ACSP Certification?
ACSP, which stands for Apple Certified Support Professional, is a certification awarded to those who demonstrate a clear understanding of the Mac OS X platform and its functionality. Additionally, an ACSP certified individual can assist Mac users with Mac OS X functionality, perform basic troubleshooting, and also execute key services.
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In order to receive this certification, one must take the Mac OS X Support Essentials exam, available in different language formats. The most current exam is for the 10.5 OS X version, although there is a 10.6 exam coming soon. To be able to assist with both these different platforms, one must be ACSP certified for both OS X versoins.
Why Pursue an ACSP Certification?
Due to the evolving nature of the IT profession, certified IT professionals will have a greater edge in the job market. Certification also is a good way to break into the IT market for those lacking experience in the profession. Moreover, if you are already familiar with Windows platforms, being able to provide tech support on Apple products indicates cross-platform knowledge.
This will certainly distinguish you from those who possess only the typical Microsoft accreditation. In addition, Apple products are extremely popular and acquiring an ACSP qualification is worth pursuing. As an ACSP certified professional, you get to be up to speed with Apple technology, and differentiate yourself as a knowledgeable and professional support for the Mac OS X platform.
With an ACSP certification, you can also join Apple’s Consultant Network, a way for clients to easily seek professionals for help. When part of the network you can get product discounts and network with other consultants, a huge plus. You will also get the chance to hand out your business card to Apple store customers.
Who Should Pursue the ACSP Certification?
Any IT professional who has good knowledge of Windows platforms and is seeking to increase his or her marketability in cross-platform markets, should pursue such a certification. Mac enthusiasts should also opt for an ACSP Certification. Furthermore, those whose goals revolve around working as full-time professional system administrators or engineer should start with the ACSP certificate and work their way up.
Jobs Available With ACSP Certification
The Apple Certified Support Professional certification allows individuals to work as help desk professionals, technical support providers, technical coordinators, and as power users who provide help and assistance to other Mac OS X users. You can also work to help manage networks.
How Much Does a ACSP Certified Professional Make?
PayScale.com indicates that those with this certificate can expect to make about anywhere from $23,912 to $65,659. For those who already have a job, working as a part time support technician can earn you on average $20.48 per hour, according to the same source.
Future Trends for ACSP Certification
As the ever popular and evolving Mac line of technology expands (as well as iPhones, iPads, and iPods), so does the number of Mac users. As a result, there will indubitably be more customers seeking help and technical support with their devices. IT professionals with ACSP certification will be qualified to fill this increased demand.
Lastly, since the ACSP is the beginning of the certification process for work with Mac OS X platforms, it is definitely a requirement and a good investment should one want to continue on to be a Mac technician or to advance to a professional system administrator position.