I am very happy today because I unexpectedly cleared the SCEA5 Part1 (the exam).
I've been working with J2EE for several years now (since 2002). Last year in August I startet learning a little bit for the old J2EE SCEA part 1. Then stopped because of the voucher expiration time in the very far future. In April 2008 I figured out that Sun upgraded the exam to JEE 5.0. So I used my voucher 2 months ago to schedule my exam appointment just before the voucher expired, which took place today.
What I did for preparation of this exam was the following:
- passed the SCBCD 5.0 (EJB3 beta exam) in 2006 so this gave me a very good clue about EJB3
- took the Sun ePractice exams last weekend and yesterday
- had a quick read yesterday on this: http://java.sun.com/developer/technicalArticles/J2EE/intro_ee5/
This was pretty much it. I must admit that I did nearly not prepare at all because I bought the voucher during the 'one trial for free' promotion. Therefore I knew I would have a second chance.
The exam was very hard. You have roughly 2 minutes per question so you must answer quickly. I had 20 minutes left for the marked questions (about half the questions I had marked) but that time was running up very fast. My estimate when time was up was that I could have possible made it 50%. The more surprised was I about the 84%, very well distributed across all topics.
One side notice to the ePractice exam takers: There were a lot of questions with 2 or 3 choices in the real exam as opposed to mostly questions with one answer in the trial exam. So that was kind of misleading to me and I was really p***d in the exam because even the topics about let's say the most simple pattern like the singleton had 2 answers among 6, where at least 1 invalid answer was very close to being valid (so you must really carefully read even the obvious).
I think if you have some industry experience even if only theoretically and a good intuition what the target of the question is, then it's easy to pass.
I wish all other test takers good look!