Microsoft Testing Questions

Discussion in 'MCSE' started by =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=, Jul 7, 2005.

  1. I'm just wondering/thinking out loud here,

    Why does Microsoft make their tests so tricky? Why format it in ways that
    gets people to fail it?

    I've been working in IT for a few years. I know how to setup user accounts,
    move permissions in groups, troubleshoot hardware, etc. Yet, I get questions
    wrong on the exam because they aren't clear about that they say..

    I find the exam less and less about testing your technical knowledge and
    more about memorizing the menu that appears after you right click, etc.

    I've taken and passed Cisco exams, I wonder why Microsoft feels the need to
    do this. No flaming, just honest input if you have any.
    =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=, Jul 7, 2005
    #1
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  2. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    T-Bone Guest

    "senttonull0" <> wrote
    > I've been working in IT for a few years. I know how to setup user

    accounts,
    > move permissions in groups, troubleshoot hardware, etc. Yet, I get

    questions
    > wrong on the exam because they aren't clear about that they say..


    Hopefully some of this will be fixed by the move to simulation type
    questions.
    --
    T-Bone
    MCNGP XL
    T-Bone, Jul 7, 2005
    #2
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  3. When will the move to simulation type questions happen?

    I hear people complain about braindumpers all the time on this board, well
    guess what? There wouldn't be a point to braindumping if the questions where
    just straight forward and clear. Even the greenest rookie would rather just
    learn the material then memorize 500 test questions and answers.

    And still no answer to my original question, why does Microsoft design their
    tests this way when others like Cisco don't? Sorry to sound like I'm whining
    but I honestly don't believe the point of the current test structure is the
    weed out real IT Pros from the braindumpers. I feel like it's actually doing
    the reverse.

    "T-Bone" wrote:

    > "senttonull0" <> wrote
    > > I've been working in IT for a few years. I know how to setup user

    > accounts,
    > > move permissions in groups, troubleshoot hardware, etc. Yet, I get

    > questions
    > > wrong on the exam because they aren't clear about that they say..

    >
    > Hopefully some of this will be fixed by the move to simulation type
    > questions.
    > --
    > T-Bone
    > MCNGP XL
    >
    >
    >
    =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=, Jul 7, 2005
    #3
  4. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    JaR Guest

    In microsoft.public.cert.exam.mcse, =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?= spewed
    across the ether:

    > I honestly don't believe the point of the current test structure is
    > the
    > weed out real IT Pros from the braindumpers. I feel like it's actually
    > doing the reverse.


    Werd.



    --
    JaR
    Remove hat to reply
    *This Space For Rent*
    JaR, Jul 7, 2005
    #4
  5. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    kpg Guest

    > but I honestly don't believe the point of the current test structure is
    > the
    > weed out real IT Pros from the braindumpers. I feel like it's actually
    > doing
    > the reverse.


    How ironic.

    Looking at it from MS's perspective I'm not sure they have a
    choice, however. When the exams are too easy everyone
    complains about braindumpers, when they make it too hard
    everyone complains they can’t pass.

    Being a bit of a test connoisseur, I can tell you that multiple
    choice tests are evil. I always over-analyze the questions.
    Many of the answers given are correct or partially correct, or
    could be argued in a particular situation to be correct, but the
    instructions say to pick the BEST answer. The gurus that make
    the tests are experts in the field of test making, so I won’t argue
    their assumption that someone who knows what ever it is they
    are testing for in that questions should also know how to answer
    it, but I’m with you – If the test fails someone that really does
    know what they need to know it’s not a good test. The problem
    is that a passable test is also a braindumpable test. (Hey, I just
    made up a new word!)

    Simulation exams offer some hope to resolve the predicament.

    We’ll have to wait and see.
    kpg
    kpg, Jul 7, 2005
    #5
  6. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    Ben Smith Guest

    In article <>,
    says...
    > I'm just wondering/thinking out loud here,
    >
    > Why does Microsoft make their tests so tricky? Why format it in ways that
    > gets people to fail it?


    The intent is quite the opposite. We try to make the exams as simple to
    understand and take as possible. Could you give me an example of what
    you are referring to a tricky question? (email is ok - bensmi @
    microsoft . com)

    >
    > I've been working in IT for a few years. I know how to setup user accounts,
    > move permissions in groups, troubleshoot hardware, etc. Yet, I get questions
    > wrong on the exam because they aren't clear about that they say..
    >
    > I find the exam less and less about testing your technical knowledge and
    > more about memorizing the menu that appears after you right click, etc.


    This certainly is not the intent. I have been deeply involved in many
    exams and can assure you that this is the case.


