I recently passed the Java SE 7 Programmer test with 91%. I want to thank all of the people on this board who helped with all of my questions. I am trying to get back into programming after a teaching the last 22 years, so I didn't have much experience with Java or OOP when I started (OOP was invented after I left programming). I had taught myself the basics last summer, but I was really weak in the details of the language and understanding the whole OOP paradigm. I started with the Kathy & Bert's book back in November. I am a high school teacher so I tried to spend at least 30 min a day (more when possible) studying. I read each chapter twice before I moved to the next chapter. I made note cards for the first chapter but wound up using the two-minute review to study much more than the cards. I wrote lots of small programs with a simple text editor as recommended and found it really helped. This site was great about answering questions. After I had finished all of the Chapters I printed out the practice tests in the book and took them. I then studied what I did wrong and wrote a lot more small programs.
I redid the book practice tests and used them as a study guide again (it had been a few weeks since I took them the first time). I then took the first computer practice test which comes with the book and used it to study and write small programs (you probably see a pattern). I think I did the book tests one more time, studied and then took the second computer test. I studied some more and retook the first computer test, studied and retook the second computer test. I ordered Mala's book in March, read some of it (I was running out of time to read all of it) and took the practice test in her book. I then ordered the enthuware tests and thought they were great. I took and studied about three of them and then took the hard test the day before I was scheduled for the real thing. I consistently scored about 80%.
I would recommend Kathy & Bert's book to anyone. I think following up with Mala's book also was a good idea. I wish I had left myself more time to read all of it. Enthuware is great. I do think it should be the last thing you do but allow some time to take all 6. I would take most of a day to take a test and then go over the results. I did them during my spring break and took my test on Friday of spring break. There weren't any questions I said "what are they talking about?". The whole process gave me a much better understanding of OOP and Java. Thanks again for all of your help!
Congratulations champion! Great achievement Now it's time to relax a bit and have a (well-deserved) (or 2 or 3). And if you want to spoil yourself have a Belgian beer, our beers are the best of the world
Thanks for sharing your experiences. Other ranchers will definitely benefit! Have a cow!