Computing Technology Industry Association
Abbreviation CompTIA
Motto "Advancing the Global IT Industry"
Formation January 1, 1982; 35 years ago (1982-01-01)
Type Non-profit
Headquarters 3500 Lacey Road
Suite 100
Downers Grove, Illinois 60515
Region served
$60 million[1]

The Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA), a non-profit trade association, issues professional certifications for the information technology (IT) industry. It is considered one of the IT industry's top trade associations.[2] Based in Downers Grove, Illinois, CompTIA issues vendor-neutral professional certification in over 120 countries. The organization releases over 50 industry studies annually to track industry trends and changes. Over 2.2 million people have earned CompTIA certifications since the association was established.[1]


CompTIA was created in 1982 as the Association of Better Computer Dealers (ABCD).[3][4] ABCD later changed its name to the Computing Technology Industry Association.[5]

In 2010, CompTIA moved into its world headquarters in Downers Grove, Illinois. The building was designed to meet LEED CI Certification standards.[6]

The CompTIA portal moved to a hybrid version of the open-access model in April 2014 with exclusive content for due-paying members.[7][8] The move expanded the organization's reach to engage a broader, more diverse set of members and within a year, CompTIA's membership grew from 2,050 members to more than 50,000 in 2015.[9] By the close of 2016, the organization boasted more than 100,000 members worldwide.

CompTIA launched the Dream IT program in 2014 to provide resources for girls and women in the United States interested in the IT industry. In October 2015, the program was expanded into the UK.[10]

Skillsboost, CompTIA's online resource for schools, was launched in June 2015. It contained resources for students, parents and teachers to promote the importance of computer skills.[11][12] CompTIA held its first annual ChannelCon Vendor Summit in 2015. The Vendor Summit is exclusive to people attending ChannelCon, the industry's premier conference for collaboration, education and networking. It addresses issues within the IT industry.[13]

In January 2017, CompTIA launched an IT professional association built on its acquisition of the Association of Information Technology Professionals.[14][15]


CompTIA administers its vendor-neutral certification exams through Pearson VUE testing centers.

Basic certification

The CompTIA "IT Fundamentals" certification covers foundational IT concepts, basic IT literacy, and terminology and concepts of the IT industry. It is considered the first step toward the A+ certification.[16]

Professional level certifications

The CompTIA A+ Logo

CompTIA's "A+" certification earned accreditation from the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) in 2008.[17] A+ certification represents entry-level competency as a computer technician and is a vendor neutral certification that covers various technologies and operating systems.[18] By 2014, over one million people worldwide had earned A+ certification.[19]

The "Cloud Essentials" specialty certification was released in 2011 as CompTIA's first wholly cloud-focused certification. "Cloud+" was released in October 2013 including both cloud computing and virtualization.[20]

In February 2017, CompTIA released its "Cybersecurity Analyst" (CSA+) certification. The certification focuses on cyber-threat detection tools and analysis to identify vulnerabilities and risks. CSA+ was accredited by ANSI.[21][22][23]

CompTIA partnered with the Linux Professional Institute to create the "Linux+" certification, which replaced CompTIA's original Linux+ certification in 2010.[24] The certification indicates of knowledge of Linux operating systems, from their installation and use to the basics of applicable free software and open source licenses.

The Network + Logo used for certified programs, repair shops, contractors, and technicians

The "Network+" certification was accredited by ANSI in 2008.[17] The entry-level certification is used to measure skill as a network technician.[25]

The "Security+" certification also earned its ANSI accreditation in 2008.[17] Security+ is an entry-level vendor-neutral security certification that builds off of the network security knowledge covered by the Network+ certification.[26]

In 2001, CompTIA acquired the "Project+" project management certification program from the Gartner Group. The program, previously called "IT Project+", was updated in 2003.[27][28]

"Server+" is CompTIA's certification that focuses on server-specific hardware and operating systems, IT environments, disaster recovery and business continuity.[29] It was developed in 2001, with updates released in 2005 and 2009.[30]

Master level certification

"Advanced Security Practitioner certification" (CASP) is an entry-level certification intended to follow Security+. The CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner certification was accredited by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) on December 13, 2011.[17] The CASP exam will certify that the successful candidate has the technical knowledge and skills required to conceptualize, design, and engineer secure solutions across complex enterprise environments. In March 2013, the Department of Defense approved the certification a baseline certification accepted for Information Assurance Technical Level III, IS Manager Level II and IA Systems Architect and Engineer Levels I and II.[31]

Specialty certifications

"Certified Document Imaging Architect", or "CDIA+", is a certification for competency in document imaging, document management, and enterprise content management.[32]

The "Certified Technical Trainer" or "CTT+" certification is a vendor-neutral certification that is applicable to training professionals in all industries. Originally administered in 2001 through The Chauncey Institute, the CTT program was acquired by CompTIA and renamed as CTT+. It was created through a collaboration of the Information Technology Training Association, Inc. (ITTA) and the Computer Education Management Association (CedMA).[33]

The CompTIA "Healthcare IT Technician" certificate focuses on IT in the healthcare industry and is aimed at IT professionals that install and maintain electronic health record systems.[34]

SLED Public Sector Council

The State & Local Government and Education (SLED) division of CompTIA is a consortium of executives from leading technology companies "focused on advancing the interests of the IT industry in the SLED market".[35]


