Recently, I got an exciting opportunity to review the uCertify Prepkit for SCJP 5.0 certification.
SCJP stands for Sun Certified Java Professional and is one of the many certifications offered by Sun Microsystems that makes you stand out in the crowd. In the times like these, who would not want that. :-)
If you want to know more about SCJP, you can look at the Sun's site here or you check this to see some related FAQ's.
Coming back to uCertify Preparation Kit, I actually found it pretty useful overall, for it gives you a broad spectrum of features for a relatively smaller price. The preparation engine provides you with
- Study Notes & Helpful Articles
- 7 Mock Tests, each with 75 questions
- Study & Learn Module
- Ability to Bookmark and Tag Questions
The Study & Learn Module provides a presentation (thus not really boring) based on each Examination Objective of SCJP 5.0. Going through them before the exam could be the fastest way to revise the entire syllabus. This is so because SCJP has well-defined objectives (rules & syntax of the language) that it tests. There is no need to go beyond these objectives if you want to clear the exam.
You can also attach your own notes with Study Notes and Articles, thus making a note of some exceptional condition or some related fact. These makes life really easy when you go through them again.
The practice exams give you a real feel of the actual certification exam as it contains both multiple choice questions (MCQ's) and few drag-and-drop questions. Also the level of the questions are neither too high nor too low. On a personal level, when I took the first practice exam without really preparing for it, I faltered on questions related to in-built classes like Locale, Date, NumberFormat and use of native modifier and Enumerations.
According to me, the best feature is certainly the way the answers are explained once your test is over and you see the results. You can review all the answers whether correct or not, and find out the reason for the same.
The answers are explained in length, touching the concept involved and focussing on why other options are wrong. This gives you a proper insight of what's going on.
On the downside, I would have preferred a highlighting feature that enables me to highlight important facts in the study notes and articles, so that next time I read only that part, which is important to me. Also, I would have loved had they allowed me to copy the code and paste it to test it but I understand that they probably can't do it for piracy issues and misuse.
Although it is an excellent kit to give you a proper feel of the actual exam; it is equipped with some easy ones and some tough(read tricky) questions as well just as the actual paper would. But, do not think that you need just this PrepKit to clear the paper!!
What you also need is a javac(Java compiler) to practice and code. I strongly recommend understanding the involved concepts and coding by hand (not by IDE), then take these useful tests to gain confidence as the actual exam looks almost the same.
For more information about the other preparation kits that uCertify provides you, please visit there site here.