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CISCO Academy

WINNER! Bredon School was crowned winner of the Independent Schools Association ‘IT innovation of the Year’ award for the Cisco Academy. November 2015.

Cisco Systems is the global technology giant responsible for partnering with educational institutions the world over to provide advanced, hands-on learning opportunities and Bredon is very fortunate to have its own on-site Academy.

The courses on offer prepare students directly for technical jobs as well as for higher education in engineering, computer science and related fields. Since its launch worldwide, the programme has grown to more than 9,000 Academies in the USA alone and more than 165 countries with a curriculum taught in 16 different languages. More than 900,000 students participate in Academies operating in colleges, universities and schools.

Our own Academy blends dynamic face-to-face teaching with a web-based curriculum, hands-on lab exercises and online assessment.


In the Sixth Form, we offer the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) Industry Certification. There are no pre-requirements for following this course. Students wishing to join the Cisco Academy for the first time in Year 12 will be able start with CCNA outright.

This course is a mixture of theory and practical work. Students will learn all about computer networks. They will learn about switches and routers and the functionality of each component within the network. Students will learn how to program switches and routing using different routing protocols, IP addressing schemes, and various other methods.

Within the practical application they will set up actual working networks within the Cisco Academy. Students will also learn how to use different models to troubleshoot their networks and fix problems that might arise.

The CCNA certification consists of four parts. We teach these as follows:

YEAR 12:

CCNA Routing and Switching: Part 1: Introduction to Networks

CCNA Routing and Switching: Part 2: Routing and Switching Essentials

Students then sit the CCENT/ISDN 1 external exam. Students have to pass this exam before they will be allowed onto the next part of the certification. The exam has a theory and practical component. Students must gain 70% to pass. Students may sit this exam more than once.

YEAR 13:

CCNA Routing and Switching: Part 3: Scaling Networks

CCNA Routing and Switching: Part 4: Connecting Networks


In Years 10 & 11, we offer the Cisco IT Essentials, Industry Certification as well as the CompTia A+ certification after successful completion of the IT Essentials.

These courses are a mixture of theory and practical work. Students learn all about computer components, the functions of the different components and which components fit together. They will strip and rebuilt old computers in the lab. Students will also learn about laptops and laptop components, tablets, all sorts of different printers and how to troubleshoot each. Operating systems, malware and viruses and worms form part of the software component that students learn about.

At the end of the course students also get the opportunity to build their own private computer, based on a budget they must negotiate with their parents/guardians – one of the aspects students find most exciting!

Students do an internal test at the end of each chapter. After completion of the whole course students sit the Cisco IT Essentials theory exam as well as a practical exam.

The Cisco IT Essentials course takes around four terms for most students. After completion of the IT Essentials, students will revise and prepare for the CompTia A+ certification, which builds on the IT Essentials course, with the aim to sit the A+ final exam in the Summer Term of Year 11.

These industry related certifications are the minimum requirements that most computer companies such as Dell and PC World require for their bench technicians, therefore opening up great career opportunities for our students.

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