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What is your take on Java/JEE certification?

arulk pillai
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To certified or not certified is one of the highly debated topic. What is your view or recommendation for the aspiring Java/JEE professionals.


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Sagar Rohankar
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    1

That's really a debated topic, but the ultimate truth is, there is NO harm if you have some good certificates under your belt which reflects your expertise in the given technology and all we know that today's world is competitive and in order to have an edge, certification is must. For most of the potential employer, they will look for a certification if they had to cut off somewhere from bunch of CV's.

Bu my story is different, I joined JR so that I can prepare for SCJp, but still one and half year passed and never thought of purchasing a SCJP coupon, but I surly wanna do it.


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Katrina Owen
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Joined: Nov 03, 2006
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  17
Sagar Rohankar wrote:That's really a debated topic


Ain't that the truth!

Sagar Rohankar wrote: all we know that today's world is competitive and in order to have an edge, certification is must. For most of the potential employer, they will look for a certification if they had to cut off somewhere from bunch of CV's


I think it is much less clear cut than that. It depends on the culture at the company hiring. The company I work for doesn't use certifications to sift through resumes. The thing that usually helps cut out the bulk of resumes is "passion". For one thing, if a resume doesn't mention any sort of programming/curiosity outside of work/school then the candidate is unlikely to make it to the phone screen.
arulk pillai
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Sagar Rohankar wrote:That's really a debated topic, but the ultimate truth is, there is NO harm if you have some good certificates under your belt which reflects your expertise in the given technology and all we know that today's world is competitive and in order to have an edge, certification is must. For most of the potential employer, they will look for a certification if they had to cut off somewhere from bunch of CV's.

Bu my story is different, I joined JR so that I can prepare for SCJp, but still one and half year passed and never thought of purchasing a SCJP coupon, but I surly wanna do it.


I am not against certification. It is a good thing for the beginners. It is good for your own good to learn the fundamentals. I don't agree that certification is a must to "have an edge". It may play some part, but there are lots of other things like experience based achievements one can posses to have an edge. I guess the passionate programmer will cover these things. I have worked with many talented professionals, who are not certified at all. I also have worked certified professionals who do not really impress me. In some countries, certifications are more popular and well received than the other countries. If the interviews are comprehensive enough, it will be much easier to cut off on lot of other things than having to resort to certification alone (unless the recruitment is for an entry level position). IMHO, it is naive to believe that certification alone will turn things around or give someone an edge.

There is no harm in doing, but there are lot of things to learn and many skills to acquire to become a successful professional. One needs to be mindful of the time factor. For example, if a certification takes 2-3 months to prepare, one could gain enough hands on experience in some of the sought-after technologies in that time period. This could give someone an edge over the other certfied candidates.


Ulf Dittmer
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  65
there is NO harm if you have some good certificates under your belt which reflects your expertise in the given technology

That's debatable. There may be no harm from a prospective employer's point of view, but if a certification counts for nothing, then there's an opportunity cost to the person taking the certification: She has spent time on it that she might more usefully have spent on other things - like working on projects that prove practical experience, as opposed to the theoretical experience that exams like the SCJP and SCWCD certify. (This will apparently change: Starting later this year, the theoretical exams will be phased out in favor for practical exams.)

and all we know that today's world is competitive and in order to have an edge, certification is must.

That depends a lot on which job market you're talking about. In various countries, and especially for non-entry-level jobs, a Java certification buys you nothing.


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Sagar Rohankar
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    1

Katrina Owen wrote:
Sagar Rohankar wrote: all we know that today's world is competitive and in order to have an edge, certification is must. For most of the potential employer, they will look for a certification if they had to cut off somewhere from bunch of CV's

I think it is much less clear cut than that. It depends on the culture at the company hiring. The company I work for doesn't use certifications to sift through resumes.

Agreed, but number of such companies are less. Or may be this is the culture here in India, to seek certifications
arulk pillai wrote: I have worked with many talented professionals, who are not certified at all. I also have worked certified professionals who do not really impress me. In some countries, certifications are more popular and well received than the other countries. If the interviews are comprehensive enough, it will be much easier to cut off on lot of other things than having to resort to certification alone. IMHO, it is naive to believe that certification alone will turn things around or give someone an edge.

