Failed Dec 2, 2016-PASSED April 13, 2017! 3rd time!

Deadly-DosageDeadly-Dosage Member Posts: 49 ■■□□□□□□□□
Good day Cyber Warriors!

I went dark for awhile after failing in Dec 2016. I changed 2 questions and got a 691 (probably not from changing the questions or maybe so, I'll never know) I took a break (horrible idea) for about a month (pity party no one attended) and restarted studying in Jan 2017(it almost felt as if I was starting over from scratch). The Sept 2016 test *felt* very techie. The Dec 2016 *felt* like the questions were very network based (It was my weakest in Sept and that test). In March 24, 2017 I took the SAN GISP and failed it by 2% AND THE SAME AREAS OF THE CISSP FROM DEC! That shook me up and I had to change something. So I started to focus that last week just on practice questions from the Sybrex Practice questions, the Sybrex 7th Edition, and from one of the boot camps I attended. I was scoring in the mid to high 70's and improved to 80-82%. I re listened to Cybrary.it CISSP course 7x and focused in the 1st week all Domains and the last week in my 2 weakest Domains.
The April test felt like a true manager's test. I looked at the questions and asked myself this critical question, "Does my boss NEED to know the depth that these answers go or just the top level idea?" There was ALOT of scenario base questions on this batch of questions. I did the 3 pass method. I answered the questions as fast as I could and finished in 2.25 hours and marked 91 questions. On the 2nd pass, I asked if my boss really needed the depth or *top-level* idea on each of the marked question. I probably changed about 30 questions. The final pass, I changed another 3 or 4, but I gotta tell you that God put a gut check on 2 of them that I changed and I changed back. At the end, I took about 5 hours and 14 mins. I gave thanks to God and walked back to get the paper with the test results. The proctor looked at me, then the paper, then back at me. I picked it up and I passed!

I used the Sybrex as a base but it was just too much to read again. I liked Simple CISSP and the CISSP study guide the best as a secondary source.
The 4 key takeaways were: 1. Practice questions, 2. Does my boss/CEO/C-suite need to know this and to what level? 3. Know definitions. There was some words or acronyms the first 2 times that I just flat out didn't know and probably cost me. And finally, 4. at the end of the exam before I went through the review of marked questions, *CLICK ON THE INCOMPLETES!* I had 3 incomplete as I quickly clicked something I *knew* the answer to but must of missed clicking the radio button because I was in a hurry!!!

I took 2 boot camps, one was with a Florida university that I would not recommend but will not speak ill of which one. I did take a SANS CISSP MGM 414 course in Nov 2016 with wolf9081 (great guy) and David R. Miller as the instructor. He was very good but I had to remind myself that there are other folks in there that didn't want to know about the CISSP exam. I took the GISP as a baseline when I got close (would have been nice to pass) so I could refocus or feel great that I could pass.

I am grateful for this community, God, and my wife who drove me so I could cram a few more ideas in my head.

I was endorsed on April 17, 2017 and received from ISC2 approval with the CISSP cert PDF on May 10th, 2017!

Thank you again, wish you Godspeed!
John Dossa, CISSP 3rd timer icon_thumright.gificon_thumright.gificon_thumright.gif

