Editor’s Note: SPOTO trainer Garth Schulte, our longest-tenured trainer, recently received his SQL Server 2012 MCSA certification. Congrats Garth! We asked him to share his experiences, as well as exam-preparation/taking tips.
Garth in the MCSA recommended garb with his exam results.
Nuggets fans,
Recently, I ventured back into exam cramming to attempt the SQL Server 2012 MCSA certification.
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My first thought as I began the adventure was “this is going !!!” fun.” As the exams approached, that thought lost an exclamation mark.
Are I competent enough? Are I prepared enough? What if I fail to prepare? !
It was a stark reminder about how stressful exam time can become. In order to help you prepare for your next exam, I have some tips that I have learned from it.
Study Tips
Tip No. 1. Study in bite-sized sessions. Here’s the Nugget formula: 30-45 minutes, 2-3x per day is the ideal time to retain information. It was my routine for every exam. It was breakfast, lunch, and dinner that turned into read, observe, and do. Another study tip…
Tip No. Mix it up! To keep your brain and muscle healthy, you can pause while you watch Nuggets. This can help you keep your focus in control.
Environment Tips
Environment Tip No. Environment Tip No. 1: Don’t worry… Replace stressful thoughts with peaceful ones. It’s easier said than done, but a clear head makes better decisions than one that is cluttered. Have a laugh with the front-desk staff or, if someone is waiting to take an exam for you, have a conversation to lighten up the mood.
Environment Tip No. 2: Wear something you are comfortable in. You can leave the business attire at home or in the car. Relaxing can also help to ease your mind and body. Angry Bird PJs & Nugget shirt Check!
Exam Tips
Exam Tip No. 1. Read the question twice and answer it three times. It’s obvious, but it’s possible to find a hint in the question or a small detail in the question.
Exam Tip No. 2: The process of elimination is your best friend! There is no better way to sharpen your focus and increase your chances of passing multiple-choice exams than to eliminate the incorrect answers. This works great for interactive questions, where you have to drag and drop events or statements in a specific sequence.
Exam Tip No. 3: Mark questionable questions. Do not spend too much time pondering over one question. Mark any questions that you are unsure of and return to it during the review phase. There’s a good chance that a future question will give a clue or spark something in your memory that will give that “ah-ha!” moment. moment.
Exam Tip No. Exam Tip No. 4: Stay calm and confident, and when in doubt, go with your gut! It’s always a good idea to have a “last-resort” strategy for questions that don’t make sense. These questions shouldn’t be a deterrent. Instead, give it your best shot and let your instincts guide you. Then, keep moving.
These tips will help you succeed in your certification journeys.
I hope you found this informative and I thank you for reading.
– Garth Schulte (Nugget Trainer & SQL Server 2012 MCSA)
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