Study Methods

BUGIEBUGIE Member Posts: 9 ■□□□□□□□□□
Just curious guys but what's your study method...

I'm asking because i usually take notes out of the book which takes approx. 1 month and then just study it and get hands on experience which requires another 2 months....

I realise this is long and so am looking for more efficient ways to get the studying done... any ideas will be greatly appreciated

Thanks,

Chris

Comments

  • Danman32Danman32 Member Posts: 1,243
    Sounds like a good plan to me. Some of us simply have more time in the day to do that, or don't need as much time for that. Don't press your pace too hard that you can't retain info and skills.
  • shamrocker98shamrocker98 Member Posts: 79 ■■□□□□□□□□
    My method might not be as efficient but I always read the text twice (or two different texts) to really understand the material. In the meantime, I practice practice practice on the home lab. Finally, I do practice tests for weeks to pick up information I missed in the texts. On the day of the exam, I review everything possible and check over my actual test answers twice. That is what works for me. Unfortunately, these exams take a lot of studying (and/or real experience) so I see no "efficient" way of studying besides cheating.

    Good luck!
    josh
  • jasonbochejasonboche Member Posts: 167
    I read books and use highlighter pens and post-it flags to mark important things. I also write a lot of notes and commentary in the margins of the book to re-inforce sections that I've read. I'll make reference to sections on other pages. I'll also point out inconsistencies and write my questions in the margin. Sometimes I'll have a revelation later on the book which allows me to go back and answer some of my own questions which I've writtin the margin. Other times, questions may go unanswered by the time I'm done reading the book and I'll hit the forums looking for answers. Believe it or not, authors make mistakes - plenty of them. Challenge everything that you don't understand or comprehend.

    To give you an idea, the last book I read was the MS Press 70-292/70-296 upgrade exam book which is nearly 1,600 pages. I went through 3 highlighter pens and somewhere around 75 post-it flags.

    Twice in the past I've tried writing my own notes down on paper as I read each chapter but I found that does not do much for my learning so that technique ended quickly.

    Jas
    VCDX3 #34, VCDX4, VCDX5, VCAP4-DCA #14, VCAP4-DCD #35, VCAP5-DCD, VCPx4, vEXPERTx4, MCSEx3, MCSAx2, MCP, CCAx2, A+
  • BUGIEBUGIE Member Posts: 9 ■□□□□□□□□□
    ok thanks alot guys. sounds like i'm on the right track then.

    Chris
  • mikey_bmikey_b Member Posts: 188
    I power study. It can be pricey for the materials, but it works and I can normally write in under a month.

    I start with the Test Out training videos. They include a video introduction, a video demonstration, simulations, and test questions for each objective. At the end are several practise exams. I make certain to review my questions to ensure any wrong answers are corrected, but more importantly, learn WHY they were incorrect in the first place. Test Out videos can take up to 50 hours total, but I can cram one complete exam into a week or so (because studying at work is encouraged when things are slow).

    Once I have that understanding (which goes in to great detail), I pick up an MS Press book. I don't read a single chapter. Instead, I look to the end of each chapter for the self assessment questions. I find I'm usually able to answer the questions with ease, but it helps me identify problem areas so I can revisit them in the book for more explanation. It is a good idea to supplement the knowledge in the videos anyways, that way there are no surprises come exam time.

    Since I'm not wasting time reading that much, I go to self test software included with the book. MS Press is usually pretty good for this. Again the focus is learning from mistakes, but by this point I find I'm already quite confident and the self tests are a breeze. A good run through these samples makes a nice gauge for my knowledge. Strong scores indicate I'm ready to write.

    Lucky me, work has furnished my desk with a 2GHz Dell laptop with 2GB RAM and a 100GB hard drive, so I can also make use of the free Microsoft Virtual PC software and trial Windows Server 2003 version to build a powerful testlab to goof off with core concepts and perform the MS Press lab exercises. I can have 4 or 5 servers running no problem with good performance and nothing teaches like a real lab!

