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Matt Radbourne
Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 10, 2010 at 12:10:37 am

Hi forum
I was considering taking a 3 or 4 day Apple certified course on FCP "Advanced Editing" in an effort to add "Apple Certified Professional" to my resumé.

Has anyone taken the exam?
What's it like in terms of difficulty, format, duration etc.?

Thanks

Matt Radbourne
Media Designer
CEM, UK


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Michael Sacci
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 10, 2010 at 12:19:06 am

The classes and exams follow the APT books, and there are review questions in the books. The exams are multiple choice questions.



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Shane Ross
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 10, 2010 at 3:50:19 am

How many people will look at the PRO CERTIFICATION as a reason to hire you? Typically people don't look at skill level on an edit system, but rather your ability to tell a story to cut what they want cut. Just because you know how to use FCP doesn't mean you are a good editor.

Just saying.

It is really only for people who want to teach or...maybe become assistants.



Shane



GETTING ORGANIZED WITH FINAL CUT PRO DVD...don't miss it.
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Zane Barker
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 10, 2010 at 7:06:22 am

I agree with Shane, a certifications only tells people you know what to click on in the software, it does not tell them that you can edit a story well.

If your vary new to video and dont have much in the way of a demo reel then sure it cannot hurt to get a certification. But your time would probably be better spent putting together a reel that actually shows people you know how to edit a story.



There are no "technical solutions" to your "artistic problems".
Don't let technology get in the way of your creativity!



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Matt Radbourne
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 10, 2010 at 1:09:56 pm

Yeah, that's true.

I guess I'm just thinking that, if an employer had the choice between a good editor and the same editor with a pro certification, they'd probably choose the latter.

I guess it's the same as the whole "How much is a degree worth?" dilemma.

Anyone know where I can get a copy of any example questions?

Matt Radbourne
Media Designer
CEM, UK


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Peter Gruden
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 10, 2010 at 6:32:57 pm

For FCP, there is a book by Diana Weynand from Apple Pro Training series which was used as a working material for the course, available at http://www.peachpit.com/promotions/promotion.aspx?promo=135631

At the end of every chapter there are questions (with answers), which are similar to those in the test.
The course is a good reminder of basic FCP functionality, but it does not seem usefull to solve real life production problems.

The next level Train the trainer course goes a bit further, but it still leaves the impression that you can do everything inside a Mac Book Pro.

Peter



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Steve Eisen
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 10, 2010 at 11:02:58 pm

[Matt Radbourne] "I guess I'm just thinking that, if an employer had the choice between a good editor and the same editor with a pro certification, they'd probably choose the latter."

Not for and editing job. Possibly for a teaching job. Personality helps too.

Steve Eisen
Eisen Video Productions
Vice President
Chicago Final Cut Pro Users Group


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cowcowcowcowcow
Chris Wyatt
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 11, 2010 at 5:30:08 am

Hi Matt
please be aware that you will need to sit for and pass the FCP7 Certified Pro Level One exam
before attempting the Level 2 (advanced) exam. This FCP101 exam is tough - Prometric pass rate for my last set of students in Sydney Australia in December 09 was 80%. It is a closed book exam. The current peachpit book Final Cut Pro 7 by Diana Weynand is your best resource for study. The FCP7 advanced editing book has just been released and would be worth going through as well.
There are plenty of AATCs in London who can help you with this.
Probably the most central is soho editors: http://www.sohoeditors.com/uk
There is a sample test available. There are no 'train the trainer' books.
Becoming a certified apple trainer in FCP means sitting for a T3 exam in FCP7. This course is run by an FCP trainer and involves delivering training from the current resource set in front of your class (other trainers), being assessed on your training performance and passing a closed book T3 exam at the end of the course. The current exam covers workflows including formats like Digital Betacam and P2 media among others.
It is not laptop biased in my opinion.
This information is all directly availabe from the apple website.
I think that Zane and Shane are right however - being able to tell a story is what makes you a valuable editor. Getting experience editing different formats helps as well - a music promo, sports show and documentary for example. And of course a short film or two.
And yep, I'm an Apple Certified FCP7 trainer. But I still line up for freelance edit/production gigs like everyone else and I'm only as good as my last edit which I will laminate into my current showreel or proof of competency package.
This qualification may be of direct use with some broadcasters like the BBC or Channel 4 because many of their current staff have this certification and it means one less thing to check off on their skills matrix list in job applications. As stated earlier in this thread having your certification will not hurt your job chances and it is proof of some knowledge of FCP.

Best regards
Chris Wyatt
Apple Certified Trainer in Motion 4, FCP7, Final Cut Server.




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Shane Ross
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 11, 2010 at 5:32:01 am

I'll wager that if I took that test today, I'd fail.



Shane



GETTING ORGANIZED WITH FINAL CUT PRO DVD...don't miss it.
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Rafael Amador
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 11, 2010 at 6:12:58 am

Sure the certificate doesn't makes you a better video editor, but shows that you care about your job and profession and that you have gone through the manual.
As Shane said, today I would fail the exam too.
Many people dismiss the Certificate, but if everybody would have it, the posts to our FCs forums would drop dramatically.
Cheers,
Rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Matt Radbourne
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 11, 2010 at 1:44:02 pm

Thanks for all the info Chris! That's brilliant.

I'll check them out. All of the London trainers look fairly good from the websites so it's great to get a recommendation.

I totally agree with your points below:
This qualification may be of direct use with some broadcasters like the BBC or Channel 4 because many of their current staff have this certification and it means one less thing to check off on their skills matrix list in job applications. As stated earlier in this thread having your certification will not hurt your job chances and it is proof of some knowledge of FCP.

