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 Transact-SQL (2012)
 question about certification exam
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joe8079
Posting Yak Master

USA
127 Posts

Posted - 09/29/2013 :  10:05:55  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm about to take the sql server 70-461 exam in December and I'm studying for it now. So far, i'm comfortable with almost all the topics except for the xml and spacial data section which I never use any of that stuff and its the hardest to focus on and memorize. My question is if I'm comfortable with all other aspects of this exam could I actually skip those two sections and still pass the exam with a 700?

James K
Flowing Fount of Yak Knowledge

3326 Posts

Posted - 09/29/2013 :  10:39:56  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
It is difficult to answer that question. I have taken the test. There are about 40 or 50 questions, which comprise of six or seven groups of questions. Each group will be from one sub topic - such as windowing functions, xml, query optimization etc. Each group will have six to eight questions. My impression is that they have 15 or 20 sub topics and the six or seven you are asked are perhaps randomly selected. In my test, xml happened to be one of the topics with about be 7 or 8 questions. That might happen to you, or it may not.

So I would be reluctant to do the test without a thorough understanding of xml. You don't have to memorize. Learn the concepts and practice. A superficial knowledge won't be sufficient to answer xml questions.

All of what I said is based on one data point, namely my taking the exam. I did not try to gain any insight into probable questions through any nefarious means, so I might be completely wrong in my analysis of the patterns and subject matter of the questions.
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Lamprey
Flowing Fount of Yak Knowledge

4358 Posts

Posted - 10/01/2013 :  14:57:28  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I haven't taken the 2012 exams, but the previous ones had a lot of XML questions. XML may not be as big of a marketing hot-topic, so the number of XML questions may have been decreased (I'd hope they would), but I wouldn't count on it.
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joe8079
Posting Yak Master

USA
127 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2013 :  10:26:11  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
thanks for the input, I guess i'll have to spend sometime with XML which I'm finding it to be difficult mostly because I have no use for at work so i'm trying to memorize stuff I'll never use at my current job. Also the spacial datatypes i'll need to work on.
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James K
Flowing Fount of Yak Knowledge

3326 Posts

Posted - 10/04/2013 :  12:10:57  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This happens to me too. I do use SQL XML in my work, but even so, I tend to use things that I am comfortable with. For example, when you want to compose XML from a relational table, you have a few different choices: FOR XML PATH, FOR XML AUTO, FOR XML RAW, FOR XML EXPLICIT. Almost ALWAYS, I use FOR XML PATH. But the XML questions in 70-461 that I had to answer were evenly distributed among the first three. (FOR XML EXPLICIT is deprecated/obsolete). I had to struggle to figure out the answers without having the benefit of running the queries and seeing the results.
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geekgirl65
Starting Member

USA
2 Posts

Posted - 11/06/2013 :  16:43:58  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I just took the exam and found that a cursory knowledge of the topic really isn't enough. I used the Virtual Academy video to give me a good idea of what was covered and just did it the old fashioned way and studied what they covered. I don't know if you have seen this but it did help me quite a bit.
http://borntolearn.mslearn.net/mcsa90/?vid=463ExamPrep#fbid=A-myVWmLV-x?SQLServer2012

Renee
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