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  1. Virtually Certifiable tbgree00's Avatar
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    #1

    Default Can't get motivated to study

    After passing the 294 I came back and immediately scheduled the 298 for 10/18. It's a little soon but I didn't want to spend another 70+ dollars on a hotel and a long drive to take a test on a Saturday. My local center fills up since it's the only one in this part of the state and only have one seat.

    Anyway I scheduled my test and started watching the CBT Nuggets. I realized that I have already taken notes and learned almost all of this information before. It's pretty exciting to start something and realize I have a good base to build on. The problem is that I haven't been watching at a good pace and stopped reading early on. The material is dry and the books aren't great.

    I am a little worried about the test format throwing me off. I tried a demo of the measure up test and found the questions pretty simple but the format was confusing. Is it okay for me to ask about sims? Are there any in here? Generally the sims save me.

    It's strange, I've fought for my MCSE for months and now I feel like I'm giving up at the end. I just find it hard to care about this one. It's even worse because I have changed the final goal to the :S so even when I get it I won't celebrate because I have two more tests to go.

    I don't really know what I'm asking, more just venting frustration. How does anyone else keep going at this point?
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  3. Senior Member za3bour's Avatar
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    #2
    I feel you, I too have to go a long distance in order to take an exam but it's really sweet when you pass. I've been studying since March finished 4 exams till now not all material was really good and I only enjoyed studying Win 7 exam.

    My last exam(today) 70-646 was really tough and took me around 2 months in order to finish it I'm glad I did my motivation is always my family I wanna make more money for them and Certs is essential to get better position.

    I havent take a vacation this summer ( I do every year) because I can't afford it with all books, exams, transportation ..etc but I'm not sad since I have a goal.

    You have finished a lot and only few is left, try to read something fun before opening the boring book or even try changing were you study I like going to cafe's from time to time in order to study.

    Good luck for you
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  4. Virtually Certifiable tbgree00's Avatar
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    #3
    It's funny that you suggested reading something fun. I took two days off from studying to read the newest Dexter book. Now that I finished that I have started doing nuggets again so hopefully it worked to give me enough of a push to take this seriously.

    Congratulations on the pass btw. It looks like you will be working toward your EA soon. Just to be nosy, why didn't you go after the MCSE before the MCITP:SA and EA? It's always interesting to hear people's reasons for such a decision.
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  5. Senior Member za3bour's Avatar
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    #4
    Quote Originally Posted by tbgree00 View Post
    It's funny that you suggested reading something fun. I took two days off from studying to read the newest Dexter book. Now that I finished that I have started doing nuggets again so hopefully it worked to give me enough of a push to take this seriously.

    Congratulations on the pass btw. It looks like you will be working toward your EA soon. Just to be nosy, why didn't you go after the MCSE before the MCITP:SA and EA? It's always interesting to hear people's reasons for such a decision.

    That's good to hear, I hope that it will really work for you.

    Thanks Yea hopefully I will do 643 in october and 647 will be the last to finish I don't know when yet.

    Well there are many reasons for this, I started in 2000 by doing one exam then I did another exam in 2003 so completing my MCSE was like doing a new MCITP that's one

    Second here in Syria MCSE is becoming something old even though it's still valid and most servers are 2003 and won't be upgrading soon but doing a new cert (at least here) means that you are up to date with technology and it's better to mention something new on resume.

    That's being said most of my experience is in 2003 so I kinda have both certs for 2008 and experience for 2003 so hopefully this will find me a better job/position.

    I will start looking for a job next month, hopefully get a new one by start of the year.


    Good luck for you,
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  6. Senior Member Devilsbane's Avatar
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    #5
    I just got back on the bandwagon after about a month of failed study attempts.

    I don't know about you, but my study patterns are always strong the first week or two, slow down in the middle, and then the last week to 2 weeks I go into panic mode and can bust through 50-60 pages a day or 5-6 cbt videos (and if it is a Saturday where I have nothing else to do, maybe even both). If you have that same kind of kick at the end, maybe you are doing alright.

