70-310 exam

Discussion in 'MCAD' started by bill yeager, Jul 1, 2006.

  1. bill yeager

    bill yeager Guest

    Well... I have just failed this exam again for the 4th time ranging in scores
    from 625 to 675. I just don't have enough real-world experience to "get over
    the hump" in passing this particular test.

    This comes even after taking the Transcender cert exams (after the first
    failed attempt); Exam Cram 2 book by Mike Gunderloy - Que publishing (after
    the second failed attempt) and vb.net xml web services and server components
    by Sybex (Pamela Fanstill). I found all 3 study guides to be useful and
    helpful, but not enough to pass...

    I'm already an MCP that has passed the vb.net Windows forms and
    asp.net/vb.net exams on the first try with only the transcender study exams.
    I believe I was able to pass these exams, because I have had some "real
    world" experience with the types of concepts in these two exams, but very
    limited exposure to xml web services, .net remoting, security and
    testing/debugging which seemed to be my weakest topics. I just can't get
    passed that 700 score.

    Does anyone have any ideas on how I can improve to pass the 70-310 exam to
    get my MCAD certification?

    Thanks in advance,

    bill yeager, Jul 1, 2006
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  2. bill yeager

    delly_jm Guest

    Hi Bill,

    I feel it that you haven't been able to get through the 70-310. I ironically
    passed the 70-310 (my first .NET exam) on the 28th of June 2006 got a 748, my
    focus has always been on webservices for the last year and a half.
    I'd suggest looking into the Microsoft press books, it was very helpful for
    me. Also, I had to read the questions really hard and try to reason out some
    of the questions. Just try your best it'll work out soon. I also subscribed
    to cramsession.

    delly_jm, Jul 1, 2006
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  3. bill yeager

    Cerebrus Guest

    Hi Bill,

    I would also recommend the MS Press book for this exam, though the most
    useful resource for me in any exam always proved to be the Que book.

    My suggestions for you would be :

    1. Print out the Exam Preparation guide from the MS site if you haven't
    done so, already.
    2. Review each major area of the guide, and number it according to your
    relative confidence in it.
    3. This, combined with some of the practice exams you've given, should
    very clearly tell you which are your weakest areas. You've mentioned
    all of the important topics as weak. That won't do.
    4. It is a misconception that you simply cannot substitute real-world
    experience with knowledge and practice. You'd have to work much harder
    than a person who's done it all, but it's definitely possible.

    Feel free to ask here about any other help you need.
    Cerebrus, Jul 1, 2006
  4. bill yeager

    bill yeager Guest

    Guys, thanks for the response...

    I went over the Prep and am probably the weakest in the e-learning # 2524
    for XML web services. It is $209! Is it really worth it? It says it has
    virtual labs which might help.

    Another thing is that I viewed the MS Press book at Amazon.com and the main
    reason I didn't initially get it was because it has a rating of just 2.5
    stars from readers. Is this book worth it to get.

    I have just another month to prepare for my "second shot" exam. I don't have
    enough time or money to take an instructor-led course and want to know which
    of the two, if any, or both of them for a matter of fact, would be worth it
    for me to try and pass this exam.

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts,

    bill yeager, Jul 2, 2006
  5. bill yeager

    delly_jm Guest


    I say get the MS Press book and go through each of the topics with a fine
    tooth comb. Don't only read the MS Press but read on the topics from
    MSDN/CodeProject/.NET 247. Those are helpful. Take keen details of
    everything. Attention to detail makes the difference.

    delly_jm, Jul 6, 2006
  6. bill yeager

    ekareem Guest

    Hi Bill,
    I have just came across your email, and you have raised a valid issue with
    every person who attempts to get crertified.

    The issue is simply that books are not remotely sufficient for passing the
    exam - In fact even MS Press books themselves are not sufficient.

    There is some magical blend that a person has to acquire to pass.

    This is not OK at all. It is frustrating. Since one spends time and money.

    MS should know that when one spends $60 and 200 hours or so studying a book
    for an exam, that book should have all the information required to answer the

    IT people spend 10s of hours researching things that vendors don't take the
    time to document it in the first place. We pay from our lives, pockets and
    health in doing so.

    A learner should have a the right tools and the exams should focus on
    testing real world skills - Most of those skilss could be put in 1 or 2 books
    for each exam.
    Such a resource could be priced as high as the publisher wants - But it
    should be inclusive.

