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Microsoft certification exams: What to expect at the testing center

Check out this excerpt from MCSA/MCSE 70-290 Exam Cram: Managing and Maintaining a Windows Server 2003 Environment by Dan Balter and Patrick Regan, with info on how to score higher on your 70-290 exams.


Always remember that the testing center's test coordinator is there to assist you in case you encounter some unusual problems, such as a malfunctioning test computer. If you need some assistance, feel free to notify one of the test coordinators—after all, they are there to make your exam-taking experience as pleasant as possible.

All Microsoft certification exams allow a certain maximum amount of testing time. (This time is indicated on the exam by an onscreen timer clock, so you can check the time remaining whenever you like.) All Microsoft certification exams are computer generated. In addition to multiple choice, most exams contain select–and-place (drag-and-drop), create-a-tree (categorization and prioritization), drag-and-connect, and build-list-and-reorder (list prioritization) types of questions. Although this format might sound quite simple, the questions are constructed not only to check your mastery of basic facts and figures about Windows Server 2003, but also to require you to evaluate one or more sets of circumstances or requirements. Often, you are asked to give more than one answer to a question. Likewise, you might be asked to select the best or most effective solution to a problem from a range of choices—all of which are technically correct. Taking the exam is quite an adventure, and it involves real thinking and concentration. This book shows you what to expect and how to deal with the potential problems, puzzles, and predicaments.

Continue to Part Two: Exam layout and design.

Table of contents:

What to expect at the testing center
Exam layout and design
Design and special exam question formats
Microsoft testing formats
Strategies for different testing formats


Dan Balter is the chief technology officer for InfoTechnology Partners, Inc., a Microsoft Certified Partner company. He works as an IT consultant and trainer for both corporate and government clients and has worked with several network operating systems throughout his 24-year career. Dan holds the following Microsoft certifications: MCDST, MCSA, and MCSE.

Patrick Regan is a senior design architect/engineer and training coordinator for Miles Consulting Corp (MCC). He holds many certifications, including the Microsoft MCSE, MCSA, and MCT; CompTIA's A+, Network+, Server+, Linux+, Security+, and CTT+; Cisco CCNA; and Novell's CNE and CWNP


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