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Passed OCAJP 8 Exam With..... Passed

 
Mark Kitchell
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ok this is embarrassing. 77.

Here's what I think; I spent too much time in the details and not nearly enough time on practice tests. Didn't really start taking practice tests until Sunday night at midnight (test scheduled for Tuesday); and pretty much panicked then came on here and immediately went and downloaded enthuware based on some of the threads here. THANK YOU.

The story: programming in Java professionally since it was beta. Yea; since the late 90s. To be honest I think the longer you've been doing this "for real" the harder a test like this becomes. That plus the fact that when you build enterprise Java apps all day every day there's a whole lot of down side to putting your rep on the line with an "Associate" certification test.

Several reasons this was tough; likely the main of which bad habits have happened! My IDE handles the little things. I'm shocked at how much I actually learned (and had forgotten; and re-learned!) Was totally worth it even though it almost gave me a panic attack.

It's going to be really interesting to see if the OCP is actually easier for me then the OCA; I'll let you know. I strongly suspect it will be especially since I've had to re-visit and re-learn all the "little things" I took for granted previously.

Study materials:
Oracle Press - "OCA Java SE 8 Programmer I Study Guide"
Sybex - "OCA Oracle Certified Associate Java SE 8 Programmer I Study Guide"

Both great books; read them each twice. Took all the chapter tests.

Sybex practice tests ..... poorly formatted (code blocks) unfortunately which wastes a lot of time - just go to Enthuware.

So - do the books; take the chapter quizzes/tests; then get Enthuware when you're ready to get into testing mode. Preferably get into Enthuware at least 2 weeks before the test (not 1 1/2 days like me!!) so you can get thru all the Enthuware material. Pretty sure that if I had even 1 week in Enthuware I'd have had a much better score. The actual test was easier than Enthuware and that's a good thing; practice should be hard or you don't get better.

Just my opinion.

And thanks again for this website and pointing me in the right direction when I panicked Sunday night






 
Jeanne Boyarsky
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Mark,
Hey, a pass is a pass. And a pass qualifies you to take the next exam.

I was actually thrilled the book uses the "new code engine." Books that came out a few years ago from Wiley used a "format" where you could only see a few lines of code a time. Yuck. I'm an SO glad that the engine that goes with our book doesn't have that limitation.

Personally, Scott and I find the OCP to be much harder than the OCA. (we are both experienced Java developers although not quite as long as you; we were in college when you were starting out with Java.) Also, keep in mind some OCP topics don't gell well with real life. For example, they didn't pick the subset of JDBC that matches "what anyone who codes in JDBC would know". We whine about that in OCP book a bit .

Finally - and I know you don't want to hear this - I think you should practice with the OCA Enthuware exams more to get your scores up. Doing well on a certification exam involves a way of thinking. Like knowing what to look for. Without a stronger grasp of that for the OCA material, I think you are going to cause passing the OCP to be harder for you than it needs to be. And you've already bought Enthuware. I strongly believe spending a few more hours with it is going save you way more time than that studying for the OCP.
 
Mark Kitchell
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Thanks Jeanne! And no worries... I absolutely needed to practice testing a LOT more. I'm sure if I get in more practice I'll have less frustration looking at code not formatted the way I like it too! ha. Trying to decide on what date to schedule right now; I work a lot better under a deadline. But I also have 2 new toolsets (need to get proficient in Angular and another we haven't chosen yet for services management; at-least the later is on "my" side of the firewall) to learn the next couple months; getting pushed into UI and not all the heavy frameworks stuff all the time (still doing that too; of course -- does anything ever come off of a developers plate?!).

And a note to all the old developers out there who have (or had) the attitude "I've been doing this since beta why do I need to take a certification test?!". JUST DO IT. Completely worth it. Way too much good stuff out there I wasn't in the habit of using/doing that has now entered my skill set.

Finishing all of the OCA Enthuware exams and have already downloaded the Enthuware OCP exams. Trying not to repeat the same mistake!
 
Jeanne Boyarsky
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Mark,
Remember that you can reschedule the exam if you need to. I realize that makes it sort of a fake deadline. But it also means that you can delay because "life happened".
 
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