Matt Radbourne
Media Designer
CEM, UK


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juan prado
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Mar 11, 2010 at 8:12:05 pm

To pass the train the trainer exam would you recommend to read the white paper documentation about Apple ProRes?.
Thanks a lot.


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walter biscardi
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 11, 2010 at 12:16:56 pm

[Matt Radbourne] "I guess I'm just thinking that, if an employer had the choice between a good editor and the same editor with a pro certification, they'd probably choose the latter."

Nope. I can tell you I don't even look at pro certification when I consider people. I've never been certified because I know the class just makes sure you can push the buttons the way Apple wants you to and I have no desire to be a "certified teacher" right now.

I look at your resume (as in experience working in the field), your Reel and your references.

Certification will probably only come in handy if you're going for a corporate video department type of gig where you have to go through a human resources dept. first before you get to the actual video folks. They'll probably like to see that, but as a means to getting a working video job, I don't see certification being worth the price.

Taking an art class, a Photoshop class, an After Effects class. THOSE would be beneficial. I think it's very important for an FCP editor to know Photoshop and After Effects. Those skills are very useful in setting yourself apart from other editors.

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

"Foul Water, Fiery Serpent" now in Post.

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Matt Radbourne
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 11, 2010 at 2:04:28 pm

Yeah, Photoshop and After Effects are as important IMO.

I think that, as a junior, it would show application and dedication. The price isn't a factor, but, in a way, that would emphasise commitment.

In my opinion it will act as an at-a-glance benchmark in technical and troubleshooting skills.

Matt Radbourne
Media Designer
CEM, UK


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Kylee Peña
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 11, 2010 at 5:12:02 pm

I took the FCP6 level 1 exam in March. And also the ones for DVD Studio Pro, Motion, Color, and Soundtrack Pro. Basically I was a senior in college and I initially decided to try and reach the FCP level 2 certification as part of my big final project. My reason for doing this was so I could feel totally comfortable within the software. You're always going to get people who say they don't pay attention to certifications when they're hiring. To that I say DUH. Of course your actual storytelling skills and natural ability are the most important things by far. And you learn a lot of the software by just using it a lot, yes. But it's so much easier to just take the leap and learn it at a much deeper level initially - it helps you tell your story much more easily when you aren't fumbling around. The Apple Pro Training Series books are AWESOME. From this process, I learned more than what buttons Apple thinks I should push. The books tell you many ways to go about editing something, workflow suggestions, and how the software really works at a deeper level. Just knowing that helps me greatly. So basically, I did the certs for myself to ease anxiety that I would seem like a total noob in front of Final Cut.

That being said, I was a pretty regular user of FCP before I took the FCP101 exam. I studied the Apple Pro Training book for that pretty intensely anyway, just to be safe. I thought it would be super easy. It so wasn't super easy lol. Like I said, I initially was going to do the 3 day workshop and take the FCP 2 exam the next month. Unfortunately, I was the only person signed up for it so they cancelled it. Long story short, I had to scramble for a way to make up for that loss in my graduation project. So I decided to attempt the master level certification. I knew there was little to no chance of actually obtaining it. It consists of taking the Motion, Color, Soundtrack Pro, and DVD Studio Pro level 1 exams. Those along with final cut level 1 = master certification. I had one month to study those books and software on top of 18 credit hours and two other major projects to finish and I had barely touched Color and Motion. I passed Color and Soundtrack Pro somehow (the proctor mentioned Color was the hardest of all the tests and I would agree), and BARELY failed Motion and DVD Studio Pro. GAH. I'm talking less than 10% with each. Not bad for cramming for one month. Even though I failed, I saw what the tests were like and I really did learn a lot about the whole suite, so it was worth a try. Especially with Color, I learned a ton about color correcting I never knew.

Basically my point is use the Apple Pro Training Series books. But don't rely on just the questions at the end...read the chapters, do all the exercises, AND don't memorize it - actually learn it.

In terms of format, I went to a testing center and took a computer based multiple choice test. It didn't take very long, although you have a time limit. I think I took all 4 of those tests above within an hour and a half. The FCP one was definitely under an hour.

Hopefully this novel of a response is what you're looking for. I did certifications for myself, though of course I still stick them on my resume. It certainly helps a bit to have things like that being in the midwest where a lot of jobs are obtained through HR people.


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Joe Wilby
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Jan 13, 2010 at 1:13:28 pm

Well put Kylee.

I've been editing with FCP for 9 years now, never done any proper training, and mainly i have just got to grips with the software as i've gone along. I mainly cut commercials in London and last year a feature film, so I know how to use FCP enough to do what I need to do.

But, I too have finally taken the plunge and signed up for an advanced course with Soho Editors. Not because I want to be a certified pro, but because i want to invest in myself. I want to make sure that I know the fastest way to achieve what I want to achieve. Yeah if I pass the test I'll stick the apple pro logo on my website, it's not going to lose me any jobs and some producers may think its impressive. You never know, they might pay an extra £50/day for it?! worth a try ;)

It's true that people will hire you mainly because of your personality, talent and competency. I see the course just gives a boost to your competency. Some editors may 'poo poo' getting training, but then again you can't teach an old dog new tricks can you...

Plus its tax deductable. bonus!


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Andree Franks
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Mar 20, 2010 at 2:47:43 pm

If I want to take the Level 2 Exam do i need a recent Level 1 Cert?
I took the Level 1 Cert when FCP6 hit the market.

Thanks



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Joe Wilby
Re: Apple Certified Pro exam
on Mar 20, 2010 at 6:10:58 pm

You'd have to check with Apple to be sure. But I do know you can do the Level 2 exam without having done Level 1, but sneekily and they won't certify you for level 2 unless you've passed level 1.


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