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how old is SCJP 6 (or even Java SE 6?)

Rob Poulos
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 21, 2009
Posts: 49
Hey all,

I am starting my self-study for the SCJP 6 exam. At the same time i was going to start studying for the A+ Exam that ive been meaning to get for the past 10 years when looking up information about the A+ i noticed that CompTIA had just come out with a new exam for 2009. This got me thinking; how old is the SCJP 6 exam? How frequently does Sun turn out new JRE's? In other words, by the time i study and take the SCJP 6 exam will the certification be "valid" for a few years or will sun come out with a newer version?

i say "valid" with quotations becuase i know the SCJP Cert is valid forever but ultimately it becomes out dated. I dont want to study my butt off only to have to go redo everything when a new cert comes out. I think i read something on here about an Oracle Certified Java Programmer (OCJP) cert or a SCJP+ cert that might replace the SCJP but there has been no official word from the company.


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Ankit Garg
Sheriff

Joined: Aug 03, 2008
Posts: 9293
    
  17

Rob, I see SCJP as the first step into Sun certifications. You can't give SCWCD or SCBCD etc if you are not SCJP. And its almost certain that new versions of SCJP will come with each new version of Java (if the programmer plus certification doesn't replace it).
I dont want to study my butt off only to have to go redo everything when a new cert comes out.

There are two benefits of a certification. Its a way to tell others that you have decent knowledge of a topic and you learn a LOT from your preparation. Even if a new version of SCJP or the programmer plus certification are launched, still you'll have enough time to give your exam (when Sun declared the programmer plus certification, they declared that they'll only discontinue SCJP 3 months after the new certification is actually launched). So your efforts will not go in vain...


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Jesper de Jong
Java Cowboy
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Joined: Aug 16, 2005
Posts: 14114
    
  16

Rob Poulos wrote:How frequently does Sun turn out new JRE's? In other words, by the time i study and take the SCJP 6 exam will the certification be "valid" for a few years or will sun come out with a newer version?

There has been a new version of Sun Java roughly every 18 to 24 months (see Java version history). The next version of Java should be coming out sometime next year, Sun mentioned March 2010 at the JavaOne conference last June. It might come later than March 2010, and it will take at least 3 to 6 months before there is a new version of SCJP. But with all the turbulence of Oracle taking over Sun, it's not clear what's going to happen. It looks like Sun is working on a new certification called Sun Java Programmer Plus (see this topic, for example).

In my opinion, you can just go ahead and do SCJP 6 now, the certificate for that will be valid for years to come. It's too unclear what's going to happen in the future (and when) with regard to new certifications. You probably don't want to wait a year...


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Rob Poulos
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 21, 2009
Posts: 49
excellent, thank you for all this information!
Bert Bates
author
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 8815
    
    5
I agree with Jesper and I'd like to add:

Not all new versions of Java have the same importance. Java 5 was a HUGE new version - so the difference between a Java 1.4 certification and a Java 5 certification is equally HUGE!

On the other hand, from my perspective Java 6 was a relatively small step forward - so to me the difference between a Java 5 and a Java 6 certification is small.

At this point I'm leaning towards thinking that Java 7 will be another small step, so given everything I don't see much value in waiting.

hth,

Bert


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Deepak Bala
Bartender

Joined: Feb 24, 2006
Posts: 6661
    
    5

At this point I'm leaning towards thinking that Java 7 will be another small step


I agree on that. Looking at the JDK changes that have been approved, it looks like a very small change to the Collections / generics and flow control chapters is the only possibility.


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Jesper de Jong
Java Cowboy
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Joined: Aug 16, 2005
Posts: 14114
    
  16

JDK 7 is going to be more than just library changes; there are also going to be some minor language changes, for example you'll be able to use strings in switch statements, there will be binary integer literals, for example:

and there will be ways to write Sets and Lists in a more compact way:


See Project Coin if you want to know details.
Deepak Bala
Bartender

Joined: Feb 24, 2006
Posts: 6661
    
    5

Jesper Young wrote:JDK 7 is going to be more than just library changes; there are also going to be some minor language changes, for example you'll be able to use strings in switch statements, there will be binary integer literals, for example:

and there will be ways to write Sets and Lists in a more compact way:


See Project Coin if you want to know details.


Plus the syntax that uses the '<>' without types to instantiate Collections and generics.

Project coin also mentions other enhancements that were rejected if you are interested.
 
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subject: how old is SCJP 6 (or even Java SE 6?)