Also I want to make one point clear, certification for fresh passed out graduates is must because that's definitely make your resume more impressive, especially during such bad phase of recessions and down sizing. So, if you had a 7 -8 years of experience in building an enterprise application in Java, no one ask you about your certificates, but the same case is NOT true for novice job seekers.
arulk pillai
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Also I want to make one point clear, certification for fresh passed out graduates is must because that's definitely make your resume more impressive, especially during such bad phase of recessions and down sizing. So, if you had a 7 -8 years of experience in building an enterprise application in Java, no one ask you about your certificates, but the same case is NOT true for novice job seekers.


I wouldn't say must, but certainly helps. Have you seen a job advertisement that says "Certification is a must". I have rarely seen ads saying "Preferrably Sun Certified" where I live. Employers do consider your other qualifications and skills like

-- basic degree
-- soft-skills acquired through part-time jobs, casual jobs, particpiating in sports, organizing cultural events, charity work, etc.
-- presentation skills (e.g. resume)
-- interviewing skills
-- self-taught projects and open-source contribution
-- online persona e.g. blogs, participation in the forums like this.

One employer may give more emphasis to soft-skills and culture fit whilst the other employer might prefer someone with a certification. That is why it is better to be a well-rounded professional.


Sagar Rohankar
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    1

OK, OK, It looks like I'm the only one who is strongly supporting certification, all your points/inputs are good. But, I couldn't get one thing, every one starts like "Having certified is good/certificates makes you no harm", and in next paragraph, the ticking off the negative side of certification, like time taken for preparation, not ALL company's considers it, NOT a benchmark/identity of quality resource.
Ulf Dittmer
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  65
But, I couldn't get one thing, every one starts like "Having certified is good/certificates makes you no harm", and in next paragraph...

Those are quotes of your post, so that the reader knows what, specifically, the following reply text refers to. They're NOT an indication of the opinion of the person posting the reply (and in this case, apparently, quite the opposite). Just like in this post, I'm quoting just one sentence of your post, because that's the part I'm specifically replying to.
Sagar Rohankar
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    1

Ulf Dittmer wrote:
But, I couldn't get one thing, every one starts like "Having certified is good/certificates makes you no harm", and in next paragraph...

Those are quotes of your post, so that the reader knows what, specifically, the following reply text refers to.

I know it, Ulf.

Now, let me reexplain using your own post:

That's debatable. There may be no harm from a prospective employer's point of view,

You said, NO harm.
but if a certification counts for nothing, then there's an opportunity cost to the person taking the certification: She has spent time on it that she might more usefully have spent on other things - like working on projects that prove practical experience, as opposed to the theoretical experience that exams like the SCJP and SCWCD certify. (This will apparently change: Starting later this year, the theoretical exams will be phased out in favor for practical exams.)

And then you mention a point which sounds like "certification is waste of time"
Ulf Dittmer
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Joined: Mar 22, 2005
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  65
I think you missed a few crucial parts of my post; let me make those explicit:
Ulf Dittmer wrote:There may be no harm from a prospective employer's point of view, but if a certification counts for nothing, then there's an opportunity cost to the person taking the certification: She has spent time on it that she might more usefully have spent on other things - like working on projects that prove practical experience, as opposed to the theoretical experience that exams like the SCJP and SCWCD certifications.

Make more sense?
Sagar Rohankar
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Joined: Feb 19, 2008
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    1

OK, It means, certifications are good as long as perspective employer seeks for it, otherwise you're wasting your time

Hope this time I'm right, else I need to join English language classes
Jeanne Boyarsky
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Ulf Dittmer wrote:(This will apparently change: Starting later this year, the theoretical exams will be phased out in favor for practical exams.)

Hmm. Maybe I should get certified then . I've never seen the value of memorizing a bunch of obscure facts.


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arulk pillai
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So should I. Practical exams will be much better.
Hong Anderson
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I think it's simple, if you want just do it, if don't want just don't do it, no need to discuss much.

From my experience, most of my employer/ex-employers and potential employers feel positive that I have some certifications. I'll say it's nice to have. Some companies might don't interest, but some companies do. I don't understand, why some people deny benefit of certifications by saying that *some* companies don't interest. I guess it's a preconception.

Some companies also increase salary if we have some certifications, is it good to get more salary? I cannot think of how it's not good .

