How to Pass your 220-1101 and 220-1102 A+ Exams

The CompTIA A+ certification is one of the most popular in the world. In this video, you’ll learn about the exam format, topics, and tips that can help you pass this important industry exam.

If you’re watching this video, then you’re probably interested in the CompTIA A+ certification. And why wouldn’t you be, because it is one of the most popular IT certifications in the world. It’s commonly used to introduce people to information technology or to provide people with a way to show that they know the skills required to get a job working in IT. This is a great starting point in the industry. And if you look at job postings in your area, you’ll probably see a number of jobs where an A+ certification is a prerequisite or a requirement for getting that position.

The A+ certification is managed by CompTIA or the Computing Technology Industry Association. Not only is CompTIA one of the largest providers of IT certifications, their certifications are also vendor neutral. This means that the information in the exam objectives is not specific to a single vendor, but instead covers many different vendors across IT. CompTIA members include manufacturers, resellers, training organizations, and anyone else who would be interested in making sure that we have a solid foundation of IT professionals. The CompTIA has certifications are recognized around the world and you’ll find their exams are available in many different languages.

I’m James Messer and this is the first video in my A+ series available on or on the Professor Messer YouTube channel. My experience is almost exclusively in information technology going back to supercomputer operations, hardware troubleshooting, networking, and cybersecurity. I take all of the experience that I’ve had throughout my career and I build IT training courses to help others get a job or get a better job.

This course covers two exams that are associated with the A+ certification. The first is the two 220-1101, we sometimes refer to this as the Core 1 exam. And there’s the 220-1102 that is called the Core 2 exam. Both of these exams were released on April the 20th of 2022. This course is designed to give you everything you need to learn from the CompTIA exam objectives and it’s separated into small bit-sized videos. So you can find exactly the information you’re ready to learn. You can watch a short video on those topics. And then you can decide whether to watch another video or to come back later and watch more of those.

All of the videos for these courses are available on the Professor Messer website or on our YouTube channel. Every minute of every video is available in either of those locations and nothing is held behind in a paywall. You won’t be asked for any registration and there’s nothing additional need to provide. You simply need to visit one of those sites and you can immediately start watching the training course.

Our goal is to create a strong foundation of IT professionals. And we think creating this training is something that can give people an opportunity to get their very first job in IT or to move up into a better job in it. There’s no catches with this course. There’s nothing extra you need to purchase and nothing you need to do extra to be able to watch the videos. Every single video is available for you to watch online for free. Some folks would like to have an offline version of this course and there are video and audio options available for purchase. There’s also a set of course notes you can purchase in either PDF or a physical book format that includes the text, the diagrams, and the charts that I have in all of my videos. All of these resources, and much more on my website at

The 220-1101 exam, or Core 1 exam, consists of five different domains. Mobile devices, networking, hardware, virtualization and cloud computing, and hardware and network troubleshooting. This exam is 90 minutes long and you’ll get a maximum of 90 questions on the exam, although you could get fewer than 90 questions. The passing score you’re looking for is a 675 on a scale from 100 to 900.

The other exam that you’ll need to take is the 220-1102, or Core 2 exam, it consists of four domains. Operating systems, security, software troubleshooting, and operational procedures. This is also a 90 minute exam with a maximum of 90 questions. Although the scale is the same between 100 and 900, you have to do a little bit better on the Core 2 exam, passing score is a 700.

Both of these exams have to be passed for you to be A+ certified. There’s no time restriction between these two exams. You could take these exams years apart if you wanted to and there’s no order that you have to go through. You could take Core 1 first and then core second. Or you could reverse this and take Core 2 first and then take Core 1. The goal is to simply pass both of these exams and as long as you’re able to do that you’re A+ certified. The only requirement is you must pass both of these exams before they’re retired.

These exams were released on April the 20th of 2022 and usually these exams stay around about 3 and 1/2 years. I would recommend looking at the CompTIA website to confirm what the retirement date might be, especially if you’re planning to take this exam sometime near that retirement date. CompTIA keeps everything updated on their website so if you’re interested in getting a copy of the exam objectives or you want to learn more about the retirement dates you’ll find them all on

The exam itself may be a little different than industry exams that you’ve taken in the past. You’re probably already familiar with multiple choice type questions. Those are the questions that have multiple answers to choose from and those are very common on industry certification exams. These exams also have a handful of performance based questions right at the beginning of the exam. These usually require you to complete a task. They may put you at a command prompt and ask you to perform a function. These might be matching questions or sorting questions. They may have drag and drop components associated with them. But the point is that they can ask you anything from the exam objectives in any form.

