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Mandatory Course Requirement for OCMJD & OCMJEA starting October 1st

David Byron
Rancher

Joined: Jan 20, 2009
Posts: 172

Source of Oracle info
Deadline extended to September 30, 2011

Beginning October 1, 2011, Java Architect, Java Developer, Solaris System Administrator and Solaris Security Administrator certification path requirements will include a new mandatory course attendance requirement.

Candidates may earn their certifications using the current track requirements found on the Oracle Certification website through September 30, 2011.

Attention Java Enterprise Architect and Java Developer candidates: It is important that you submit your assignments allowing enough time to take the Essay Exam and to resubmit the assignment if you happen to fail the first attempt. Your assignment will take four weeks to grade and must be submitted prior to registering for the essay. You should submit your assignment, allowing four weeks for grading plus any additional time you will need to take the essay and resubmit the assignment in the event you do not pass initially. Keep in mind that completion of your essay will depend on test center availability. In order to ensure that you have at least one week to resubmit if you fail, you should submit your assignment and complete your essay by August 27, 2011. Any assignments and essays submitted after August 27 cannot be guaranteed to receive a grade in time to resubmit before the September 30 deadline. If you receive a failing grade on your assignment after September 30, 2011, you will be required to resubmit the assignment and meet the training requirement. You should also note that it is your responsibility to ensure you have enough time to complete the essay after submitting the assignment, allowing for limited test appointments. Oracle will not be able to extend the deadline for candidates who submitted their assignments too close to the deadline and were unable to get an essay appointment in time. If you submit the assignment or essay after September 30 2011, you would be required to complete the Hands-on course requirement.


source
Beginning August 1, 2011, Java Architect, Java Developer, Solaris System Administrator and Solaris Security Administrator certification path requirements will include a new mandatory course attendance requirement.

Candidates may earn their certifications using the current track requirements found on the Oracle Certification website through July 31, 2011.


[added date and OCMJEA - want to make this a merged thread]

FAQ
Can I take part 1 before October 1st and the rest later?
No. All parts must be completed before October 1st.

If I fail part 2/3, can I resubmit without taking a course?
Yes. No. Oracle changed the policy: according to the latest information we got from Oracle you have to fulfill the mandatory course requirement when you have to resubmit after October 1, 2011.

The self study/online training courses are cheaper. Can I take one of those?
The courses must be instructor led. This can mean onsite or a special type of instructor led online course. Both are expensive.

From e-mail candidate received
Candidate submits Assignment and Essay (and has completed any other required exams) by August 27, 2011 and receives a passing grade after September 30, 2011
This candidate will receive the certification without completing the training requirement

Candidate submits Assignment and Essay (and has completed any other required exams) by August 27, 2011 and receives a failing grade after September 30, 2011
This candidate will be given the opportunity to resubmit the assignment and essay within a prescribed time period. Should the candidate pass on the second attempt, he will receive the certification without completing the training requirement. Should he fail on the 2nd attempt, training will be required for certification based on subsequent attempts.


SCJD 6, OCPJP7, Baroque Potion, G+
Roel De Nijs
Bartender

Joined: Jul 19, 2004
Posts: 5218
    
  12

Thanks David for this notification. I'll make it sticky, because it's quiet important.

If I understand correctly, you'll need for the SCJD to follow one of these trainings in order to get your OCMJD (beginning August 1, 2011):
  • Java Programming Language, Java SE 6
  • Fundamentals of the Java Programming Language, Java SE 6
  • Developing Applications With the Java SE 6 Platform
  • Object-Oriented Analysis and Design Using UML
  • Java SE Performance Tuning


  • Sounds to me if Oracle just wants to earn some a lot of extra money. I verified the different courses you need to follow and price is more than 2000 euros (for 5 days). Why do you need to follow courses like fundamentals if you have to be a SCJP prior to taking this certification
    Or they want to get rid of this certification, because they have to much trouble with it (downloading, submitting, getting the right essay exam, grading,...), so they try to make it completely unpopular, so they can retire the OCMJD.


    SCJA, SCJP (1.4 | 5.0 | 6.0), SCJD
    http://www.javaroe.be/
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    Why is Oracle adding a hands-on course requirement?
    Many Oracle certifications require hands-on course attendance as a part of the certification path. The course requirement is being added to these certification paths to bring them in line with Oracle Certification Program’s standards for the levels of certification under which they fall.


