CISSP Exam Format

kingkong81kingkong81 Registered Users Posts: 4 ■□□□□□□□□□
I have the CISSP exam (computer based) coming up next week. Pretty stressed out at this point.
So, I have a question on the exam format if someone can shed some light. I understand that there are 250 questions with only 225 questions that will be counted. (other 25 are trial questions). There are new question type now which is the "Drag and Drop" type.
I am currently taking CCCure practice exams and from what I read on this forum, the question style is nothing like what I will see during actual exam (which is reasonable I guess... as long as you really understand the concepts).
My questions is... out of 250 questions, how many are going to be scenario based questions like the ones you can see on AIO book (end of each chapter). And also how many Drag-and-Drop type questions can I expect? Can I assume majority (maybe 175 our of 250) of the questions are going to be multiple questions kind of like what you will see on CCCure questions or Conrad book?

When I took CCNP exams or the other exams, I went in knowing how many simulation questions there will be and roughly how many drag-and-drops(i think i expected to see 4-5 of these type although it ended up being only 3).

Anyways, it would feel alot better if I knew what format I should expect. Can someone help please?
Please don't tell me all 250 questions are scenario based... like reading half page and solve 3 questions and then read 2 pages then solve 5 questions.......


  • LionelTeoLionelTeo Member Posts: 526 ■■■■■■■□□□
    Due to NDA, nobody can give exam specifics, giving a % gauge is not allow, I had accidentally violate this once. Expect lots of scenario base question. you had to think of the exam format as an examiner view. There would be a portion of a give away questions, and this will help the candidate to reach a reasonable score, remember, CISSP is an exam that prove you are better than lots of other IT Security Professional, and this is done through the set of special questions that made you stand out, think of it as a school exam where there is a few questions behind that separate the A and B graders. I suggest you to get a GIAC GISP Practice Test of 250 questions at 129 USD, if you can pass it at 70% without book reference or minimal reference, CISSP is a breeze walk.
  • cyberguyprcyberguypr Mod Posts: 6,927 Mod
    The format of the exam and the number of questions per type are two different things. It seems that you understand the format well. If you master the domains and really understand the material, the number of scenario type questions is irrelevant. The test is designed to be completed within the allocated time. Since it's all about applying the concepts, follow LionelTeo's advice and be prepared for lots of scenarios. Do not assume most will be multiple choice one-liners. You'll set yourself for failure.

    Don't overthink it, do as many practice test as you can, and kill it next week.
  • kingkong81kingkong81 Registered Users Posts: 4 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for the advice guys... I've been following this forum for some time now and thought I'd ask because I couldn't find a specific layout of the exam. But now I know that ISC2 has a very strict NDA. It's not like going to CCNP official bootcamp and instructor telling you what type of questions you can expect.

    My CISSP studying experience so far feels like I'm going to have to drive blind folded during the driver's license test and the DMV is just telling me to study everything about the car...know it in and out.. engine (piston, valves, cylinder...), tires (profile, air pressure...), electric system(radio, ECU, ignition...), exhaust system blah blah... and on the actual test day it will be something like ..."ok now parallel park!"
    It's bad and stupid analogy but... yeah that is how I feel right now... so much material and I'm not sure if I'm going to be able to apply my knowledge to the scenario base situations...

    All I can do at this point is to believe what people say and just practice, practice, practice.
  • cyberguyprcyberguypr Mod Posts: 6,927 Mod
    Agree, it's a bad analgogy. It would be more like knowing what each part of the car does and then seeing a scenario like:

    "Mercedes-Benz is a German automobile manufacturer, a multinational division of the German manufacturer Daimler AG. The brand is used for luxury automobiles, buses, coaches, and trucks. Mercedes-Benz is headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany. Mercedes-Benz traces its origins to Karl Benz's creation of the first petrol-powered car, the Benz Patent Motorwagen, financed by Bertha Benz and patented in January 1886, and Gottlieb Daimler and engineer Wilhelm Maybach's conversion of a stagecoach by the addition of a petrol engine later that year. The Mercedes automobile was first marketed in 1901 by Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft. The first Mercedes-Benz brand name vehicles were produced in 1926, following the merger of Karl Benz's and Gottlieb Daimler's companies into the Daimler-Benz company.

    How many wheels does a typical car have?"

    or maybe:

    Which part of the car needs to be checked if you get a "low tire pressure" alert?

    And don't forget the obscure/virtually impossible to answer item like:

    Based on the above, what is the name of the guy driving the car?

    Takeaway is that, as with tests from other vendors, scenarios may or may not be relevant to the question they are actually asking. It is of the utmost importance that you deconstruct the question and figure out what is valuable and what is fluff.
  • BGravesBGraves Member Posts: 339
    Good luck next week!
  • dustervoicedustervoice Member Posts: 877 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Ive just recently started studying for this exam and from what ive read on the internet about it .. it seems as if they want you to rely on real world experience to pass this thing.So just reading books, watching vids,etc will help but certainly not prepare you 100% for the exam. When i think im ready for the exam, i will give it my best shot! Pass or Fail life goes on!
  • LionelTeoLionelTeo Member Posts: 526 ■■■■■■■□□□
    Its not really about real world experience, my experience only cover two of the ten domains, its all about hardwork. If you have been taking on tough exams from ISACA, GIAC or even other minor ISC2 exams, it actually helps indirectly on how to tackle tough question.
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