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Posted: 5/25/2001 7:53:52 AM EDT
What is the deal with the new Win2K tests? What is the point of these tests that have no bearing on actual knowledge, but are based on your ability to decipher a nonsensical scenario? Who the heck writes these things?
Link Posted: 5/25/2001 7:56:05 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/25/2001 7:54:15 AM EDT by burn]
I have a theory that thier just trying to prove a point about knowledge in the classroom vs self taught. .02 worth
Link Posted: 5/25/2001 8:18:43 AM EDT
I would agree that pratical knowledge and experience is more important than being able to recite lines from a book. However, the scenarios in the tests, are not based on experience at all. From the quesitons I've received, they are simply asking the most off-base, completely irrelevant, obscure and ludicrous questions possible. Nobody with any decent amount of experience would allow themselves to let their systems degrade to the point indicated by the questions. The questions have nothing to do with your ability to do the job, as much as it demonstrates you ability to take a test.
Link Posted: 5/25/2001 9:26:56 AM EDT
Most of those exams seem like more of a reading comprehension test than anything else. They bombard you with useless info only to have the information you need in the last line of a 2 paragraph "question". QUite often also, I have found there is a right way, and a Microsoft way. That was very apparent when I took the Networking Essentials test a few years back. The real thing that makes me mad about the Win2k exams are that as an NT 4.0 MSCE my cert goes away in Dec when I was told that these certs were good out to the next 2 versions of the OS. That being said, MS is one of the saught after certs in the business, so I guess we gotta play by their rules... Aviator
Link Posted: 5/25/2001 9:43:04 AM EDT
Let me preface this by saying that I am an MCSE (NT4). The whole MCSE certification program is a racket designed to artificially keep the salaries of MCSE's high. I have found my real-life experience to be vastly more important than all the silly crap I memorized for the tests, then promptly regurgitated while taking the test. After one month most of that 'book knowledge' evaporated away into the ether. While this little scheme has benefitted me, I still hate MS and all their BS!!! I won't hire simply because someone has an MCSE - in fact I know several that can't even make a bootdisk. Real-life experience is alot more valuable in real-life. The real problem is that so many HR depts. will only look at folks who have a cert. Doesn't matter if they know anything or not. Rant Off.
Link Posted: 5/25/2001 10:07:56 AM EDT
As both an NT 4.0 MCSE and an IT manager, I simply use the test as a baseline of knowledge a candidate may have. There is no replacement for actual real world experience. Very rarely do you find an environment that is pure Microsoft anyway. The tests are designed to prove you have the basic knowledge of how the Microsoft versions of services work and how these would integrate into the rest of the world. Anyone who thinks that becoming certified will automatically put you in the 50k plus bracket are in for a rude awakening. The market is getting real competitive and certs are a dime a dozen. The win2k test were designed to weed out the individuals that lack real experience. The NT4.0 test were passable by anyone who could read and retain knowledge. The win2k track is designed for people who actually use the products in the real world. Neither are that important. If you want to break into the industry, get an entry level helpdesk position and keep learning on the job. 2 solid years of real world experience are far more valuable than any cert (well maybe not your CCIE). BUT, if you are already in the industry and are not certed, you should consider doing so if you think you're going to be job hunting soon. It just supports the experience you are listing on your resume.
Link Posted: 5/25/2001 12:37:20 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/25/2001 7:04:18 PM EDT
I've been saying that for years, people tell me I'm nuts. Did took a few MS classes but argued with the instructor the whole time about what happened in the real world. Its funny, I was head of a group of 5 guys supporting 13 call centers with 4500+ NT desktops and 150+ servers. None of us were certified. We fixed many issues in other divisions of our company that were supported by MCSE's. Why waste the time reading and testing when you could be shooting?
Link Posted: 5/25/2001 9:49:20 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/25/2001 10:17:12 PM EDT
There is always one guy in the class arguing with the instructor over how things really work. Once I took the first test, I realized how bogus it is. I stopped taking notes and just started memorizing the prep books. There were two guys at my last job that couldn't admin their way out of a paper bag, but got hired for their MCSE. I only went, because the company was picking up the tab. I am thinking about getting my Solaris certification, because it would probably mean a few extra bux come raise time. I have taken most of the classes, but have to pay for the tests from my own pocket. There was a guy at my old company that had his Cisco CCIE. He said it was 10x harder than getting his Sun cert., and he is a super-genius.
