MCSD Insights or What I learned on the way to MCSD.NET Cert land....

Discussion in 'MCSD' started by charlie, Feb 24, 2004.

  1. charlie

    charlie Guest

    Hi Folks,

    I just completed my last MCSD exam - 70-300. (It does not give you a score
    just Pass/Fail)

    I don't intend to give away any secret questions just give my perspective
    some general overall study areas to help you in your quest.

    Here's what I recommend.

    For MCSD study the SQL design stuff before taking the 305, 306 & 310
    (this is the same for the C# track) because they all ask about SQL, data
    and ole db stuff. I consider myself fortunate because I took the MCSE-W2k
    first and already knew the SQL. Know the M$ method of displaying ORM as is
    in VISIO and how to normalize and when to de-normalize for a physical

    The test format of the 70-300 was along the same lines as the MCSE exam
    Designing W2k Directory Services Infrastructure (219) all scenario based, I
    had three different
    ones, but not nearly as difficult. The scenarios were mostly about upgrading
    an existing business
    situation using old technology to newer Web based (i.e. web services from
    terminal, SQL from DB2
    and how to connect the old with the new, etc...)

    The 305, 306 & 310 for the most part stuck to what their names imply however
    SQL & XML
    were spread through out.

    I did a LOT of studying and I also went to a boot camp for each of them. I
    found one
    that let me get them all, MCSE/MCDBA & MCSD, for the price of one. I could
    do this
    because they have a continuing education policy that permits me to take any
    that they offer for just the cost of room, board and transportation for up
    to a year.
    If you did the up front work it was a great learning experience.

    I also made some really great contacts because all of my classmates had
    been working
    in this field for at least ten years. Oh, yeah, by the way, they pre-screen
    you so
    that you know what you are doing BEFORE you get there and won't hold up
    everybody else.

    I mention the boot camp because both C# & VB.NET tracks were taught at the
    same time in
    the same classroom and since I already knew C++ and VB.NET, I couldn't see
    much difference
    other than syntax. I know that's what Microsoft has been saying all along! -
    I didn't
    believe them, now I do. Sooooo, if you know C++ go w/ C#. VB.NET is a lot
    from Visual Basic so be prepared by studying VB.NET before hand.

    Know web apps, web services and forms security. Really know what's in the
    app.exe.config file

    I hope that this helps and I wish you well on you future exams.


    charlie, Feb 24, 2004
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  2. charlie

    Bill Hileman Guest

    I respect the fact that you do not appear to be spamming, as you have not
    mentioned the boot camp's name. However, this policy does appear attractive
    to me, along with the pre-screen part (also snipped). I find that hard to
    believe - that a bootcamp would actually turn away business, but if it's
    true, it's a good idea.

    If you don't mind my asking (and you can reply privately if you wish), how
    much was it for the three certs, and which training company was it?

    How much was it for the cost of travel, accomodations, etc., for the extra
    certs you got?

    Congrats, by the way.
    Bill Hileman, Feb 24, 2004
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  3. charlie

    charlie Guest

    Hi Bill,

    I'm not spamming, I just finished the course this weekend and passed the
    last test 70-300.
    And so I am VERY HAPPY!!!!
    For the first course they cover all costs (airfare, food, motel)

    I liked the idea of having to be prepared before you go. That helped
    convince me that I would actually learn
    something rather than just test answers. I make a living doing this stuff
    and a cert without substance is
    worthless but eight months of study and no cert is just a bad.

    They will refuse those that are not ready because it screws up the training
    for the others and it is fast moving...

    charlie, Feb 24, 2004
  4. charlie

    Eric Guest

    I also like the idea of prescreening! That school might just be OK. You
    can't expect to take somebody with no background all the way through
    certification in a couple weeks unless you do some kind of prescreening.

    It's probably a good idea to tell people the name of the place. I'm
    assuming you won't get kick-backs for recommending them.
    Eric, Feb 25, 2004
  5. charlie

    charlie Guest

    Hi Eric,

    I got into the classes because I already had my MCSE+I for NT4.0
    and had been pushing code for may moons...

    I was concerned about getting wacked for mentioning the school
    because people would assume that I was in "cahoots" with them.

    I am not.

    I just finished my MCSD this past weekend and was
    very happy to get the cert and also very pleased
    with the school

    I called lots of places and none of them did like this one.

    I'll take a chance and give its name here. I am sorry if
    anyone takes it as spamming, but if I can help you I
    am happy. Besides if I am lying or putting you on
    one phone call will easily expose that.

    This shows the courses

    I wish all of you well.

    charlie, Feb 25, 2004
  6. charlie

    Bill Hileman Guest

    I can personally vouch for charlie... he did privately e-mail me with the
    name of the school. I know where you're coming from and appreciate your
    caution. Many people are dead-set against bootcamps, but I'm not one of
    them. I am against bootcamps whose sole purpose is to get someone
    certified, no matter their previous experience or aptitude, but this
    particular trainer does not appear to be of that type. In just my own
    humble opinion, bootcamps do have their place, just not the ones out for a
    quick buck on someone else's misguided dream(s).

    Bill Hileman, MCP, CPD, BCIP
    Programmer/Analyst, DASI

    PROGRAM n. A magic spell cast over a computer allowing it to turn one's
    input into error messages. tr.v. To engage in a pastime similar to banging
    one's head against a wall, but with fewer opportunities for reward.

    Yahoo! Group for Certaholics
    Bill Hileman, Feb 25, 2004
  7. charlie

    Jason Newell Guest

    Well, since he mentioned the name of the school, I'll stand up and say that
    I've been to an IT-Centers boot camp and he is exactly right. My opinion is
    they are the best in the bootcamp biz. I was blown away at their
    professionalism. All they ask is that you trust them and everything will
    work out. It's a tough boot camp, but well work the money.

    My .02.

    Jason Newell (Not associated with IT-Centers)
    Jason Newell, Feb 26, 2004
  8. Many people are dead-set against bootcamps, but I'm not one of
    The problem I see is that certification's can be bought, without, as
    you say, 'previous experience or aptitude'. And from what we see day
    in day out, there are plenty of companies prepared to just that.

    Until the format of the exams change to include at least some kind of
    practical element, those companies will continue to rack in the
    dollars and the worth of the cert's will continue to decline

    Kline Sphere (Chalk) MCNGP #3
    The Poster Formerly Known as Kline Sphere, Feb 26, 2004
  9. charlie

    JaR Guest

    The Poster Formerly Known as Kline Sphere opined, On 2/26/04 12:47 PM:
    Being as how HR droids are now 'requiring' them for Hell-desk jobs.

    The only way the value of the certs could crawl any lower will be when
    it is 'required' to collect unemployment.

    Thug # $.02
    JaR, Feb 26, 2004
  10. Being as how HR droids are now 'requiring' them for Hell-desk jobs.
    Good point.... Watch out cobol & wong, no welfare for you soon.

    Kline Sphere (Chalk) MCNGP #3
    The Poster Formerly Known as Kline Sphere, Feb 26, 2004
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