Brian Smithhfds wrote:I took the 1Z0-851 Java test from Oracle this morning and passed with 83%. I have a few observations on the changes effective 6/1/2011 and on the test in general. Hopefully these observations will be of use to someone preparing for the exam.
Preparing for the exam
To give some background on me: I have no professional Java experience. I work in HR and began studying Java a year and a half ago so I can make a career change. I have studied text-books and written many practice programs, but I did not major in CS in college. I used the SCJP book by Kathy Sierra and Bert Bates as my sole preparation for this exam. I think it contains everything needed to succeed, but has one major flaw: the mock exams are not an accurate reflection of the real exam.
thanks for giving such useful info about how to get prepared for the exam,,,i have a question: you said that you had no professional java experience ,do you mean that you did not know anything about java and you just started by studying Kathy Sierra and Bert Bates' book ? or what else did you use? how long did it take you to finish Kathy Sierra and Bert Bates' book ? how many hours a day? thanks in advance..
Brian Smithhfds wrote:Thanks to those who congratulated me. Hama Kamal - No, I was not brand new to Java when I started the K&B book. I had studied Java on my own for a little over a year. I started with the book Java Software Solutions by Lewis & Loftus. Then I worked my way through Data Structures & Algorithms in Java by Robert Lafore. Both are great books and I highly recommend them for anyone going the self-taught route. The Data Structures book is not applicable to the exam, but I expect its concepts are essential for getting a job. The Lewis & Loftus book would be an excellent stand-alone primer to jumping into the K&B book and preparing for the exam.
I studied for four months. I put in about 15 hours each week in addition to my full-time job. I spent the first seven weeks working my way through the K&B book, meticulously taking notes and creating flashcards. I ended up with over 500 flashcards; they are the only way I retain information. Then I spent several weeks memorizing them, writing a few practice programs, and taking mock exams.
Now that I have passed the exam, I'm working on a couple of projects to use as a portfolio, then I'll start applying for jobs. Hopefully this round-about way to getting into software design works out.