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Education tracks to become an Oracle DBA

I am interested in eventually becoming a DBA and am looking at education tracks at Oracle. I can afford to take one class at the moment. Would you recommend taking Introduction to PL/SQL or a course which prepares one to sit for the Database Operator (DBO) exam? Also, what is the best way to obtain an entry-level position in the database industry? Thanks, Marie

A lot of people want to get into a DBA career and have difficulties these days. DBAs can make a lot of money, but employers are reluctant to invest in someone who hasn't proven themselves. This means that you'll need experience. And experience is more valuable these days than OCP certification.

A lot of people want to get into a DBA career because they know that they can make a very good living at it. While this can be true, people are often surprised to find out what exactly a DBA experiences every day in their job. It can be rewarding and frustrating. Some people love it, and others grow to hate it. One of the biggest drawbacks is the high pressure environment that a DBA can be immersed in. And yet, some people thrive in that situation.

The best way that people are breaking into the DBA role is to start in a company that can use one of their skills and let them work on some light DBA duties to start. Typically, these skills are either development or system's administration. While working as a developer or sys admin, their company lets them get their feet wet as a DBA. And then they increase the DBA duties along the line. This has the added advantage of letting an individual find out if they truly want to be a DBA!

It also helps if you have some education behind you. Almost every DBA open position that I've seen requires at least a Bachelor's degree. And other database-related education helps, too. The Intro. to PL/SQL course is a good one because it gives you the basis for everything that you'll do, namely SQL and PL/SQL.

Good Luck!

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