    > I've taken and passed Cisco exams, I wonder why Microsoft feels the need to
    > do this. No flaming, just honest input if you have any.
    >
    Ben Smith, Jul 7, 2005
    #6
  7. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    Briscobar Guest

    In news:,
    senttonull0 <> rambled:
    >
    > When will the move to simulation type questions happen?


    It's already started in some exams.

    > I hear people complain about braindumpers all the time on this board,
    > well guess what? There wouldn't be a point to braindumping if the
    > questions where just straight forward and clear. Even the greenest
    > rookie would rather just learn the material then memorize 500 test
    > questions and answers.


    I beg to differ, here. Call me a cynic, but I really do think that as long
    as a test is braindumpable[1], there will be morans out there who'll try to
    take the easy way out.

    > I honestly don't believe the point of the
    > current test structure is the weed out real IT Pros from the
    > braindumpers.


    Well put. We've heard rumbles here (not to point the finger, but I'm
    pointing my finger at Ben) that MS is indeed working on castrating the
    braindumpers. Whether this is a proactive solution (in addition to
    simulation-based exams) or a reactive solution (tctips emails), I don't
    know. Either way, MS claims that they're working on the braindumper
    situation. But you're right; the current multiple-choice-only exams are
    quite conducive to cheating, and they don't help separate the good from the
    bad.



    [1] {$1 to kpg}

    --
    KB

    MCNGP #26
    www.mcngp.com is part of a balanced breakfast.
    Briscobar, Jul 7, 2005
    #7
  8. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    Ben Smith Guest

    In article <>,
    says...
    > Well put. We've heard rumbles here (not to point the finger, but I'm
    > pointing my finger at Ben) that MS is indeed working on castrating the
    > braindumpers.


    Castrating might be a little strong of a word.

    > Whether this is a proactive solution (in addition to
    > simulation-based exams) or a reactive solution (tctips emails), I don't
    > know.


    Both, also we are attempting to better educate managers (and hiring
    managers) on the role of MCSE - what it means and how to use it. (I
    wrote an article about this last year in Windows IT Pro Magazine. )
    The bottom line is that a person without real knowledge and skills with
    an MCSE will be quickly exposed - the challenge for us it to not let
    those individuals hurt the brand of the credential.


    > Either way, MS claims that they're working on the braindumper
    > situation. But you're right; the current multiple-choice-only exams are
    > quite conducive to cheating, and they don't help separate the good from the
    > bad.
    >
    >
    Ben Smith, Jul 7, 2005
    #8
  9. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    CBIC Guest

    MS is indeed working on castrating the
    > braindumpers.


    How did you hear about the order they placed with us?
    --
    aka
    Doom MCNGP #38
    Some people are like a Slinky.
    Not good for much but still fun to push down a flight of stairs.
    CBIC, Jul 7, 2005
    #9
  10. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    Ben Smith Guest

    In article <>,
    says...
    > Subject: Re: Microsoft Testing Questions
    > From: Ben Smith <>
    > Newsgroups: microsoft.public.cert.exam.mcse
    >
    > In article <>,
    > says...
    > > Well put. We've heard rumbles here (not to point the finger, but I'm
    > > pointing my finger at Ben) that MS is indeed working on castrating the
    > > braindumpers.

    >
    > Castrating might be a little strong of a word.
    >
    > > Whether this is a proactive solution (in addition to
    > > simulation-based exams) or a reactive solution (tctips emails), I don't
    > > know.

    >
    > Both, also we are attempting to better educate managers (and hiring
    > managers) on the role of MCSE - what it means and how to use it. (I
    > wrote an article about this last year in Windows IT Pro Magazine. )
    > The bottom line is that a person without real knowledge and skills with
    > an MCSE will be quickly exposed - the challenge for us it to not let
    > those individuals hurt the brand of the credential.


    You can read my article on-line at
    http://www.windowsitpro.com/Authors/AuthorID/1474/1474.html
    Ben Smith, Jul 7, 2005
    #10
  11. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    kpg Guest

    > Both, also we are attempting to better educate managers (and hiring
    > managers) on the role of MCSE - what it means and how to use it.


    That's good. A three pronged approach - my favorite kind.

    If you read (well not you, but others) the description of an MCSE,
    we probably only need about 7 of them in the world.

    kpg
    kpg, Jul 7, 2005
    #11
  12. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    Ben Smith Guest

    In article <>,
    says...
    > Subject: Re: Microsoft Testing Questions
    > From: Ben Smith <>
    > Newsgroups: microsoft.public.cert.exam.mcse
    >
    > In article <>,
    > says...
    > > Subject: Re: Microsoft Testing Questions
    > > From: Ben Smith <>
    > > Newsgroups: microsoft.public.cert.exam.mcse
    > >
    > > In article <>,
    > > says...
    > > > Well put. We've heard rumbles here (not to point the finger, but I'm
    > > > pointing my finger at Ben) that MS is indeed working on castrating the
    > > > braindumpers.

