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Need Encouragement!!

 
Greenhorn
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Hello Javaranchers,
My problem is that I start studying and stop. I get distracted and find it difficult to take up to studying again. I need some encouragement to motivate me to study and pass the SCJP1.4 exams. I really want to do it.
Please tell me how many hours of study and practice are needed to pass the exams. What should be the target date as from today by which one can be ready for the exams if one studies sincerely.
Thanks
 
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My problem is that I start studying and stop. I get distracted and find it difficult to take up to studying again. I need some encouragement to motivate me to study and pass the SCJP1.4 exams. I really want to do it.
My question is what motivates you to take the SCJP exam? Hobby, work?
Please tell me how many hours of study and practice are needed to pass the exams.
This can unfortunately not be answered as it depends on how you study, how fast you store things in your brain, how well-anchored those things are in your head, how well you associate learned things together to build up new ideas, etc.
What should be the target date as from today by which one can be ready for the exams if one studies sincerely.
Again, what does "sincerely" mean to you? 1 hour, 2 hours, 5 hours a day? The whole day? Day and night?
Remember this: It is not how long you learn but how focused you are while learning. The best way to learn for SCJP is to write Java code, lots of it, tons of it. This is, in my sense, the only way to master the language. Whenever you encounter a problem, write some code that illustrates the problem, tweak it, change it, update it, augment it, ask questions on it. You should end up with a collection of little programs for each and every objective. When you master each objective you are ready for the exam. That may take days, weeks or months (or years) depending on how much motivated you are and how much time you can spend on the task.
Go for it, take a deep breath, think of something you really like, smile, be confident and most of all be positive. Adopt the leitmotiv Be yourself at your best and you'll see everything will go well...
And don't hesitate to come and ask questions here... People will be happy to answer them
Good luck.
[ October 17, 2002: Message edited by: Valentin Crettaz ]
 
Ranch Hand
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How long is a piece of string?
Hint: go to http://www.danchisholm.net and find
the topic exams. Choose a topic and one set of questions. That's your target for today. Attempt that topic's questions and if you have any doubts about the topic, read, learn, and practice around that topic. At the end of the learning session take a break, come back in a few hours and retry the all the questions. If you get any wrong you are not ready on that topic, try again the next day. Make sure you understand why the other options are wrong, as well as understanding the correct option.
Do that for all topics and all sets of questions...
Ask and answer questions on these forums, get involved. If your answers are wrong you will be corrected and you will learn from it.
Something will happen to you (given time) and you will know what to do and feel whether you are ready or not.
Then find some realistic mock exams, do them, and away you go...
How long is a piece of string? Who cares?
-Barry (obviously going off his rocker)
BTW what distracts you so much? There's EVERYTHING you need on JavaRanch, even a JavaRanchJunkie's topic somewhere
[ October 17, 2002: Message edited by: Barry Gaunt ]
[ October 17, 2002: Message edited by: Barry Gaunt ]
 
Cowgirl and Author
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You're going through what everybody else goes through. In fact, you're supposed to be discouraged at least once every four days or there's something seriously wrong with your progress.
But it get easier and easier and easier. Switch back and forth between logic/code and concepts (like OO topics), to keep your brain from getting too tired.
My absolute best tip, and I've seen hundreds of people pass this way, is to use flash cards. Get a pile of 4 x 6 cards (or whatever size suits you) and create questions to drill yourself on. These are not mock-exam style questions, but rather questions that you can use to memorize all those little facts and details. You put a question on one side and an answer on the other, that way you can have other people quiz you with them even if they don't know Java. The important thing is that *you* have to develop the questions.
That is the only way I would have passed the first time, and I still use them each time I have to come up to speed fast on something. I still have a BIG stack of Jini cards, and an even bigger stack of EJB cards. I took them everywhere. In the car (best if used only at stop lights), at restaurants, waiting in line, everywhere!
But what most people who try this say is that they find the act of MAKING the flash cards is what really makes it stick, and that once you've made a card, you often don't need it after that!
If you get bored you can try color-coding them, sorting them, making origami with them. Martha Stewart would be proud with what I've done with *mine*.
Good luck and don't be intimidated. Some of the smartest folks on the planet are in these discussion forums, so it can sometimes feel like you have such a long way to go, but we all started at the beginning.
cheers,
Kathy
 
Aneeta Srini
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I want to take up the exam to get a better job and prove my competency in Java.

Thanks a lot for your encouragement and useful suggestions. Now it is upto me to take this up seriously. I will do my best.
Thanks again !!
BTW Barry..what distracts me is chat..
 
Barry Gaunt
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BTW Barry..what distracts me is chat..


Hmmm... OK, three options (at least):
1) deinstall that chat program
2) when someone "calls you" ask a question about some java problem you are stuck on. If they sign off immediately, great continue with study. If they help you then also great. win-win.
3) exchange love-poems written using only java 1.4 keywords and valid identifiers.
4) ???
-Barry
Better get this over to MD somebody
 
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I think you should start with taking tests. Start with the topic exams of Dan. They are really good. Also, don't make the mistake of trying to cover the material completely, before embarking upon exams.
I left the exams for the last and I regretted it, because I found out that I still don't know a lot of things. The topic exams, especially, are a learning tool. Also, try out all the examples. Comment out or change code in different sections and see the difference in o/p.
-Sharda
 
Kathy Sierra
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Originally posted by Barry Gaunt:
<snip>
3) exchange love-poems written using only java 1.4 keywords and valid identifiers.


Excellent idea. There's a whole lot you can do with access modifiers (I know, I know it's a cliche -- the whole "exposing private members through your public interface" thing), but whatever works.
Some of us at Sun have a saying,' If you want to remember it, make it *memorable*.
Mnemonics, stories, rhymes, pictures, anthropomorphizing (giving something human characteristics like, "so then the VM became angry because the object refused to..."
cheers.
Most importantly, have fun with it.
 
Barry Gaunt
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You know, I once had an algol 60 compiler written for the Digital Equipment Corp PDP8 that recognised only the first letter of any of the algol 60 language's keywords.
Boy, we had some good fun writing (runnable) programs with that... The concepts of Maintainability/Readability did not exist in those days.
-Barry
 
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Too good suggestions Barry !
Leena
 
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