Credentials: Database Certification

SAN MATEO (07/17/2000) - Database certifications are vendor-specific, so credentials are issued by the software companies. As Oracle Corp. grows in popularity in the enterprise, DBA certifications from Sybase Inc. and Informix Corp. have become nearly extinct.

The basics

Oracle Certified Professional (OCP) - As part of the OCP program, Oracle offers a number of tracks, including Oracle8 DBA, Oracle8i DBA, and Oracle8 DBO certifications.

Cost: $125 per exam; each of the DBA certifications includes five exams.

Sample exam topics: Network, database administration; backup and recovery; performance tuningDetails: IT testing company Prometric administers the exams, which range from 60 to 80 questions and are 90 or 120 minutes in length.

Web: education.oracle.com/certification/index.htmlMicrosoft Certified Database Administrator (MCDBA) - This credential is appropriate for IT professionals who implement and administer Microsoft SQL Server databases. The Windows 2000 MCDBA track is replacing the Windows NT tracks.

Cost: US$100 per exam; MCDBAs are required to pass three core exams and one elective exam.

Sample exam topics: Installing and administering Microsoft Windows 2000 Server and SQL Server, database design and implementationDetails: Exams are administered by Prometric and Virtual University Enterprises. Windows NT 4.0 exams will retire December 31, 2000, but MCDBAs certified in the Windows NT 4.0 track will remain certified until December 31, 2001.

Web: www.microsoft.com/trainingandservicesSybase and Informix - Currently, Sybase offers DBA-related exams only outside of North America. The Informix Certified Database Specialist certification will be awarded through August 31, 2000, and outside of North America through January 1, 2001.

Vital statistics

Percent of IT professionals who reported holding a database certification, among those with at least one certification:

* Total - 9.5 percent *Senior management - 8.6 percent *Middle management - 8.3 percent *Staff - 11.8 percent *Contractor - 5.2 percentWeb resourcesAnimated Learning - www.animatedlearning.comThis site offers online and CD-based training for Oracle's Certified Professional exams.

About.com's Computer Certification - certification.about.comWeb information portal About.com offers information and resources on IT certifications, including several resources related to database credentials.

SOURCE: 2000 INFOWORLD COMPENSATION SURVEY.

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