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New Cisco cert calls out to voice pros

Cisco Systems has launched what it calls its most comprehensive IP telephony certification to date, aiming to cover all the skills IT pros need to implement, monitor and troubleshoot IP telephony systems.

Cisco Systems Inc. has unveiled its latest professional-level certification, the Cisco Certified Voice Professional (CCVP).

CCVP is aimed at IT professionals responsible for deploying and maintaining Internet Protocol telephony systems and incorporates several of Cisco's preexisting specialist-level IP telephony certifications.

Before creating this certification, San Jose, Calif.-based Cisco offered several segmented voice certifications, said Don Field, senior manager for Cisco's certifications. Those certs focused on specific skill sets required for various stages of the IP telephony lifecycle, such as the Cisco IP Telephony Design Specialist and the Cisco IP Telephony Support Specialist certifications.

But as more enterprises using Cisco gear have recently made the leap to VoIP, Field said the company determined that now was the time to launch a more comprehensive approach to voice certification.

That is what Cisco believes it has done with the CCVP cert, which it said covers the full range of skills IT professionals need to successfully implement, monitor and troubleshoot IP telephony systems.

The CCVP curriculum focuses on Cisco CallManager call-processing systems, quality of service, gateways, gatekeepers, IP phones, and voice applications and utilities on Cisco routers and Cisco Catalyst switches.

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To achieve the CCVP certification, a candidate must take and pass five separate exams: Quality of Service (exam number 642-642), Cisco Voice over IP (642-432), IP Telephony Troubleshooting (642-425), Cisco IP Telephony (642-444), and Gateway/Gatekeeper (642-452). The first four are currently associated with individual Cisco specialist-level certifications, with only the Gateway/Gatekeeper requiring a new exam.

Cisco also offers corresponding training courses for all but the Gateway/Gatekeeper exam. The company expects to launch a course for the Gateway/Gatekeeper exam by July of this year.

As with all of Cisco's certifications, the CCVP certification exams are given in a proctored environment and are available at Thomson Prometric and Pearson VUE test centers throughout the U.S.

For now, Field said the company feels that with the CCVP, it has rounded out its IP telephony certifications. Though it does not currently have any others in the works, Field said Cisco will "look to respond to what's needed in the marketplace in the future."

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