CompTIA established a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation called Creating IT Futures.[36] In 2012, Creating IT Futures worked with the Wounded Warrior Project to provide 5,000 CompTIA certification testing vouchers to injured military veterans.[36]

Certification expiration

Previously, CompTIA marketed its flagship A+, Network+ and Security+ certifications as being valid for a lifetime. In January 2011, CompTIA changed the status of these certifications so that they would expire every three years. Under this proposal, certified individuals would have to re-certify for the exams or pay a yearly maintenance fee for a CEU (Continuing Education Units) system. CompTIA modified the guidelines so that only certificates received after January 1, 2011 would need to be renewed every three years; however, a certain amount of documented hours geared towards use of the certification will automatically renew the certification.[37]

See also


  1. ^ a b c Mark Zonca (August 2016). "CEO Profile - Todd Thibodeaux". Naperville Magazine. 
  2. ^ Peter Fabris. "CompTIA's Update Ready to Install". Sync Magazine. 
  3. ^ Peter H. Gregory, Bill Hughes (April 24, 2015). Getting a Networking Job For Dummies. John Wiley & Sons. 
  4. ^ Computer Concepts Illustrated Intro. Cram101 Textbook Reviews. October 16, 2016. 
  5. ^ "ABCD to CompTIA Explaining the History of CompTIA Security Training". The Art of Science. November 5, 2009. 
  6. ^ "CompTIA: The Computing Technology Industry Association Inc.". The Journal of American Institute of Architects. April 27, 2012. 
  7. ^ "CompTIA Opts for New Open-Access Membership Model: Associations Now". Retrieved . 
  8. ^ "CompTIA adds free open-access option to membership structure". SearchITChannel. Retrieved . 
  9. ^ "From 2,000 to 50,000: Lessons Learned From CompTIA's Open-Access Membership Model". ASAE. Retrieved . 
  10. ^ "CompTIA brings Dream IT programme to UK to inspire girls and create role models". We Are The City. October 26, 2015. 
  11. ^ Ronald Moore-Colyer. "CompTIA launches Skillsboost website to entice more students into IT". V3. 
  12. ^ Joshua Bolkan (June 24, 2015). "CompTIA Launches Online Resource for Students Interested in IT Careers". The Journal. 
  13. ^ "CompTIA ChannelCon 2016 Vendor Summit Examines How To Thrive In The IT Channel". Business Solutions. June 15, 2016. 
  14. ^ Conner Forrest (January 9, 2017). "CompTIA launches professional association to help fill skills gap in IT". TechRepublic. 
  15. ^ Rich Freeman. "CompTIA to Create New Association For IT Professionals". ChannelPro Network. 
  16. ^ "IT Fundamentals Overview". IT Pro TV. 
  17. ^ a b c d "Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA)". Retrieved . 
  18. ^ "What is the CompTIA A+ certification". Indiana University. 
  19. ^ "One in a million: CompTIA A+ passes certification milestone". Certification Magazine. October 21, 2014. 
  20. ^ Ed Tittel, Mary Kyle (November 17, 2016). "Best Cloud Computing Certifications For 2017". Tom's IT Pro. 
  21. ^ Tara Seals (February 20, 2017). "CompTIA Unveils Cyberanalyst Certification". InfoSecurity. 
  22. ^ Simon Quicke (February 20, 2017). "CompTIA extends security certification coverage". Computer Weekly. 
  23. ^ Sara Barker (February 21, 2017). "CompTIA zeroes in on behavioural analytics with new global security certification". Security Brief. 
  24. ^ Ed Tittel, Mary Kyle (November 21, 2016). "Best Linux Certifications For 2017". Tom's IT Pro. 
  25. ^ "CompTIA A+ Certification vs. Network+ Certification". Vista College. 
  26. ^ Ed Tittel (December 13, 2016). "Best Information Security Certifications For 2017". Tom's IT Pro. 
  27. ^ "Project+ - combining the technical world and the business world: An Interview with Ayana Nickerson, for CompTIA".  c. August, 2004.
  28. ^ Emmett Dulaney (November 12, 2003). "Seven things to know about the new IT Project+ certification". Tech Republic. 
  29. ^ Ed Tittel, Mary Kyle (December 19, 2016). "Best Computer Hardware Certifications For 2017". Tom's IT Pro. 
  30. ^ "CompTIA Server+ Certification Training". Computer Training Schools. 
  31. ^ Ellen Messmer (March 22, 2013). "DOD accepts CompTIA's Advanced Security Practitioner certification". Network World. 
  32. ^ Steve Rowe (September 1, 2004). "A Look at the CDIA+ Certification". 
  33. ^ Warren E. Wyrostek (February 1, 2002). "Now What? -- Becoming an IT Trainer and The CTT+ Certification". Inform IT. 
  34. ^ Michael Gabriel Sumastre (September 24, 2012). "Get to Know More About CompTIA Healthcare IT Technician Certificate". Pluralsight. 
  35. ^ "The State & Local Government and Education (SLED) Council", Retrieved 2017-04-14.
  36. ^ a b "CompTIA Creating IT Futures Foundation Helps Wounded Warriors Conquer Their Next Challenge: Preparing For Careers In The IT Field". Business Solutions. 19 March 2012. Retrieved 2017. 
  37. ^ Anderson, Nate (January 26, 2010). "CompTIA backs down; past certs remain valid for life". Ars Technica. Retrieved 2010. 

External links

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