    ...and there was me thinking that they added this requirement to extract a minimum of US$ 2,250 extra from each candidate.

    World-wide recession and Oracle decides to fleece people who are interested in studying by increasing their turnover on this certification by nearly 400%, cheers Oracle .

    Hands up anyone doing the OCMJD who feels they'd need to attend one of these courses to complete the project, or even feels like they'd gain US$ 2,250 worth from them???

    SCJP (1.4 | 5.0), OCJP (6.0), OCMJD
    Ulrich Cech
    Greenhorn

    Joined: Dec 16, 2009
    Posts: 10

    I was shocked for this message. I would start the "SCJD" in the middle of this year (submitted the SCJP in 2009), but the cost of nearly $3.000 is inacceptable. This is very disappointing that certified programmers should take absolutely unneccessary courses.
    I wrote to Oracle (germany) and wait for their answer concerning this issue...


    SCJP 1.5
    Adam Philpotts
    Greenhorn

    Joined: Nov 11, 2010
    Posts: 2

    I have already started preparing for my exam; if I don't take it by August 1, 2011, will I be required to complete training?Yes. Anyone who does not completely finish the current track requirements before August 1, 2011 will be required to meet the new requirements, which will include a mandatory course attendance requirement.




    I was planning to download OCMJD pretty soon. I assume phrase "completely finish the current track requirements" incorporates possible resubmissions. So if we want to avoid any chance of giving Oracle an extra £2k, and allowing at least 4 weeks for them to mark everything, this implies we'll probably have to submit at the start of June at the latest?

    I guess I'd better get a move on...

    I feel sorry for anyone who just started and (with work/other commitments) was planning to take things slowly.


    SCJP 6 (95%)
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581


    I have already started preparing for my exam; if I don't take it by August 1, 2011, will I be required to complete training?Yes. Anyone who does not completely finish the current track requirements before August 1, 2011 will be required to meet the new requirements, which will include a mandatory course attendance requirement.


    I would read this differently. I would have thought that once you submit your assignment and get the exam done before the 1st August, then you will not have to do a course. Does this sound correct?
    Adam Philpotts
    Greenhorn

    Joined: Nov 11, 2010
    Posts: 2
    OK, you're probably right Sean, since a resubmission is not part of the OCMJD track requirements.

    Wouldn't surprise me though, if someone resubmitted after August 1 and then suddenly training was required.

    Obviously better (and cheaper) to pass first time in any case.
    Mikalai Zaikin
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Jun 04, 2002
    Posts: 3207
        
        5
    Sean Keane wrote:

    I have already started preparing for my exam; if I don't take it by August 1, 2011, will I be required to complete training?Yes. Anyone who does not completely finish the current track requirements before August 1, 2011 will be required to meet the new requirements, which will include a mandatory course attendance requirement.


    I would read this differently. I would have thought that once you submit your assignment and get the exam done before the 1st August, then you will not have to do a course. Does this sound correct?


    Yes, I think you're right.


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    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    Adam Philpotts wrote:OK, you're probably right Sean, since a resubmission is not part of the OCMJD track requirements.

    Wouldn't surprise me though, if someone resubmitted after August 1 and then suddenly training was required.

    Obviously better (and cheaper) to pass first time in any case.


    My understanding is if you need to resubmit after the 1st August, then you would have to do a course. Is this what you guys think?

    If this is not the case i.e. if you submit before the 1st August and get your exam done before the 1st of August, and then fail, you can resubmit without doing a course. Then it would make sense for anyone doing the certification now to definitely submit before the 1st August. Because even if you fail, you will only have to pay another $500 again ($300 for the assignment, $200 for repeat exam).

    So, worst case scenario, you fail first time, resubmit and pass. Then it will have cost you a total of $1100 versus the $2850 if you have to do a course.

    It's not 100% clear from the Oracle site what you have to pay to resubmit if you fail. There is the repeat exam which is about $200, but I'm assuming you have to pay another $300 to get your project remarked. Am I correct here?

    The question remains - what happens if you submit and do the exam before the 1st August and fail? Can you resubmit at a later date without attending a course? Or are you subject to the new requirements and thus will be required to attend a course?
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    I had a quick scan of the Oracle site to find out what you have to pay if resubmit after failing

    What do I do if I fail the assignment?