    I think Transcender is a must for this test. There is nothing worse than walking into an exam nervous and uncomfortable.
    Last edited by Devilsbane; 09-29-2010 at 03:01 PM.
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  7. Virtually Certifiable tbgree00's Avatar
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    #6
    I have a very similar study pattern. I get hot about it, get bored or annoyed or work interferes, then I get super stressed out and knock out some good studying. My wife commented on hating when I have a test coming up because it's so stressful.

    I actually bought the measureup online test for this one. I've done that for all the other MSCE track tests and they're 50% off until Friday so I figured I may as well get accustomed to the format. Even if they're not 100% they are close enough.
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  8. Senior Member Devilsbane's Avatar
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    #7
    It is good to be back into it. The reading is still going pretty slow (but it is going) and I have watched 12 CBT's in 4 days.
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  9. Senior Member powerfool's Avatar
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    #8
    I tell you what... I have hit a rut as well. I was at a fast pace of an exam every 10 days... and that worked great for the four exams I needed to update to 2003, but I just cannot get my head into studying for 298/299. I know that most of it is review of other material... and I am already a CISSP, so I get all of the concepts.

    For the other exams, I just scheduled them and forced myself into studying for them that way... but it just isn't working out now. Heck, I have the free second shot now, and I still cannot get myself to just take the thing.

    Now I am doing a grad school class, too... and I am supposed to be doing CCNA Security starting next week. Maybe I should just cram and take the tests... if I can get myself to do it... I have taken a month off of studying... ugh.
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  10. The Colosus of Clout Paul Boz's Avatar
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    #9
    Dude me neither. It sucks because I've got a lot of objectives I'd like to complete. I'm working 10-12 hour days right now so its hard to get an edge into studying.
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  11. Senior Member Devilsbane's Avatar
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    #10
    Is 10 days really enough? Even studying 5 hour days doesn't seem like any of that information is going to stick. I was on the 4-5 week plan for quite some time, and I would study anywhere from 30 mins to 5 hours a day (usually in the 1-2 hour area) and I still thought that was pretty quick.
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  12. Senior Member powerfool's Avatar
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    #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Devilsbane View Post
    Is 10 days really enough? Even studying 5 hour days doesn't seem like any of that information is going to stick. I was on the 4-5 week plan for quite some time, and I would study anywhere from 30 mins to 5 hours a day (usually in the 1-2 hour area) and I still thought that was pretty quick.
    I just usually read about 15-30 minutes a day, and then cram a couple of hours the night before. Granted, I had about seven years experience with Windows Server 2003 at the time, and I was already an MCSE, so I was familiar with Microsoft exams. 10 days would not work otherwise.
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  13. Virtually Certifiable tbgree00's Avatar
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    #12
    My day is coming up soon. I've been taking some measureup practice tests and I'm getting frustrated. It seems like at least 3 of their case studies involve making a Netware network play nice with a Windows Server 2003 network. I keep failing these tests because there are tons of details and questions about it. I assume that I won't need to know beyond the basics on it. I think my Server+ studying may actually come in handy if I get any questions on that.

    I'm trying to suck it up and get this taken care of. I feel like I'm pretty strong on the topics that appear on the test description. I think the practice test case studies are freaking me out more than making me comfortable though. They have probably 10 - 12 tabs worth of information and seem to talk in circles about what I'm supposed to know. I hope the live test is easier to deal with or I may run out of time!
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  14. Virtually Certifiable tbgree00's Avatar
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    #13
    I think the title of the post says it all. I bombed today, 503 was my final score and I was lucky to get that. I have nothing to blame other than myself. I heard everyone's advice and tried to use it. I think the time restraints were unreasonable. I'm not sure if saying the time per question is breaking the NDA so I won't but it was really bad for me. I know that a lot of people have taken it and passed so I know it is possible.

    I totally failed the first section about Creating Conceptial Design. The questions can go so many ways I think.

    The problem is every weekend between now and the new year is booked with family stuff. I planned to pass and be done with tests so now I can't really give myself time to restudy. With such a low score I feel I need to rewatch all of the nuggets to see where I went wrong. I actually don't feel that they covered the complexity of the questions at all.
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  15. Senior Member Devilsbane's Avatar
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    #14
    Thats too bad to hear. It has me nervous for when my time comes.