    So the breakdown is:
    1 week Test Out training package
    1 week MS Press study guide self assessments
    1 week Test Lab environment with exercises

    If I can't pass after that, then something is wrong with me, not with the method.
    Mikey B.

    Current: A+, N+, CST, CNST, MCSA 2003
    WIP: MCSE 2003
  • SlowhandSlowhand MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, MCSA: Windows Server 2003/2012/2016, CCNA Routing & Switchi Bay Area, CaliforniaMod Posts: 5,163 Mod
    I've been fortunate enough to get my hands on some very, very good study material. What I did for my last test, as well as what I'm planning to do for just about every test from here on in, is to use the CBT Nuggets videos in conjunction with TestOut's training material. Both are video courses, but TestOut features simulations and hands-on work, as well as step-by-step videos. They also feature a tutor who explains concepts out, drawing them on a whiteboard in broader terms, before showing you on the computer. Basically, what I've been doing is going through each topic in the TestOut course after watching the corresponding material on the CBT videos.

    Along with that, I also like to find myself a good study book to review as I'm going along, and to read while I'm out and about, (err. . . well, while I'm in the bathroom, too. Nothing like a captive audience, huh?) Between the three sources, I learn the material inside and out, then it's just a matter of firing up the ol' Virtual PC or other simulator to get some hands-on practice.

    For me, books don't always give me a clear picture of what I'm doing. It's very good to have a readable source to work from as well, and that's why I spend far too much time in bookstores, sitting in a chair with a cup of coffee and a stack of thick books next to me on whatever it is I'm studying for, until I finally find the one I want to buy. However, I happen to like the video and simulator courses a little better for certification purposes, where I'm covering a lot of material in a short amount of time. Especially when that material is related in some way, such as for a test, it helps me to have visual and hands-on study material.

    Hopefully, this'll help. Check out http://www.testout.com and http://cbtnuggets.com for more information. Chances are, if you're in school or you work for a company with a decent-sized IT department, they'll have material from either one or the other.

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    Let it never be said that I didn't do the very least I could do.
  • mikey_bmikey_b Member Posts: 188
    Slowhand wrote:
    Hopefully, this'll help. Check out http://www.testout.com and http://cbtnuggets.com for more information. Chances are, if you're in school or you work for a company with a decent-sized IT department, they'll have material from either one or the other.

    My company is big with super deep pockets but they insist on making their own courses, which are VERY hit-and-miss. I'm trying to convince the business manager for my group to shell out the money for a Test Out site license but it's hard going because we do have free stuff available, it just sucks.

    You'd think one of the leading IT shops in the world would get the good stuff...
    Mikey B.

    Current: A+, N+, CST, CNST, MCSA 2003
    WIP: MCSE 2003
  • SlowhandSlowhand MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, MCSA: Windows Server 2003/2012/2016, CCNA Routing & Switchi Bay Area, CaliforniaMod Posts: 5,163 Mod
    That's how it goes in this industry, unfortunately. I'm sure there is some corporate decision to go with the companys own material, for whatever reason. It might be financial, thinking that they'll spend less money on their own stuff. It might be that they're thinking they're going to be licensing it out at a later date, and making sure all employees sing the praises of the software. Or, it could be sheer ego, or lack of understanding/interest on the parts of higher-ups. (Can you tell I've been on this ride before?) I do hope they see your point of view, and go with the TestOut material, so you can have both sets of training.

    Good luck, man.

    Free Microsoft Training: Microsoft Learn
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    Let it never be said that I didn't do the very least I could do.
  • CessationCessation Member Posts: 326
    My method might not be as efficient but I always read the text twice (or two different texts) to really understand the material. In the meantime, I practice practice practice on the home lab. Finally, I do practice tests for weeks to pick up information I missed in the texts. On the day of the exam, I review everything possible and check over my actual test answers twice. That is what works for me. Unfortunately, these exams take a lot of studying (and/or real experience) so I see no "efficient" way of studying besides cheating.

    Good luck!
    josh


    Is that "Actual test" answers as in A*****t****.com?