    I hope you pass you next test.
    ekareem, Aug 8, 2006
  7. bill yeager

    Cerebrus Guest


    I find myself in disagreement with your analysis of the situation and
    the logic you present. My comments are inline :
    The exams are not *intended* to be passable simply by reading or
    learning the concepts given in the books. If you read the exam page for
    any exam on the Learning site, it will suggest a number of resources
    that can help you to prepare for the exams, but none of them is touted
    as the comprehensive source for all topics or questions that you might
    face on the exam.

    In fact, I think the exams should be much tougher than they are at
    present. They should be such that people who have not thoroughly
    explored the subject would find it very difficult to pass. Which
    unfortunately is not the case at present.
    There is no "magical blend", it is just a combination of gaining a good
    conceptual understanding of the listed topics, as well as the
    familiarity that you can only gain through experience / practice of
    those concepts.
    While I agree that most MS Press books are severely lacking in being
    able to prepare you for the exam, I think it is the candidate's fault,
    if he relies solely on one book or one resource. The books published by
    Que score highly over MS Press books in this respect, because they
    stress highly on presenting facts, along with presenting lots of
    Step-by-step applications that you can develop.
    Research is what MS wants you to do, if you want to pass the exam.
    There is nothing stopping you from researching any topics that you find
    on MSDN, or the web for that matter.

    You yourself say that the exam should focus on testing real world
    skills. Well, in my opinion, Real world skills are not gained through
    reading any one book. They are gained through concerted
    practice/experience, application of the concepts, and research.


    Cerebrus, Aug 8, 2006
  8. bill yeager

    ekareem Guest

    You have presented you response elegantly, and I understand your points.

    Certification process is very much influenced by the purpose of the
    certification and the nature of the job.

    With the job market as it is, certifications are not used by employers to
    hire skilled professionals, instead it is used to let developers get entry
    level jobs or merely to get you in the selected few who may get a into an
    interview. This is true in several parts of the world.

    As a result, for the entry level person, there is no way that person would
    gain the skills required in the exam without extensive study - Usually done
    from books unless he or she can spend thousands of dollars on MS classes -
    Again, that is not possible for lots of people. I have never been in any of
    those course because of the cost and I am not sure if the courses would be

    Also, some certifications package topics that you may not encounter in a
    typical development role. For example Remoting.
    You may spend years developing applications without actually coding a single
    remoting program - Yet, unless you know it, you can't pass the 70-310.

    May be there has more than one level - An entry level certification that one
    could use to get hired or to prove to a prospect employer that he/she has
    some knowledge of the subject and the other level that you mentioned which is
    the difficult one that is mostly based on the hands-on experience.

    Wishing you all the best in your learning efforts...
    ekareem, Aug 8, 2006
  9. bill yeager

    bill yeager Guest

    ekareem, I agree with you whole heartedly!

    Two weeks ago, I took the exam for the fifth time and failed it again with a
    score of 675 (700 is passing). I missed it again by about two questions.
    There are so many topics on exam 70-310, that if you don't have some kind of
    experience with them, it's almost impossible to pass (for people who don't
    have a photographic memory, like me).

    I rigorously went over the two books I had purchased for the test in prior
    tries and yet still did not pass. I am just missing it... With some kind of
    experience in some of the subject matter, I know I would have enough to pass.
    I just don't have the knoweledge (which comes from the experience) to pass
    this exam strictly from books.

    I don't know what my next option is (any suggestions would be appreciated),
    but I am moving on to get more acquainted with the 2.0 framework and work on
    projects using that. Maybe one day, I'll have enough experience to pass this
    test. At any rate, I will wait till MS gives another 2 for 1 test scenario


    bill yeager, Aug 12, 2006
  10. bill yeager

    Cerebrus Guest

    I don't entirely agree, Bill. I had no previous experience on the exam
    topics and I *don't* have a photographic memory (actually I can hardly
    remember what happened yesterday !), but I managed to pass the exam.
    The only topic I found very difficult to grasp was Remoting. So the
    exam, per se, isn't that difficult really.

    I think that after five tries, you should really re-evaluate how you're
    going about the preparation. By now, you've probably identified the
    topics that you are missing out on.
    Cerebrus, Aug 13, 2006
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