Guys as i posted in the SCJP forum, I passed SCJP with 91% today. I was wondering what to do now.
A little background on myself.
My profile : Masters in Computer science (almost done with thesis almost complete). By the end of this year, I will mostly have 1/2(more likely 1) papers published in ICDB or ACM journal. I have a few academic projects as well. I have taken up design patterns and object oriented analysis as a part of my study and made quite a few projects on that.
I completed SCJP with 91 %
I have a total of 1 year experience with 6 months in java and 6 months in .net. Both involved
I am planning to give an oracle certification.
Now my question is, will scjd be a good option. I agree I might invite responses like "Experience is the best teacher" and that "SCJD looks good only with experience". But i am struggling to get that first job. Mainly because i havent tried, but still. Its not like i am going to not take up a job just to complete the certification. I will keep searching for jobs. But I realized one thing. I learned a loooot as a part of the certification. Wouldnt the company take that into consideration? Wouldnt they feel that I am not just having these words on my resume, but I also have more to offer. May be not as much as what a person with an SCJD and 2 years experience will have. But definitely more than someone with no experience(like me) and with no certification at all?
Wouldnt I be considered better than people with no experience and no certification?
As a fresher just out of school and having only 2 months buffer time to find a job(thanks to new stricter visa restrictions for international students), would a SCJD tag offer better opportunities for me? Would I get preference over other candidates (again with similar credentials) for entry level positions?
As far as scwcd is concerned, i would be more interested in scjd.
I think the SCJD is a really learningful experience (threads, swing, rmi,...) but I don't know if a fresher can call himself a developer when he doesn't have any real life development experience. Just like I could take the SCEA, but in my opinion it's just too soon to call myself (having 6 years of Java experience) an architect. I believe you should have at least 10 years experience in different environments, different technologies, different projects,... (therefore being a consultant is the ideal job). I requested the SCJD assignment in June 2007 (after 3 years experience), but finished it in the period January 2009 - May 2009. And don't forget the SCJD is one of the more expensive exams, because you need to buy an assignment and an essay exam (I don't know if money is an issue).
I started myself at the it department of a (non-it) company in 2004 (through a special regulation which made it easier for a fresh man to get a job, because at that time there were also too many it people due to y2k bug, introduction of the euro,...). After 3 years I switched to a consultancy company where I did several projects with several technologies (which is of course excellent for your personal development). And again 3 years later I'm now a self-employed consultant, which gives you of course a lot more freedom (but of course also responsabilities and a higher risk, certainly during an economical recession).
If you are trying to hunt a job, a certification will always be good because it shows besides the knowledge also you are motivated, you are willing to educate yourself,... characteristics which are highly valuable for someone in the IT industry.
So I would say: just do it! it can't do any harm and it may do some good!
Thank you noel for your motivating reply. I think i will go ahead with the certification. I just checked out the SCJD - Andrew Monkhouse book from our university library. Ill start reading it and probably download the assignment very soon. Ill probably be posting much more regularly on Javaranch pretty soon about my progress and doubts.
As you pointed out, I know I will be spending 500$ for it, but if it helps me in getting a job even 1%, I think it wil be definitely worth the effort. I would rather spend 1000 $ and get a job rather than save up on those and be unemployed. z
Any pointers you have to share will be really helpful (like books, tips, suggestions).
Also, while preparing for scjp, i came across some enthuware packages where in they provide professional guidance for the scjd assignment. Has anyone taken up any of these services? They claim to review the code and assess it before submitting it and tell us if we need improvements. Is this legitimate? and allowed?
Being fresh from school, I donot have much of an idea about the practices in development. In school, we were recommended and encouraged to discuss our design with our professors and colleagues. But i understand sun has different policies. I am scared because even though my design might look flawless to me, i might end up making practical mistakes which experienced programmers wouldnt. So if it is a legitimate practice, at least I would know where I went wrong.
I used Andrew's book too, which is an excellent resource for this certification. And if you still have doubts you can search this forum, search the internet, ask your question on this forum,... And Andrew is also a regular visitor of this forum (although since Roberto and I took over it's not more that frequent as in the early days because he knows it is in good hands ).
Normally it is not allowed to share your code with other people, that's also why code snippets on this forum are kept to a strict minimum (and/or just some pseudo-code), so how these enthuware services do that, I don't have a clue. You can use for yourself some code reviewing tools (like checkstyle, pmd,...). But if you use a decent IDE (like Eclipse) and you'll ask questions here (or use the search engine because every possible question is already asked 2-3 times I think ) you'll be a SCJD before you know it