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(Best CISSP Training) 5 Essential Considerations for Choosing the Best CISSP Training Solution (Best CISSP Training Topic Cluster)

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By: Charles Owen-Jackson

August 18, 2021

Five essential considerations for choosing the best CISSP training solution

Although many certifications are available in the cybersecurity field, becoming a certified information systems security professional is one of the best.

There are few better ways to take a career in cybersecurity to the next level than becoming a certified information systems security professional (CISSP). According to ISC2, the accrediting organization, CISSPs in North America earn an average salary of $120,552. Moreover, CISSPs are among the most sought-after security professionals anywhere globally, especially given the current global cybersecurity skills deficit.

Choosing the right CISSP training solution is one of the most important decisions in the journey to becoming a CISSP. After all, the difference between passing and failing the exam hinges heavily on the study materials' quality and the chosen training methods. Furthermore, since everyone has a different preferred learning style, it is essential to evaluate several training options.

Here are some of the most important considerations:

#1. Flexible Learning Experiences

Most people have a preferred learning style, but the best learning experiences are typically fairly flexible and incorporate a range of solutions. Some training platforms use more than one specific learning model, while others take a more traditional approach.

For individuals, the two main options are self-paced online learning and traditional, instructor-led learning, which may be done online or in person. Self-paced learning is ideal for those with busy schedules, especially if they are not rushing to earn certifications as quickly as possible. Instructor-led learning may take the form of one-to-one sessions or one-to-many workshops and boot camps. However, they lack flexibility and typically require a high commitment, making them prohibitively time-consuming and costly for those in full-time employment.

The third option is team-based training, which typically takes place on the job. After all, given the cybersecurity skills shortage, many employers are enthusiastic about upskilling their teams and, in doing so, funding CISSP and other training programs. These programs often combine self-paced learning with hands-on virtual labs and on-the-job training.

#2. Hands-on Learning and Virtual Labs

Cybersecurity is far more than just a technical discipline. Experts in the field require a broad range of soft skills too. Furthermore, given the constantly evolving nature of cybersecurity, the need for hands-on learning experiences is unavoidable.

The only truly effective way to prepare for a CISSP certification is to take a hands-on training approach. In other words, learning by doing is the best way to become familiar with real-world use cases. This is best achieved with a blend of on-the-job training and virtual online labs.

Hands-on virtual labs provide accurate simulations of real-world scenarios involving real IT equipment. These labs help candidates develop important practical skills and hone critical-thinking and problem-solving abilities in a way that traditional learning materials cannot.

#3. Up-to-date Training Content

Although the CISSP program has been around for almost 20 years, having been adopted as a baseline by the NSA in 2003, it has evolved significantly since its inception. As of April 2018, it now covers eight domains, whereas, before 2015, it distinguished ten domains. Given the dynamic nature of the information security field, a CISSP credential is only valid for three years, after which renewal is required by obtaining 120 continuing professional education (CPE) points. CPEs are typically earned via full-time employment in the field.

To pass the exam, candidates must have access to the most up-to-date training content. During their training, they must have the opportunity to develop a deep understanding and awareness of the latest threats, regulations, and best practices. Not only will this increase the chances of passing – but it will also make it easier to find and retain a high-value job position and earn CPEs.

Finally, any training solution should draw directly from the official ISC2 student guide, which consists of interactive flashcards and other materials to reinforce knowledge ahead of the exam.

#4. Dependable Knowledge Checks

There are many prerequisite pathways for becoming a CISSP, the most notable of which is a requirement to have documented proof of five years of professional experience in the field. This can be reduced to four years for candidates who have one year of full-time work experience as holders of various other ISC2 credentials. As for the fifth year, a four-year college degree or an advanced degree from the US CAE/IAE both count.

The above illustrates the substantial amount of knowledge and experience required to become a CISSP. While an actual CISSP course should only take around 20 hours, it covers a great deal of ground. As such, any training program should include reliable knowledge checks in quizzes and hands-on practical tests. Post-course mock exams are also critical for gauging overall exam readiness.

#5. Online Feedback and Reviews

Last but certainly not least, candidates should thoroughly evaluate any training organizations, platforms, and instructors before they commit. After shortlisting a few options that meet the individual needs and preferences of the candidate or team, they should research each training program through online feedback and reviews. Some useful resources to start with include G2, Gartner, and Indeed. Checking out reviews on Google and Facebook will also help candidates make an informed decision about choosing the best CISSP training program.

Becoming a certified information systems security professional (CISSP) requires careful preparation and work, but it is a proven path to career success. This guide explores the best practices and approaches for CISSP training to help ensure confidence and readiness ahead of exam day. Ensure you are prepared for whatever lies ahead when you're part of your organization's team on Cybrary. Enroll today to start developing stronger cybersecurity skills.

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