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Hasta la vista, SCJP.. Passed!!!!!! -some tips-

Andres Gonzalez
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Joined: Nov 27, 2001
Posts: 1561
eeehhhhhhh oohhhhhhhhh
Boys and girls, 10 minutes ago I passed my SCJP exam with a score of 85%. Actually I'm a bit dissapointed with the score, was aiming at more than 90%, but it's ok, now I'm joining the club!!
Garbage collection and Collections framework killed me (66% each). Pay attention to them. Threads was also pretty weak (75%). Got a few 100%'s.
For those of you studying here's my preparation:
- Started reading KnB book and everytime I finished a chapter I started with the chapter test. I wasn't doing well in those, scoring an average of 40-50%. As soon as I finished that, I jumped straight into Dan's topic exams. Yes, they are harder, yes, sometimes they're out of the exam scope, but THEY ARE THE BEST.
As you can imagine the frustration was even bigger. I was getting avg 40% in the mock exams.
- Finished KnB and re-read it again, focusing more on Dan's tests. I did a LOT of questions on that.
- Bought JQPlus. I figured that it's better to spend 25 dollars than paying again for the certification exam if you fail . Did all 11-full-60-questions mock exams. It does help you, specially when checking the time. When I went to the exam I knew my first pass through all the questions should not take me more than 30 minutes, based on JQplus "strategy".
- My average score in JQPlus was 75%. Day before yesterday I did the 11th test, I was really tired of doing mock exams, I did a lot (that's the reason I'm not quite happy with the results). I did it so fast that when I finished I still had 1h:15 minutes left. Score 70% in that one
- Three weeks ago I started doing Marcus Green Tests (skipping the 1.2 questions). Got 81, 88, 83, 85. So it is really close to the real exam.
- Did also KnB master exam (scoring 88 and 81%)
so, basically, JQPlus, marcus green, and dan's, and of course, an excellent book like KnB.
This is basically it. Pay a lot of attention to the code, the exam is not that hard to pass, passing score of 52 and 120 minutes is more than enough to pass it, of course, if you've studied.
Pay attention to threads, GC and collections. You'll find many questions like "which collection class/interface would you use if blah, blah,blah".
Also, read the questions carefully. There were many like "if thread A notifies blah blah". THe options are very similar, basically the same sentences but with words like "only, always, etc", which makes a lot of a difference. I know I missed a lot of those ones because of that.
Also, if you see a lot of calculations, check the answers, if you see there's no compilation error option (nor even runtime error), then jump straight into that, you can assume that the code compiles and runs. Otherwise check names, like
public void break(int x)
// some code
Can you spot the error? (This was NOT in the exam, it's taken from KnB book, it's only to show an example)
Mock exams is the way to go.. take enough time to do excercise, and play with the code as well.
Another thing very very useful: Answer questions in the forum. You don't know how much it helps. You always see the same people answering questions, but it is an excellent way to prove that you know what "you're talking about".
That's it. And of course, many thanks to Dan Chisholm. Man, thanks for such an effort to putting up a site like that.
Also to anupam, alton, jose botella, thomas paul, damien, marlene and her excellent answers and all of you guys around.
And of course to Kathy and Bert (or Bert and Kathy) for the book, excellent!!!

I'm not going to be a Rock Star. I'm going to be a LEGEND! --Freddie Mercury
Damien Howard
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Joined: Apr 01, 2003
Posts: 456
Don't worry about the score, you got quite a high score, and besides no one knows what score you got unless you tell them.
chi Lin
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Joined: Aug 24, 2001
Posts: 348
Congratulations & welcome to SCJP pool.

not so smart guy still curious to learn new stuff every now and then
Alex Radomski

Joined: Apr 24, 2003
Posts: 24

That's excelent score, at least in my books.
Have you asked yourself what's next??

Andres Gonzalez
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Joined: Nov 27, 2001
Posts: 1561
Have you asked yourself what's next??
One at a time, of course
Anupam Sinha
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Joined: Apr 13, 2003
Posts: 1090
Hi Andres
Congratulations on your great Score!
Wishing you the best of luck for your future endevaours.
Anupam Sinha
Bert Bates

Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 8898
Andres -
Congrats!!! Fantastic score!
Hope you'll stick around, I've enjoyed your posts, and your eagle eye.
We're glad the book helped!

Spot false dilemmas now, ask me how!
(If you're not on the edge, you're taking up too much room.)
Marlene Miller
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Joined: Mar 05, 2003
Posts: 1391
Congratulations Andres. Terrific.
Thank you for all the many helpful ideas. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts.
Now you can relax. No more studying. No more mock exams.
We will miss you. Marlene.
[ July 31, 2003: Message edited by: Marlene Miller ]
I agree. Here's the link:
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