I'd like to update my skills as I am certified in 1.4 and am now working in a Java 5 environment. The Sun eduction site recommends sitting the new Java 6 exam, but I have no idea how to go about revising for the upgrade exam. Do I get a Java 5 book and look up the extra Java 6 bits, or just start with Java 6? Are there a lot of differences between the versions? In the upgrade exam will I only be tested on these differences, or everything? Basically, do I need to read about what a for loop is for the millionth time?
I've used the targeted books (Head First) for my SCJP and SCWCD exams and am not looking forward to doing it on my own if that's the only option for me.
I can't afford the recommended Java 5 (not even 6) course the training guys told me to do at �1500 so a book or online would be my method.
So you already have experience as a Java programmer working with Java 5? My personal opinion is that a �1500 course is totally unnecessary if you already know Java. The SCJP for Java 6 is still quite new, so the books specific to SCJP 6 are not yet out. So your best bet at the moment is get a book for SCJP 5, study it, and watch out for the differences between SCJP 5 and 6. There is not that much difference between Java 5 and 6.
Ofcourse I don't know your situation, but if you're already SCJP 1.4 certified and have some experience as a Java programmer, is there really a compelling benefit for you to upgrade to SCJP 5 or 6? (I'm SCJP 1.2 certified myself and have about 9 years of Java programming experience).