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HF Servlets and JSP - new vs. old

Bert Bates
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Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 8801
    
    5
Hi Guys,

We're updating HFSJ and we got some questions from a rancher that I'm sure will be frequently asked:

Q: Should I stop studying for the current exam?

A: Nope! The new exam doesn't have any new objectives or topics - just a bunch of new questions on existing topics.

Q: How long will the old exam be valid?

A: For quite a long time. Maybe a couple of years from now people will forget that they're really the same exam, but for now, and for quite a while, the two exams should have the same value in the market.

Q: I already have HFSJ, does this mean I have to buy the new version too?

A: No! O'Reilly will kill me for saying this, but there is no need to buy the new version of the book if you already have the old version. Bryan is putting his dynamic attribute tutorial into the new book, but you can already get a great version of that here at the ranch.

We are adding a bunch of new questions, but the many people have told us that the old questions have done a great job of getting them prepared.

So, much as we'd like to be greedy, we're much more concerned that you're all happy! So let me reiterate - if you already have a copy of the book, you really don't need to buy the new version!

Q: When will the new exam be available?

A: You'll have to watch Sun's site

hth,

Bert


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Bert Bates
author
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Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 8801
    
    5
Hey Mikalai,

Good question

The folks at Sun who put out new versions of Java EE didn't meet with the folks at Sun who create certification exams. The feeling was that if there was a new version of Java EE, there better be a new version of SCWCD - even though the new version of Java EE didn't have any impact on the exam. So, I guess you could call it a "synchronization" update, just to keep everything lined up.

The other thing is that we had a chance to see how the old questions were doing, take out some of the less amazing old questions and, we hope, replace them with better questions. So, even though there aren't any new topics, we hope the new exam will be a better exam.

Bert
Mikalai Zaikin
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Joined: Jun 04, 2002
Posts: 3199
    
    5
The new exam doesn't have any new objectives or topics




Hmmmm.... What is the point to have 2 different exams with the same objectives ?


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Mikalai Zaikin
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Joined: Jun 04, 2002
Posts: 3199
    
    5
Geez, Bert !

You posted your answer on my question *before* I even typed it (just right after I thought).

You're sooooo fast !
Mihai Radulescu
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 18, 2003
Posts: 916

Hi Bert,

I think that the sun has already do the new exam, I here that a lot of people (here on the ranch) already get a 80 questions in 180 minutes. This is what you mean with the "new exam" ?
I just was on sun :
http://www.sun.com/training/catalog/courses/CX-310-081.xml

here is the old exam. Strange !?

If you work on a new version for the HF may be will be not bad if you include about some more details about the PageContext (API).

Regards
M
[ January 23, 2008: Message edited by: Mihai Radulescu ]

SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, OCPJBCD
Ken Duncan
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 30, 2007
Posts: 42
Originally posted by Bert Bates:
Hey Mikalai,

Good question

The folks at Sun who put out new versions of Java EE didn't meet with the folks at Sun who create certification exams. The feeling was that if there was a new version of Java EE, there better be a new version of SCWCD - even though the new version of Java EE didn't have any impact on the exam. So, I guess you could call it a "synchronization" update, just to keep everything lined up.

The other thing is that we had a chance to see how the old questions were doing, take out some of the less amazing old questions and, we hope, replace them with better questions. So, even though there aren't any new topics, we hope the new exam will be a better exam.

Bert


Bert,

There are no changes in objectives but how about all the little details of what's what. Aren't there API changes in Java EE 5? If so, then studying using the old book, unless I manage to take the current exam first, won't be sufficient.

I've helped with certification questions for other Sun exams when I was there. However, the questions I sought to get changed, such as on the Architect exam, needed changing because they were unclear in some way, not to make the exam more challenging. I understand that sometimes questions don't work well. Are you only removing questions that don't work well or making the exam harder? I'm concerned about this because, having passed both the Programmer and Architect exams, the SCWCD exam looks much harder, based on the question in the HFSJ book than anything I hit on the other two exams. Thanks.

Ken
Marc Peabody
pie sneak
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Joined: Feb 05, 2003
Posts: 4727

Originally posted by Ken Duncan:
There are no changes in objectives but how about all the little details of what's what. Aren't there API changes in Java EE 5? If so, then studying using the old book, unless I manage to take the current exam first, won't be sufficient.


Not really.

Check out Scwcd 5 Links. Next to the spec links are links to what has changed in the specs.

The biggest change was in adding JavaServer Faces to the spec, but this wasn't added to the SCWCD 5 exam. Maybe version 6 of the exam will include it.


Thanks so much, Bert, for answering so many of the questions we've all had. It's nice to know someone on the inside.


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Christophe Verré
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Joined: Nov 24, 2005
Posts: 14687
    
  16

I have put Bert's QA in the SCWCD5 FAQ. Feel free to update it.


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Joe Harry
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Joined: Sep 26, 2006
Posts: 9344
    
    2

May be this question from be would be a slight deviation from the original topic, but anyways my question is,

Is JSF spec now a part of JSP 2.1/Servlets 2.5 Specs?
[ January 23, 2008: Message edited by: Jothi Shankar Kumar Sankararaj ]

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Christophe Verré
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 24, 2005
Posts: 14687
    
  16

Is JSF spec now a part of JSP 2.1/Servlets 2.5 Specs?