    If you have failed and wish to resubmit for another attempt, you will need to purchase the resubmission version of your assignment. You will only need to resubmit your assignment. We do not require you to retake your essay exam.

    The exam results provided by the assessor are final and non-negotiable.


    This "resubmission version of your assignment" costs about $200.

    So, if you submit and do the exam before the 1st August 2011, then fail, and resubmit after. It is possible that it will only cost you $800.

    * $300, for the assignment
    * $300, for the exam
    * $200 for resubmitting the assignment.

    This could be good news for any of us doing the certification right now. But the question remains, if you submit and do the exam before 1st August 2011, and the find out you fail and want to resubmit, do you have to attend a course or not?
    Roel De Nijs
    Bartender

    Joined: Jul 19, 2004
    Posts: 5218
        
      12

    First of all with a resubmission you don't have to pay again for the essay exam. You only have to pay for submitting (and grading) your changed assignment again.

    Secondly, it's of course normal that you try to know what would happen if you need to resubmit, but I'm a (very regular) visitor since January 2009 and as far as I know just 1 or 2 ranchers had to resubmit. So chances you have to resubmit are very limited. If you want to know for sure, you'll have to send an e-mail to Oracle and ask your question about resubmitting and attending a course.
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    Roel De Nijs wrote:If you want to know for sure, you'll have to send an e-mail to Oracle and ask your question about resubmitting and attending a course.


    I've put a message up on the Oracle forum. I will see if I get a reply there. But failing that, I'll contact Oracle. I'll update with any information I get. I think it would be useful for us all to know what the situation is upon resubmission from 1st August onwards.
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    One interesting thing is that Oracle haven't specified how many courses you have to take.

    They list the following as approved training:

  • Java Programming Language, Java SE 6
  • Fundamentals of the Java Programming Language, Java SE 6
  • Developing Applications With the Java SE 6 Platform
  • Object-Oriented Analysis and Design Using UML
  • Java SE Performance Tuning


  • But there is no mention of how many of these you must take. The only hint I could see was in this comment here:

    Approved Training Providers:
    Candidates must attend their approved course through one of these providers:

    Approved course being singular not plural.

    If only one course has to be attended, an interesting point worth keeping in mind is that OCMJD and OCMJA have courses in common. I'm guessing if you had to do one for OCMJD that would also satisfy the requirment for OCMJA if you went on to do that.
    Rajeev Rnair
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Mar 22, 2010
    Posts: 308

    Hi,

    This is what I found for the
    Developing Applications With the Java SE 6 Platform (SL-285-SE6)
    course, which is a common requirement for OCMJD and OCMJEA
    Schedule/Purchase Training Formats Price Duration Course Materials Instruction Language
    View Schedule Instructor-Led Training US$ 3,000 5 Days English English
    Purchase Online Self Study Online US$ 840 not applicable English
    Purchase Online Self Study CD-ROM US$ 600 not applicable English


    The self study cd-rom costs only $600 which is way cheaper than a $3000 - 5 day course!

    I am also planning to take OCMJD and OCMJEA later in this year!


    SCJP6, SCWCD5, OCP-JBCD5, OCE-JWSD6 OCE-JPAD6 , OCM-JEA5 1,OCM-JEA5 2,3 - Brainbench certifications: J2EE, Java2, Java2-NonGUI, JSP, SQL2000 Admin, SQL2000 Programming , Brainbench certified Java Programmer, Computer Programmer, Web Developer, Database Administrator
    Mikalai Zaikin
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Jun 04, 2002
    Posts: 3207
        
        5
    Rajeev Rnair wrote:

    The self study cd-rom costs only $600 which is way cheaper than a $3000 - 5 day course!