    Are'nt those ****?
    A+, MCP(270,290), CCNA 2008.
    Working back on my CCNA and then possibly CCNP.
  • woodwormwoodworm Member Posts: 153
    With my last exam (290) I wrote out flash cards as I went along, I ended up with hundreds of them, but I found they were great for testing my knowledge.

    I would write a simple question on the back such as 'Steps to restore Active Directory' or 'List all NTFS Permissions' along with the answers on the back.

    I did think that this time (291) instead of writing out the flashcards, I would enter them all in to an access database to use as my own test engine (who's sad? icon_redface.gif ) ....

    I still had to read the books and watch the CBT stuff as well though ....
  • jpeezy55jpeezy55 Member Posts: 255
    Cessation wrote:
    My method might not be as efficient but I always read the text twice (or two different texts) to really understand the material. In the meantime, I practice practice practice on the home lab. Finally, I do practice tests for weeks to pick up information I missed in the texts. On the day of the exam, I review everything possible and check over my actual test answers twice. That is what works for me. Unfortunately, these exams take a lot of studying (and/or real experience) so I see no "efficient" way of studying besides cheating.

    Good luck!
    josh


    Is that "Actual test" answers as in A*****t****.com?

    Are'nt those ****?

    Very, very bad... icon_evil.gif Yes, the website you mentioned up there is for cheaters. Not to say that Shamrocker uses those, hopefully not, but they are just wrong to use. No one here will even remotely support the use of ****-material like actual test, so let's let Shamrocker tell us what he meant before he is wrongfully run into the ground..if he did use that site, then he will be rightfully run into the ground! :P
    Tech Support: "Ok, so your monitor is not working, the screen is blank, and no matter what you do it stays blank? Do you see that button on the bottom right hand side just below the screen? Press it. . . . Great, talk to you next time!"
  • shamrocker98shamrocker98 Member Posts: 79 ■■□□□□□□□□
    By "actual test answers" I meant literally MY actual test answers. No ****. Sorry for the confusion.
  • Danman32Danman32 Member Posts: 1,243
    In other words, he reviewed his test twice before exiting the test.

    Correct?
  • shamrocker98shamrocker98 Member Posts: 79 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Danman32 wrote:
    In other words, he reviewed his test twice before exiting the test.

    Correct?

    Exactly! That's all I meant icon_redface.gif
  • Danman32Danman32 Member Posts: 1,243
    That's what I thought you meant, as at first glance I was thinking of the brain ****, but there's no way the proctors would let you take that into the test room, and if you did manage to do that, you certainly wouldn't post it to us! That would be awfully bold!
  • shamrocker98shamrocker98 Member Posts: 79 ■■□□□□□□□□
    If I'd have known there was a brain **** by that name, I would have worded it differently. :)
  • jpeezy55jpeezy55 Member Posts: 255
    If I'd have known there was a brain **** by that name, I would have worded it differently. :)

    That's why we don't judge too quickly here...Glad to hear you do it the old-fashioned way and earn it...

    Also, just for laughs, start a new post but make sure you do not hit submit until you fix this, and type in "actual tests", but without the space. Then hit 'preview' down there and see what it changes your word to, I love it! I found out because in my previous post, I wrote it that way, but when I previewed, the word was changed...

    Just type that word on a blank line and see what you get in preview...but, remember to delete it before you post!
    Tech Support: "Ok, so your monitor is not working, the screen is blank, and no matter what you do it stays blank? Do you see that button on the bottom right hand side just below the screen? Press it. . . . Great, talk to you next time!"
  • Danman32Danman32 Member Posts: 1,243
    That's a good way to find out if a site is known to be a braindump. Thanks!

    So many sites had me wondering.
  • mikey_bmikey_b Member Posts: 188
    jpeezy55 wrote:
    Just type that word on a blank line and see what you get in preview...but, remember to delete it before you post!

    Hahaha! That's great!
    Mikey B.

    Current: A+, N+, CST, CNST, MCSA 2003
    WIP: MCSE 2003
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