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realism: for(perspective){certification != money++ || betterJob}

 
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I think it's good that people are keen to become certified and wouldn't want to discourage that. However, it becomes more and more apparent that people are pursuing the holy grail of becoming certified as they perceive that this proves they can code java and will thus reap the associated rewards; better job, money, etc. This isn't necessarily the case. My experience in the workplace (particularly in Europe) is that employers care more about experience than certification. When interviewing, I'd choose the person with six months experience (if they could answer some simple questions) over the person who's self taught without experience (even if he was Sun Certified). Previous posts about people passing at 12 years old don't impress me.
At the end of the day, by passing the exam just through reading a book or two and taking mock exams must prove to you the worth of the certification.
The strength of the certification on the CV (resume) of the inexperienced is that it does alleviate some of the risk of hiring someone fresh from school/ university as it proves they're keen and intelligent enough to potentially master the language. (It doesn't tell me they actually have mastered the language.)
The certification proves that you can write small code snippets, not that you can code 'real world' java.
The point? - If you're fresh to java and have passed the exam, congratulate yourself and let the certification get you onto the first rung of the ladder, don't expect the certification to carry you straight to the top of the ladder, you need experience for that journey.
(I admit that I do not know the significance of the certification in the Asian job market.)
 
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I was just curious, where did you see people with unrealistic expectations? In here? I have not seen any in this board. So, I have to question your intent...
 
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I agree with Trevor, experience is key. However, certification is a way to show not only that you can code Java, but that you are willing to learn, which is also a very important concept. When a person is able to take time to work during the nights and weekends to become certified, this shows how willing the person is. It is true that SCJP is only the tip of the iceberg, I am a Java consultant myself and reading specs on JMS or JMX is much more advanced than learning how to properly construct a try-catch statement, but the point is that everyone has to start somewhere and more importantly that SCJP is only a beginning. I have just started SCJD and it is a shame to see some people not try it because it is too much work. If you really want to make a career in Java, you have no choice but to learn J2EE (JSP, servlets, EJB, JNDI) and soon J2ME. Then all these news specs like JMX, JMS, Java connectivity, etc.. Then, you cannot get anywhere without RMI, XML. So to everyone out there, go get your SCJD, you will learn not how to code (you learned that in SCJP), but learn how to design a system from the ground up. Then, go get the architect certification, Java will not stop bringing out new things, so if you want to stay up to date you gotta know everything. Have fun, there is a whole other Java world waiting for you!
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Greg Georges
Sun Certified Java Programmer for the Java2 platform (SCJP)
 
Trevor Green
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True, most of the posts I read were on the 'just passed' and 'job seeking' boards.
'...how come I can't get a job even though I'm Java Certified?'
It concerns me that the certification will go down the same root as the MCSE and become, in effect, meaningless.
 
arch rival
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I'd like to disagree with Trevor as I run a web site aimed at people studying for the programmers exam. However I can't as he is quite right. The Programmers certification proves that you know the basics of the language and that you are motivated enough to do independent study. If might get you a job against a similarly qualified alternative but it probably won't get you a pay rise etc etc. If you have no previous experience studying and taking the exam is an excellent motivator and a big tick on a resume.
Interestingsly, a report in a mag a while ago showed that certified people get paid more, however I suspect that this is because they are generally more highly motivated, egg, chicken, chicken, egg..
Marcus

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