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My thoughts about the SCJP 1.4 exam (with I've taken today) - includes tips and more!

bengt hammarlund
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Joined: Oct 17, 2003
Posts: 78
Here are my opinions about the exam:
- The exam should be considered very easy for anyone with SOME Java experience;
- the exam is weak at assuring you know how to use and program in Java. This exam should include a written part, with questions like:
"you got a interface MyInterface that defines one method "void MyMethod()". Write the code to that interface, and write a class that implements that interface. The class you'll write should serve as a Thread target too. Implement any interface you fell is important for that task.
Your class will have a member variable: any Collection class that is fast in insertions at the middle of the collection. This member variable should be only visible to members of your class."
The question above is easy, but serve as a example of what should be, in my opinion, a better way to be shore that the person who's taking the exam KNOWS Java at a decent level.
My observations and tips to the actual exam:
- there wore no big "got you!" questions;
-questions about assert system wore mainly theorical;
- the same can be said about collections framework part of the exam;
- the loop/logic of the code questions wore simple. Watch out for stuff like:
int i = 0;
do {
//some simple logic with break/continue statements
} while (++1 < 10) // be shore you know how this kind of stuff works!
- thread questions are NOT THAT HARD. I scored 100% in threads; 50% theorical 50 practical, only one I considered a little hard.
- make sure you know how to at least instantiate all flavors of inner classes (static, instance member and method member). This will assure you 90% of inner class questions;
- study a lot and do a lot of mock exams. This will give you the confidence necessary to go throut the exam with calm, and more importantly: minimize the chance of your nervous system get in the way between you and your certification!
That's it. Any questions I'll be more then happy to respond. As of my score, I scored 96% (missed two... really don't know WITH ONES!!). When I finished I really was shore I didn't missed ONE. But that's a good score, I guess.
Sections analysis:
I missed on question in Operators and assignments, and the other one in Fundamental classes in the java.lang package. Sniff.
The other ones I scored 100%.


<b><i>Bengt Hammarlund</i><br />� Sun Certified Java Programmer</b>
Marlene Miller
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 05, 2003
Posts: 1391
Congratulations Bengt. Doesn�t it feel good. No more studying.
I sat for the exam on Thursday. I also missed one in the Fundamentals Classes of the java.lang package. Let's pretend it's the same one. Let's pretend there is a bug in the exam.
Say, I have a question for you about the instructions that come just before the questions regarding the assumptions and how to understand partial snippets of code.
How good is your memory? Can you remember exactly what they said about the meaning of must and can? If you think this is something Sun would not want you to disclose, then by all means, do not answer this question.
I am trying to help Dan phrase his questions concisely and without ambiguity. It is always tricky when something is true sometimes.
(I sent you a private message a few days ago.)
bengt hammarlund
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 17, 2003
Posts: 78
Originally posted by Marlene Miller:
Congratulations Bengt. Doesn�t it feel good. No more studying.

Thanks! But... no more studying? I am already saving money for my next Certification, I'm aiming at SCBCD, since I already participated in a EJB project at my University.

I sat for the exam on Thursday. I also missed one in the Fundamentals Classes of the java.lang package. Let's pretend it's the same one. Let's pretend there is a bug in the exam.

Don't say bug! You just remembered me a bug that happened when I was reviewing my questions. The window of the exam application just disappeared and I had the Windows desktop on the screen! But nothing that [ALT]+[TAB] didn't fix. I missed one that I marked as correct this: float f = (new Float()).parseFloat(1.whatever) ... but there is no no arg constructor for any Wrapper class! I really remember that one because I was in dough...
By the way, what was your score? Just curious =]

Say, I have a question for you about the instructions that come just before the questions regarding the assumptions and how to understand partial snippets of code.
How good is your memory? Can you remember exactly what they said about the meaning of must and can?
(...)

I didn't really read all the instructions. I was in a hurry today, since I had other exam in the university 30min after the SCJP 1.4. But I remember one Assertion question was ambiguous, in my opinion. I marked the one that was more likely, and I scored. But in 61 questions, that was the only one I felt was not clear enough - so I guess it's ok. Besides, maybe for ME it was ambiguous, but for more experienced people it isn't.

(I sent you a private message a few days ago.)

I just answered that one!
[ November 01, 2003: Message edited by: bengt hammarlund ]
Marlene Miller
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 05, 2003
Posts: 1391
Thank you Bengt. You're right. There is always more to study. Don't fall behind the technology like I did. I was so busy churning out code on schedule, I didn't notice the world changed. Some one said, learn a new language every year. That might be about right.
I recognize that question mentioned. I also had trouble with it. My first reaction was, the exam has bugs. There are too many correct options to select.
Didn't you know that people whose native language is not English are allowed to add 10% to their score. So you are over the top. I missed one.
bengt hammarlund
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 17, 2003
Posts: 78
Hi guys. Hi Marlene! =]
Listen, I want an opinion, what should be my next step, SCBCD or SCWCD?
I'm already working with EJBs (but very little actually), but my experience with servlets and JSP is ZERO, NADA. =]
But a friend of mine got a book about SCWCD and the Whizlabs SCWCD exam. He's willing to sell me both cheap since he's not using them anymore.
Is that a good deal, or should I invest my time in SCBCD? I don't have any book towards the certification, but I got this book: "Mastering EJBs" Second Edition, a book that I'm almost finish reading. And since I know there are many more SCWCDs out there then are SCBCDs, I fell it's more interesting a SCBCD.
Comments, oppinions please!
 
Don't get me started about those stupid light bulbs.
 
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