    AFAIR, Oracle requires only instructor-led courses.
    Roel De Nijs
    Bartender

    Joined: Jul 19, 2004
    Posts: 5218
        
      12

    Like Mikalai already mentioned, is (unfortunately) true. Here is the quote (same source as the one in OP):

    *Approved Training:
    Only instructor-led in-Class or instructor-led online courses (includes Live Web Classes – LWC and Live Virtual classes – LVC) from the above approved list of Oracle University courses count toward the training requirement. Self Study CD-Rom and Knowledge Center (including Recorded Web Courses – RWC) courses are excellent study and reference tools but DO NOT meet the Hands-on Course Requirement for certification.
    Rajeev Rnair
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Mar 22, 2010
    Posts: 308

    Roel De Nijs wrote:Like Mikalai already mentioned, is (unfortunately) true. Here is the quote (same source as the one in OP):

    *Approved Training:
    Only instructor-led in-Class or instructor-led online courses (includes Live Web Classes – LWC and Live Virtual classes – LVC) from the above approved list of Oracle University courses count toward the training requirement. Self Study CD-Rom and Knowledge Center (including Recorded Web Courses – RWC) courses are excellent study and reference tools but DO NOT meet the Hands-on Course Requirement for certification.


    Thanks Mikalai and Roel, this is very sad seems to me like Oracle intends to make a lot of money, but have to see who will pay $3000 from their pocket for a stupid course. In some cases, the company sponsors the expenses, but most majority does not! I cannot fast track SCJD or SCEA now since I am preparing for Web Services exam and got two project deadlines in July. Hopefully some alternative solution will come up from Oracle .
    Jeanne Boyarsky
    internet detective
    Marshal

    Joined: May 26, 2003
    Posts: 30361
        
    150

    I've directed the SCEA/OCMJEA version of this thread to here so we can all benefit from what people learn. The problem/rules are the same after all.


    [Blog] [JavaRanch FAQ] [How To Ask Questions The Smart Way] [Book Promos]
    Blogging on Certs: SCEA Part 1, Part 2 & 3, Core Spring 3, OCAJP, OCPJP beta, TOGAF part 1 and part 2
    ananthakrishnan ramachandran
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Jan 24, 2011
    Posts: 52
    Hi,
    As per this new mandatory requirement,what happens in the case if OCMJEA part 1 is cleared before august 1 and the assigment(part 2 &3) is submitted after august 1.Will the mandatory course requirement still be applicable?


    regards
    R.Ananthakrishnan
    Mikalai Zaikin
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Jun 04, 2002
    Posts: 3207
        
        5
    ananthakrishnan ramachandran wrote:Hi,
    As per this new mandatory requirement,what happens in the case if OCMJEA part 1 is cleared before august 1 and the assigment(part 2 &3) is submitted after august 1.Will the mandatory course requirement still be applicable?


    regards
    R.Ananthakrishnan


    Yes, I think so. Please, refer the link - this situation is explained. ALL parts must be taken BEFORE August 1st.
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    ananthakrishnan ramachandran wrote:Hi,
    As per this new mandatory requirement,what happens in the case if OCMJEA part 1 is cleared before august 1 and the assigment(part 2 &3) is submitted after august 1.Will the mandatory course requirement still be applicable?


    regards
    R.Ananthakrishnan


    From what I have read, there is nothing stopping you submitting part 2 that will fail and completing part 3 at the same time. Then the question remains, what happens if you have to resubmit after the 1st August do you (a) only have to pay for resubmission or do you (b) have to pay for resubmission and do a course?

    The answer to this question about what happens when you resubmit *after* the 1st August is not available on the Oracle site.

    If you can resubmit after the 1st of August without the need to do a course, then anyone doing these certifications now should submit an assignment of any sort before the 1st August in order to avoid paying for a course - even a blank assignment would do
    Jeanne Boyarsky
    internet detective
    Marshal

    Joined: May 26, 2003
    Posts: 30361
        
    150

    Rene Avontuur wrote:By passing an exam, I can show that I know the subject right.

    Would it still remain an option to pass the exams (part I, II en III), without doing any course? (even after august)

    This would allow me to tell anyone that I passed the required exams. Without having a certificate, but with some documents that state that I passed the exams.

    I don't like this. Just got the approvement to do this certification track. Now I have to tell that things changed, which effects reliabilty.

    This quote is from the SCEA version of the thread before the merge.

    Rene: Oracle has a Course submission forum that must be submitted anytime during the certification path but before the certification success kit is sent. This implies you can definitely take part 1. You get a printout at the exam center with the score so you could definitely do this for part 1. I'm not sure if they would grade parts 2/3 without the form submitted.
    Jeanne Boyarsky
    internet detective
    Marshal

    Joined: May 26, 2003
    Posts: 30361
        
    150

    More on Rene's question. The announcement page says

    Upon completion of your Certification track requirements, Candidates are required to complete a Course Submission Form for providing the details of the required course(s).


