I appeared for the exam today and scored 85%. Here are some of my preparation tips.
1. HFSJ first edition
2. peabody design patterns notes.
3. marcus green mock exams.
4. JSTL spec for some of the optional attributes.
5. dynamic attributes tutorial.
I got HFSJ one and half year ago and read it once. After a long gap i decided to take exam. so 2 months ago i started it again. spent 2 hours a day and was able to complete the book with in one and half month. last 2 weeks i was doing mock exams available in net.i didnot buy any commercial ones. mostly marcus green mock exams. i scored 90+ in marcus green exams and got 68% in HFSJ final exam.
SCWCD 5 exam questions are not straight forward. there is a scenario given for most of the questions. and options seemed to be very close to one another with a slight difference. so one has to be very sure about which is a right syntax and which is not. remember all APIs. all attributes(optional) of standard actions and custom tags,implicit objects of EL and jsp,lifecycle actions of servlet jsp simple and classic tags. do more examples with scope in standard actions. memorize all elements of web.xml. i scored less in security and standard actions.
i wish i had done questions from second edition.thanks to everyone out here who helped to clarify my doubts either by posting a reply or by asking their questions. all the best to all of you who are about to take the test.
thank you chinmaya, geet and vishwa.
i woudl like to add one more thing to exam preparation. try different combinations with scripting , el expressions inside standard actions, scripting expressions in attributes of tags etc.
thank you. hanumanth deshmuk is good. once you read it, do the mock exams in HFSJ second edition.This might give an idea of how the exam is going to be. for chapthers in EL, standard actions,custom tags, do as many examples as possible.