When building a new program, testing centers often ask us which application of the six ACA exams is the best to start with. Of course there may be some factors on a particular campus that might make a specific program rise to the top, but aside from that… here are a couple tips:
1. Start with what you know.
If you already have a teacher who knows a program and is most comfortable starting with a particular application, we suggest starting with that. Teachers are the most valuable resource for programs, and the ACA teaching and testing center process has its own learning curve. If a teacher already knows a program well, start there and build off of that over time.
2. No preference? We suggest starting with Photoshop.
If there is no particular preference about the applications, we suggest starting with Photoshop. This program is the “base” certification for the second level ACA Specialist certifications across the board.
-ADOBE CERTIFIED ASSOCIATE VISUAL DESIGN SPECIALIST:Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign
-ADOBE CERTIFIED ASSOCIATE WEB DESIGN SPECIALIST:Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Flash
(Video doesn’t have a specialist yet, but we suspect it will be Photoshop, Premiere, and AfterEffects if that exam gets built.)
Other than this, we really think this is a decision that is best made by the teaching staff involved with the students- they most have their fingers “on the pulse” of what their students enjoy and what they already know and can bring some existing experise to the program!