File APIs for Java Developers
Manipulate DOC, XLS, PPT, PDF and many others from your application.
http://aspose.com/file-tools
The moose likes Jobs Discussion and the fly likes Please Advice Big Moose Saloon
  Search | Java FAQ | Recent Topics | Flagged Topics | Hot Topics | Zero Replies
Register / Login


Win a copy of Soft Skills this week in the Jobs Discussion forum!
JavaRanch » Java Forums » Careers » Jobs Discussion
Bookmark "Please Advice" Watch "Please Advice" New topic
Author

Please Advice

shalini sharma
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 21, 2002
Posts: 26
Hello All,
I have Master's degree in Computer Sciences and have solid knowledge of Java, J2EE ,'C'. I dont have industry experience till now and many companies are asking experience even for entry level jobs. Will getting Java Programmer Certification Help? From Past six months I am applying for all kinds of computer jobs from PC technician. Please advice whAT to do in this present situation.
Thanks and Regards
Jyothi
Sam Tilley
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 05, 2001
Posts: 160
There is no harm in getting SCJP if you are currently unemployed, it won't help if an employer is only looking for experience but it wont hurt either. If you have plenty of knowledge / time it shouldnt take you too long to pass either. Also try and get onto an open source project such as Jakarta to get some work experience
Good luck


Sam Tilley SCJP, SCWCD
Eric Fletcher
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 26, 2000
Posts: 188
Like Sam, and countless others at the Ranch have noted, it can't hurt. The negative is obviously the cost, especially if are not working. I don't think it's a guarantee to get you noticed, but I do believe it can set you apart from other candidates with a similar background, i.e. knowledge but no practical experience.
But an added benefit is you learn the language like it was intended to be used. I've been programming in Java for about three years(primarily self-taught)and thought I knew plenty until I started studying for the cert exam. Sure I could code, but studying for the exam forces you to REALLY understand the fundamentals.
Good luck,
Eric


My theory of evolution is that Darwin was adopted. - Steven Wright
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037
Actually, I do see some "harm," or at least, a cost:
1) It costs money
2) It costs time
This is an issue of opportunity cost. Because I don't place much value on the certification, I think the time oculd be better spend coding projects or learning new skills, or even learning Java through other means.
3) It teaches the wrong things
SCJP teaches you how to regurutate the rules of the language, not how to write good code. I've interviewed plenty of SCJPs who weren't good programmers. I've looked at the SCJA exam. It seems to teach you Sun's marketing. While you may get familiar with much of the different APIs, it doesn't teach you how to recognize bottlenecks, estimate tradeoffs, etc. I havent' look too much at the SCJD, but I suspect it's similar.
4) It sets you up for disappointment
It's hard being unemployed. It must be even harder to work hard to get certified, and get your hopes up, only to discover that there is no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

How much those things cost and how much benefit you get obviously varies from one person to the next.

--Mark
Jamie Robertson
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 09, 2001
Posts: 1879

With a Master's degree on your resume, the employers will probably be indifferent to a certification on your resume. I'd spend the money on getting my resume professionally reviewed and spend my time pounding the pavement ( yes, actually going out into the real world, not just emailing 30000000000000 resumes over the web! ) getting my name out there by networking, gaining contacts, and finding jobs that other people don't even know are available.
Jamie
Jamie Robertson
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 09, 2001
Posts: 1879

continuation...
I also think that a greater benefit would come from volunteering your time to help a non-profit organization. At the end of the project you won't have a certification, but you will have real-world experience, more money ( no certification fees ) and you'll have something concrete to talk to prospective employers about (complete lifecycle of a project), not just some hypothetical exam questions or a few lines of code you've written. There are also the intangibles that I think are important as well. Volunteering for non-profit organization portrays an image of you being honest, ethical, responsible, reliable and many things that employers are looking for. Also, you never know who you'll meet while working on the project or by just being around other people instead of having your head glued to a computer screen or
book.
Just my 2 cents.
Jamie
shalini sharma
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 21, 2002
Posts: 26
Jamie, How can I get my resume professionally reviewed? I have applied to non-profit organisations also... but no response.Any idea where I can find more jobs in non-profit organisations.
Thanks all once again.
Jyothi
[ March 07, 2003: Message edited by: Jyothy kidambhi ]
William Barnes
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 16, 2001
Posts: 986

techsoup is a good place to checkout if you are interesting in non-profits.


