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Microsofts Unrealistic Impossible Certification Exams. RRS feed

  • Question

  • After taking the 70 680 exam twice and failing it twice Iam almost convinced Microsoft dosen't want certified professionals.Studying every day for over 2 months after finishing a 1 year college program and studying from Microsofts own training kit book (Configuring Windows 7) with at least 358 scenario questions as well as using other software.Who ever has designed the 70 680 exam has gone overboard to the point of insanity and Iam now concidering not bothering with any more exams as it looks like it will be a waste of time and money.To whoever designs those exams I think they should be told they are being unrealistic and driving people like the many I have met out of the NAD trade as they had given up and now I can see why.At least the College was realistic as was trade training I had with the Military for decades.
    Saturday, November 24, 2012 3:12 AM

Answers

  • Hi bigj9659,

    I'm sorry to hear of your 70-680 failure. However, please don't take it as a personal failing because this exam is challenging for anyone without the requisite Windows 7 experience.  Once again, I must agree with Mr. Wharty. Having experience in the appropriate environment with the Microsoft technologies being tested on the exam is now, more than ever, a critical factor in guaranteeing one's success with the new Microsoft exams.

    The days when you could sit down and read a book, then go take a Microsoft exam and pass it are over. I remember when I did my Windows NT4 certifications in 2001, all the answers came from the books I read. The exams were easy, and all you needed to pass was a good memory. That soon started to change with the Windows 2000 certifications, until now with the Server 2008 R2 and Windows 7 certifications, it is virtually impossible to pass any Microsoft exam purely by reading a book.

    The current Microsoft exams are meant to be a validation of both experience and training, with experience being a significant factor. Therefore, you will now find questions on Microsoft exams, the answers for which you will not find in any book because they are based in large part on experience.

    The "catch 22" situation that Mr. Wharty highlighted is indeed very real for prospective entrants to the IT field, and it presents a significant challenge for folks such as yourself. For example, you need experience to attain the certifications and get a job, but you need the certifications to get the job in the first place, so it's a classic "chicken and egg" scenario.

    Therefore, my main suggestion would be the same as Mr. Wharty's, but if you can't get a job, then try to get an apprenticeship (even unpaid) with some company in the field, where you could attain the experience necessary to help you pass these Microsoft exams. Although even an unpaid apprenticeship might be hard to come by, it's worth a try because I've known several folks who went to work on apprenticeship and did such a good job that they ended up with permanent positions in the same company.

    Anyhow, I wish you every success in attaining your certifications.

    James

    Sunday, November 25, 2012 3:53 PM

All replies

  • After taking the 70 680 exam twice and failing it twice Iam almost convinced Microsoft dosen't want certified professionals.Studying every day for over 2 months after finishing a 1 year college program and studying from Microsofts own training kit book (Configuring Windows 7) with at least 358 scenario questions as well as using other software.Who ever has designed the 70 680 exam has gone overboard to the point of insanity and Iam now concidering not bothering with any more exams as it looks like it will be a waste of time and money.To whoever designs those exams I think they should be told they are being unrealistic and driving people like the many I have met out of the NAD trade as they had given up and now I can see why.At least the College was realistic as was trade training I had with the Military for decades.

    I am sorry to hear that you failed this exam however as per the following link http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exam.aspx?id=70-680:

    Candidates for this exam operate in computing environments that use Microsoft Windows 7 as a desktop operating system in an enterprise environment. Candidates should have at least one year of experience in the IT field, as well as experience implementing and administering any Windows client operating system in a networked environment.

    Based on your original post, it appears that you do not have the practical experience required to pass this exam (by practical I mean working with the technology on a daily basis in an enterprise environment, not studying, doing labs and/or test questions).

    Unfortunately it's a catch 22 situation; you need experience to pass the exam however to get experience most employers want you to already have the skills covered in the exam.  All I can suggest is that you continue on with your studies and try and find a junior position somewhere where you can get hands-on experience with the required technologies.  You could even look into setting up a small network at home (a domain, not a workgroup) to assist with your studies.  I would also recommend that you have at least 1 yrs experience before you attempt the exam again.


    When you see answers and helpful posts, please click Vote As Helpful, Propose As Answer, and/or Mark As Answer

    Jeff Wharton
    MSysDev (C.Sturt), MDbDsgnMgt (C.Sturt), MCT, MCPD, MCSD, MCITP, MCDBA
    Blog: Mr. Wharty's Ramblings
    Twitter: @Mr_Wharty
    MC ID: Microsoft Transcript


    Saturday, November 24, 2012 3:29 AM
    Moderator
  • Hi bigj9659,

    I'm sorry to hear of your 70-680 failure. However, please don't take it as a personal failing because this exam is challenging for anyone without the requisite Windows 7 experience.  Once again, I must agree with Mr. Wharty. Having experience in the appropriate environment with the Microsoft technologies being tested on the exam is now, more than ever, a critical factor in guaranteeing one's success with the new Microsoft exams.

    The days when you could sit down and read a book, then go take a Microsoft exam and pass it are over. I remember when I did my Windows NT4 certifications in 2001, all the answers came from the books I read. The exams were easy, and all you needed to pass was a good memory. That soon started to change with the Windows 2000 certifications, until now with the Server 2008 R2 and Windows 7 certifications, it is virtually impossible to pass any Microsoft exam purely by reading a book.

    The current Microsoft exams are meant to be a validation of both experience and training, with experience being a significant factor. Therefore, you will now find questions on Microsoft exams, the answers for which you will not find in any book because they are based in large part on experience.

    The "catch 22" situation that Mr. Wharty highlighted is indeed very real for prospective entrants to the IT field, and it presents a significant challenge for folks such as yourself. For example, you need experience to attain the certifications and get a job, but you need the certifications to get the job in the first place, so it's a classic "chicken and egg" scenario.

    Therefore, my main suggestion would be the same as Mr. Wharty's, but if you can't get a job, then try to get an apprenticeship (even unpaid) with some company in the field, where you could attain the experience necessary to help you pass these Microsoft exams. Although even an unpaid apprenticeship might be hard to come by, it's worth a try because I've known several folks who went to work on apprenticeship and did such a good job that they ended up with permanent positions in the same company.

    Anyhow, I wish you every success in attaining your certifications.

    James

    Sunday, November 25, 2012 3:53 PM