To supply ITs demand for qualified professionals, Microsoft is committed to improving its training program for trainers.
To supply IT’s demand for qualified professionals, Microsoft is committed to improving its training program for trainers.
- By Steve Willett
When you commit to gaining Microsoft certification, you
make a serious investment of time and money that will
reap dividends for you and your organization. To realize
those benefits, Microsoft commits to providing you with
the training you need, through our channel, to gain meaningful
certification. So, how are we doing?
The question is more important than ever, because the
demand for Microsoft certification is increasing dramatically.
That gives us the added challenge of increasing the number
of Microsoft Certified Trainers (MCTs) worldwide while
maintaining trainer quality. The number of trainers has
more than doubled recently, to more than 14,000 worldwide,
and we believe weve maintained a standard of quality
in the process.
MCTs must meet a variety of Microsoft criteria before
they can instruct in the classroom. First, MCTs must obtain
certification in the courses they are to teach. But thats
just the start, because qualified training requires both
technical expertise and the ability to convey information
to technology professionals. MCTs are required to receive
Microsoft-approved training in technical instructional
And we do more. Under our trainer preparation
program, master trainers from around the world attend
in-depth sessions at the Microsoft campus on the latest
products and technologiesfrom Microsoft Windows
NT Server 5.0 to Visual Studio 6.0.
Far from being limited to abstract presentations, these
master trainers participate in detailed seminars with
Microsoft product managers and engineers, and with educators
and writers who create Microsoft courseware for the corresponding
examsin essence, they have direct access to the
experts. These master trainers then return to their countries
or regions to train the trainers who eventually train
Our Microsoft Certified Trainer program continues to
evolve as the needs of our trainers and certified professionals
evolve. Instructor-led training will remain central to
the certification process. A recent Gartner Group study,
for example, showed that instructor-led training is the
most used form of training chosen by IT decision-makers.
But this will change. For example, instructor-led training
will integrate into a hybrid that incorporatesbut
is not replaced byonline instruction. For another,
MCTs will take an active role in customizing courseware
to meet company- or job-specific needs. In addition, MCTs
will participate more actively in new training formats,
such as scenario-based training, in contrast to product-based
To evolve with these needs, well continue to expand
our trainer preparation efforts. Were sponsoring
more training activities at our Redmond campus. Were
enhancing the MCT Web site with new resources and building
an online community that allows MCTs to share best practices
and insights. Were committed to providing MCTs with
the resources and support they need to make classroom
instruction successful. And, you can be assured that if
you enhance your career by becoming an MCT, the same resources
and support are waiting for you. Visit the MCT Web site
cert/mct for details.
Steve Willett is Microsofts worldwide program manager for the Microsoft Certified Trainer Program.