Keep on Learning
Have you taken IBM certification exams in the past, but don't remember what you've passed? Have you received the certificates that you are entitled to? Check on the Member Site for IBM Certified Professionals to see where you stand.
IBM's Certification Member Site allows you to:
* View your test and certification history, including shipping status of certificates
* Submit requests to merge multiple candidate/testing IDs
* View and update your demographic information
* Request additional copies of your certificates (softcopy via email or hardcopy)
* Download the IBM Certification marks to which you are entitled
Remember, certification results are confidential to you, so if you have earned a certification, the only way for your manager to know is if you tell them. I suggest that you print a copy of the certificate and give it directly to your manager.
svisser1 2700018UK9 Tags:  certification prague db2 speakers idug infosphere data cloud big 5,756 Views
As you’ve noticed, I’m promoting the upcoming IBM Information on Demand Conference via my blog. Many Europeans are unable to afford the time or money to go all the way to Las Vegas for a conference, so the good news is there is an amazing conference planned for Prague in November. I’m hoping that I can attend in order to set up a bookstore for attendees.
IDUG DB2 Tech Conference in Prague, Czech Republic, 13-18 November 2011, at the Clarion Congress Hotel Prague
How you can hone your expert DB2 skills at IDUG EMEA
The Certifications can be taken during the conference and in accordance to this schedule:
For the complete agenda and speaker list, see this site: http://www.idug.org/p/cm/ld/fid=102
For anyone who was at the IOD Conference last year in Las Vegas' Mandalay Bay, you'll remember how **tired** you were after walking the large distances! Do you want an interesting strategy to deal with the strain your poor legs and back will be under?
If you get certified at the conference or were previously certified, you are welcome to join the Certification Lounge. The Lounge will once again be featuring tables, chairs, food, beverages, and best of all.... free massages. We want to ensure that you are specially rewarded for earning your certification.
Prepare in advance to make sure that you can begin using the certification lounge from day 1:
Each exam has a time limit of 90 minutes, except the upgrade exam which has a time limit of 60 minutes. The number of questions and the cutscore for each exam varies. For example, exam 730 has 64 questions and you must score 59 percent or higher to pass it.
How do I prepare to pass an exam?Here is the recommended path I suggest you take to prepare for a DB2 exam:
1) Choose the exam you want to take based on your job role. The DBA and AppDev certifications first require that you are certified as a Database Associate. To help you decide where to start, see the certification roadmaps: ibm.com/software/data/education/cert-roadmaps.html.
2) Read through the exam objectives. Every question on the exam relates directly to one or more of the exam objectives. For a breakdown of the exam objectives and the recommended study materials, see ibm.com/software/data/education/certprep.html
Here are the exams that cover the DB2 9 product: * Exam 730 - DB2 9 Fundamentals
* Exam 731 - DB2 9 DBA for Linux, Unix, and Windows
* Exam 732 - DB2 9 DBA for z/OS
* Exam 733 - DB2 9 Application Developer
* Exam 734 - DB2 9 Advanced DBA for Linux UNIX and Windows
* Exam 735 - DB2 9.5 Developer. Although not specifically written for this exam, the book DB2(R) SQL PL: Essential Guide for DB2(R) UDB on Linux(TM), UNIX(R), Windows(TM), i5/OS(TM), and z/OS(R) (2nd Edition) might help you prepare for this exam.
* Exam 736 - DB2 9 Database Administrator for Linux UNIX and Windows Upgrade. See also Kate's blog entry about the upgrade exam!
3) If you are experienced with DB2 and feel that you are prepared to pass the exam based on what you saw in the exam objectives, take an assessment exam: ibm.com/software/data/education/cert/assessment.html. You'll get a report after taking the assessment exam that can help you pinpoint your weaknesses. Assessment exams cost $10 per take, so if you really think you are ready, come and take the exam to see.
4) If you are NOT experienced with DB2, download a free version of DB2 Express-C and give it a try!
5) Decide on how you want to increase your skills: a) Consider buying one of the Certification Study Guides to refresh and deepen your skills: ibm.com/software/data/education/bookstore.
For exam prep, the best books are these:DB2 9 Fundamentals Certification Study Guide by Roger SandersDB2 9 Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 731 by Roger Sanders DB2 9 Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 732 by Susan Lawson and Daniel Luksetich DB2 9 Database Administration Upgrade Certification Study Guide for Exam 736 by Roger SandersDB2 9 Advanced Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 734 by Roger Sanders and Dwaine Snow.