No, but it's part of J2EE1.5. But in the JSP specification, EL has been enhanced to make friend with JSF.
Marc Peabody
pie sneak
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Joined: Feb 05, 2003
Posts: 4727

Originally posted by Christophe Verre:

No, but it's part of J2EE1.5. But in the JSP specification, EL has been enhanced to make friend with JSF.

And EL has been extracted from the JSP spec to be a spec all on its own.

Look at Scwcd 5 Links. The specs are all listed there.
Ken Duncan
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 30, 2007
Posts: 42
Originally posted by Marc Peabody:


Not really.

Check out Scwcd 5 Links. Next to the spec links are links to what has changed in the specs.


I've now looked at these links. If one wanted to do so, one could write twenty new questions based on these changes, like the use of generics and annotations. That would be enough to make the difference between passing and not passing the test.

Ken
Marc Peabody
pie sneak
Sheriff

Joined: Feb 05, 2003
Posts: 4727

Originally posted by Ken Duncan:
I've now looked at these links. If one wanted to do so, one could write twenty new questions based on these changes, like the use of generics and annotations. That would be enough to make the difference between passing and not passing the test.

By your hypothetical "one" you mean Bert and the rest of the cert team. If they had done something like you are suggesting, Bert would have said so. In fact, his answers would have been completely different.

I find what you said interesting, but please keep in mind that words like this can put unfounded doubts into others' minds. Bert clarified a lot of questions everyone has had for months about the exam. I really would hate to see his facts clouded with dubiety.
Ken Duncan
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Joined: Apr 30, 2007
Posts: 42
Originally posted by Marc Peabody:

By your hypothetical "one" you mean Bert and the rest of the cert team. If they had done something like you are suggesting, Bert would have said so. In fact, his answers would have been completely different.

I find what you said interesting, but please keep in mind that words like this can put unfounded doubts into others' minds. Bert clarified a lot of questions everyone has had for months about the exam. I really would hate to see his facts clouded with dubiety.


I'm certainly not trying to raise doubts about Bert's statements. I'm only trying to ascertain the precise impact of the new specs on the new exam. I really wasn't trying to cause disruption. Sorry if it sounded like that. I guess for myself I better hurry up and finish studying for the test and take the current one, so I'll have read up on what's on the exam.
Bert Bates
author
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Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 8801
    
    5
Hi Guys, Hi Ken,

I promise, no one is trying to be tricky!

I would consider something like generics or annotations to be a "new topic". What I can say is that both sets of objectives (which, again, are identical), are very broad. It's not possible, in the space of 69 questions, to fully cover everything that's mentioned in the objectives. When we added new questions for this version we did try to explore areas previously unexplored by earlier questions, but I can assure you we stayed strictly within the bounds of the objectives.

Another way to put this is that whatever study resources you might have used for the current exam, will be equally useful for the soon to be released new exam.

hth,

Bert
al nik
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 18, 2007
Posts: 60
I'm really interested to see this "new" exam from Sun.
SCWCD 5.0 of what? The "new" exam doesn't include JSF so I ask new of what.. of little changes in spec?
Like SCJP5-SCJP6 that differ from 3 Collection classes I'll see the "new" Web component exam and I'm sure I'll laugh as I've done with scjp6..
IMHO If Sun doesn't have time to update their exams so I think they don't have to come out with any new one!
No sense that for example if I want to be SJCP6 I have to do an Exam of
150 minutes
with 48 question
and pay 180 EURO (in Italy this is the price! AKA 265.883 USD)
for an Upgrade.. Upgrade of what? 3 Classes?

Please Sun ... Please


SCJP5 - SCWCD5 - SCBCD5
Bert Bates
author
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 8801
    
    5
Hi Al,

What would you suggest?
al nik
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 18, 2007
Posts: 60
As I said
IMHO If Sun doesn't have time to update their exams so I think they don't have to come out with any new one!

What's a "synchronization update"..? If they want absolutly update something in my opinion it's better they update the name of the exam instead of 3 classes.
The question is not "What would you suggest?"
but "Why Sun makes this possible?"
I think money or..?!
If I take a Certification it's first for me and then because I want to spend it on the market. I think also that employers evaluate in the right way the little differences between new and old exams but.. this is not the point.
I only think that with this politic Sun leaks on credibility.

p.s. yours are great books Bert! really
[ January 24, 2008: Message edited by: al nik ]
Bert Bates
author
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 8801
    
    5
Hey Al,

We're glad you like the books!

Okay, here's the dilemma that Sun faced: There was a new version of Java EE, but the Sun certification team decided that there was nothing in it that should be added to the existing exam. However, if a candidate comes to Java technology they might be discouraged to see that there is no certification that meets the new spec levels. Also, you can well imagine that a lot of people would complain if Sun DIDN'T come out with a new exam. They were really in a bind!

