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MS exam format for a newbie

Discussion in 'General Microsoft Certifications' started by thetokyoproject, Mar 13, 2007.

  1. thetokyoproject

    thetokyoproject Byte Poster

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    prob gonna do my first ms exam next month.

    it'll prob be the 1st of the mcdst exams.

    could someone confirm the following pls:

    -exams are either standard or adaptive
    -exam centre will supply paper and pencil
    -number of questions and pass mark are variable
    -should receive on average about 5 mins per question
    -you can go back on the multi choice questions to amend or do any that were missed.
    -there is a countdown clock which lets you know how much time and how many questions are left?

    many thanks in advance guys/gals.
     
    Certifications: 271
  2. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    1. Yup, but these days MS exams tend to be standard, that is when you sit down to take it you get told how many questions you are going to get.

    2. Yup, although most places these days give you a white board and a dry wipe marker.

    3, Yup, depending on the exam you could get any number of questions. you won't know how many until you are sat infront of the computer ready to take the exam. MS exams these days have the passing score set at 700 points. What the points are out of is pure speculation.

    4, It depends on the exam, what the subject is, how long the question is, how fast you read. The important thing is that you know how long you have for the test and how many questions you will have on the test.

    5, Yes. You can also Mark questions that you are unsure of for easy reviewing when you have reached the end of the exam before you submit it for scoring.

    6, Yup. What more can I say! :biggrin

    Good Luck!
     
  3. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    Yep what Si said.

    Good luck on your exam, let us know how you get on :)

    -Ken
     
    Certifications: CITP, PGCert, BSc, HNC, LCGI, PTLLS, MCT, MCITP, MCTS, MCSE, MCSA:M, MCSA, MCDST, MCP, MTA, MCAS, MOS (Master), A+, N+, S+, ACA, VCA, etc... & 2nd Degree Black Belt
    WIP: PGDip
  4. webslinger2k

    webslinger2k Byte Poster

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    Hi thetokyoproject

    I sat the first of the MCDST exams recently and confirm simon is spot on with his answers.

    I found that with most people I have spoken to, they tended to have between 45 mins to an hour left at the end, to which they could review any questions they marked. i.e. Plenty of time...

    I had just over two hours and if I remember correctly 60 questions, obviously this will and can be different on any given day.

    The best advise I could give before going into this test is take a drink because as it too was my first MS exam, I noticed my throat dried right up where I was being overly concerned with what turned out to be a walk in the park - obviously it helps the more prepared you are for the material you are going to be faced with...

    Good luck mate - dont forget to let us know how u get on like the others have said
     
    Certifications: 270, 271, 272
    WIP: 70-290
  5. Stig

    Stig Bit Poster

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    The testing room where I work has a coffee machine in it!

    I hope the OP has seen some good exam simulation software. I recommend Self Test Software. PM me if you want it at reduced cost.
     
    Certifications: ACA MCP MCSA MCSE MCTS MCITP MCAS MCT
    WIP: MCAP
  6. thetokyoproject

    thetokyoproject Byte Poster

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    cheers guys,

    the thing i love about this forum is that everyone is genuienely helpful where as i've seen so many condescending b'stards on other boards who are just there to annoy (rant over ;-p)

    anyway, so 700 marks is the typical ball park figure for a pass depending on the subject - i take it that this does not equate to 70%.

    the other thing is as someone mentioned, are you not allowed to take in a bottle of water even if the label has been taken off?

    i take it also that toilet breaks are forbidden. in which case i should make sure i don;t drink too much beforehand.

    it looks as if it'll be the 271 towards the end of next month.

    cheers again.
     
    Certifications: 271
  7. simongrahamuk
    Honorary Member

    simongrahamuk Hmmmmmmm?