    > >
    > > Castrating might be a little strong of a word.
    > >
    > > > Whether this is a proactive solution (in addition to
    > > > simulation-based exams) or a reactive solution (tctips emails), I don't
    > > > know.

    > >
    > > Both, also we are attempting to better educate managers (and hiring
    > > managers) on the role of MCSE - what it means and how to use it. (I
    > > wrote an article about this last year in Windows IT Pro Magazine. )
    > > The bottom line is that a person without real knowledge and skills with
    > > an MCSE will be quickly exposed - the challenge for us it to not let
    > > those individuals hurt the brand of the credential.

    >
    > You can read my article on-line at
    > http://www.windowsitpro.com/Authors/AuthorID/1474/1474.html
    >
    >


    Jan 05.
    Ben Smith, Jul 7, 2005
    #12
  13. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    Ben Smith Guest

    In article <>,
    says...
    > Subject: Re: Microsoft Testing Questions
    > From: kpg <>
    > Newsgroups: microsoft.public.cert.exam.mcse
    >
    > > Both, also we are attempting to better educate managers (and hiring
    > > managers) on the role of MCSE - what it means and how to use it.

    >
    > That's good. A three pronged approach - my favorite kind.
    >
    > If you read (well not you, but others) the description of an MCSE,
    > we probably only need about 7 of them in the world.
    >



    ROTFL!
    Ben Smith, Jul 7, 2005
    #13
  14. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    Briscobar Guest

    In news:,
    Ben Smith <> rambled:
    >
    > In article <>,
    > says...
    >> Well put. We've heard rumbles here (not to point the finger, but I'm
    >> pointing my finger at Ben) that MS is indeed working on castrating
    >> the braindumpers.

    >
    > Castrating might be a little strong of a word.


    I was just joking, but it's a shame that you're not tracking them down and
    castrating them, IMO.

    >> Whether this is a proactive solution (in addition to
    >> simulation-based exams) or a reactive solution (tctips emails), I
    >> don't know.

    >
    > Both, also we are attempting to better educate managers (and hiring
    > managers) on the role of MCSE - what it means and how to use it. (I
    > wrote an article about this last year in Windows IT Pro Magazine. )


    Good to hear.

    > The bottom line is that a person without real knowledge and skills
    > with an MCSE will be quickly exposed - the challenge for us it to not
    > let those individuals hurt the brand of the credential.


    I agree that frauds will be exposed, but it's kind of beside the point, I
    think. Once the dumpers are unleashed on the workforce, the collective
    quality of MCSE certs goes down. By firing the offender, the manager doesn't
    effectively do anything to improve the quality of the cert. The dumper will
    just go find another job (because he's *certified*, after all!), and repeat
    ad infinitum - or until he actually learns from OTJ experience.

    I'm glad that MS is taking a stance to educate hiring managers, but cutting
    the problem off at the source (the exams and the dumpers themselves) seems
    to be a much simpler and effective solution, no?

    --
    KB

    MCNGP #26
    Visiting www.mcngp.com will make you smarter. And sexier.
    Briscobar, Jul 7, 2005
    #14
  15. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    Ben Smith Guest

    In article <>,
    says...
    >
    > I'm glad that MS is taking a stance to educate hiring managers, but cutting
    > the problem off at the source (the exams and the dumpers themselves) seems
    > to be a much simpler and effective solution, no?
    >


    I am not convinced that this could ever be accomplished on a cost
    effective basis. Both approaches have value.
    Ben Smith, Jul 7, 2005
    #15
  16. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    Jtyc Guest

    Jtyc, Jul 7, 2005
    #16
  17. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    catwalker63 Guest

    "CBIC" <> prattled ceaslessly in news:7Z6dnYl0
    :

    >> MS is indeed working on castrating the
    >> braindumpers.

    >
    > How did you hear about the order they placed with us?


    Tip: You need to start encrypting your email.

    HTH, HAND!

    --
    Catwalker
    aka Pu$$y Feet
    BS, MCP, MCSA
    MCNGP #43
    www.mcngp.com
    faq.mcngp.com
    "If man could be crossed with the cat, it would improve man, but it would
    deteriorate the cat." Mark Twain
    catwalker63, Jul 8, 2005
    #17
  18. > I beg to differ, here. Call me a cynic, but I really do think that as long
    > as a test is braindumpable[1], there will be morans out there who'll try to
    > take the easy way out.


    ok, let me rephrase. how do u expect a rookie to study for these exams? you
    can take the training course but that's not enough. Read the training kit
    book but that's also not enough. Read the various white pages online, now you
    are starting to get there, but wait MS will still throw you a VB script
    questions out of left field just to screw with you.