Link Posted: 5/25/2001 10:25:19 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/26/2001 12:22:16 AM EDT
Link Posted: 5/26/2001 12:29:45 AM EDT
Makes me mad sometimes... Computers have been my hobby for a long time now, and for the past 2 years I've done it as a profession. But everytime I apply for a job some stupid human resources person just reads off the paper and asks me if I am MCSE or A+ certified. I say no and they assume I know nothing and I am "entry level" even though I have a beefy resume and my past two jobs were at Dept. of Fish and Game and IBM as a Desktop Support Technician. Every job that I have interviewed with and talked to some agency contractor person or some human resources person I didn't get the job. Every job that I sat down with a systems administrator or a fellow tech I've gotten an offer. Pisses me off. I guess I need to spend $600+ for a piece of paper saying I can do what my resume, my references and letter of recommendations say I can do. Blah...
Link Posted: 5/26/2001 10:53:49 AM EDT
Link Posted: 5/26/2001 11:19:35 AM EDT
Sounds like nothing has changed. I'm a MCPS #5454, got the certification back when DOS was part of the exam. None of it was based on real life then either. Most of the answers to the test were found in the footnotes or the explanations of the diagrams. Certainly glad I didn't spend the time or the bucks for an MCSE. There are way to many of them now.
Link Posted: 5/26/2001 5:45:48 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/26/2001 6:04:52 PM EDT
Yeah Duffypoo, That would be nice.... but I'm still just starting out. I can hold my own in desktop support, but I feel I need to learn A LOT more. Especialy on the server side of things. Man... I'm really stressin out... I need to get a job soon or I'm screwed.. I keep havin nightmares of me say "Would you like to super size that!?" aCk!
Link Posted: 5/26/2001 9:09:52 PM EDT
What really sucks is that many hiring managers use the certification as a way to sort out who they will interview. My wife is a Sr HR Manager of IT for a large company, she says I couldn't even get in the door for a job at the level I've been doing for years because I have no college degree or certifications. Many knowledgable folks are in the same boat. Anybody know if the Cisco classes/exams are more real world? Been doing LAN/WAN engineering for a year now for 12,000 seats in 33 centers and wouldn't mind knowing some of the big picture stuff a bit better.
Link Posted: 5/26/2001 10:16:03 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/26/2001 10:14:55 PM EDT by Duffy]
Link Posted: 5/26/2001 10:44:05 PM EDT
Originally Posted By FrankTheSpank: Pisses me off. I guess I need to spend $600+ for a piece of paper saying I can do what my resume, my references and letter of recommendations say I can do.
View Quote
I am in the same shoes you are on this one. Currently studying for the certs, and I can tell you from my own experience that since I started reading, I've learned a few things and made sense of a lot more... It's a racket, you won't need to know the OHM rating of a resiter, or a specific registry entry in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE to do your job, but the paper you get for jumping through the hoops will amount to your being worth more to your current/future employer...(even if that is just a perception)...the quality of your work is what counts. The piss ants in HR are too ingnorant of IT matters to make intelligent decision, so they suppliment doing thier jobs by taking the paper sight unseen. Hammer the books, nail the test, play the game and get paid...BS or not, the certs are the only way your going to get considered for the jobs you really want. Or at least they'll save you some of the heartache of finding an employer smart enough to check you out.
Link Posted: 5/27/2001 9:40:27 AM EDT
My issues have been specifically with the Win2k tests. Has anyone taken the Windows 2000 tests, and not the 4.0 or 3.5x tests? I guess my big beef is that these test are entirely scenario based. Microsoft gives you these ludicrous scenarios, and the answers they want is not something I would perform on my first or second troubleshooting steps. It seems that they do everything ass backwards. That is what bugs me. For those of us who really know what we are doing, it makes no sense. I never cared much about certifications, primarily with all the "braindump" sites available. All one needed to do to pass a test, is to simply memorize the questions and answers beforehand. I heard Win2k was different, and was supposed to be worthwhile, but that hasn't been my experience. I can't see these exams as being worthwhile as they do not test actual knowledge or even common network issues.
Link Posted: 5/27/2001 10:26:32 AM EDT
It's a racket. They put together a test that is so rediculous and off base that anyone who really knows what they are doing and hasn't "bought" the answers they're looking for will fail. This gives them the numbers to show how "hard" the test is, therefore increasing the "value" of the certification to employers...because obviously, someone who can pass the tests with so many people "failing" them must be really really good!
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