Somebody might think experience is more important, I have an experience that I was very confident in my ability in some topics, but when I was in the exam room, I realized immediately how unknowledgeable I was. A drawback of experience is sometimes we presume that we have enough knowledge, we are capable, but actually we're not. If we will rely on experience, we need to have mentors or study a lot from several books.

And a benefit of examination is we will be evaluated by gurus/experts, that is the reason why formal study in schools/universities need to have examination, even Ph.D. requires examination, only having experience don't give us a real Ph.D.


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Jeanne Boyarsky
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Kengkaj Sathianpantarit wrote: A drawback of experience is sometimes we presume that we have enough knowledge, we are capable, but actually we're not. If we will rely on experience, we need to have mentors or study a lot from several books..

I agree. I read the SCJP prep book and learned a lot. It was just the actual exam I didn't see the value of.

Kengkaj Sathianpantarit wrote: And a benefit of examination is we will be evaluated by gurus/experts, that is the reason why formal study in schools/universities need to have examination, even Ph.D. requires examination, only having experience don't give us a real Ph.D.

Useful examination, yes. However a multiple choice exam doesn't exactly grant this review. I get way more feedback from a code review.
Jimmy Clark
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The ability to answer multiple choice questions and recite memorized technical facts is not a software development skill. If an individual does not have real skills and abilities, their certifications will not mean much.
K. Tsang
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    9

Hi there, IMO certifications in general only helps you personally to verify your (Java) skills. Employers may consider certs as added-value but in the long run certs are just like a piece of paper similar to your degree. So what if you have a cert when no employers consider it or even worse when they think you have no or not much practical experience with that technology?

I once took the MCSE exams but once I got it, I hardly touched a Windows Server!! I now have SCJD but seem hard to get a java-related job. And in today's job market, well rounded is the norm - companies expect you to have "solid" experience in a variety of things. And sometimes it's impossible to have "solid" experience when your company uses a single platform for development (whether it's .net or java or lamp). I hate that ...

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matt charron
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Dear Tsang,

Think in general terms, present market situation is exception andn worst in last 70 years. Once economy recovers, there will be jobs and think from that time's perspective.

I think certification are significant help. It is basic conformation that you atleasy know the academic side. It is helpful for developers with less than 5 years experience. After that, it might not matter that much.
Hong Anderson
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Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:
Kengkaj Sathianpantarit wrote: A drawback of experience is sometimes we presume that we have enough knowledge, we are capable, but actually we're not. If we will rely on experience, we need to have mentors or study a lot from several books..

I agree. I read the SCJP prep book and learned a lot. It was just the actual exam I didn't see the value of.

I thought I learned a lot from reading a book, but when I went to an exam, I realized that there are many things I didn't know, for me that is a value of taking actual exam. It's very different from searching for mock questions and try to do it at home. Some mock questions of SCJP are funny, and I surprise that some people believe that the real questions will be like that, and say they are no value, it is preconception.

Kengkaj Sathianpantarit wrote:
Useful examination, yes. However a multiple choice exam doesn't exactly grant this review. I get way more feedback from a code review.

Multiple choices exams and exams that require to write explanation have pros and cons.
Anyway, there are certifications that have review as a part of the exam like PgMP, SCJD, SCEA, MCA.
Hong Anderson
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James Clark wrote:The ability to answer multiple choice questions and recite memorized technical facts is not a software development skill. If an individual does not have real skills and abilities, their certifications will not mean much.

Each certification has objectives, it evaluates only from the objectives. I agree with your last sentence, it's the same that bachelor/master/doctoral degree does not mean much if an individual does not have real skills and abilities.
Tim Holloway
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  21

I was forced to take a "competency exam" recently for a certain popular technology. I walked away from it with a firm belief that any test that can be graded by unskilled personnel is not worth very much.

Since the exam had to be graded by machine, it was all "multiple guess", and the questions were generally of the "best answer" variety - which I loathe, because some of the answers are only "best" if you're ignorant of any other way to do things. A good selection of the rest were for obscure seldom-used features that I don't consider worth keeping in memory. Like Sherlock Holmes, I keep a library for that purpose. Although at least he didn't have to worry about obsoleted knowledge.

At the same time, since I was a very early adopter of this technology, I've seen some really awful things done with the technology in question, resulting in programs that would randomly die if more than one user signed on, leaky resources, subversion of the very features that were supposed to make this particular technology so useful and so forth. The exam didn't even begin to test for the kind of knowledge that would indicate that the examinee had the competence not to commit these offenses.

