Win a copy of The Little Book of Impediments (e-book only) this week in the Agile and Other Processes forum!
  • Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Need some advice after failing the exam

 
Akshaya Thirusangu
Greenhorn
Posts: 7
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Awesome! That some of you have passed the OCAJP exam in first attempt. Congratulations! Couldnt wait to join the PASSED candidates list. LOL

I gave my exam yesterday. I didnt pass it. I was very confident that I am going to be passing it with flying colors. Because I have been taking 93% consistently from the practice tests in the CD material that comes with the OCAJP K&B Guide.

I found it little time taking to work on "for loop" questions on exam. It consumed so much of my real test time. As a result of which I didnt answer 4 questions towards the end of the test. Ran out of time.
It was a 100% disappointment for me to fail.
And now I have purchased Enthuware study materials from enthuware.com. Looks like it contains quiet a lot of questions to practice. I am actually planning to give the exam in a week time from now. Do you guys have suggestions for me in how much more time I might need to prepare(approximately)?

(This post originated in this topic)
 
Roel De Nijs
Sheriff
Posts: 10662
144
AngularJS Chrome Eclipse IDE Hibernate Java jQuery MySQL Database Spring Tomcat Server
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi Akshaya Thirusangu,

First of all, a warm welcome to CodeRanch!

Akshaya Thirusangu wrote:I gave my exam yesterday. I didnt pass it.

Sorry to hear you have failed. But don't be disappointed and definitely don't feel miserable! The OCA certification exam is a hard and tough exam, it requires a good and solid understanding of Java and OO basics. You can perfectly be able to write working Java programs and still fail this exam. And you are definitely not the only one who has failed this certification exam. You'll find here and here other experiences of ranchers who failed (or struggled with) the OCA exam. This threads also contain some excellent advice to prepare yourself for the exam and almost be guaranteed to pass. So definitely worth reading!

Akshaya Thirusangu wrote:Because I have been taking 93% consistently from the practice tests in the CD material that comes with the OCAJP K&B Guide.

How can you consistently score +90% on the practice tests of the K&B guide? There are only two exams. And did you take the practice exams in exam mode (time limit, first attempt & no other resources used than pen and paper)?

Akshaya Thirusangu wrote:I found it little time taking to work on "for loop" questions on exam. It consumed so much of my real test time. As a result of which I didnt answer 4 questions towards the end of the test. Ran out of time.
It was a 100% disappointment for me to fail.

And what was your score on the actual exam? If you missed 4 questions due to running out of time, you have answered a lot of the questions incorrectly. And that would indicate your current Java and OO knowledge is not at the required level to pass the exam. Here you can read the experience of a rancher who ran out of time as well, couldn't answer 10 (!) questions but still passed the exam with 80%.

Akshaya Thirusangu wrote:And now I have purchased Enthuware study materials from enthuware.com. Looks like it contains quiet a lot of questions to practice. I am actually planning to give the exam in a week time from now. Do you guys have suggestions for me in how much more time I might need to prepare(approximately)?

The Enthuware mock exams are probably the best mock exam software available at this moment. But if you don't have a good, solid understanding of Java and OO basics, you probably won't pass the exam. First you must study and prepare yourself thoroughly and then you can take the mock exams to become more familiar with the exam questions and exam taking techniques. The best thing you can do: take the first Enthuware mock exam. Based on your score, you'll definitely know what to do. If you don't score 80+%, you'll need to study more and harder before taking any other mock exams.
If you use the search function, you'll find plenty of topics with advice to prepare (and ace) the OCA exam. Here are a few:
  • Studying so hard just to fail(1z0-808)
  • Failing Java SE 8 Programmer I
  • Bad Experience with OCA 7 exams
  • Any tricks about how to manage the 120 min for so many question?
  • second failed OCAJP


  • Hope it helps!
    Kind regards,
    Roel

    PS. According to Oracle's Retake Policy you must wait 14 days before retaking a failed exam.
     
    Akshaya Thirusangu
    Greenhorn
    Posts: 7
    • Mark post as helpful
    • send pies
    • Quote
    • Report post to moderator
    Thank you so much for the suggestions.

    Yes Roel. I took the exams in exam mode and didnt use any other resources than pen and paper.

    My actual exam score is 58%.
     
    Roel De Nijs
    Sheriff
    Posts: 10662
    144
    AngularJS Chrome Eclipse IDE Hibernate Java jQuery MySQL Database Spring Tomcat Server
    • Mark post as helpful
    • send pies
    • Quote
    • Report post to moderator
    Akshaya Thirusangu wrote:My actual exam score is 58%.

    So that probably shows you still don't have a good, solid understanding of all exam topics and concepts.

    Can you elaborate on how you prepared yourself? You said you have read the OCA part of the K&B7 study guide. Did you read it just once? Did you write (lots of) code snippets as a part of your preparation? Did you use an IDE when writing code snippets?
     
