Practice exams?

SephStormSephStorm Posts: 1,732Member
A quick question, how do the practice exams work on GIAC exams? Do they just provide the score and you have to determine where your weaknesses were or do they provide some kind of breakdown of the areas where you had issues?


  • colemiccolemic Posts: 1,568Member ■■■■■■■□□□
    I *think* you get feedback on each question, if I remember correctly... but I would suggest screenshotting the questions (if you can), I pasted them in a word doc, it makes it much easier to review...
    Working on: CCSP, definitely, maybe. On the twitters: @mcole1008
  • ethkhkrethkhkr Posts: 11Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    I haven't taken the practice tests yet, but my co-workers have. The way I understand it is that the practice test mimics the exam and will display your % after 15 questions.

    Hope this is helpful.
  • SephStormSephStorm Posts: 1,732Member
    Thanks guys. Waiting for the practice exams to be posted to my account.
  • laughing_manlaughing_man Posts: 84Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    The practice tests are formatted just like the real tests, so the real test will not be a surprise. For scoring you are given the option (I believe) to allow for answers to be given on all questions or just review the answers on questions you get wrong. I typically go with the latter. Upon completion you are given a sheet that assigns a 1-5 star rating for each domain of the test. I also review the subject where I scored a 3 star or less rating.
  • SephStormSephStorm Posts: 1,732Member

    Took my first Practice exam today, I passed with a 78% Without a real index and quite honestly without going though the last book. I felt that I did well on time during the first portion of the exam, I was over 3hrs for a long time. eventually it did whittle away as we dug into portion in that last book. My areas of improvement will be Format Strings and rootkits, buffer overflows (I think I did okay here, but I still want to understand them better.), and of course the stuff in the final book. I think I will probably skip over the second practice, study the last book and my weaknesses and take the exam in a few weeks. I want my GCIH before the month is out. :D
  • docricedocrice Posts: 1,706Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    The real exam will look and feel the same as the practice exam, except you won't get an explanation when you answer a question incorrectly. The other difference is that you're in an actual testing center and you might be a bit self-conscious while you create some "paper rattle" referencing your index and turning pages in the books where other test takers may take notice.

    And in the back of your mind, you can probably imagine them thinking, "Wow, that guy's cheating on his test!"
    Hopefully-useful stuff I've written:
  • G.HaydukeG.Hayduke Posts: 13Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    SephStorm wrote: »
    I want my GCIH before the month is out. :D

    I'm also sitting for the GCIH exam next week. Good luck to you!
  • SephStormSephStorm Posts: 1,732Member
    Lol. I heard some people have issues with how long it takes to submit and move on to the next question, is that your guy's experience as well?
  • cyberguyprcyberguypr Senior Member Posts: 6,844Mod Mod
    I've taken two and haven't experienced any noticeable delays.
  • Khaos1911Khaos1911 Posts: 366Member
    For GSEC, I did two practice exams in the same week, then took the real thing the very next day after the second practice exam.
  • SephStormSephStorm Posts: 1,732Member
    Passed GCIH today with a 89%. Ugh, i'm tired. Did a full shift prior to the exam this morning so, yeah. Just a quick blurb, I thought that it varied significantly from the practice exam, I had a number of questions where you are expected to analyze output. Some of the questions were somewhat if not very obscure. Honestly, GIAC exams need to be limited to 100 questions, the additional 50 are not going to validate that much additional information. I felt there were a few questions that were borderline, where it could have been one or the other. Finally, The prep material (The books in my case) were a little old, but contained the majority of the information needed. They should eliminate the labs from the main books and put all of that into the "workshop" book. Any needed information from the labs should be in the requisite section.

    Ultimately, overall, I felt pretty good about the experience. I think I could have passed the practice with a much higher percentage post study with minimal book reference, the real exam seemed more difficult. I also spent less time in the real exam finishing with about an 1.5 hr's remaining.

    Do your due diligence in your studies and you will do well.
  • Khaos1911Khaos1911 Posts: 366Member
    Good stuff, Seph. I'm going back and forth on which GIAC exam to attempt next. I'm studying for GCIA at the moment, but wondering if I should go ahead and knock out GCIH since people say it's "easier" and not as mentally taxing. Plus, I have quite a bit of familiarity with alot of things it covers since I studied way too hard for CEH. I have the official SANS 2014 books for both exams, but it's tough digging so deep into packets, gets boring sometimes and I find it hard to focus. Either way I plan on sitting for both exams by the end of the year.
  • SephStormSephStorm Posts: 1,732Member
    You could always do a double... :D No, I'd say do the GCIH, knocking it out will relieve some of the pressure.
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