    Quote Originally Posted by tbgree00 View Post
    With such a low score I feel I need to rewatch all of the nuggets to see where I went wrong. I actually don't feel that they covered the complexity of the questions at all.
    My biggest complaint with nuggets (other than the DRM and other usability things) is that I don't feel like they prepare you to take the test. They prepare you to know the material and to work in the real world. But very few times are there references to things you should expect to see on the exam or anything like that. I don't want it to be a dump type thing where they tell you everything, but I think it is reasonable that they at least acknowledge that you are going to take the test and give you a few pointers here and there about it.

    I think every book that I've ever read starts out with an introduction of what the test is and what to expect when you walk in. Then as your reading, they will also include notes about what you are going to see on the test. They also will often quote the objectives as you cover the topics.

    So rewatching the nuggets will certainly help, I would also look into some book that is going to cover the test better, since the nuggets do a fine job of material coverage.
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  16. Senior Member za3bour's Avatar
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    #15
    I'm sorry for your fail, I don't actually see it a low score you got 50% while it's 70% (almost) so with a little push you may have passed.

    Now at least you know the areas that you're weak in, try to find time to finish this before EOY and with a little adjusting I'm sure you can pass this.

    I've never used videos, I always lab every thing myself I'm not familiar though with this exam but all I can say is don't give up this quick.
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  17. Virtually Certifiable tbgree00's Avatar
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    #16
    In reference to giving up I'm speaking in black and white terms when the reality isn't nearly that dramatic =p It was a tough test, I'm not really sure labbing would do it. Even the MSPress book's questions aren't that great. They will give a case, ask an either/or question and then the answer is "Both, you just have to explain why". In a multiple choice format that isn't helpful.

    The nuggets are great, I can explain a lot of complex concepts because of them. This test requires a ton of application of multiple topics in ways that the nuggets don't cover. There is also the "Throw in topics not in the test outline" problem I've had with MS tests since I started taking them. I assume those are unscored questions but there were 3 on the same protocol so who knows.

    The earliest date to schedule the test in my city is the 15th of November. I can do this or drive to Cincinnati and take a test on a weekend. I have to wait 72 hours before I can request my second shot voucher so I will make a decision then.
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  18. Senior Member powerfool's Avatar
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    #17
    Well, now you have seen the content of the exam. Don't go brain dumping, but you know what materials the exam covers to a great degree... time for some "scalpel" studying. Get in there and focus on what you need. Try to remember the questions you had a hard time with and look for material that will clarify. There is a decent chance that you will get some of the same questions, anyhow.

    Best wishes.
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  19. Member brewd's Avatar
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    #18
    I hear ya on the lack of motivation for studying. I've taken about 13 tests so far this year and the last one I'm planning on completing is the CCNA. Looking to take it this Saturday most likely. I jumped into the CCENT with both feet and labbed like crazy. I just haven't had the energy to bother labbing VLANs, ACLs, EIGRP or OSPF. I sit here looking at my lab systems and just don't feel it...

    Anyways, thought I would suggest you take a look at the Sybex 70-298 book. I used the MSPress books all the way through the MCSE track except for 70-298 due to it's poor rating on Amazon. The Sybex book was great in preparing me for the radical change in format from the other MCSE tests.

    I completely agree with you about the pressing time issue on the exam. One thing I've seen people suggesting here on TE for the exam is not to read everything, start instead with the questions and find the relevant information in the description to save yourself some time. This would probably be some good advice for you as you now know what to expect.

    Best of luck on your next crack at 70-298!
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  20. Virtually Certifiable tbgree00's Avatar
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    #19
    Funny enough I already ordered that sybex book yesterday. I got it from a used seller with expedited shipping. I am going totally study free for a week until my in-laws leave. It's refreshing. I already wrote down the topics that tripped me up.

    I'm probably going to reschedule for the 17th of November. I will take that time to read through that book, focusing on the first section. I got almost all white on my score report for that one. I had a real "make it or break it" moment yesterday and I think I'm going to come out stronger in the long run.
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