    Akshaya Thirusangu
    Greenhorn
    Posts: 7
    • Mark post as helpful
    • send pies
    • Quote
    • Report post to moderator
    Yes I read OCAJP guide almost thrice. I didn't use any IDE since exam tests the knowledge on command prompt execution of programs. And I wrote small programs but not that much. I made sure that I executed all the code snippets from guide and the practice test software.

    Right now, I'm practicing on Enthuware. I Should be doing good this time. Other than that do you have suggestions for me now? I just got Mala Gupta OCAJP guide. I want to take up the test within two weeks from now. Please suggest anymore thing that I can do in this two weeks time.

    Thanks Roel!
     
    Scott Selikoff
    author
    Saloon Keeper
    Posts: 4033
    18
    Eclipse IDE Flex Google Web Toolkit
    • Likes 1
    • Mark post as helpful
    • send pies
    • Quote
    • Report post to moderator
    This happens in machine learning and its called overfitting. In short, if you study the same questions over and over again you learn them too well. For example, you may start to memorize an answer without even reading the question. One tip is to read the chapter and review questions multiple times and only take a practice test when you think you are ready.

    In other words, don't rush into the practice tests or take them too frequently. Save them for when you are ready to take the exam.

    Also, always answer every question since there's no penalty for wrong answers! It's easy points to get. When Jeanne and I wrote our guides we thought long and hard about the study and testing taking appendix. There's a lot of simple things you can do to improve your test taking skills.
     
    Roel De Nijs
    Sheriff
    Posts: 10662
    144
    AngularJS Chrome Eclipse IDE Hibernate Java jQuery MySQL Database Spring Tomcat Server
    • Mark post as helpful
    • send pies
    • Quote
    • Report post to moderator
    Akshaya Thirusangu wrote:Yes I read OCAJP guide almost thrice. I didn't use any IDE since exam tests the knowledge on command prompt execution of programs. And I wrote small programs but not that much. I made sure that I executed all the code snippets from guide and the practice test software.

    Learning a programming language is like driving a car: you don't learn how to drive a car by just reading a book, you have to get your hands dirty. So you have to write lots and lots of code, preferably using your favourite text editor, javac and java. On the exam you need to assess code snippets, spot compiler errors, select the correct output,... (without an IDE). So writing some small programs and executing all code snippets from a study guide is really not enough! Each code snippet in the study guide should be the starting point to do plenty of experiments (change access modifier, change return type, add throws clause, mark an instance method static or final, and so on). And before you compile (and run) the program, you try to predict what will happen after you made the changes. Then you compile the program (and if it successfully compiles, run it as well) and see if your expectations/thoughts were correct.

    Akshaya Thirusangu wrote:Right now, I'm practicing on Enthuware. I Should be doing good this time. Other than that do you have suggestions for me now? I just got Mala Gupta OCAJP guide. I want to take up the test within two weeks from now. Please suggest anymore thing that I can do in this two weeks time.

    Enthuware mock exams are currently probably the best ones on the market! Here you'll find some advice about how to use Enthuware mock exams effectively. And finally it might be very useful to read this thread as well. So you don't make the mistake of rushing through all the mock exams.
    And of course setting a deadline is not an issue, unless it is unrealistic. Then you will rush through your preparation, you'll take the exam while you are not thoroughly prepared and you might fail the exam again. Take your time so you are well prepared to take the exam. The Enthuware mock exams definitely provide a very good indication of your current knowledge and your readiness for the exam. If you score +80% on a practice exam in exam mode (first attempt, within time limit, only paper and pencil as tools), you have a good, solid understanding of all exam topics and you can proceed to the next practice test without additional studying (of course you review all wrong answers). If your score is less than 80%, your knowledge is not good enough to pass the test. So besides reviewing your wrong answers, you need to study a few weeks more (with main focus on your weaker points) before taking the next mock exam. And you can always ask some advice in this forum if you are unsure about your readiness for a next practice test and/or the actual exam.

    Hope it helps!
    Kind regards,
    Roel
     
    Akshaya Thirusangu
    Greenhorn
    Posts: 7
    • Likes 1
    • Mark post as helpful
    • send pies
    • Quote
    • Report post to moderator
    Roel, Thank you so much. I started practicing the suggestions you have mentioned in the response.

    Scott, Yes you are 100% correct. I tend to memorize the answers as I took the practice tests over and over. I am going to be writing lot of small code snippets and testing myself on each topic. Thank you for the response Scott.

    I will get back to you guys in case if i have anymore doubts during my preparation process now. Well, I know I am going to be needing your help so much this time. LOL!

    -Akshaya
     
    Roel De Nijs
    Sheriff
    Posts: 10662
    144
    AngularJS Chrome Eclipse IDE Hibernate Java jQuery MySQL Database Spring Tomcat Server
    • Mark post as helpful
    • send pies
    • Quote
    • Report post to moderator
    Akshaya Thirusangu wrote:I will get back to you guys in case if i have anymore doubts during my preparation process now. Well, I know I am going to be needing your help so much this time. LOL!

    No problem at all! When in doubt or if you have questions, just let us know. That's why CodeRanch is a friendly place for programming greenhorns Happy studying!
     
    • Post Reply
    • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
    • New Topic