I respect anyone who's made the effort to acquire formal credentials, but most of the credentials themselves are worth just about as much as if I'd created the certificate myself.


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Jimmy Clark
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Each certification has objectives, it evaluates only from the objectives. I agree with your last sentence, it's the same that bachelor/master/doctoral degree does not mean much if an individual does not have real skills and abilities.


You cannot reasonably compare Sun Microsystems to Massachusetts Institute of Technology or Indian Institutes of Technology.

And the effort to obtain Sun certificates and the effort to obtain college degrees from accreditied academic institutions are not the same.

Basically, certifcation programs are revenue-generating marketing programs for profit-based companies. They are not part of academia.
Hong Anderson
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Tim Holloway wrote:
I respect anyone who's made the effort to acquire formal credentials, but most of the credentials themselves are worth just about as much as if I'd created the certificate myself.

Exactly. Credentials themselves has almost no value, value is not in the credentials but in along the path to get the credentials.
Chad Fowler
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As someone who has done a lot of interviewing and hiring, I'd say that as a technology becomes more of a commodity, things like certifications become necessary evils when you're in a job search. The reason is that when it's a buyer's employment market, potential employers are flooded with resumes for every job posting. Many if not most of the candidates are unqualified. For example, you might ask for competency in core Java and get a lot of candidates who barely know Java at all.

So certifications are used as a weeding mechanism to separate completely clueless candidates from those that can at least pass a test. I've never considered a certification to be a valid measure of real worth, but it can at least help me avoid interviewing people who don't know the technology at all. It's a known fault that you will certainly miss qualified candidates who are not certified but sometimes it's the best choice in a list of not very good choices for a hiring team.


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Jimmy Clark
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It's a known fault that you will certainly miss qualified candidates who are not certified but sometimes it's the best choice in a list of not very good choices for a hiring team.


This is an unacceptable process in my opinion and presents a significant risk to the organization. And, this type of talent acquistion typically is the root cause of failed IT projects.
Chad Fowler
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James Clark wrote:
It's a known fault that you will certainly miss qualified candidates who are not certified but sometimes it's the best choice in a list of not very good choices for a hiring team.


This is an unacceptable process in my opinion and presents a significant risk to the organization. And, this type of talent acquistion typically is the root cause of failed IT projects.


We'll just have to agree to disagree on this one. I'm speaking from the perspective of someone who has done a ton of hiring with a very high volume of applications. I'm also someone who understands the value of great developers. I wouldn't use certifications in this way if I were looking for a niche position or, say, a technical leadership position. But there are some positions for which there aren't many choices for weeding through resumes.

Another technique I've used with great effect is to filter on candidates who have significant experience in an unrelated language. For a specific example, we were trying to hire 30 Java developers out of a resume/applicant pool of 20,000 (yes, that's twenty thousand). The process was unwieldy until we started filtering on people who had Smalltalk experience. Smalltalk being significantly different from Java (dynamically typed, extensible at runtime, image-based, etc.) caused our filtering process to yield a significantly higher percentage of applications we actually made offers to.

To say that this type of talent acquisition is typically the root cause of failed IT projects leads me to believe that you misunderstood my description of what we did. We didn't use the certification as selection criteria. Just as a means of filtering the number of people we had to talk to. We then put them through a rigorous set of interviews during which the certification never really came up. I don't see how this could lead to failing projects in any way. We might have missed some otherwise qualified candidates but there was no way our interview team could scale to the kind of influx of applications we were getting so we were going to miss a lot anyway.
Jimmy Clark
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Good points.

Significantly and repeatedly "missing qualified candidates" is the problem that I associate with failed IT projects. Using certifications to "filter" candidates is not an efficient way to find the best candidate available, in my opinion. There are many other more intelligent ways to narrow down the bunch, without the risk.

Having a resume/applicant pool of 20,000 represents another issue, however. (Not appropriate for this thread though)
Chad Fowler
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I'd love to hear more ideas, James!

Thanks,
Chad
Jimmy Clark
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I'm sure that you would
Jeanne Boyarsky
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Kengkaj Sathianpantarit wrote:I thought I learned a lot from reading a book, but when I went to an exam, I realized that there are many things I didn't know, for me that is a value of taking actual exam.

