Three years after getting my CISSP, here's what I know about aspiring cert holders.

kalkan999kalkan999 Member Posts: 269 ■■■■□□□□□□
What I know about people who take the CISSP a couple of times and fail but score in the 600's each time before they pass is this: They tend to work at least as hard at their job as they did when they studied for this exam, and they are also the ones who are often the MOST successful in the field after the fact. WHY? Because those who come close and retake this exam after studying SO hard not once, but twice, maybe three times, take that same ethos and apply it to whatever job they do, because they appreciate what they have accomplished, and how much they sacrificed to get where they are today. And while they are relieved that they have the cert in their hands after so much trial and error, they are usually NOT the type to squander it, nor do they tend to be the type of person/s who let anyone sully the reputation of what it means to be a CISSP.
If I had to take this test again today, I would CRUSH it, because I have not only an additional three years of knowledge, I also have the confidence it takes now, and the respect of my peers and my subordinates, because I work as hard in the InfoSec field as I did when I studied to pass this crucible of a test, every...single...day.

Now go out there and do the same thing, and then pay it forward! icon_study.gif

-Kalkan999

Comments

  • Spin LockSpin Lock Member Posts: 142
    Well said Kalkan, well said. I agree whole heartedly with your comments about folks who fail on the first try but don't give up. How someone deals with adversity tells you a lot about their character.
  • koolguy123koolguy123 CISSP, CDPSE, CCIE Security, Bunch of other Cisco Certs, AWS Security Member Posts: 27 ■■■□□□□□□□
    congrats mate...very artistically said...
  • kiki162kiki162 Member Posts: 635
    I've read some of your previous posts on your journey. After my 2nd fail, I was determined to pass. Took a couple of months, and took a different approach to studying - passed on my 3rd time as you did.

    I'm awaiting my endorsement here in the next few weeks. Hopefully this will help me on my job search. Fingers Crossed! icon_thumright.gif
  • koolguy123koolguy123 CISSP, CDPSE, CCIE Security, Bunch of other Cisco Certs, AWS Security Member Posts: 27 ■■■□□□□□□□
    kiki162 and kalkan999 , what was your approach before and what did you change in your style of study to get over the line ? It will be really helpful.

    Thanks in advance.
  • kalkan999kalkan999 Member Posts: 269 ■■■■□□□□□□
    For me it was overcoming anxiety and being stubborn about how I answered the test questions. Knowing what ISC2 is looking for as the BEST answer versus answering the question/s as a technician might was key. I also dove into some virtual lab environments and applied some transcender type scenario based questions into the lab and solved the problems that way, as in, 'do some hands-on' with concepts that are not all that clear. That really helped a lot. I had all the knowledge and a lot of the experience (though not all of the latter) going into the exam. This is an experience based test, but that doesn't mean that you'll pass. I know lawyers and Technical writers who pass this test first time around because they are good at understanding concepts without real-world knowledge. Me? I have to put and IKEA store's worth of furniture together twice before I have enough confidence in saying I am able to call myself an expert in the matter. It's frustrating that I cannot grasp concepts as well as those who can take this test once and pass, but as they say 'it is what it is.'
    Some people don't even read Shon Harris or Tipton and just take CCCure test questions, read forum posts, and download notes and flash cards from others and do just fine. I did ALL of the above, PLUS I had about 12 years of experience in IT and IT security before I took the test. It's hard for everyone who doesn't ****, and harder for others for reasons that only they can answer.
    If you read Shon Harris cover-to-cover and you understand the concepts and have the requisite experience, then the knowledge to pass is likely in your head. Again, scoring in the 600's is a testament to that fact, which I assume you probably did as well, koolguy. Another KEY factor in my passing the test was that the third time, I XOR'ed each scenario based question. I used all 6 hours and flagged a bunch of questions as a result, and it made the difference between my passing and failing. FLAG questions you answer and go back to them. After the first pass, take a break, go to the bathroom, go for 5 hour energy drink, wash your face, then get back to it. If you're like me, you'll look back at the questions you flagged and answered and ask yourself 'WHO was sitting here answering the question this way? Surely it wasn't me!?!?!?! Then you'll surprise yourself at how easily you will change the answer with confidence. SOOOOOOO much of this test is about confidence in yourself.
  • impelseimpelse Member Posts: 1,237 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I feel the same, I have two put three times effort, first barrier language, please do not ell me to take the exam in Spanish, there are not too much resources in Spanish.

    Second I have to understand deeply what I will answer to make sense my answer and third I am a bad taker exam. anyway it is hard.

    I heard some people studying for one month and passed it, I study fro 10 month and a lot of reading (3 books), exams simulation, flashcards and classes and I am a Sr Level and still it is hard.
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  • E Double UE Double U Member Posts: 1,791 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I got a 676 on my 2nd attempt and I've been studying every single day since. Books, audio, and practice questions until I pass this damn thing (but the learning will not stop then). Using every bit of free time to learn all of this material which is ******* off the Mrs so I definitely will not squander this. Not to mention the money down the tubes since I only get reimbursed when I pass. That should have been put towards Disneyland annual passes for the family :).

    Sitting in my car on my lunch break with Shon Harris and Eric Conrad printouts will pay off one day.
    Alphabet soup: CISSP, CCSP, CISM, CISA, GDSA, GPEN, GCIA, GCIH, GCCC, CEH, Azure Fundamentals, Azure Security Engineer Associate, ITIL 4 Foundation, and more.

    2020 goals: AZ-900, AZ-500, GDSA, ITILv4

    "You tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try." - Homer Simpson
  • MeanandMeanand Member Posts: 40 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thanks a lot. It helps and encourages others also.
  • kalkan999kalkan999 Member Posts: 269 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Just paying it forward.
  • mjsinhsvmjsinhsv Member Posts: 167
    E Double U wrote: »
    I got a 676 on my 2nd attempt and I've been studying every single day since. Books, audio, and practice questions until I pass this damn thing (but the learning will not stop then). Using every bit of free time to learn all of this material which is ******* off the Mrs so I definitely will not squander this. Not to mention the money down the tubes since I only get reimbursed when I pass. That should have been put towards Disneyland annual passes for the family :).

    Sitting in my car on my lunch break with Shon Harris and Eric Conrad printouts will pay off one day.


    Hang in there E Double.
    You are almost there.
    Don't think of it as money down the tubes but rather an investment in your future.

    You can do it if you set your mind to it and refuse to quit.
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