I passed the test today, finally. I've been preparing for this for months, not because it was so hard, but because I had so many other things to do.
In fact, during last three weeks I focused really on the exam.
As for the preparation, I read HF JSP twice (thanks Bert, Kathy & Bryan;)), did some online mocks (mainly the ones linked here, on javaranch), and studied APIs - servlet-2_4-fr-spec, jsp-2_0-fr-spec and jstl-1_1-mr2-spec. For my own testing purposes, I used Tomcat5.5 servlet container with Eclipse as IDE.
I must say that I'm overwhelmed by the difference between SCJP and SCWCD - in SCJP everything was clear and obvious; in SCWCD there's so much ambiguity, that even exam authors have some problems with proper approach to the presented subjects.
Three of the questions I got today on the exam, where, I must say, badly constructed. I can't remember the exact question (you can't get any notes out of the exam center), but it went something like this:
Q: You have a List object, stored as a request attribute, what is the proper way of retrieving it?
A: List ar = request.getAttribute("list"); and some other answers, all of which lacking the cast to List type. In fact, all the answers were wrong.
Another question involved autoboxing feature, that was not supposed to be tested on SCWCD5.
The same applies to the HF JSP book - look at all these errata points: some of them confirmed, some still unconfimed yet. I don't believe that it is a matter of chaotic book writing (the book itself is very good, and does its job very well). I think it is a general problem with Servlet specification. All these inconsistancies, piles of rules, and even more exceptions from the rules. I would like to quote James E. Rolfe here (Angry Video Game Nerd):
"WHAT WHERE THEY THINKING?!"
Ok, enough complaining. Some thanks following:
- Bert Bates, Kathy Sierra and Bryan Basham for their HF JSP book
- javaranch people for all the questions I didn't have to ask
- Combidata Poland (Gdynia) Test Center people which were very friendly and helpful
I had similar problem in my test too, there was a spelling error for EL syntax in ALL answers, the same error. I asked the testing center whether I could write some kind of a feedback, but they said its impossible.