    This implies you would get your part 2/3 score and then have to submit the report. Which of course makes the course requirement even sillier if it can be done after.
    Jeanne Boyarsky
    internet detective
    Marshal

    Joined: May 26, 2003
    Posts: 30361
        
    150

    I've blogged my thoughts on the change. I included a statement to check this thread for the actual information.
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    I read a comment from someone from Oracle describing why courses are part of certifications. The reasons were basically twisted logic and absolutely laughable.

    Read here Oracle Comments


    What Is The Value To The Candidates?
    A big value of the hands-on course requirement to the credential-holders is that Oracle has eliminated a large group of people that I unkindly refer to as “bottom-feeders” – those individuals and groups (identified by Oracle back in 2002) whose sole goal was to exploit the brand-recognition of the Oracle credentials without really doing the work to become certified. This includes cheaters, those taking advantage of proxy-testing, and those taking real short-cuts to become certified in many different company programs - practices that became evident during the tech-bubble. These people’s actions tend to damage the credentials that many people have legitimately earned. “Bottom feeders” - for the most part - are not willing to spend the time, effort and money to attend an Oracle course.


    Yep, making people attend a course where they can just sit there and do nothing, and they still need to do the same assignment\exam at the end of the day, that stops cheaters? Really? That is laughable.

    Isn’t This Just All About Money?
    No, it’s not. And skeptics…read on:

    First - the financial impact that Oracle initially took was tremendous. And because most of the aforementioned ‘bottom-feeders’ will never come back (the assumption being that they’ve given up on Oracle), we will continue to forfeit the fees associated with them.


    Yeah, let me see, you are increasing the cost from $600 up to $2850. Almost a 5 fold increase. So they can afford to lose 2 or 3 out of every 5 who would apply and still make a bigger profit. Plus the courses are run by Oracle, so they will get even more profit than from the exam.

    Take into account the sources of funding for students of this certification - some self funded, some funded by their employer. There's a greater chance that employers will still pay the money, especially ones that have a partnership with Oracle and can get discounts, block discounts, tax breaks etc. So really, it's the individual developer that is funding themselves that will be more greatly affected.


    Secondly - had the requirement been only about money, it would have been far more expansive than the actual policy in place right now. As it stands - the hands-on course requirement does not apply to many areas, such as the Oracle Certified Associate (OCA) level certifications, all developer certification tracks, and the complete set of Middleware certification tracks. Additionally - those who are upgrading their Oracle certification(s) are not required to attend further mandatory training - from any level, to any level. Essentially, once you are certified you have indeed demonstrated your commitment, have engaged in quality interactive learning that is key to success, and are hence ‘onboard’ and no longer required to attend additional mandatory training courses.


    Hmmm. What is Oracles argument here that it is not all about money - there isn't one! I think the most pertinent point of that paragraph is highlighted in bold, I shall roughly translate what it means to me - "you gave us a bunch of cash, now you are part of the club".


    Summary
    Oracle raised the bar for certification with the hands-on course requirement. This has had a clear and definite positive impact on the overall value of the Oracle certification - both for those who hold them, as well as those in the marketplace for Oracle credentialed individuals.


    It gets even more laughable. Raised the bar? How on earth did they raise the bar by making people attend a course? You could simply sit at the back of the class and learn nothing. You still do the same exam and assignment at the end of the day.

    Conclusion

    In summary. We all know that the only reason Oracle are introducing course requirements is purely to get more money. There is no other reason that holds up any water. This is exploitation in my humble opinion, and an opportunistic move by Oracle to glean more money from a popular certification.

    People power can achieve things at times - just look at Egypt and surrounding areas in recent times. How about we all do something concrete? An online petition? Mass email to Oracle? Media shaming - no company likes bad publicity, especially in harsh economic times.
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    An update below from Oracle guys. The part in red is main point I wanted clarified - so if you are doing the Developer or Architect assignment now, make sure you submit whatever you have and get the exam done before the 1st of August. Then you can resubmit after the 1st August and avoid paying for a course. Happy days



    Hi,

    Thank you for writing to Oracle Certification Program. Here are the answers to your queries:

    1. If you complete your assignment and essay before 01 Aug 2011 then for the resubmission you will not be required to complete the Hands-on course requirement.