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    You can usually take a toilet break (at least where I test you can), but the clock doesn't stop. 8)
     
  8. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    700 doesn't necessarily equal 70%. Microsoft hasn't stated:
    1) whether they give partial credit
    2) whether they use a sliding points scale based on difficulty of question (harder questions worth more points)
    3) whether the score range is 0-1000

    From what I've seen, testing center policies vary per location. One used to let me take Cokes in, another would not. Some exams are several hours long (once took a 4-hour long exam), so testing centers have allowed pee breaks in the past. Again, this will vary per location.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
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  9. onoski

    onoski Terabyte Poster

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    Just get the MS press book and the questions on the labs should be similar to the exam format as well as that of Transcenders.:)
     
    Certifications: MCSE: 2003, MCSA: 2003 Messaging, MCP, HNC BIT, ITIL Fdn V3, SDI Fdn, VCP 4 & VCP 5
    WIP: MCTS:70-236, PowerShell
  10. thetokyoproject

    thetokyoproject Byte Poster

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    if you finish the exam early - can you just click end exam and get your result and leave or do you have to stay to the end of the total time allocation?

    also, is there a practice section of the exam before the actual one starts or do you just get thrown into it?

    oh and are a standard uk passport and standard uk photo driving licence enough for ID before the exam?

    cheers.
     
    Certifications: 271
  11. Raffaz

    Raffaz Kebab Lover Gold Member

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    Yes, no, yes:)
     
    Certifications: A+, MCP, MCDST, AutoCAD
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  12. Tinus1959

    Tinus1959 Gigabyte Poster

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    During the 2000 4 hour design exams you could have a toiletbreak and the clock could be stopped.
     
    Certifications: See my signature
    WIP: MCSD, MCAD, CCNA, CCNP
  13. thetokyoproject

    thetokyoproject Byte Poster

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    does anyone know if all mcp exams are 700 out of 1000 to pass?

    also, will there typically be on average 60 questions over about 2 hrs since any much longer and my brain seems to burn out ;-(

    interested in the average length/no of questions and passmarks for the 272, 270 and 290.

    cheers.
     
    Certifications: 271
  14. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    There is no definitive answer to your questions - Microsoft exams questions are randomly drawn from a large pool of questions and the amount of questions can vary from exam to exam. For example, I took the 70-216 twice, having failed it the first time. The first time it was 60 questions and the second time it was 45 questions.

    I believe scoring 700 will get you a pass but whether or not the maximum points are 1000 is still open to debate.
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  15. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    All Microsoft exams require 700 to pass (by the way, not all Microsoft exams are considered "MCP exams"). It is not known whether all Microsoft exams have a maximum score of 1000 (however, I have seen three scoresheets, all developer exams, with a score of 1000).

    All that said, don't rely on 700 to equal 70%. This is true for several reasons:
    1) You might or might not get partial credit on some interactive items. Microsoft doesn't disclose whether they provide partial credit.
    2) Some questions might be worth more points than others. Microsoft doesn't disclose how they score their questions.
    3) Some questions might be unscored. This is particularly true when they are introducing new questions into an existing exam - they will put the "beta" questions into the question pool, and you will be asked those questions, but they will not count for or against your score.
    4) Microsoft no longer states that the score range is from 0-1000 on their exams.
    5) A score of 700 may simply mean different things from one exam to another. The reason I say that is this: back in the "old days", each Microsoft exam had a different passing score, and it was on a scale from 0-1000. For example, the SQL 2000 Admin and SQL 2000 Design exams had different passing scores. A few years back (4 or 5 years ago, I'm guessing?), MS standardized everything to a 700 passing score, including their past exams... including those two SQL exams. Did they change how they score those exams? Or did they make those exams harder to pass by "raising" the passing score? Nobody knows... and Microsoft isn't telling.

    The number of questions and amount of time given is different for each Microsoft exam. Design exams will have more to read (case studies), but you might get fewer questions. Exams that don't have long scenarios will typically give you more questions. Upgrade exams are often longer; the 70-240 Windows 2000 upgrade exam, many years ago, consisted of approximately 100 longish scenario questions, four hour time limit, and you had to pass each of 4 sections in order to pass.

    Bottom line is this: Don't stress about how much time you have, what the passing score is, how they score, or even what color the test screen's gonna be. In the grand scheme of things, it doesn't matter. Learn the material and truly *understand* the concepts, and you'll be able to handle whatever questions they throw at you... period. It's truly that simple. :)
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  16. thetokyoproject

    thetokyoproject Byte Poster

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    thanks for the details mike. great to have an exam writer on the boards.

    by the way, does anyone know if there's a microsoft logon page that gives you a online record of all your passes and ms qualifications?

    cheers.
     
    Certifications: 271

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