Passed CISSP after the third try

fam20854fam20854 CEH, Sec+, CISM(pending)Member Posts: 4 ■■□□□□□□□□
edited January 2020 in CISSP

Passed CISSP exam after third attempt.

You may have seen this post at the reddit community, but just thought I post this here as well. I am happy to say that I finally passed the CISSP exam after my third attempt. I want thank God first and then this CISSP  community for playing a huge role in my success on the exam.

5 years as an Information Assurance Manager. I first took the exam 2 years ago and failed the with flying colors. I studied using the Sybex book and completed all of the practice questions. I memorized answers of practice questions, thinking the sybex questions would be similar to the real exam. Oh man! I was super wrong and like I said before, I failed with flying colors. I studied for another year, and also enrolled in a 12 weeks virtual CISSP boot camp (weekend only). I took the exam early last year and failed again. However this time with some flying colors lol. I decided to take another break from the exam and put my focus on a different certification. I decided to take the CISM certification to put me in the mind frame of Senior Management/Risk Advisor. I purchased the online exam banks from ISACA website and studied for almost 10 weeks. I took the exam and passed. Then, I revisited the CISSP exam later this year and passed it (you guessed it) with flying colors lol. The materials I used for the CISSP that really helped me are:

  1. Bosons: 10/10. No brainer, please purchase this software and complete all of the domains. Understand why you get a question wrong and especially correct.Try to see if the reason you get a question right or wrong matches the Boson explanation. Please make sure you understand what you are reading and be able to apply. It is extremely important.

  2. Sybex Book 8th edition: 8/10. I used it as a reference point for topics I did not understand.

  3. Shon Harris AIO 8th edition: 8/10. I enjoyed comparing the domains to sybex text book and definitely helped me tremendously prep for the CISSP exam.

  4. Essential CISSP Exam guide (paper back) by Phil Martin: 9/10: Personally, I think this is one of the greatest resources out there for the CISSP exam. Concise, Easy to read with great explanations for all the domains. I highly recommend this book.

  5. Shon Harris Audio: 10/10: listened to the audio everyday for 20 weeks. This audio related all of the topics to real life scenario, which helped me a lot on the exam. I am unable to post the link here because I just joined this thread. However, I was able to post the link in the subject line.

Advise: please understand that in order to pass the CISSP exam, you have to be able to APPLY the domains to real life situation. In other words, understanding the materials you’re studying is very important. But it is the APPLICATION of it that will help you conquer the exam. Please, for those who have failed, please take note of this and DON'T GIVE UP. I wish all the future CISSP exam takers the very best feel free to reach out for any questions or concerns. :smile:



  • bigdogzbigdogz Member Posts: 873 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Nice post and congratulations.
    What you stated as others before you is correct. You have to know how to apply the concepts. There is no quick way to pass the exam. I think taking the CISM may have helped you when you took the CISSP the last time as the CISM covers some of the domains within the CISSP.
  • tedjamestedjames Scruffy-looking nerfherdr Member Posts: 1,179 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Congratulations and special commendation for sticking with it! Great information, by the way.
  • TheRedBar0nTheRedBar0n CISSP, CySA+, Sec+, MCSA, ITILv3 Cape Town ZAMember Posts: 60 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Congrats on the pass mate, welcome to the club! Agree 100%, getting into the CISSP mindset and understanding how to apply the domains in real life as a manager/risk analyst etc is vital in passing the exam. What helped me get into the right mindset was the Max Quasar CISSP vids on YouTube the morning before the exam (to complement OP's listed resources).
  • oceanmarsoceanmars Member Posts: 4 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Cool!  Congrats
  • averageguy72averageguy72 Senior Member Member Posts: 320 ■■■■□□□□□□
    CISSP / CCSP / CCSK / CRISC / CISM / CISA / CASP / Security+ / Network+ / A+ / CEH / eNDP / AWS Certified Advanced Networking - Specialty / AWS Certified Security - Specialty / AWS Certified DevOps Engineer - Professional / AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Professional / AWS Certified SysOps Administrator - Associate / AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Associate / AWS Certified Developer - Associate / AWS Cloud Practitioner
  • imnewbieimnewbie Member Posts: 30 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Congratulations :)
  • DZA_DZA_ Untitled. Member Posts: 438 ■■■■■■□□□□
    Congrats OP! The Boson Exam simulator helped me pass the second time which I'm very grateful of, phew. I'll be sure to check out the essential CISSP Exam guide by Phil Martin as I'm interested in seeing how different authors approach different topics. 
  • LordQarlynLordQarlyn Member Posts: 660 ■■■■■■□□□□
    Hey congrats on passing the CISSP, it's not an easy exam. And you stuck with it, persistence is a useful trait in nearly all circumstances. Congrats and may this be the first step to new experiences and opportunities.
  • AIiAIi CISSP - CCSP - CISM - CCSK - CRISC - CIPP/E - CIPT - ITILv4 - TOGAF - ISO 27001 LA/LI - PRINCE2 Member Posts: 4 ■□□□□□□□□□
    That must have been an amazing feeling. Well done – congrats! 
    <i>We grant you the rank of master but you are not on this council</i>
  • E Double UE Double U Member Posts: 1,827 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I also passed on the third attempt so I know the feeling. Congratulations!
    Alphabet soup from (ISC)2, ISACA, GIAC, EC-Council, Microsoft, ITIL, Cisco, Scrum, and more.

    2021 goals: AZ-303, AZ-304, maybe TOGAF and more ISACA

    "You tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try." - Homer Simpson
  • balancebalance MBA,CISSP-ISSMP,CISM,CISA,CRISC,CDSPE,CASP,CEH,CSM,ITIL V3,V4 Found,Sec+,Net+,Project+, ITF+ Member Posts: 203 ■■■■□□□□□□
  • MrNetTekMrNetTek 41 certificate exams, 51 training certificates, and a bachelor's and master’s degree. Member Posts: 100 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Congrats! You earned it.
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