It's more than reading a book. I'm talking about the Kathy Sierra/Bert Bates SCJP book. It makes you think and has "real-style" exam questions throughout. Doing the questions is what made me learn. I considered it like taking an exam. They say their test is harder than the actual exam - and as exam creators, they would know!
arulk pillai
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James Clark wrote:Good points.

Significantly and repeatedly "missing qualified candidates" is the problem that I associate with failed IT projects. Using certifications to "filter" candidates is not an efficient way to find the best candidate available, in my opinion. There are many other more intelligent ways to narrow down the bunch, without the risk.

Having a resume/applicant pool of 20,000 represents another issue, however. (Not appropriate for this thread though)



Agree with you completely. A qualified candidate should not just be a techie with tons of certifications, but a well rounded candidate with technical skills, soft skills, and proven achievements.

When we buy a product, we not only look at the quality of the pruduct, but also the business acumen of the company that made the product, service, brand name, how well it is marketed, complete packages provided, etc. McDonalds don't necessarily make the best burgers, but they sell the most number of burgers. They are cheap, located conveniently, provide great service, child friendly, good at marketing etc. Companies do pay a lot for IT consultants from branded companies than more talanted independed consultants? The branded companies can provide complete business systems than just technical expertise alone.

Some companies also increase salary if we have some certifications, is it good to get more salary? I cannot think of how it's not good .


Certifications are for your own good. During your performance appraisals or payrise negotiations, what would you say if your manager asks you -- why are you worth more?

-- I am now Sun certified

---- OR ----

Stating the visible contributions you made like:

-- Improved the customer engagement Web services’ response times from ~6 seconds to ~3 seconds by redesigning the XML contracts and service end-points, tuning
SQLs, and introducing caching strategies.

-- Identified and fixed a hard to reproduce concurrency issue in a Java/JEE based application for Big Bank Ltd.

-- Redesigned and migrated a poorly performing and outdated application to Spring, Hibernate, and JSF based framework, which performs 40% faster for MQR Investment
banking.


If you are after a real payrise

-- Prove to the company that you have made a difference to the success of the project, quality of the software, and/or to the bottom-line of the company.

-- Prove that you are a well rounded contributor, who makes measurable improvements. You must mention these quantifiable achievements in your resume for a bigger
jump in salay in your next job.

-- Changing jobs. Some companie take you for granted. They won't realize your worthiness until you decide to leave.



Hong Anderson
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It seems to me like somebody have mindset that whoever has certifications doesn't have any other knowledge, skills, abilities, and doesn't have any achievements except certifications. I feel like that, and don't understand why, it's not reasonable. If certified professionals don't have any achievements except their certs, do you think their company will not fire them?

Maybe because you have experience about incompetency certified professionals, but don't you have experience about incompetency and non-certified people? Or every certified guys you have worked with are all below average, and every non-certified guys you have worked with are all remarkable?

When I interview an applicant, I don't care about certifications, I know being certified doesn't mean competency automatically, but I don't think that certifications are bad.

When I go for an interview, I never mentioned about my certs, if the interviewers don't ask, in case they ask, our talk about this topic is quite short, we have more interesting things to discuss.
Hong Anderson
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Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:I'm talking about the Kathy Sierra/Bert Bates SCJP book. It makes you think and has "real-style" exam questions throughout. Doing the questions is what made me learn. I considered it like taking an exam. They say their test is harder than the actual exam - and as exam creators, they would know!

Oh, don't trust they easily. For me, the actual exam of SCJP 5.0 is harder. I know, I read their book and I passed SCJP 5.0 . Anyway, K&B SCJP book is really good.
arulk pillai
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Kengkaj Sathianpantarit wrote:It seems to me like somebody have mindset that whoever has certifications doesn't have any other knowledge, skills, abilities, and doesn't have any achievements except certifications. I feel like that, and don't understand why, it's not reasonable. If certified professionals don't have any achievements except their certs, do you think their company will not fire them?

Maybe because you have experience about incompetency certified professionals, but don't you have experience about incompetency and non-certified people? Or every certified guys you have worked with are all below average, and every non-certified guys you have worked with are all remarkable?

