I passed the exam with extremely mediocre score. I would like to give you a background of what my experience is so that once can asses the effort one would require to put it. Here is what it took for me My background - 9 years experince in IT field. Worked in Java for about 4 years but relaistically did design not core programming. Have been working on JSP and some servlets. Basically I am etremely experienced but not very hands on. The last Jsp I wrote was 3 years ago.
Here is what I did Read the head first book for 3 weeks and did a few promgrams to demonstarate the principles. Did 2 mock exams.
The areas that I seemed to get low score was Session managemnet design patterns custom tags
My advise is Head first not not good enough on design patterns do a little researc on the web. Session management had some tricky questions.
Way to prepare 1. Have web.xml tags on the back of your palm. 2. Session management iterate reiterate 3. custom tags [ easy questions] but need practise 4. JSP not much was asked 5. EL -- Need to be very good.
My apprach was to put minimum effort to pass. Note this approach worked for me as my goal was just to get updated with technology. Not an approach for a person who really wants to start programming on day 1 on a job.
Congrats k Ra for scaling the exam irrespective of the score; there are many out there who would have been very happy just scaling through like you did. Question for you... You spent four years in java but mainly 'design not coding'; one would assume that you would have grasped design patterns, and as a result should have known upfront the short falls in HF. I really need an answer to this question as to why you would perform poorly on Design questions when people claim certification is not useful at the work place; just the practical experience.
Joined: May 03, 2005
Very good question. What do we do at work years go by. When C++ was in its prime Gang of 4 was the bible ,there was really no standardization.but as one got experienced lowly design patterns caught on. But medium sized projects, I did not see them much used, it was more for I know this in the interview process. WE described them as techniques. When frameworks started being popular design pattern caught on. When Java came by the C++ band wagon moved on to java in the early stages patterns were not named , people used good design techniques such as OMT, TRumba , Booch methodologies. The frame work developers definitely used well known patterns. It is now that there is a lot of emphasis on the name and style.Otherwise it most designers did the same thing without calling it a factory and so on.
Specifically answering the question on working on what for 4 years in java I was on the web development. Not Swing or Application progrmming. Lot of JSP and using web tools like vignette, ATG Dynamo, BLue Martiny, BroadVision. Basically architecting and designing the overall aspects. Most work places use some tool or other, the frame work will already be there what you would code is a little bit here and a little bit there. Basically what we do is not monolithic anymore it is putting together. Well I don't consider writing JSP and some servlets as part of core coding experience. We can relate this easily to struts.
A one liner whether certification is useful at work place the answer is 1. Yes at interviews you can answer specifs, as now in this changed world people are asking syntax and more detailed how tos. 2, It is a way to know where to get an answer when you are posed with a problem. You don't have to start opening and browsing the books then. This will help if your manager is micro managing you. 3. Gives confidence one more feather in your hat.
Trust me most people in the work force will tell you certification is not necessary bla bla. Finally it is what works best for you