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passed IBM Test 283 VAJ 4.0 and some thoughts

Bruce Yu

Joined: Feb 22, 2002
Posts: 27
I passed the ibm test 283 with 77% the day before yesterday. I am not sure if this is the right place to discuss the certification since I cannot find a proper forum to discuss VisualAge test. There is a thread in VAS forum discuss the problem. It would be nice to form a JCert forum to discuss the tests.
Some thoughts as follows:
1. the book to prepare for the test.
I used Scott Stanchfield and Isabelle Mauny's "Effective visualage for java version 3".
There are two IBM redbooks on vaj3, after skimming them, I found they were not suit for me. I never used visual composition with javabean/data access bean and only use vaj as servlet and ejb ide for some time before. My first ICE try was 46% showing javabean and ide features were my weakest parts. Chapter 7 - 13, 19 - 21 in "effective vaj" covers most topic listed in test objective section 3 and 4 which weights 38% in the test. Plus there is a yahoo user group for its readers to ask questions and answered by the authors.
The difference between versions(v3 and v4) is not important for the test 283. the main new feature for v4 is that it support ejb1.1 which is not covered in the test.
2. the sample test.
Don't use the sample test as preparation guideline! I mean it is not enough; this test is different from test 486, if you really understand the sample test, you can figure out the answer in real test by reasoning. For test 283, real test will test more knowledge on ide features than the sample. I marked many no-sure answers in the test(little things on ide), feeling not as good as taking test 486. There is only about 20% sample questions shows in real test (change faces) -- my best guess.
So it is good to stick on the test objective, play with the ide and use online help to prepare for the test the book doesn't cover. I made a mistake to think it is following same pattern as test 486.
3 preparation time.
The score is fair to me. I used 10 days reading book and playing the ide. I think it worth to spending more time on SCEA and ICED. Anyway, I only use the features of an ide which I need or I like.

Hope it helps,

jason adam
Chicken Farmer ()
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 08, 2001
Posts: 1932
Thanks for the info, Bruce. I'm going to move this to the Product Certification forum, since that's probably a better place for it, and your insight will probably reach those interested in this exam better there.
Duncan Allen

Joined: Jan 15, 2002
Posts: 19
Cheers Bruce
Thanks for the posting. There isnt a lot of information on javaranch about this exam. I am just in wait for the Wiley book (should arrive next week).
Duncan Allen
Vikas Kaushik
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 13, 2001
Posts: 46

HI Bruce,
thanks for the info. are u finding VAJ useful from career point? How will you rate it as compared to other certs like scjp, scwcd, xml.
thanka lot in advance

Vikas Kaushik
Bruce Yu

Joined: Feb 22, 2002
Posts: 27
Hi Vikas,
>>are u finding VAJ useful from career point? How will you rate it as compared to other certs like scjp, scwcd, xml.
I don't think VAJ Test 283 is helpful from the career point. My purpose to take Test 283 is: I want to be an IBM certified Enterprise developer, so I need to pass Test 486 and 283 before I touch the next two tests. I think ICED or SCEA is more helpful for career than other certs for java developer. Another reason taking 283 is that I used vaj to develop server-side java app before and never has time to learn and use java bean with visual composition, taking the test is a good learning time for me.
For a java developer, maybe taking one cert from other categories such as (OCP DBA, which is rated number 2 hottest certification for 2002) can add some competetive since I found some java developer ads need strong database background.
I agree. Here's the link:
subject: passed IBM Test 283 VAJ 4.0 and some thoughts