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2012-12-14

Microsoft Exam 70-483: Programming in C#

Filed under: Programmeerimine — Sander @ 10:44:40
Tags: , , ,

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Yesterday I passed MS exam 70-483: Programming in C#. It was not an exam I really needed for MS Visual Studio 2012 certifications, as I already have MCPD (VS 2010 certifications) for both Windows and Web – so I could have done just the two exams required for an upgrade. However, I wanted to ensure I am properly up to date with .NET 4.5.

As of now, there really aren’t any “official” study materials. Microsoft’s Exam Ref 70-483: Programming in C# will come out in April 2013, Wrox’s MCSD Certification Toolkit (Exam 70-483): Programming in C# won’t be out until May 2013. Andreas Hammar has collected study links for the exam in his blog.

I read Pro C# 5.0 and the .NET 4.5 Framework, skipping quite a few sections as it is a very basic introduction (and the attempted humor in the book is just bad). Jeffrey Richter’s excellent CLR via C#, 4th Edition was both more interesting and in-depth – I read only Part II: Designing Types and  Part III: Essential Types for the exam, rest will be my Christmas reading (hey, to each his own!).

The exam itself was easy – probably easiest out of all eight Microsoft exams I’ve done so far. That wasn’t really surprising, as I am working daily with those areas covered in the exam. Maybe I should have paid more attention to performance counters, but despite Microsoft pushing those heavily, next to no one uses performance counters, opting for various other profilers instead.

However, what was surprising was how bad the exam questions were. Yes, that is a new, fresh exam – but that is not an excuse for sloppiness. Obviously I cannot go into details of the questions, but several of the questions were ambiguous – i.e. they did not cover all the requirements. Formatting of the code sometimes skipped spaces, i.e. instead of int i there was inti and so forth.

At least one question promoted just horrible way of coding. Yes, the problems are artificially constructed, but whoever prepared the exam should realize a lot of newbie programmers will see the code and think this is the way that particular casting operation should be done – and they will use it in their production code, causing bad performance and hard-to-find bugs.

And even worse, one question about nullable types and LINQ did not have a simplest and most logical answer. Again, this is something I have been working with daily for years, often implementing complex business logic.

I left quite a few comments to the exam review, but unfortunately, I really doubt anyone will actually read those and fix the issues. Which is a shame, as exams (same as study books) should always promote best practices and clean code.

6 kommentaari »

  1. I’m new to programming, well C# anyway, and taken exam twice, 49% both times. I was surprised on the questions referring to material that was not in the 70-483 book. I think I had a question about nullable types too and just had a good guess. Questions covered by material in book were simple.

    kommentaar kirjutas scott — 2013-02-20 @ 15:06:04 | Vasta

    • That is pretty much standard for all certification exams – you cannot get all the answers from the book. It is really annoying, but the intent is to make sure you’ve actually used that particular area.

      kommentaar kirjutas Sander — 2013-03-04 @ 11:17:16 | Vasta

  2. Congrats that you have successfully achieved the certification. I have few clarifications about the exam. Could you please let me know, how many number of questions were there totally? and also how long the duration of the exam was?

    kommentaar kirjutas karthi — 2013-12-27 @ 20:19:00 | Vasta

    • I think there were 40 questions, but I could be wrong – and 2.5h for the exam.

      kommentaar kirjutas Sander — 2013-12-28 @ 20:10:31 | Vasta

  3. Wow, only 40 questions, and 2,5 hours to complete? I took the exam a few weeks ago, and there were 55 questions and 2 hours to complete. That’s an average of about 2 minutes and 18 seconds per question. A lot of the questions had a lot of code in them, and you had to select muliple lines of code to insert/change in two or three places, in order to get it right. No way is that time enough to scan a considerable chunk of code, understand what it does, and then change/complete it to make it work. That test is totally un-realistic, and in no way does it reflect the way anyone works as a developer, and I see my self as a fairly good one. I missed it by 9 points, and I know my stuff. I lost a great deal of respect for MS that day. Total rip-off…

    kommentaar kirjutas Ola — 2015-05-24 @ 17:12:55 | Vasta


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