Friday, December 19, 2008

My ZCE Certificate

Today, I received my hard copy of Zend Certified Engineer PHP5 certificate together with ZCE logo sticker and letter from Training Program Manager of Zend Technologies, Inc.

This gonna be my first IT Certification. What's next? Well, might be Security+/Network+ if time permits.

I would also like to thanks to the people who inspired me to take the exam, my former Team Lead and co-ZCE Dino Simeon Madarang, my idol and Team Lead Ronnel Maglasang, all my colleagues and InfoWeapons family, my wife Nancy, my daughter Hannah Niah, my son Lance Noah, and above all my one and only God Jesus Christ. Also to my General Manager Oliver Cam who encouraged me to take the exam. This certificate is dedicated to all of YOU!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Zend PHP5 Certification Preparations

It was June this year when planning to take the certification came to my mind. I went to website to look at the reference materials for certification. Zend suggested the following references:
PHP 5 Power ProgrammingCertification Study Guide, Certification Online Practice Testing and of course a Certification Training

I just bought 10 mock exams (online practice testing) on the 16th of June, 2008 to test if I'm well prepared without taking any review. Fortunately, on my first mock exam try I got a grade of PASS, the same as the second and third exam. My fourth until the last (which is 3 days before my exam) I got an EXCELLENT grade. I just consumed 6 out of 10 because some questions were repeated most of the time. Below is my last mock exam.

Taking the mock exam helps me a lot, since the exam revealed the topics which I got a grade of FAIL, which I could say that it's my weaknesses and needs to focus more attention in review. I read some blogs that they found really difficult in the mock exam compared to the actual exam, based on my experience they're in the same level of difficulty.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Zend PHP5 Certification Exam Experience - before an exam

On Monday (Nov24) I went to work just to continue my daily job. Since most of the time I always out of office at 7pm, I arrived at home late 9pm. After eating my dinner, I opened my computer and re-read on the Study Guide particularly on the subject of Security and XML and Web Services because I read some blogs stating that most of the questions were based on XML, so I went reading those chapters in Study Guide and this time using the 2nd edition. As I scanned through those chapters, I just read without detailed research on a particular subject, since I learned few of them but not all. I done reading almost 11pm, and before going to bed I pray that HE will give me courage and strength to take the exam the following day and claim his promise in my favorite verse Jeremiah 29:11.

I woke up early to prepare since it would take hour and a half of travel going to the testing center at:
MISNet Inc. - Cebu City
5/F Ongtiak Business Center
#65 Gen. Maxilom Avenue
Cebu City 6000
+63 (0)32 2531536

If you guys from Cebu, Philippines and willing to take the ZCE Exam, I would recommend you to choose MISNet as your testing center (I'm not advertising their company), maybe other testing centers are great and it depends on your preference. My first appointment date supposedly today (Nov28 @2pm) and since I rescheduled the exam at an early date (Nov25 @10am) not because I don't want to see my failing grade but because I don't want to prolong my agony and take any longer. I took three(3) rides going to testing center, and I noticed that I was too early of my appointment time, I entered the grocery of Robinson Fuente and spending my time texting to my fellow brothers and sisters to pray for me. Thanks to kuya danny, kuya arvin, kuya lester and ate rhea, and my colleague mae and jundie, and for my friend yvette ang gobonseng who purchased my exam voucher in my behalf, for their prayers and most especially to my family and God for answering my prayers. I looked at my cellphone's time it was 8:50am and since I still have more than an hour before my appointment time, what I did was took a visit at National Bookstore and reading some computer and religious books. I noticed that it was almost 9:20am, so I left the bookstore and going my way to the testing center. Since it's a walking distance from National Bookstore going to the testing center, I did not took a jeepney ride.

I arrived at the testing center 30 minutes before 10am. They asked me for 2 valid government ID's and read the pearsonvue testing guidelines. They required me to surrender all my things like cellphone, wallet, purse, ID's, even my handky. I start taking my exam 5minutes before 10am. Inside the testing center was a pre-configured computer and a surveillance camera. Before taking the exam, I prayed and ask to God for courage. I finished my exam in less than an hour, and since I still have more time, I reviewed some of the items particularly those items that were marked for review. I suggest to review your answers since in my part I changed at most 5 answers during my review. Overall I finished the exam with more than 10 minutes left. I then press the End Exam button closing my eyes with my hand, and after I opened my eyes I see message which I really love most "Congratulations". I thank God and HE did it for me. There is really nothing impossible with HIM. I was not really prepared during those times, and my weapons are just my experience and trust to HIM. My intention in taking the exam was for experienced so that I may know what particular topics in the exam I need to review because I read most of the blogs that they found hard for the actual exam compared to the mock exam. It's really hard if you do not have coding experience for at least a year.

If you are going to take the exam, I suggest that you have at least a year in coding experience in PHP, some are at least 6 months because memorizing the php manual by heart is not a guarantee to pass the exam.

Next... I will post my preparation I did before taking the actual exam.

My name was already in the Zend PHP Yellow Pages as one of the Zend Certified Engineers

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Zend PHP5 Certification Exam Experience

It's been almost a year since my last blog. 13 hours ago, I took my PHP 5 Certification exam. And I love the word Congratulation on the screen after I clicked the End Exam button. I will make another blog for my experience during my exam including my preparations.

I'm still waiting for the printed copy of my certification. Here is the printed copy I received right after I took the exam.

Zend already updated their PHP Yellow Pages to include my name

What's next? Maybe CompTIA Security+ or CompTIA Network+