Please ignore post, I have no idea what I am talking about.
Harpreet Singh
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 16, 2002
Posts: 56
Jyothi,
I just thought I will throw in my two cents worth also. I have always believed certifications are a self-serving industry. Vendors just have to design a pool of questions and then they can charge a lot of money and of course they get to sell books also. And to top it all you build a following in the tech community. So its a win-win-win for vendors. Money from exams, money from books and money from product sales!
But you need to play the game of the industry. There are a lot of people out there who view candidates with certification favorably. Personally, I believe your time will be better spent getting open source experience. This will help you get interviews with smart hiring managers. But if you can spare time and money get the cert as well. This will help you get interviews with managers who are old-fashioned and have no clue about open source.


Harpreet Singh<p>SCJP2/SCWCD/IBM Certified Specialist-DB2 7.1/IBM Certified Application Developer-DB2 8.1
William Barnes
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 16, 2001
Posts: 986

How can I get my resume professionally reviewed?

Post it here. I have seen lots of good feedback on this forum (and it's free!).
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037
Originally posted by Harpreet Singh:
I have always believed certifications are a self-serving industry.

Well, as much as I oppose certifications, there are some programs out there that are worthwhile. Lately they tend to be the exception rather then the rule, at least for the software industry, anyway.

Originally posted by Harpreet Singh:
But you need to play the game of the industry.

If by game you mean get certificatons, then I strongly disagree. I know plenty of people who are doing just fine in this market without certifications.

--Mark
William Barnes
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 16, 2001
Posts: 986

Just wondering, what country are you from? And if in the US what state/city. (Just wondering about the condition of the job market in geographical areas.) Thanks.
Harpreet Singh
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 16, 2002
Posts: 56
Mark,
I agree that there are plenty of techies who are doing great without any certs especially developers. The only thing I have gained from certs is that they forced me to read things I would have never read otherwise. But here's the flipside, I have still not used the obscure things that I read for the certs! So much for the value of certs
Anyway, if I were the hiring manager I would any day pick an open source developer over a paper SCJP. But believe me there are a lot of old-fashioned folks out there who value paper more than open source experience. In fact they think of open source developers as some sort of ham radio enthusiasts living in a basement!
Sam Tilley
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 05, 2001
Posts: 160
Ah but you have missed the whole point of doing a certification, you don't just do one or the other.. It is often done alongside other avenues that get you experience/knowledge.
Its not a question of picking an open source developer over a paper its a SCJP. The question is which is better, an open source developer or an open source developer with an SCJP...
You can easily do both at once so people who discredit certs as saying experience is more valuable are off track as having experience and a cert is always going to be better than just experience alone. Its not a one or the other thing.
In my experience getting the cert got me a job that would not have been offered to me otherwise, hence getting me the experience. Also i am able to understand the different areas of Java a whole lot better than i did before so its benefitted me hugely, and so i believe is always worth it.
OK so a masters is more valuable than a cert but a masters and a cert will always beat a masters.
Its just like playing cards
Mark you said that some programs are worthwhile. Out of interest which ones were you referring to???
[ November 28, 2002: Message edited by: Sam Tilley ]
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037
Originally posted by Sam Tilley:
Ah but you have missed the whole point of doing a certification, you don't just do one or the other.. It is often done alongside other avenues that get you experience/knowledge.

No, that is exactly the point! There are many SCJPs who do do one witout the other and only have paper knowledge.
--Mark
Mark Herschberg
Sheriff

Joined: Dec 04, 2000
Posts: 6037
For some reason (probably the fact that I haven't been using my regular laptop lately) I totally missed that this posting didn't comply with the naming policy. Time to fix that...
--Mark
"Jyothi",
Welcome to JavaRanch.
PROPER NAMES ARE NOW REQUIRED
Please look carefully at official naming policy at javaranch & reregister yourself with proper first & last name, with a space between them. Please adhere to official naming policy & help maintain the decorum of the forum. The naming policy can be found at http://www.javaranch.com/name.jsp
Topics posted by people with invalid names will be closed. Please register with a new name and this topic will be reopened.

--Mark
shalini sharma
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 21, 2002
Posts: 26
Thanks all for your suggestions.
Will,
I am presently located in DC metro area (US).In DC area most of the IT jobs need US citizenship.
I am planning to take my certification in January. Hopefully, by January ending my goal is to get certification and positively get into a Job.
thanks all once again.
Jyothi
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
 
subject: Please Advice