So, the team decided to do a kind of "refresh", getting rid of the less wonderful questions and adding new questions. I think the hope is that any employers that use certifications as part of their candidate evaluations will take the time to understand that the current certification is every bit as good as the "new" certification.

But I gotta say, if I was you, and you already had the current SCWCD certification, I would strongly recommend that you NOT bother to upgrade!

hth,

Bert
Raghavan Muthu
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Joined: Apr 20, 2006
Posts: 3344

The latest reply of Bert makes sense.

Just for a subtle update why would anyone go for the new exam?


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Arjan Times
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Joined: Sep 16, 2007
Posts: 35
Originally posted by Bert Bates:

Okay, here's the dilemma that Sun faced: There was a new version of Java EE, but the Sun certification team decided that there was nothing in it that should be added to the existing exam.


Hi Bert,

I'm not really sure I follow this exactly. Do you mean the SCWCD certification team decided that nothing from Java EE 5 should be added to the existing SCWCD exam? Surely the SCBCD did found stuff in Java EE 5 that could be added to 'their' exam

The thing I really don't understand is why JSF has been overlooked. As we all know, JSF is quite a large specification that brings with it not only a large API, but also a large set of new concepts and actually quite a different way of working in the web layer.

If the SCBCD team took JPA from Java EE 5 and put that into their exams, why couldn't the SCWCD team take JSF? Could it be that the SCWCD team feels the SCWCD exam should be solely based on Servlet and JSP? If that were to be correct, then would it be reasonable to expect a whole new exam specifically for JSF?

Arguably, JSF is one of the most important technologies in the web layer right now. It's more or less the foundational technology for an entire eco-system of other technologies. I find it -very- hard to believe that after this relatively long amount of time, there still isn't a JSF certification available. One may ask what message this communicates. It almost feels like Sun itself isn't fully confident about JSF, i.e. that it's considered an experimental technology that may go away in the next version of Java EE. Of course, when we look at the road map for Java EE 6 this is far from true. So, the message is a bit confusing here.

It would be wonderful if you could enlighten me on this
[ January 27, 2008: Message edited by: Arjan Times ]

SCJP 5 (90%)
Bert Bates
author
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 8801
    
    5
Hi Arjan,

That's a great question! The first important thing to know is that due to logistical limitations, Sun needs to keep the number of questions in its exams to a certain maximum, and the SCWCD is at that maximum now. We looked at JSF and we decided we would just spread the exam too thin if we tried to add JSF objectives to the SCWCD.

JSF is an important technology, and as Sun looks forward to new exams in the future I wouldn't be at all surprised to see JSF in the mix.

hth,

Bert
[ January 27, 2008: Message edited by: Bert Bates ]
Mihai Radulescu
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Joined: Sep 18, 2003
Posts: 916

Hi

There is still something what I don't get, I plan to sustain the exam in some weeks, so this will be the new exam 1.5 ? or the old one 1.4 ?
If there is a new one why I need to worry about the old one ?



Regards
M
[ January 27, 2008: Message edited by: Mihai Radulescu ]
Arjan Times
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 16, 2007
Posts: 35
Originally posted by Bert Bates:
We looked at JSF and we decided we would just spread the exam too thin if we tried to add JSF objectives to the SCWCD.


I can understand that, Servlet, JSP and JSF in one exam may indeed be too much; JSF is probably just too large of a specification for that.


JSF is an important technology, and as Sun looks forward to new exams in the future I wouldn't be at all surprised to see JSF in the mix.


It would be great if that happened indeed, hopefully sooner than later. Having a JSF certification available would surely send a strong message to the industry that Sun is really serious about JSF.

Anyway, thanks a lot for the clarification Bert
Michael Raymond Jr.
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Joined: May 16, 2005
Posts: 178
Originally posted by Mihai Radulescu:
Hi

There is still something what I don't get, I plan to sustain the exam in some weeks, so this will be the new exam 1.5 ? or the old one 1.4 ?
If there is a new one why I need to worry about the old one ?



Regards
M

[ January 27, 2008: Message edited by: Mihai Radulescu ]


i agree - go for the new one considering the exams are "identical".


i have one question: why not just eliminate (make it not available) the 1.4 and make all new candidates take 1.5 since they are identical? Or, "refresh" the title of the current exam and not create a new one. Either way, Sun can still produce new books/promos and all that jazz for 1.5, and candidates can still use their already purchased 1.4 material...making the whole world happy. this would eliminate repeated confusion that goes like "which one do i go for if they are both the same?", and prevent the almost-1.4 mob from getting angry due to having to buy new material.

[ January 29, 2008: Message edited by: Michael Raymond Jr. ]
[ January 29, 2008: Message edited by: Michael Raymond Jr. ]

Scooby Snacks for everyone...<br /> <br />SCJA, SCJP 1.4
al nik
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Joined: Oct 18, 2007
Posts: 60
I agree with you Michael and Mihai.. the problem here is that you will be certified today for 1.4 and tomorrow 1.5 with nearly the same exam.. so wait if you can.. nobody know how long
[ January 30, 2008: Message edited by: al nik ]
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
 
subject: HF Servlets and JSP - new vs. old
 
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