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Failed SCJP 1.5 with 56% (Second attempt)

Chiok Jarse
Greenhorn

Joined: Dec 29, 2005
Posts: 13
Besides API Contents, I did pretty well this time. However, I absolutely bombed API Contents with only 9%. I also dropped on OO Concepts with 50% whereas I had 70% on that the first time I took the test.

The first time I took it I had 47%. I had only read the SCJP sections of Complete Java 2 Certification (5th edition) and the first 7 days of Teach Yourself Java 2 In 21 Days. I also watched some old Java 1.2 videos.

After that I read the rest of Complete Java 2 Certification, up to page 556 in Stanek's Java 2 Certification (3rd edition), Java 5.0 Tiger: A Developer's Notebook, the online edition of Thinking In Java (3rd edition), the two outtakes from K&B, up to page 90 on the Java Language Specification, and a lot of small assorted stuff.

I guess they don't hand-check it when it is this close, eh? Crap.
Christophe Verré
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 24, 2005
Posts: 14687
    
  16

Hi Jamie,

Don't worry. This is not an easy test.

Maybe you are using too much materials, and you should probably focus more on one of them. Take the one you feel comfortable with and study it thoroughly.
You said you have 2 K&Bs. Do you have the new one ?
SCJP Sun Certified Programmer for Java 5 Study Guide (Exam 310-055)

You are so close from success, please don't give up.
Take your time to read things carefully, try to answer other ranchers' problems in the SCJP forum, and give it another try.

Good luck.


[My Blog]
All roads lead to JavaRanch
Chiok Jarse
Greenhorn

Joined: Dec 29, 2005
Posts: 13
I mean the two samples from the new edition.

http://wickedlysmart.com/certpdfs/TigerSamples.html
Christophe Verré
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 24, 2005
Posts: 14687
    
  16

- The reviews I've seen about "Complete Java 2 Certification" are not very encouraging.
- "Java 5.0 Tiger: A Developer's Notebook" may be not very helpful for the exam.
- Thinking in Java 3rd edition does not cover 1.5 features.

What did you think of the samples you've read ? I've read them too, there are enjoyable and easy to read. If you've enjoyed them too, don't hesitate and go for this book
Chiok Jarse
Greenhorn

Joined: Dec 29, 2005
Posts: 13
- Well, after failing twice I'm not exactly happy with Complete Java 2 Certification. It is a good book for what it covers, unfortunately it doesn't cover everything on the exam. So much for "Complete". The Generics section is extremely brief and was no help for the Generics questions on the exam. The word 'polymorphism' occurs once in the text (besides listing the objectives that it "covers"), so don't expect to learn OO programming from it. There is also a lot of errors. I made a errata list http://other.livejournal.com/365988.html for the book.

- "Java 5.0 Tiger: A Developer's Notebook" was quite helpful, especially the other books I've read were Java 1.2 or 1.4. It's not focused on what is and is not on the exam, but it is helpful.

- I *really* liked Thinking in Java (3rd ed). Since I didn't learn about things like polymorphism from Heller & Roberts, I got a lot out of this book. In particular, a lot of things in Section 1 (Declarations, Initialization, and Scoping) finally clicked when I read this.

My main problem today was that I only discovered this book a week ago and I wanted to do the test today as there is a Job Fare on Wednesday. Instead of doing a lot of practice exams and such like I was planning on doing, I spent the last week rushing through this book. I guess I didn't review Section 3 of the exam enough.

If I could have done it all over again, I would have read Thinking in Java 6 months ago at a slower pace and maybe used the Hands On Java lectures as well. The good news (well, for other people) is that the 4th edition is supposed to come out in a couple of weeks and that deals with Java 5.0.

- You didn't ask about the Java Language Spec. It is sometimes recommended for studying for the exam, for instance in the javaranch certification FAQ. http://www.javaranch.com/certfaq.jsp#q2 I don't recommend anyone read this to study for the exam. Sure, study it if you want to lose the will to live, but not for the exam. Dear lord, that was boring!

- I liked the K&B samples. The thing I especially liked is it deals with the objectives one (or two?) at a time, so you should feel fairly confident that the book is actually covering what it says it covers. That would be nice.
Christophe Verré
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 24, 2005
Posts: 14687
    
  16

Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts about the books.
Yes, K&B's book is focused on the exam, so that's probably what you'll want to read and study if you are focused on passing the exam.
I wish you all the best.
Chiok Jarse
Greenhorn

Joined: Dec 29, 2005
Posts: 13
Woah! Not cool. I just noticed that this is the second article google finds if you google my name.

Can someone either mangle my name or delete this entry? I don't want a potentional employer reading that I failed the exam twice.
Mikalai Zaikin
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 04, 2002
Posts: 3204
    
    5
Howdy !

[offtopic]

You can't make google delete entry.

However, if you change name in javaranch profile on something like

"C Jarse"

or

"Chiok J"

then google re-index those pages with your new name and search on your full name won't return those pages.

regards,
MZ


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Chiok Jarse
Greenhorn

Joined: Dec 29, 2005
Posts: 13
Thanks. 'Chiok Jarse' is mangled.
Nilesh Patel
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 02, 2006
Posts: 91
hello 'Chiok Jarse'

what do you think if you have given SCJP1.4 than you have passed it ....


Nilesh Patel
SCJP 1.5 - 87%
Chiok Jarse
Greenhorn

Joined: Dec 29, 2005
Posts: 13
Yeah, I would have done better with the 1.4 exam. i also would have done better if I had read K&B earlier. I guess I picked the wrong year to study for the SCJP (i.e., after the 5.0 exam came out but before the K&B book).

The main problem is that the books I read didn't cover the SCJP 5.0 exam. Complete Java 2 Certification in particular doesn't cover the exam. Beside barely covering some of the essentials (esp. heap/stack, generics, and polymorphism), it didn't get into what the exam is exactly looking for. Also, it uses some technical terms different from the exam. It's not a badly written book on Java in general (1.4 with an intro to 5.0), but it shouldn't be anyones main study source.

The only thing with K&B is that they don't always introduce what they are talking about. It shouldn't be the first Java book you look at.
Pavel Kubal
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 13, 2004
Posts: 356
Of course! K&B book is written in simple and friendly style, but nothing for newbies. Simply put, you cannot learn basics of Java from this book. This book can prepare you well for the exam, but not for starts in Java. I don't get this. Each week somebody new posts in SCJP forum something like this :

"Hi, I'm new to Java and I'd like to pass SCJP exam."

Some people don't know anything about Java and hurry hurry to be certified. Very bad approach. I see that you want to learn Java properly and I hope this is not your case. Two times failed...you should consider what's wrong. Maybe you underestimated your preparation.
 
It is sorta covered in the JavaRanch Style Guide.
 
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