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  1. Junior Member
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    CISSP, SSCP, CCNA R/S, CCNA Security, MTA-Security, A+, Project+
    #1

    Default November 17 CISA

    I've been following the ISACA forum for a while as I studied for the CISA and haven't seen an experience thread in a while, so here you go.

    I took the exam this morning and received the provisional pass with the final score expected within 10 days. For background, I have about 10 years IT experience, about 7 in various IS functions, the last few in full-time security, and plenty of informal auditing, but not much in the way of a formal audit so this test was a bit of a stretch for me. As far as study material:

    - I bought the AIO a while back and made it through about 3 chapters. Remembered zero. It's about as dry as other technical books, but it did include some good information when I needed to fill in gaps, so I'll keep it as a reference.

    - Cybrary: I am a huge proponent for these guys and the Handerhan CISSP videos were instrumental in passing the CISSP. The CISA videos unfortunately were as dry as the reading material. I listened to a few where I knew I needed reinforcement, but I couldn't stay focused long enough to make it through all of them.

    - The QAE database: Truly the only resource you need if you have the experience. I took quizzes of questions I hadn't seen to make sure I had seen all 999 at least once, then tackled the ones I missed the first time, then adaptive quizzes ad nauseum. In all, I spent about 23 hours taking quizzes and answered nearly 3000 questions. I caught myself remembering answers (knew the answer before I finished reading the question) so for those I would explain to myself why the others were wrong before submitting the answer to make sure I actually understood why the answer I remembered was correct.

    As for the actual exam, it was nothing spectacular. I actually thought the QAE database questions were more convoluted. Most questions were cut and dry, close to what was seen in the QAE, and a handful of "where did this come from?" questions.

    For others considering the CISA or preparing: if you have the experience, hammer the mess out of the QAE, and if you don't, consider extra reading material in addition to the QAE. I didn't use the ISACA review manual so I can't speak to its usefulness but others have said it was helpful.

    Good luck, everyone.
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  3. Junior Member Registered Member
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    Sep 2017
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    #2
    R6Raven,
    Thank you so much for sharing your experience. I feel very encouraged by it! I've been following ISACA forum for a while as well, and like you said, haven't seen much CISA experience thread for a while.

    Your emphasis on using the ISACA QAE Database to learn the concepts was reaffirming to me. I've been using that consistently, and find it quite beneficial. I'm also using David Cannon's CISA Study Guide 4th Edition. I'm going through my 2nd round on the book (only the more technical chapters in the 2nd round). I have finished all questions from the book as well. I find it helpful to learn the concepts. I'm not sure how it compares to AIO or the ISACA Review Manual. But your comments made me feel I can get by without them.

    My background is over 10 years of financial/operational audits (I hold a CPA & CIA). I have also been serving as the System Admin to my company's internal audit repository system for the last 1 & 1/2 years. This role has helped me become more familiar with IT functions & the concept of running a database system. I would like to add CISA to my credentials as I see IT auditing as increasingly relevant. My CISA exam is scheduled for this Dec. I'll report back on how it goes!
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  4. Member
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    #3
    Thanks for the detailed post and sharing your experience.
    Congrats
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  5. Senior Member
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    CISSP, GWAPT, GSEC, C|EH, CCNA:Security, CCNA:R&S, CCENT, Security+, Network+
    #4
    Quote Originally Posted by R6Raven View Post
    1 - I bought the AIO a while back and made it through about 3 chapters. Remembered zero. It's about as dry as other technical books, but it did include some good information when I needed to fill in gaps, so I'll keep it as a reference.

    2 - Cybrary: I am a huge proponent for these guys and the Handerhan CISSP videos were instrumental in passing the CISSP. The CISA videos unfortunately were as dry as the reading material. I listened to a few where I knew I needed reinforcement, but I couldn't stay focused long enough to make it through all of them.

    3 - The QAE database: Truly the only resource you need if you have the experience. I took quizzes of questions I hadn't seen to make sure I had seen all 999 at least once, then tackled the ones I missed the first time, then adaptive quizzes ad nauseum. In all, I spent about 23 hours taking quizzes and answered nearly 3000 questions. I caught myself remembering answers (knew the answer before I finished reading the question) so for those I would explain to myself why the others were wrong before submitting the answer to make sure I actually understood why the answer I remembered was correct.
    1. I think all of the books for CISA are pretty dry. I used the official book and it was quite dry and hard to work through as well. I think the CISA material, similar to CISSP material, is great for going back to as you need to be effective.

    2. Can't agree more about the videos. They were very high level, and more of a summary than in depth training...and were just a repeat of the video lectures. I still used them when I drove to and from work but definitely were not amazing.

    3. I originally got the book version of the questions....DON'T DO IT...get the online version. The answers in the book are directly below the questions so you have to block them out and its annoying. The online engine lets you get random questions, pick missed questions and other options.
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  6. Junior Member
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    #5
    Yeah, I thought about getting the QAE manual just to save some money (I miss the days of cheap certs, but I digress) and decided to go ahead with the online version. There is no substitute for it and I have no regrets. It was worth every single extra penny.
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  7. Junior Member
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    CISSP, SSCP, CCNA R/S, CCNA Security, MTA-Security, A+, Project+
    #6
    Good luck on your exam, cisanut. It really is an audit exam with some IT sprinkled on top. if there were any technical questions, I don't remember them.
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  8. Junior Member Registered Member
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    #7
    Congrat. R6Raven

    I have 1177 QAE but not sure is the last the newest version ? When Can i find the best QAE CISA ?
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