[lpi-discuss] [LPI-News] Linux Professional Institute changes Recertification Policy

Enrique Verdes emverdes at ieee.org
Fri Dec 8 15:56:50 EST 2006

Thorsten, thanks for your mail. I've tried to stay current with all
the discussion, but it has been dificult because of all the topics
that merged. Brian did a good job changing subjects to help follow the
different threads, thanks also to you Brian.

One good thing coming out of this issue is the renewed life to this
list. I think we, as members, are in some way responsible for the lack
of traffic, but also I think the LPI staff has "the duty", to put it
someway, to bring here the topics they want the community feedback.

I have had the feeling for some time that LPI staff is getting far
from the community, and in some way this make me think my feelings are
not far from truth. I hope this helps to get things back on its
tracks. One of the key values I always felt proud about LPI was it's
"open source" foundation, not only in exam development, but in the
overall participation of the community within LPI. We can't loose

Going to the point, Evan said something, in this same trhead, that I
think got missed,
"LPI strongly encourages certificants to recertify minimally within a
ten-year period from the date the first exam of the level was passed.
Since Linux is a relatively constant operating system in comparison to
other systems and proprietary software programs, the ten year
recertification period was determined to be most appropriate by LPI.
Also, since LPI tests examinees only on vendor-neutral skills and
knowledge, LPI's exams are not affected by the recurring revisions of
proprietary software. Although the exam items are updated every few
years to reflect new system features or kernel updates, the general
scope of practice is rather constant, thus the ten year recertification

I'm curious to know what was determined to have changed, during the
consultative process, to invalidate the above paragraph -- which itself
was the result of lengthy and intense debate and consultation. IIRC,
this statement had been approved at the time by LPI's psychometrician,
its director of exam development, the LPI Board, and NOCA.

I get my LPIC 1 in 2003, and, based on my experience, I can't see that
by 2008 I'll be doing things in any way differently than today.
¿There's a real need for recertification every 5 years? ¿Are you
seeing anything I can't? I can buy the "continuing education" thing.
In fact, I'm planning to get LPIC2 anytime during 2007, and other
certifications as well, if my mind doesn't blows in the process, but
the thing is, in 5 years, how much of the knowledge tested to get
LPIC-1, or LPC-2, if its the case, will change so significantly that
will be obsolete and not usefull?

IMHO, this is what should have been discussing, and not the semantics
of the word "INACTIVE"

Enrique Verdes.

2006/12/8, Torsten Scheck <torsten.scheck at gmx.de>:
> Anselm Lingnau wrote on 12/05/2006 12:06 PM:
> [...]
> > We're basically LPI's ground crew here (with the executive presumably
> [...]
> Dear friends:
> Please excuse my late response. Whenever I had the time to write, I was
> occupied by another flood of messages belonging to this
> thread. I'd like to make at least one of those "faceless, nameless,
> identity-less non-entities" more tangible. I'm a member of LPI's Board of
> Directors. A position which is by the way unpaid and which doesn't permit
> any conflict of interests. As a Linux software engineer working in R&D, I'm
> quite comfortable in this regard.
> First of all: All those who have recently expressed their concerns about
> the recertification policy change demonstrated their commitment to LPI as
> they invested their precious time on composing understandable arguments.
> Thank you very much for all your efforts.
> Furthermore, I know at least of Anselm, Karl and Alan that they have been
> very active supporters of LPI ("ground crew") and I understand from their
> messages, that their trust into LPI is at stake--no matter how bravely
> Bryan defends LPI's actions (thank you Bryan, anyway). They feel betrayed,
> as they learned about the change only when the policy was officially
> effective, even though _they_ are the ones who deal with LPI's policies on
> a daily basis. There also seems to be the position among some LPI staff
> members that the change wasn't appropriately facilitated. Please be
> assured, that I take this very seriously.
> The goal of the recertification policy change was to create a balance
> between the needs of certificants, employers, training industry,
> international standards for certification of personnel, and LPI itself.
> When the recertification policy was discussed in 2004, I campaigned for the
> longest possible period and for existing certificants to keep their
> lifelong active status--be it just for the sake of holding a promise. The
> more and more I learned about continuing education frameworks beyond LPI
> (for some pointers see [1]), I felt that LPI outsmarted certificants with
> the promise of a lifelong certification status--presumably to their own
> disadvantage.
> The value of certification doesn't necessarily obey to the usual rules of a
> regular industrial product, i.e. the more candidate benefit and the less
> cost, the better. An extreme example would be a certification which can be
> acquired without any efforts (low cost) and for which lifelong recognition
> is granted (high benefit). This won't make certificants happy in the long
> run, as the real value lies in the mutual recognition of certification as
> signal for job skills, continuing professional development, training
> effectiveness, and service quality among organisations, employees,
> applicants, and customers.
> As a member of LPI's board I had the opportunity to scrutinise
>  and discuss the policy change until I felt comfortable with it.
> Being an LPIC-1 myself (August 2000), my critique might have been so
> comprehensive, that it was felt that the rest of the world would also be
> okay with the resulting policy without any further efforts. ;-)
> Obviously, this wasn't the case--at least as long as we just dump the
> result onto our community. We neglected two important components of
> successful change management--namely understanding and involvement. This
> led to perceived "management by remote control", i.e. a prevalent
> impression that policy is made by people who are remote from what is
> actually happening on the ground. I'm convinced that the change could have
> been managed and communicated without causing such an uproar while still
> comprising the same change elements.
> As a (minor) excuse for this I see the huge work load of LPI's staff. I
> assume that after dealing with the board, Area Operations Managers (AOMs),
> LPI staff and affiliates (of which some members also carry the certificant
> hat) Jim and Scott wanted to quickly finalise the change, so they could
> turn to all the other remaining challenges.
> When I learned in which way the change would be communicated to the
> community, I had a bad feeling, but I didn't insist on revising the
> process, which I now regret. I apologise sincerely for troubling you and
> wasting your time due to my lack of intervention. Therefore, I promise to
> address this issue both at LPI Board level and at the annual meeting of LPI
> German within the next two weeks. Policy change drafts which directly
> affect members of LPI's community must be communicated early--along with
> the rationals--through the existing channels to the respective stakeholder
> groups, i.e. through AOMs and affiliates to alumni
> and training partners. Besides supporting trust,
> predictability and community relationship, this also allows to turn
> feedback into an improved official announcement.
> I apologise in advance for currently not being able to get involved in
> extensive discussions. (I need such a device as Bryan's Treo, which seems
> to be capable of transforming thoughts into e-mails during sleep. ;-)
> Torsten
> [1]
> Certification of Persons ­ ISO/IEC DIS 17024
> http://www.iso.org/iso/en/commcentre/isobulletin/articles/2002/pdf/certification02-10.pdf
> The learning continuity: European inventory on validating non-formal and
> informal learning - National policies and practices in validating
> non-formal and informal learning
> http://www.mec.es/educa/incual/pdf/rec/01_aprendizaje_contiuo.pdf
> Increasing Value Through High-Stakes Testing
> http://www.clomedia.com/content/templates/clo_article.asp?articleid=327&zoneid=34
> --
> Torsten Scheck <torsten.scheck at gmx.de>  Jabber:torsten at i0i0.de
> GnuPG 1024D/728E 6696 F43D D622 78F1  F481 45C0 2147 69AB DD54
> software engineer:open standards/access/knowledge:enthgnusiast
> _______________________________________________
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Enrique M. Verdes

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