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Top 10 tips for passing the MCSE certification exams

The MCSE certification consists of seven specialized exams that test your knowledge on Microsoft networking and Server technologies. If you are preparing for these exams, you should have a thorough understanding of installing, configuring, managing, maintaining and troubleshooting client and server operating systems. You also need to show your expertise on other Microsoft products such as Exchange Server, SQL Server, Internet Security and Acceleration (ISA) Server, etc.

So much to learn in so little time? Of course you have to study hard, as there is no short cut to success, but if you prepare systematically, you can pass all these exams easily. Here are 10 tips that will help you pass these exams with flying colors:

  1. Set a deadline: Set a schedule for yourself before starting your preparations. Plan and decide how much time will you devote on your studies, practicals and practice tests. Also plan when will you review your preparations and when will you take the exam beforehand. This will help you concentrate more and organize your time better. Although the preparation time depends on how fast you can study and what experience you have, but generally, it takes about 8-10 weeks to prepare for a particular exam.
  2. Review the exam objectives: Clearly understand what are the skills required for MCSE exam and on what specific topics you should concentrate for a particular exam. Know what to expect in the exam and start your preparations accordingly.
  3. Read technical articles and study notes: Read plenty of good articles for MCSE exam questions. Study notes are helpful to learn the technical terms, definitions and the key concepts required to understand the complex technology that the exams cover.
  4. Have practical experience: Install server and client operating systems on separate PCs, network them and set up a lab. Experiment the different practical aspects such as setting up a domain, configuring Active Directory, managing users and computers, setting group policies etc. The questions in the MCSE exams test your skills on solving the practical problems and having practical experience will help you a lot.
  5. Take practice exams: Take MCSE practice exams and get the experience on the pattern and format of the actual certification exams. This will also help you discover your strengths and weaknesses, so you can focus more on the topics difficult to you. Quality MCSE exam simulations come with reporting and analysis tools and can actually tell you when you are ready for the real thing.
  6. Schedule the exam for your peak time: Always schedule your exam for your peak time. Taking the exams in the morning is generally considered better, but it depends on what is the most suitable time for you. Likewise, it is advisable to schedule your exam in weekdays, so that there are less people to take the exam at the exam center.
  7. Sleep well in the night before exam: Have a good night’s sleep in the night before the exam. Staying up late and studying the whole night before the exam will not help, as you will feel tired and sleepy while taking the exam.
  8. Reach the exam center before time: Always try to reach the exam center at least 15 minutes before the exam. Use the extra time for completing the formalities and getting familiar with the environment at the testing center. You can also review the important topics so that you remember them during the exam.
  9. Be relaxed during the exam: Be comfortable while taking the exam. Read all the answer options even if you feel that you know the correct answer. If you’re unsure about the answer, try to eliminate the obviously wrong answers first. You can also bookmark the questions on which you have doubts and answer them afterwords.
  10. Review the answers: Thoroughly MCSE question review your answers before ending the exam. Answer the questions you have bookmarked by guessing the correct answer options and don’t leave any question unanswered.

Most importantly, keep faith in yourself and you will see that nothing is impossible. You can always find what works for you and what does not and plan your preparations accordingly. This may not be an exhaustive list of what to do and what not to do, but we do hope that these tips will pave your way towards your ultimate goal, i.e., to be certified as an MCSE. If you’d like to share your tips for preparing for the MCSE exams, please send a mail to support at ucertify dot com and we will include them here.