    2. After 01 Aug 2011, you will have to complete one of the approved courses as a part of Certification requirement.

    3. Yes, if you complete one common course for both the Oracle Certified Masters track, it would be acceptable. Please note the course should be a part of approved course list for both the tracks.

    Regards,
    OCP Team


    > Hi,
    >
    > I have some questions about the new requirements for Oracle Certified Master Java Developer that are to be introduced on the 1st of August i.e. the requirement to attend an Oracle course.
    >
    > 1) If I submit both my assignment and do the exam before 1st August, and then I fail and resubmit after the 1st of August will I be required to do a course? Or do I simply have to pay the resubmission fee?
    >
    > 2) The new requirements do not state how many courses one needs to attend for the Oracle Certified Master Java Developer. How many courses does one have to attend for this certification?
    >
    > 3) The Oracle Certified Master Java Developer and the Oracle Certified Master Java Architect have some courses in common in the new requirements. If I attend a single course for the Oracle Certified Master Java Developer will this also cover me for the requirements for the Oracle Certified Master Java Architect the course is also one of the approved courses for Oracle Certified Master Java Architect?
    >
    Krzysztof Grajek
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Mar 07, 2011
    Posts: 53
    That info made my day. Thanks!
    sameer kumar
    Greenhorn

    Joined: Mar 22, 2004
    Posts: 13
    This is very bad news.
    Highest level of stupidity done by a highest level of organization.
    Christophe Verré
    Sheriff

    Joined: Nov 24, 2005
    Posts: 14687
        
      16

    Wait a second. I'm looking at the approved trainings for "Oracle Certified Master, Java EE 5 Enterprise Architect" :
    - Java Programming Language, Java SE 6
    - Object-Oriented Analysis and Design Using UML
    - Developing Applications for the Java EE 6 Platform
    - Developing Architectures for Enterprise Java Applications

    I clearly don't want to take "Java Programming Language, Java SE 6". I'd prefer to take "Developing Applications for the Java EE 6 Platform" instead. But that course says :

    Required Prerequisites:
    * Experience with the Java programming language
    * Familiarity with object serialization
    * Familiarity with relational database theory and the basics of structured query language (SQL)
    * Familiarity with the use of an IDE
    * Java Programming Language, Java SE 6 (SL-275-SE6)

    What ? I need to waste money on that "Java Programming Language, Java SE 6" course ?

    "Developing Architectures for Enterprise Java Applications" is even worse. You need both "Object-Oriented Analysis and Design Using UML" and "Developing Applications for the Java EE 6 Platform" (which implies that you also need "Java Programming Language, Java SE 6"). I leave you calculate how much it costs to take that course.


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    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    We all know that the only reason Oracle are introducing course requirements is purely to get more money. There is no other reason that holds up any water. This is exploitation in my humble opinion, and an opportunistic move by Oracle to glean more money from a popular certification.

    People power can achieve things at times - just look at Egypt and surrounding areas in recent times. How about we all do something concrete? An online petition? Mass email to Oracle? Media shaming - no company likes bad publicity, especially in harsh economic times.

    Viva la revolution !!!
    Andrew Monkhouse
    author and jackaroo
    Marshal Commander

    Joined: Mar 28, 2003
    Posts: 11432
        
      85

    Personally, I suspect a more sinister motive. If they were just doing a money grab, they would have introduced prerequisites across the board.

    It seems to me that they are attacking the Java exams that have assignments. Being cynical, I wonder if the assessing of user provided solutions just proved too difficult. Given that quite a few people consider the assignment based exams to be the better exams, it would be hard to simply remove these certification paths. An alternate way to kill these two exams would be to make the price for the prohibitive. But it is not as simple as just changing the base price - too hard to justify. Adding in ridiculous prerequisites works though.


    The Sun Certified Java Developer Exam with J2SE 5: paper version from Amazon, PDF from Apress, Online reference: Books 24x7 Personal blog
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    Andrew Monkhouse wrote:Being cynical, I wonder if the assessing of user provided solutions just proved too difficult.


    I had read that line of thinking elsewhere, but it didn't make sense to me. Simply because Sun have been assessing these assignments for years, so they obviously had a well refined process for doing this. Oracle took over from Sun. So at a very simple way of looking at things - the same employees are still using pretty much the same processes to deal with this certification, the only main difference being that these employees are working for a different employer.

