We recently sat down with John Brooks from Kaplan IT Training to ask a few questions about the practice tests they develop to help candidates prepare for Oracle certification exams.
Oracle has so many certification exams. How does Kaplan IT Training decide which certification exams they will build practice tests for?
Our practice tests are vendor-driven, which means we work directly with Oracle to gain a better understanding of how, what, and when to create our practice tests. At the end of the day, it is all about the demand for specific certifications, how large the pool of candidates is, and how critical the need is in the industry for that role. If the Oracle certification team tells us they have high demand for a particular certification product, then we schedule an internal meeting and start working on the requirements for that practice test.
How does Kaplan IT Training develop the Oracle Certification practice tests?
We work alongside Oracle engineers who are certified for the technology and have years of experience using those technologies. We reach out to the Oracle certification team for the exam blueprint, which gives us the section, objective, and sub-objective topics and weightings. If the exam is in beta, then we will take it, but sometimes we begin this process earlier and schedule our exam sitting for when it goes live. We take that information and gather requirements for each objective, including any insights from the job task analysis process. We then try to make sure that our sources cover all the material that is going to be on the actual exam and identify any references we’ll need. We focus on the objective weightings with our blueprint, but the sub-objectives are addressed at a high level, leaving room for adjustment during the development process. Our approach is to cover all possible items by asking several different questions about the sub-objective while making sure that our resources are viable and substantial.
When we write our practice tests, we create viable questions, but we also create key learning points by using solid and logical alternative answers. By this, we mean that we really think about the alternative answers and offer in-depth explanations for why the wrong answers are incorrect.
Who creates these practice tests?
From an Oracle product line perspective, I actually create the practice tests. I am the primary content developer and subject matter expert, although there are others on the team that contribute as well. I have been in the industry for 15 years and am certified in multiple versions of Oracle and other relational database management versions. I have been an adjunct professor at Purdue University Global for over 10 years as well.
Let me add that our practice tests go through a technical review that validates the information in the practice tests, and that information is compared to what Oracle advises. This final information then goes through a thorough copyediting and quality assurance regimen as well.
How do Kaplan IT Training practice tests help candidates prepare for an exam?
Our practice tests are specifically written to help students pass their specific Oracle exam, with the goal of a 100% success rate for qualified candidates. We focus on writing our practice tests to account for all the information covered on the exam. It is also all about confidence! When a candidate uses our practice tests, stress level is reduced and confidence is increased, allowing them to focus on the exam content itself. I always say passing a certification exam is all about learning and mastering the material. And the best way a candidate can do that is by using Kaplan IT Training as a benchmark and certification tool to ensure career success.