Comments

  • TankerTTankerT Member Posts: 132
    Congrats on the pass, and the certification!
  • Deadly-DosageDeadly-Dosage Member Posts: 49 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thanks TankerT!
  • pinksjpinksj Member Posts: 89 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thank you for writing in detailed this does help a lot. A huge relief for you.
    What's next on your list now?
  • shimasenseishimasensei BSc IT, CISSP, CCNP:RS, CCNA:Sec, CCNA:RS, CCENT, Sec+, P+, A+, L+/LPIC-1, CSSS, VCA6-DCV, ITILv3:F Member Posts: 241 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Congratulations! Thanks for sharing your experience. Can you expand on what you mean by the "3 pass method" and "does my boss need to know this"?
    Current: BSc IT + CISSP, CCNP:RS, CCNA:Sec, CCNA:RS, CCENT, Sec+, P+, A+, L+/LPIC-1, CSSS, VCA6-DCV, ITILv3:F, MCSA:Win10
    Future Plans: MSc + PMP, CCIE/NPx, GIAC...
  • sameojsameoj Member Posts: 366 ■■■□□□□□□□
  • Deadly-DosageDeadly-Dosage Member Posts: 49 ■■□□□□□□□□
    My job now requires a Master's Degree. So IT management with concentration in Project management. I was hoping just to sail into the sunset....
  • Deadly-DosageDeadly-Dosage Member Posts: 49 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thank you very much!
    My first pass was, "Either I know it or I don't" so I saw what I knew an answered it then moved on. If it took me more than 30 or 60 seconds I marked it for review.
    On my second pass, it was only of the marked questions and I looked at it as if I was answering it to my boss in the board room with the C-suite.
    On the third pass is what I couldn't "unmark" from the second pass and really looked it as, should I go with my gut or let it lie? Most I left alone but I did change 3 cause my gut/spirit just ached to change them.

    I was being too techie for the exam. So I would get a question about network security. The answers would be like:
    A. Firewall
    B. IP address
    C. MAC Address
    D. Network Layer
    Which big idea does the boss need to know? Hey the network has security. Ok good next topic. At least that's how I had to train my brain to think like a manager. Not a program manager or a network manager but a near equal in the big board room. So they didn't need to know what the IP address(es) are, which computer, or the physical net addy of a box just that the network was secured. I hope that makes sense. Thanks for question!

    JD
  • leothebestleothebest Member Posts: 9 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Congratulations!! the ability to take this test 3 times is true determination! I commend your resilience and ability to keep going
  • wolf9081wolf9081 Member Posts: 61 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Congrats on the pass.
  • Deadly-DosageDeadly-Dosage Member Posts: 49 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thanks Wolf9081! You got next buddy!
  • shimasenseishimasensei BSc IT, CISSP, CCNP:RS, CCNA:Sec, CCNA:RS, CCENT, Sec+, P+, A+, L+/LPIC-1, CSSS, VCA6-DCV, ITILv3:F Member Posts: 241 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Thank you very much!
    My first pass was, "Either I know it or I don't" so I saw what I knew an answered it then moved on. If it took me more than 30 or 60 seconds I marked it for review.
    On my second pass, it was only of the marked questions and I looked at it as if I was answering it to my boss in the board room with the C-suite.
    On the third pass is what I couldn't "unmark" from the second pass and really looked it as, should I go with my gut or let it lie? Most I left alone but I did change 3 cause my gut/spirit just ached to change them.

    I was being too techie for the exam. So I would get a question about network security. The answers would be like:
    A. Firewall
    B. IP address
    C. MAC Address
    D. Network Layer
    Which big idea does the boss need to know? Hey the network has security. Ok good next topic. At least that's how I had to train my brain to think like a manager. Not a program manager or a network manager but a near equal in the big board room. So they didn't need to know what the IP address(es) are, which computer, or the physical net addy of a box just that the network was secured. I hope that makes sense. Thanks for question!

    JD

    Thank you for your insight. Cheers!
    Current: BSc IT + CISSP, CCNP:RS, CCNA:Sec, CCNA:RS, CCENT, Sec+, P+, A+, L+/LPIC-1, CSSS, VCA6-DCV, ITILv3:F, MCSA:Win10
    Future Plans: MSc + PMP, CCIE/NPx, GIAC...
  • CryptoQueCryptoQue PMP, CISSP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA, CCDA, CCENT, NET+, SEC+, ITILv3 VirginiaMember Posts: 205 ■■■□□□□□□□
    It's good to see success stories like yours. A lot of people would have given up if they were in your shoes, but you persevered. Congratulations!!!
  • Deadly-DosageDeadly-Dosage Member Posts: 49 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thanks CryptoQue! It was a long row to hoe but well worth it!
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