    However, having said that, Oracle got rid of the percentage score, and are now only providing a pass\fail. This immediately devalues the certification, because someone who got 100% is obviously more competent than someone who got a lesser score. So there is no way to distinguish between two people who have the certification. It is like having legs - you either have them or you don't - there's no way to tell who'd win gold medal by simply knowing that they have legs! We're all winners or losers, depending on which way you look at it.

    I've no view of Oracles operations, but from reading a few pages, it seems they do offer quite a lot of instructor led training. So the theory of them trying to increase this activity (and thus revenue) for instructor led training seems like a stronger possibility to me on the face of it. Like I mentioned before, there is 5 fold increase in the cost of this assignment when you factor in the course. This means they could afford to lose a large number of customers and still make a greater profit.

    Another idea I read was that they want to reduce the number of people with these certifications in order to increase their "value" - but I don't think this really holds much water, as thousands of people have passed these certifications over the lifetime of Sun running them.

    Either way, I think most would agree this has nothing to do with improving the certification, and there are other reasons at play here that simply do not benefit us as developers. As a community of developers, it is to our benefit to have our voice heard, so come on folks, any ideas of how to get our point across? People poweerrrr .
    Roel De Nijs
    Bartender

    Joined: Jul 19, 2004
    Posts: 5218
        
      12

    Sean Keane wrote:However, having said that, Oracle got rid of the percentage score, and are now only providing a pass\fail. This immediately devalues the certification, because someone who got 100% is obviously more competent than someone who got a lesser score.

    I agree with the 1st remark: Oracle should give at least your total score. But I don't agree with the 2nd remark because I could have a 100% score and put in 500 hours, you could have a 90% score with 100 hours spent. That does not make me more competent than you.

    Andrew Monkhouse wrote:It seems to me that they are attacking the Java exams that have assignments. Being cynical, I wonder if the assessing of user provided solutions just proved too difficult. Given that quite a few people consider the assignment based exams to be the better exams, it would be hard to simply remove these certification paths. An alternate way to kill these two exams would be to make the price for the prohibitive. But it is not as simple as just changing the base price - too hard to justify. Adding in ridiculous prerequisites works though.

    I totally agree. Oracle just want to get rid of these assignment-based certifications, because they have to put too much effort (resources), compared with other exams, and in a world where only profits count, the less lucrative have to go.
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    Roel De Nijs wrote:
    Sean Keane wrote:However, having said that, Oracle got rid of the percentage score, and are now only providing a pass\fail. This immediately devalues the certification, because someone who got 100% is obviously more competent than someone who got a lesser score.

    I agree with the 1st remark: Oracle should give at least your total score. But I don't agree with the 2nd remark because I could have a 100% score and put in 500 hours, you could have a 90% score with 100 hours spent. That does not make me more competent than you.


    Purely a side note. But the two of us could train for a marathon. I could put in half the hours you put in and end up finishing in 4 hours whilst you finish in 3 hours. If I was an athletic coach looking for runners to join my team, do you think I would chose the 4 hour guy or the 3 hour guy .

    Same with Oracle certifications - if I had to hire one guy, and I had two guys in front of me, and the only thing to distinguish them were their Oracle certifications. The first guy scored 90% + in all certifications, the second guy scraped through only passing on each certification. Who would I hire?

    You have to use something to gauge someones level of competency, an exam\assignment is one way. Of course, a straight A student might not put in the same effort as a B student and thus fail, but you can't turn around and say "we'll the exam doesn't assess ones competency in that subject, because look at the smartest guy in the class, he failed".
    pradeepkumar Arun
    Greenhorn

    Joined: Dec 24, 2004
    Posts: 2
    Very disappointed to see the mandatory courses . There are numerous ways to earn more money but not by killing Java developers/architect goal. Will oracle revisit this by any chance?

    Thanks,
    Pradeep
    Sean Keane
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Nov 03, 2010
    Posts: 581

    pradeepkumar Arun wrote: Will oracle revisit this by any chance?

