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Self Study or Course Root

Tony Combe
Greenhorn

Joined: Mar 14, 2002
Posts: 17
Hello everyone I am fairly new to java but would like to take the SCJP in about 3 to 6 months time. Can anyone give me advice on the quickest way to learn for the exam are there any courses that are worthwhile or is it better to save my money and just get a few books. Would be very gratefull for any advice
Corey McGlone
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 20, 2001
Posts: 3271
Well, I'd say it depends on how new you are to Java and programming, in general. If you're just new to Java and you're a veteran programmer, you can probably get away with a good book. However, if you're new to programming as a whole, a book would be helpful, but taking a class or two might really help get you a "jump-start."
The one thing to remember and many people around here preach is that you must practice if you want to learn Java. You're not going to become a good programmer by listening to lectures or reading books. That's all great but, unless you take some serious time to write some applications in Java, you'll never get a chance to apply what you've learned.
Once you get started, be sure to frequent this forum often. Ask and, just as importantly, answer questions. If you can find the solution to someone else's question, you're going to be more likely to be able to find the answers to your own in the future.
Also, check out the Certification Book Reviews to get a good idea of what books everyone likes.
I hope that helps get you started.
Corey


SCJP Tipline, etc.
Valentin Crettaz
Gold Digger
Sheriff

Joined: Aug 26, 2001
Posts: 7610
Also another great link is:
http://www.javaranch.com/maha


SCJP 5, SCJD, SCBCD, SCWCD, SCDJWS, IBM XML
[Blog] [Blogroll] [My Reviews] My Linked In
Tony Combe
Greenhorn

Joined: Mar 14, 2002
Posts: 17
Thanks Corey and Valentin, I appreciate the quick response.
Dirk Schreckmann
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 10, 2001
Posts: 7023
Hello,
I vote for self study. If you were taking an instructor led course, for every hour you'd still have to spend many, many hours practicing and studying outside of the classroom - just listening and conversing with the instructor won't substitute doing.
An instructor would be nice, but they can be very expensive - $2500 for five days of training is a not uncommon cost. Who has that much money to throw away on concepts that cannot be mastered in five days of contemplation?
Classes at a university with a lower cost and spread out class session schedule would probably be far more practical for most. But with 25 - 30 students and one instructor in one classroom, there isn't much time for the individual that will learn on his own schedule based on his own understandings and abilities. No doubt some people would seem to require the structure and schedule of the class to keep on track and motivated to get the work done.
If you can be self-motivated (honestly) and would rather spend the money on beer and ice cream, then I say get books (from your library) and hit the internet - it has more information on learning Java than any one person could read. JavaRanch is a great place to come and ask questions you might have liked an instructor to have had the time to answer for you.
Good Luck.


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