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When to Be Confident

Matt DeLacey
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 318
I'd like to get people's opinion about what score one needs to be consistently getting on the mock exams before one should feel confident about passing the real exam. I understand that in the Certification FAQ it says you should be getting 85+, but that seems like a score if someone is wanting to get a high score on the exam. What if someone's goal is just to pass? If someone is consistently scoring 100% on Rules Roundup and 70% on mock exams (including Marcus exams), is that enough "wiggle room" to feel fairly certain that you will pass? Does anyone have any feel for how much someone can hope to raise their % on the exam in a given time? I consistently get 100% in the Rules Roundup game and 65+% in mock exams (including Marcus), and I have almost 4 weeks before I take the exam. However, I can only study for about 2 hours per day. I feel pretty good about where I stand right now but it would be nice to have some goal to shoot for (although I'm not sure 85+% is reasonable given my constraints) so that I can feel very confident that I will PASS (withou reard to the quality of the score).

Matt
Lee Reedy
Greenhorn

Joined: Sep 08, 2000
Posts: 25
Just a thought.....
It seems to me, that as long as you have to ask yourself that question, you are not ready for the exam yet. Right?
Matt DeLacey
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 318
Well, I respect your right to that opinion, but I definately disagree. I would guess that MANY, MANY people who have taken the certification exam and passed have asked themselves this same exact question. It's not an unreasonable question, because if you are consistently scoring a passing score on mock exams it seems reasonable to suspect that you would do so on the real thing. However, there are several people who have said they were doing well on the mock exam and then didn't pass. Trying to gauge how prepared you are doesn't, IMHO, mean you aren't ready, it just means you aren't certain what the results you've seen from your efforts are telling you. Not everyone who comes to this site is trying to get a 90+% on the exam. I suspect everyone here has the CPU to do it, but time constraints, for one don't always permit it. In any event, thanks for your input, I'll chaulk that up as a vote for "You need to be getting an 85+%" as I think that's the spirit of your response.
Hemanth Presingu
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 01, 2000
Posts: 30

I have been getting 95-100% in the rules roundup and also around 70% in the mockups. Infact i was able to get 70% in the mockups only during the last 3 days before the exam. I. some of my prior mockups, i got anywhere between 50 - 65%.
I passed the SCJP with 81%, of course this is all with the old test format.
My feeling is that 100% in rules roundup and 70%+ in mockups should make you pass. Infact i found most mockups tougher than the real exam. Only Marcus Green's mockups are very close to it, and my score in those mockups has been 80, 71 and 77%.
Just my 2 c.
-Hemanth
wilbin chan
Greenhorn

Joined: Oct 09, 2000
Posts: 6
I was in the same situation as you when I finished reading my main review book. After that, I spent like 20 more hours doing mocks and patching my weak spots. Remember, the JLS and the API docs are your best bets for this... Identify your weaknesses using the mocks, then read the aforementioned texts. Do it over and over until you're sick of mocks, by then you'll be more than ready...
just my experience...
Matt DeLacey
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 318
Hemanth and wilbin:
Thank you very much. This is EXACTLY the kind of info I was looking for. It is appreciated.
With Respect,
Matt
Lee Reedy
Greenhorn

Joined: Sep 08, 2000
Posts: 25
Matt,
Whoa! Didn't mean to set a fire there! I suppose the score that you want to achieve on the test also plays a big part too. I would honestly say that a lot goes into confidence. Some people test better than others. I napped through much of my SAT's in high school and still got over 1250...while others stressed and did bad because they are "bad test-takers."
As the experts have said, when you are consistently scoring over 90% then you are in a position to do well on the exam. If you want to pass the 61% mark, then I feel you should know how to code and read code and know your fundamentals well. Aside from mocks and theory, a strong coding background can't hurt at all.
 
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