    How do you expect a rookie to study for this exam when the range of material
    covered is so vast and course materials only scratch the surface? So what
    does the rookie do? He braindumps, you gave him no other choice.

    Does the rookie want to go through all this? No, he just wants a job but
    "managers" are brainwashed into thinking an MCSE will know the network better
    then the guy who built it for him.

    As long as there is a multiple choice test there will be braindumpers. That
    simple. As long as you are going to have a test there will be fakers out
    there who best the test one way or another. When you make the test the way it
    is, everyone loses instead.
    =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=, Jul 8, 2005
    #18
  19. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    T-Bone Guest

    "senttonull0" <> wrote
    > ok, let me rephrase. how do u expect a rookie to study for these exams?

    you
    > can take the training course but that's not enough. Read the training kit
    > book but that's also not enough. Read the various white pages online, now

    you
    > are starting to get there, but wait MS will still throw you a VB script
    > questions out of left field just to screw with you.


    That's because MCSE is not for rookies. According to MS, its for experienced
    systems professionals.
    --
    T-Bone
    MCNGP XL
    T-Bone, Jul 8, 2005
    #19
  20. =?Utf-8?B?c2VudHRvbnVsbDA=?=

    Briscobar Guest

    In news:,
    senttonull0 <> rambled:
    >


    Maybe I'm lost here, but it looks like you're on my side of the fence now.
    Before, you said:
    <quote>
    I hear people complain about braindumpers all the time on this board,
    well guess what? There wouldn't be a point to braindumping if the
    questions where just straight forward and clear. Even the greenest
    rookie would rather just learn the material then memorize 500 test
    questions and answers.
    </quote>

    Looks to me like you thought that dumping would stop, or at least slow down,
    if the tests were more clear. I thought otherwise, and now it looks like you
    agree with me. Maybe I'm wrong.

    Anyway....

    > ok, let me rephrase. how do u expect a rookie to study for these
    > exams? you can take the training course but that's not enough. Read
    > the training kit book but that's also not enough. Read the various
    > white pages online, now you are starting to get there, but wait MS
    > will still throw you a VB script questions out of left field just to
    > screw with you.


    I think the rookie should read the books. He should take the MS course. He
    should use TechNet. And he should also use the product. Let me put it this
    way: If you were sick, I mean really sick, would you go to a doctor? Sure
    you would. Now, you have a 26 year old kid straight out of med school and a
    50 year old who's been a specialist for over 20 years. Who would you rather
    see, all else being equal? The experienced one. That's because reading about
    livers, hearts, and bone marrow does not a good doctor make. Similarly,
    reading about subnetting, replication, and authentication does not a good
    MCSE make. *Using* and *doing* are the keys here.

    > How do you expect a rookie to study for this exam when the range of
    > material covered is so vast and course materials only scratch the
    > surface? So what does the rookie do? He braindumps, you gave him no
    > other choice.


    I just gave another choice above. One that shouldn't be a choice at all, but
    rather a requirement. Also, the MCSE cert is designed for people with a year
    or more in the business, not newbies who just finished reading Windows XP
    for Dummies.

    Braindumping should be a last resort. And by "last resort", I mean if you're
    on your deathbed, and your dying wish is to become certified, then go for
    it.

    > Does the rookie want to go through all this? No, he just wants a job
    > but "managers" are brainwashed into thinking an MCSE will know the
    > network better then the guy who built it for him.


    You do present a good point in that managers are blinded by the cert. Well,
    they were. Now the cert's mainly useless. Here's why: Too many incompetent
    people "earned" the cert, and when they got jobs, they failed miserably,
    leaving the hiring manager with a bad impression of MCSEs. Now, he's not so
    high on hiring another MCSE who's just going to fukc up his network again.
    You see?

    Ben posted in this thread that MS is now going to begin educating managers
    on what the MCSE actually is, and what it should be used for.

    > As long as there is a multiple choice test there will be
    > braindumpers. That simple. As long as you are going to have a test
    > there will be fakers out there who best the test one way or another.
    > When you make the test the way it is, everyone loses instead.


    Yes, that's what I'm saying! Fortunately, dumping has gotten harder, and
    will continue to get harder, as MS rolls out more simulation-based exams.

    --
    KB

    MCNGP #26
    If you don't hightail it over to www.mcngp.com, your job will be
    outsourced.
    Briscobar, Jul 8, 2005
    #20
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