Today I would like to share my experience both during my preparation and on the day of the SCJP exam which I took on the previous Saturday(29/08/2009).
POINT TO NOTE:
There are totally seven parts that evaluate a candidate in an SCJP test.
* Declaration,Initialization and scoping
* Flow Control
* API Contents
* OO Concepts
First of all I took my certification seriously as this is going to be my first stepping stone.I studied smart and utilized as much time as possible, for the exam.
I started my preparation about five months back. I started with the book
SCJP Sun Certified Programmer for Java 5 Study Guide (Exam 310-055) by Katherine Sierra and Bert Bates
To get my Fundamentals strong, I referred the book,
Head First Java by Katherine Sierra and Bert Bates
Both these books cover all the portions that are needed for the SCJP 1.5 exam.
Head first Java was very helpful to understand the concepts and was a good support when I needed a concept in SCJP book to be explained in more detail.
I also had the help of many of our associates who taught me how to view a problem in the exam.
Two typical examples,
Before starting, I find out problems that can be easily solved and solve them.I solve the rest when I go through it the next time. This ensures that I have a favourable number questions that help me clear the exam, and in the second pass, I concentrate on the rest to ensure that I get as many questions right as possible and score high.
If I was spending some time on a problem, I make sure that I complete it before proceeding further. This would save a lot of time for going through all the questions again.
Apart from that I referred to various Mock Tests available online and I made sure that I didnt go by their solution if I felt that the answer given to be confusing.
This helped me a lot and I learnt something new each time I attended one.
I used to solve the code snippets and had found some examples which were given wrong solutions.
DURING THE EXAM:
During the exam, I felt the same tension that I had during my degree exam. But I would assure you that you dont have to worry, there is ample time. Three hours for sixty questions and you have choice for the answers too!
There are two type of questions according to my classification,
One type is that we have to judge what is the output from a set of choices, and
In Second type, you are given some code snippets and are asked to arrange them in a proper sequence so that you get some specific output.
Especially for the second type, the online questions which I had tested myself earlier came to my help and I solved them easily.
Remember that you are not given ant or eclipse in the exam. Everything has to be done by your mind and the paper pad.
I completed my test in about one and a half hours. At the end of one and a half hours, I was confident of fifty five questions out of sixty to be correct.
This confidence made me bold and I tried my best on the other five questions.
At the end, As I submitted I got the result immediately and all my tension got subsided on seeing the result.
MY TOTAL SCORE 93.00%
Declaration,Initialization and scoping 90.00%
Flow Control 81.00%
API Contents 100.00%
OO Concepts 90.00%