    Thanks,
    Pradeep


    Maybe if they get a lot of negative feedback from Java developers they may do? Or receive a lot of negative publicity? Anyone have any concrete ideas of what we could do to express our dissatisfaction ?
    Ulrich Cech
    Greenhorn

    Joined: Dec 16, 2009
    Posts: 10

    Perhaps, we can write to some print magazines to print some article of this situation (like JavaMagazin in german).
    Because this change for the certifcation is made really silently.
    Adrian Engler
    Greenhorn

    Joined: Sep 18, 2006
    Posts: 29
    What the financial consequences of this decision will be for Oracle is questionable; it will lead to some more people taking courses (if it is not required for a certification, I don't see any reason for taking such expensive instructor-led courses), but on the other hand, the number of people getting the OCMJD and OCMEA certifications will be much lower. I think for many people, the current prices are acceptable, but it would not be acceptable to pay about $2000 more and - what would be worse for me - either take a few days holidays (or convince my employer that I should be able to attend these courses in working time). Since OCMJD and OCMEA are not really cheap now (which is probably justified, since these tests require actual manual work by those who assess the submissions), it could well be that Oracle will afterwards earn less.

    In theory, the value of a certification might go up if fewer people have it. But it also depends on whether the right people have it. Even now, I have the impression that very few good Java developers and architects (at least here in Switzerland) have Java certifications. When the exam becomes much more expensive and people have to take holidays for useless courses, the certifications will become even more exotic than they are now (as far as I know, the Microsoft certifications are much more common for dotNet developers) and thereby loose value. If Oracle was serious about raising the value, they could, for instance, have raised the passing score, or something that really deserves the name "hands-on" - not a course in which people just sit several days, but perhaps half a day in which someone has to go to a center and develop or something right there. The selection of courses is rather ridiculous (e.g. a course for programming in Java qualifies someone for getting certified as an Enterprise Architect) - it is obvious that people will not take the most suitable course, but just the cheapest one that is allowed to fulfill the "hands-on" requirement. That is simply absurd.

    Whether this decision that will probably lead to OCMJD and OCMEA certifications to become very rare is financially advantageous for Oracle is questionable. I see two explanations: a) as was mentioned above in this thread, it is a lot of work to mark submissions, and rather than just increasing the price a bit, they prefer to get rid of these exams, b) the reason is really what was stated - they just want to bring in line these certifications in line with the Oracle certifications, where there has been such a requirement for a long time. In this case, this is a bureaucratic decision, and they probably have not really thought out the consequences.

    I personally think that option b) is the case. I cannot judge whether requiring courses for the old Oracle certifications is just as stupid or whether it makes more sense for DBA certifications (I once took exams for Oracle SQL and PL/SQL, which I can show to anyone who wants a proof that I have some knowledge of PL/SQL, but I do not have any certificate for that because that would have required attending a course, as well). It seems obvious that such courses do not make sense for OCMJD and OCMEA. It seems that they now just apply principles from Oracle exams to Java developer and architect exams for organizational and bureaucratic reasons. If this is the case, organized resistance might lead to them rethinking their decision. Does anyone have any idea how to organize a protest?

    I have just taken the part I exam for OCMEA and now started with part II. With all likelihood, I will manage to finish until July (I wanted to, anyway, now I have one more reason to finish my project in July), but I am convinced that the value of OCMJD and OCMEA will decrease if in the future only those have it whom the employer sent to courses (or take holidays specifically for this and are willing to spend a lot of money for a useless course) - this is not a good criterion for restricting access to the certification.


    SCJP 5.0 (93%), SCWCD (98%), SCJD (377/400), SCBCD (100%)
    Jari Timonen
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Jan 16, 2004
    Posts: 230
    How could one instructor lead course increase the value of the/any certificate?

    You just have to give loads of money and sit.

    SCJP 5.0, SCJD URLyBird 1.3.3, OCMJEA 5 (SCEA) Factory Homes
    Jeanne Boyarsky
    internet detective
    Marshal

    Joined: May 26, 2003
    Posts: 30361
        
    150

    Christophe,
    I'm pretty sure they don't take the course prerequisites literally. They are meant for people following the program. I think someone can just register for the architecture course.

    Adrian,
    I agree. The actual Oracle (non-Java) exam has a hands on live test. While I agree "in theory" with rarer cert being worth more, I think it is more likely to turn into a fringe cert. Like the Core Spring one is now.
     
    With a little knowledge, a cast iron skillet is non-stick and lasts a lifetime.
     
    subject: Mandatory Course Requirement for OCMJD & OCMJEA starting October 1st