I was ambushed today by a workmate eager to attend a new Perl certification course. Since I'd recently rubbished Perl certifications, and certifications in general, I was surprised to say the least.

Yet it seems to be true. The O'Reilly School of Technology Perl Programming Certificate:

The Perl Programming Certificate series comprises four courses that take you from zero Perl knowledge to an advanced level that includes use and creation of objects and reusable code. From a beginning level assuming no exposure to Perl and little programming experience at all, well-known Perl trainer Peter Scott takes you through exception handling, multiprocessing, and complex data structures to web page scraping, HTML parsing, email creation, database interaction, web form handling, and using the power of CPAN: the largest repository of open-source scripting code in the world.
Though this specific online course is new, it seems that the O'Reilly School of Technology has been open for two years now. Looks like Your Mother now has some serious competition for his reasonably priced Perl certificates. :)

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re: New Perl Certification Course
by merlyn (Sage) on Nov 23, 2010 at 16:02 UTC
    See my take on this from my Perl blog, including the very helpful reply from Trish at O'Reilly (update: and Peter Scott, the course creator).

    -- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker

    The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT", "SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED", "MAY", and "OPTIONAL" in this document are to be interpreted as described in RFC 2119.

Re: New Perl Certification Course
by Your Mother (Archbishop) on Nov 23, 2010 at 16:54 UTC

    They can expect to hear from my lawyers!!!

    On a more serious note, I'm one of the few of us who is pro-certificate (maybe not -cation and I understand and generally agree with all the anti-arguments) and this sounds like exactly right way to do it. Stonehenge too of course. Without seeing some sample code/lesson, however, I'd be worried—half-certain really—they're going to churn out another round of Perl 5.4 programmers who will think they are doing us all a favor by stooping down from their Java and C++ to write more piles of two-arg-open code I'll inherit someday. :|

    (Updated: Peter Scott—Perl Medic author—is the course designer and had some good things to say so I suspect the courses will be good.)

Re: New Perl Certification Course
by luis.roca (Deacon) on Nov 23, 2010 at 20:17 UTC

    I received an email from O'Reilly promoting this course a few days ago. Ironically, I saw Merlyn's post right after reading through the email and checking out the course.

    I took a Perl/CGI course from O'Reilly last spring and it was... Okay. The material was a little dated. I'm sure this is a better course but as much as I've benefited from a few of these online/video courses in the past, I haven't had the same results when it comes to learning Perl. As boring as it may sound, I'd like a course where you get to watch the teacher writing code as they explain what the code is doing. The closest I've found to that was on Lynda.com, taught by Bill Weinman (Lynda.com is more targeted towards creative professionals but has quite a few programming courses).

    As to online certification — I'm biased because my wife is a college professor but I think an aspiring Perl programmer is better off going to night classes (even at a community college if money's the issue). Having my code work well is all the certification I need. :)

    Edit: Misspelled "Merlyn" (pretty bad considering how many times I've read The Once And Future King including as part of an Arthurian Lit. class in college). Apologies to Randal and T.H. White.

    "...the adversities born of well-placed thoughts should be considered mercies rather than misfortunes." — Don Quixote
Re: New Perl Certification Course
by zentara (Archbishop) on Nov 23, 2010 at 13:55 UTC
    I didn't look at the links, but an old taoist teaching says: it has no value, unless it is freely given.

    I think mini-lecture series online is the future of education.... see Khan !! :-) That could use a Perl programming section. :-)

    I'm not really a human, but I play one on earth.
    Old Perl Programmer Haiku ................... flash japh
      That could use a Perl programming section. :-)

      And how, esp OO/meta

        Maybe I'll start working on a way, to make mpeg movies of my desktop, whilst recording my voice with good ogg audio encoding.... then I could just make visual explanations of code.... and give it to Khan.

        I always hear James T. Kirk yelling it...Khaaaaaaaaaaan.....as he steals his starship. Its a brainworm. :-)

        I'm not really a human, but I play one on earth.
        Old Perl Programmer Haiku ................... flash japh