A+ Certification/Basic Exam Info

The A+ certification demonstrates competency as a computer technician. It requires two tests to be passed: the 220-1001 exam and the 220-1002 exam. CompTIA is vendor neutral but leans towards Microsoft operating systems. You will often find Apple and Android questions on newer exams.

Knowledge and supplies needed to prepare for the A+ Certification test


A+ Certification is created by a non-profit organization called CompTIA. Visit comptia.org to determine CompTIA specific information. CompTIA's certifications are vendor neutral and are used in the computing industry. Though not a prerequisite, A+ Certification is a natural lead-in to other CompTIA certifications, such as Network+, Server+, Linux+, Security+ and others. It is the only industry certification based on PC Maintenance.

To obtain A+ Certification, one must be able to troubleshoot hardware and software. Originally, it focused more on Windows, but Mac OS and mobile operating systems are given more attention than ever before. In this course the student will learn about the life of a tech, PC hardware and operating systems, basic networking, mobile devices, printers, security, and troubleshooting methods.

A student attempting the A+ Certification should have approximately nine to twelve months of work experience with operating systems, computer hardware, system files, maintenance, networking, configuration of hardware and software, and troubleshooting computer problems.

Courses and other study materials can be found on the Internet.

To study for the exam, the following materials are needed:

  • A PC with Microsoft Windows 7, 8, 8.1 or 10
  • Grounding pad
  • Anti Static Wrist Strap (ESD Bracelet or Ground Bracelet)
  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Flat head screwdriver
  • Calculator
  • Multimeter
  • Crimping Tool
  • Cables
  • Cable Tester
  • Punchdown Tool

Exam details


The A+ certification exam was updated in early 2019, and gets an update roughly every three years. As such, the structure of the exam is different from what it had been for the three years preceding the update. In the most recent version, the focus has moved a bit to Virtualization and Cloud Computing.

A+ certification currently entails two tests: CompTIA A+ 220-1001 and CompTIA A+ 220-1002 (released January 2019). Both of these tests must be passed in order to receive A+ certification. The exam focuses on Windows 7 and above.

As of 2021, the total cost is $464 USD ($232 USD for each test). If you are a student check with your school's Career Tech program, as many degree granting schools are CompTIA Academy partners. If your school is an Academy partner, you can get the A+ voucher for a substantial discount off the retail price. Many companies that offer training are CompTIA affiliates, and can also sell you the voucher at discounted prices.

Country/Region Price Per Exam
USA $232
Emerging Regions USDe 130
Great Britain £138
Eurozone €209
Japan ¥26,463
Australia AU$314
South Africa R1,782

The CompTIA A+ 1001 and 1002 exams both consist of 90 questions each. A passing score on the CompTIA A+ 1001 exam is 675, and a passing score on the CompTIA 1002 exam is 700. Both of these exam score you between 100 and 900

The CompTIA A+ 220-1001 certification exam is based on these five objectives.

Domain Percentage of Examination
Mobile Devices 14%
Networking 20%
Hardware 27%
Virtualization and Cloud Computing 12%
Hardware and Network Troubleshooting 27%
Total 100%

The CompTIA A+ 220-1002 certification exam is based on these four objectives.

Domain Percentage of Examination
Operating Systems 27%
Security 24%
Software Troubleshooting 26%
Operational Procedures 23%
Total 100%

In the 220-1001 Certification Exam, knowledge of Hardware and Networks together form 47% of the exam. The exam itself could be considered the hardware exam.

In the 220-1002 Certification Exam, the domains are spread out evenly. This exam is more focused on software and being a proper tech.

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