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3rd time is the charm

Aaron Potter

Joined: Feb 01, 2001
Posts: 2
Hallelujah! I finally passed! With a 74%, but I will take it.
Unfortunately for me, I am blessed/cursed with one of the primary virtues of a programmer, which is laziness. Additionally this is compounded by my overconfidence in my abilities.
The first time I took the test, in May of 1999, I bombed with a 27%. I attribute that to only studying for a month and not even knowing what the objectives were.
The second time I scored a 55%, that was this past December. Which means I failed by 3 questions. That time I studied diligently and took note of the objectives. But I gave a cursory review of my weaknesses, which were access control, garbage collection, AWT, and the package. That was probably the difference. I also wasn't prepared for the amount of code that was to be read. Then the exam was 90 minutes and I felt rushed. I finished with 6 seconds to spare. If I would have had more time I might have passed. I didn't even have time to review my questions.
Today I passed with 74%. I walked in today thinking I was going to get around 90%. I felt I knew the material cold. But the exam was completely different from the last. It was more like the first. Multiple choice with less code analysis. I would say 50% code anaylsis. The 2nd exam was more like 95 %. And the exam focused about 90 percent on my previously demonstrated weaknesses. I had about 10 questions on threads. 8 on the package. Another 10 on operators and assignments. Only a handful on the stuff that I did really well on before (languge fundamentals, java.lang, overloading, overriding, runtime type, and object orientations).
The exam is definitely an adaptive one. At least if you've failed before. It was really pounding on me for my past weaknesses.
I don't care what anyone says. It is a very tough test. The exam, I think is a little too hard as it seems to test whether a person is familiar with all of the quirks of the Java compiler.
I know I am not dumb, but I was hoping for a higher score, since I studied real hard. (I have a 174 I.Q., if anyone puts any faith in that stuff)
How I prepped: I used the SCJP 2 book from New Riders by Jamie Jaworkski, the Marcus Green exams, and studied the Java Language Specification (2nd edition) by James Gosling.
My advice: focus on the exam objectives. If you have failed before, focus almost exclusively on your weakpoints. The new exam seems to concentrate on just those weakpoints. Don't trust you programming experience. I program EJB's on WebSphere. So I never get to work on the material that is so heavily covered on the exam.
Val Dra
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 26, 2001
Posts: 439
I am thinking of taking this exam in the end of this month i am being preapring for it now for a week. I score on 1st and 2nd tests of Marcus Green 91 % on first 86% on second i didnp pay attention very well. Do you think that this results are good and enough later on for me to pass a test ? I took a Jxam today it mostly deals with awt , although i do some programming with awt i found it hard to get them right , i got a lot wrong on it. How much of a test deals with awt ? Congrads on your result , are you plainning on taking Developers any time soon ?

Val SCJP <BR>going for SCJD
Tejas Nakawala
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 04, 2001
Posts: 80
hi arron ,
Congrates...So at last u got ur goal.
Tejas Nakawala
Deepak Magoo

Joined: Nov 27, 2000
Posts: 22
Hi Aaron Potter
Congrats buddy At least u cleared with good marks. i appeared in the exam on 25th January but was not able to clear it. i got 35 questions correct but failed by only one question. anyhow congratulations again. i am feeling very disappointed.
Jane Griscti
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 30, 2000
Posts: 3141
Congratulations Aaron ... nothing like persevering
Jane Griscti
Sun Certified Java 2 Programmer
"When ideas fail, words come in very handy" -- Goethe

Jane Griscti
SCJP, Co-author Mike Meyers' Java 2 Certification Passport
I agree. Here's the link:
subject: 3rd time is the charm