When I interview an applicant, I don't care about certifications, I know being certified doesn't mean competency automatically, but I don't think that certifications are bad. I they passed with their

When I go for an interview, I never mentioned about my certs, if the interviewers don't ask, in case they ask, our talk about this topic is quite short, we have more interesting things to discuss.



There are so many certified candidates with lots of other skills. No one is denying that. What I was trying to get across is that getting certified alone is not enough. Some have the misconception that if he/she gets certified, the career will be brighter from there onwards. There are other facets need to be looked at as well to promote one as a well rounded candidate. This is evident from the "Jobs Wanted" forums where Java/JEE professionals just highlight their cetification(s) as the only achievements and fail to put any further relevant achievements about themselves. This prompted me to write this tip.

Certification is a good thing, but it has its place and there are other aspects that need be looked at as well. So the point here is


"If you are an experienced Java/JEE professional and deciding, which professional skill to improve, picking up another certification may be the wrong choice. Learning soft skills can make you not only more employable, but also can make you a more valuable and hard to replace team member."
Kai Witte
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Posts: 356
Hello,

they are all proof for a certain set of skills.

  • SCJA, SCJP, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCDJWS, SCMAD are proof for knowledge of certain parts of specs.
  • SCJD proofs that the candidate is capable of developing an application according to a strict requirement spec. It does not proof much about "best practices" in Java or OO. It's also proof for practical Swing knowledge.
  • SCEA proofs that the candidate understands the mainstream approach to a Java EE based model 2 architecture and can design such an architecture based on a given spec.


  • That's how I'd summarise what the Sun Java certs proof and don't proof.

    Kai

    Kai Witte's business website Kai Witte's private homepage
    David Newton
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    The bottom line is that certification doesn't tell the employer anything about the developer's programming ability (IMO), one's ability to mesh well with the team and/or environment, and so on.

    On a personal note, I used to scoff at the certifications, but after reading many of the questions on JR, I believe that some of the knowledge they impart is valuable--and there's some stuff about Java-the-language I don't know (although in all fairness most of those things aren't really all that useful to me).

    As a sometimes-involved-in-the-hiring-process person I would *never* qualify or dis-qualify someone based on whether or not they had a particular certification; it's unlikely I'd care at all. I'm far, *far* more concerned about things that are more important to me.
    Kavita Tipnis
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    Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:
    Kengkaj Sathianpantarit wrote:I thought I learned a lot from reading a book, but when I went to an exam, I realized that there are many things I didn't know, for me that is a value of taking actual exam.

    It's more than reading a book. I'm talking about the Kathy Sierra/Bert Bates SCJP book. It makes you think and has "real-style" exam questions throughout. Doing the questions is what made me learn. I considered it like taking an exam. They say their test is harder than the actual exam - and as exam creators, they would know!


    I agree with Jeanne, studying for the SCJP exam was great fun and I thoroughly enjoyed it , on the other hand on the exam for most part you have to rely on
    your memory and mugging up skills to score higher[IMO]. I am going to give the SCWCD but only for myself and not for the sake of adding a certification
    abbreviation on my resume!!
    Pushkar Choudhary
    Rancher

    Joined: May 21, 2006
    Posts: 425

    arulk pillai wrote:
    What I was trying to get across is that getting certified alone is not enough. Some have the misconception that if he/she gets certified, the career will be brighter from there onwards. There are other facets need to be looked at as well to promote one as a well rounded candidate.

    Agreed. However, some companies don't seem to understand this. For example, the place where I'm currently working has an annual appraisal that checks if I obtain 2 Certifications per year, as one of the criteria used for the appraisal. And I've been questioned in the past for not getting them! I find it ridiculous to kind of "force" an employee to go for certifications (that too, 2 per year). I'm saying "forced" because the employee realizes that his appraisal might depend on it.
    David Newton
    Author
    Rancher

    Joined: Sep 29, 2008
    Posts: 12617

    Just to follow up on what Chad said: I also have used "real language" experience as a qualifier--I'm much more likely to pass someone along that has experience with Lisp or Smalltalk when hiring for a Java position (or Haskell, Forth, Scala, etc.) because it *generally* means they're able to think outside the "Java box". If, OTOH, their experience is *only* in Java, or COBOL (or PL/1, JCL, etc.) then I'm like to ignore them, or consider them only for an entry-level, mentor-driven position.
     
    I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
     
    subject: What is your take on Java/JEE certification?