And although these aren’t multiple choice based questions all of the information that you need to learn comes directly from the CompTIA exam objectives. The CompTIA exam objectives are available on the website. And you may be asked anything from those set of objectives on the exam. So make sure you’re very familiar with all of the topics listed in those exam objectives and you’ll do just fine on the exam.

Before you start your studies and perhaps before you go in to take your exam make sure you reference these exam objectives. They provide an extensive list of everything you need to know to be successful with this exam. You also want to find a good video training course to watch and we cover every single topic from those CompTIA exam objectives. We also recommend that you get a good book so that you can have even more information about each of these exam topics. There are a number of good books available on the market and we have our recommendations available on the Professor Messer website. We also recommend you get as much hands on as possible. You might want to use your own equipment for this and we can recommend a number of labs that are available on the Professor Messer website.

And lastly, it’s always good before booking your exam that you test yourself to see just how much information you’ve retained throughout your studies. Make sure you try some practice exams so that what to expect when you walk into the exam room. You’ll notice the videos in my course have a number in the title of the video. That number is associated with the CompTIA exam objectives so that you can go to the objectives, find the number you’re interested in, and then locate the video about that topic very quickly.

You’ll find that most books won’t follow this structure but they do provide a cross-reference between the information that’s in a particular book chapter and which exam objectives are associated with those topics. This makes it very easy to find the video that you may be looking for because the exact numbers will be listed in your book. So the method you use for studying is really up to you. If you’d like to jump around from video topic to video topic, you can do it that way. Or you can simply start at the beginning of our video series and watch it all the way through one video at a time.

During this video we’ve mentioned how important it is to have the CompTIA exam objectives because they tell you everything you need to know for the exams, which means this also makes a very good checklist before booking your exam. You can go through the entire objective list and know exactly which topics might need a little more study before booking your exam. If you’re planning to take this exam at a testing center you may want to take some time to stop by and see what type of testing environment they have.

It’s always good to make sure you’re comfortable with the location of the testing center and that the testing center itself is providing the best possible environment for taking an exam. Of course, you could also take your exam at home but there are a few additional requirements for setting up your testing environment. So make sure you read through the rules on the CompTIA website to know exactly how to set up the testing environment at your home.

There are a number of rules on the CompTIA website that you need to be aware of, especially with online testing, so make sure you read through those before booking your online exam. And it might be a good idea to arrive early at the testing center or be ready to take your exam prior to the test start time. This will give you some time to look over your notes and become more comfortable with the testing environment. Whether you’re taking the test at home or at a testing center it’s important that this is the best possible environment to take a test. If there’s any problem with any noises or the testing environment make sure those are taken care of immediately before the test is over.

Since you’re taking a 90 minute exam that could have a maximum of 90 questions, time management becomes very important. You may want to consider jumping over the first handful of performance based questions and coming back to them at the end. Make sure you take advantage of the mark option for each individual question, which allows you to mark that question to easily find it later on. If your time management has gone well then you’re able to go through every single question of the exam again before submitting it for grading. The details of your exam results and a list of the topics you may have missed on the exam are available in your exam results online.

So that’s it. You’re now ready to get started with your A+ studies. You’ll find everything you need on our website at Our entire training course is available on the Professor Messer website and all of the videos are indexed to match the CompTIA exam objectives. We provide closed captioning and transcripts for all of the videos as well. We also have a quick link to the exam objectives, you’ll find it at There’s a link there that will take you to the CompTIA website.

There’s also a chat available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can find me and others that are available to answer your questions at Make sure you check our event calendar so you know exactly when our next live study group will be. We do study groups each month for A+, network+, and security+. You can find that on our website at

We hope this introduction has giving you all the information you need to be able to jump into our training course and earn your A+ certification. Best of luck with your studies and we’ll see you in the training course.