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NCS Pearson
Maggie Knack
+1-952-681-3000

Virtual University Enterprises
Scott Allison
+1-952-681-3000

VUE, a Division of NCS Pearson, Signs Testing Agreement with Cisco

Cisco Career Certification Exams to be Delivered through Global VUE Testing Network

Minneapolis, Minn., September 27, 2000 — NCS Pearson (formerly known as National Computer Systems, Inc.) announced today that through its Virtual University Enterprises (VUE) electronic testing division, it has contracted with Cisco Systems to begin delivery of Cisco Career Certifications exams.

Under this agreement, Cisco, the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet, will use the VUE test delivery system, the industry’s only Internet-based certification testing system, to deliver its exams through the VUE Authorized Testing Center network, which now numbers 2,400 centers globally. VUE is expected to begin delivery of Cisco exams by end of year 2000.

To help Information Technology (IT) professionals develop their careers and meet the challenge of keeping current on the latest technology, Cisco created the Cisco Career Certification programs, an industry recognized, multilevel program that trains and certifies professionals to design, install and operate Cisco networks. The Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE™) is the professional benchmark for internetworking expertise. Associate and Professional levels (CCNA™ CCDA™ CCNP™ CCDP™) address the growing demand for more network technicians trained in computer network design and support.

Tom Kelly, Cisco’s vice president Worldwide Training, said “As the need for highly trained, certified networking experts continues to increase dramatically, our need for an expanded channel of delivery for Cisco Career Certifications exams grows as well. Contracting with VUE provides a greater number of testing centers and available test seats worldwide for individuals preparing for Cisco Career Certifications and Cisco Channel Specializations.”

Neil Crocker, vice president and general manager of VUE, said, “This agreement with Cisco is a strategic win for VUE and further strengthens our emerging leadership position. Our testing center network and Cisco exam candidates have expressed a strong interest in VUE adding Cisco to our list of sponsor customers. I am confident that Cisco candidates will find VUE’s ‘breathtaking’ service to be a convenient, flexible and reliable alternative in exam delivery.”

This is Pearson’s second partnership with Cisco Systems. In 1997 the Pearson division of New Riders Publishing entered into an agreement with Cisco Systems to develop a series of technology books under the publishing imprint of Cisco Press. Today, Cisco Press has more than 80 titles developed to help networking professionals and students in their quest to become proficient and knowledgeable about Cisco networking solutions.

About VUE
VUE (www.vue.com) is the electronic testing division of NCS Pearson, servicing the Information Technology industry and the Professional Certification and Licensure markets. From operational centers in the United States, Australia, Japan, the Netherlands and China, VUE provides a variety of services to the testing and training industries. Currently serving over 100 countries, there are more than 2,400 VUE Authorized Testing Centers in its rapidly expanding network. NCS Pearson (www.ncs.com) is a global information services company providing software, services, systems and Internet-based technologies for data collection, management and interpretation. National Computer Systems, Inc., was recently acquired by U.K.-based Pearson PLC (NYSE: PSO), and is now known as NCS Pearson, a subsidiary of Pearson Education.

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