Most network engineers either have a vendor certification from Cisco (or some other network equipment manufacturer) or at some point think about getting a certification some time in their career.
Cisco certifications are notorious for being extremely difficult and include many hands on simulations to prove the skill level of the candidate. Being certified helps prove the engineers skill set and knowledge in a particular area of computer networking.
To prepare for one of these Cisco certification exams, candidates will read books, watch videos, take live instructor lead classes, virtual online classes and take practice simulation exams to help them learn the material.
But when it comes to practice simulation exams, not all are the same. There are some companies that create practice exams known as “brain dumps” or exact word for word duplicates of the exact official test questions.
Many arguments can be found on various forums and website discussion boards from engineers who believe that tests like these are cheating. And to some extent this is a very valid argument. They believe that any one who uses tests like these not only discredit engineers who study Using Other Methods But Should Not Be GiveN Credit for Passing The Official Exams.
The counter argument to this is that it is not cheating because of the live simulated practical portions of the official exams which prove the candidates know the material. Other counter arguments are that the official tests are written specifically to “trick” candidates with unreal situations and Scenarios. Brain Dump Exams Simple Provide Candides A Way to be Fully Prepared by Understand The Exact TypeS of QueStions of QueStand of the Found on The OFFICIAL EXAM.
Both Sides of this Argument Are Very Valid. But what is not. The Same Type of Arguments from Live Instructor Lead Classes.
IS It Cheating to take an Instructor Lead Class?
Human beings love to network. We get together, create relationships and help each other out. In live instructor lead classes students work with each other to learn the material and pass the exam. This includes students often asking the instructor questions like “Is this on THE REAL TEST? “OR” what type of questions can I express? “
There have even been instances where a “brain dump” tests were used in instructor lead classes to provide examples of tough questions students may expect to see. Pressure to live up to 100% pass guarantee no doubt have an influence on this.
Are Brain Dumps Cheating? Have You Seen CHEATING ON in Instructor Lead Classes?
Some engineers would say it’s all hype and certifications are not necessary at all. Being certified doesn’t make you a good engineer, being a good engineer makes you a good engineer. Companies like Cisco simply use certifications to drive sales of their own products.
All in all -USING A “Brain Dump” Test to Pass An Exam DOESN’T HELP YOU BETTER ENGINEER, it Helps You to Be a Better Test Taker.
Joseph L Wilson Is A Senior Network Engineer in Austin TX and Has Worked WitH Cisco Devices and IP Networks for 13 Years.