All five of these certification prep guides were written by members of the exam development team. That is, they created the questions for the certification exam that you are about to take! Also, each chapter of the book corresponds directly to a section on the exam. So, if you take the assessment exam and find out that you are week on a single topic, you simply need to read the chapter that corresponds to the topic where you need improvement. Lastly, the authors created a set of sample questions for the book that provides you with the correct answer to the question as well as an explanation as to why the correct answer is correct and the incorrect ones are not.
For reference and guidance beyond the exam, I suggest the following: DB2 9 for Linux, UNIX, and Windows: DBA Guide, Reference, and Exam Prep (6th Edition) by George Baklarz and Paul Zikopoulos
b) For self-study, also check out the free tutorials that IBM provides for most of the exams. The tutorials are broken into hour long segments of information based on the exam objectives. If you have a great deal of experience, this may be all you need to prepare for the exam. To see the full set of exam prep tutorials that are available, see ibm.com/software/data/education/selfstudy.html.
c) Take an education class from IBM or one of its partners. These classes typically have a fee, even for employees, so check with management to see if you can take one of these classes. Classroom education is an excellent way to learn, but may be difficult to justify due to costs. Don't forget to look into ILO training as this type of training gives you all the benefits of classroom education, but eliminates the travel costs. The best place to start to determine the classroom education that best fits your needs is with the training roadmaps: ibm.com/software/data/education/roadmaps.html.
d) Take a pre-conference class at the ILO Conference:
DB2 for z/OS DBA Certification Crammer (Exam 732)
Speaker: Susan Lawson
This high level certification preparation review is intended to help you take IBM Certification Test 732, DB2 9 DBA for z/OS. Gain an intense overall review of those areas that are on the certification exam.
DB2 9 for Linux & Windows DBA Certification Crammer (Exam 731)
Speaker: Roger Sanders
This training is designed to introduce the student to the concepts a test candidate must know in order to take and pass the DB2 9 DBA for Linux, UNIX, and Window certification exam (Exam 731). The material for this course is aligned with the 731 exam objectives.
6) If this is your first time taking a certification exam, review the steps on this site: ibm.com/certify/process/t_proc.shtml.
Can I gain experience by reading DB2 Forums and Blogs? Absolutely! There are several DBAs who firmly believe helping out on the various forums have helped us gain a deeper understanding of subjects that were on the exams. So, contribute to those forums. You're not only helping other people, you're helping yourself as well! Most likely you'll find members of the DB2 development team actively taking part in the forums as well.
Here are the sites that I recommend, at the least:Planet DB2 - a blog aggregator that combines DB2 blogs from around the world.IBM developerWorks - DB2 PortalIDUG – International DB2 User’s GroupMy blog: ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/susanvisserKate's blog: ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/katedawson
Enjoy the lounge!
A new exam was recently added to the large collection of Information Management Certification Exams. This one leads you to become an IBM Certified Specialist - IBM InfoSphere Optim for Distributed Systems - V7.3.1.
This intermediate level certification is intended for application developers, database administrators, and technical personnel who perform the installation, configuration and day-to-day tasks associated with ensuring the smooth and efficient operation of InfoSphere Optim environment.
The person performing these functions is generally self-sufficient and is able to perform most of the tasks involved in the role with limited assistance from peers, product documentation and vendor support services.
To earn this certification, you need to take one exam: Test 000-552 - IBM InfoSphere Optim for Distributed Systems - V7.3.1
There are four sections on the exam. See the full set of exam objectives.
To prepare to pass, here are the recommended courses that you could take:
As always, you can keep up to date with the latest exams and education offering updates from this site: ibm.com/software/data/education/
As you know, the only constant in life is change.... so there are constantly changes being made to the certification programs. Here are two recent pieces of news that you should be aware of:
1. Assess and Save Promotion is back!
By popular demand, the Assess and Save special offer returned July 1. Purchase and pass any Information Management Online Assessment Exam through Prometric Testing July 1 - Sept. 30 and receive a 50% off voucher towards purchase of the corresponding exam. That's $100 back in your pocket. Candidates from the first phase of this offer experienced significantly improved pass rates on the actual exam.
2. Two new exams:
Exam 419 - IBM InfoSphere QualityStage v8
Exam 555 - IDS 11.50 Fundamentals
The successful candidate for the IBM Certified Database Associate - Informix Dynamic Server 11.50 Fundamentals has important knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to provide entry level administration of IDS 11.50, including basic SQL (Structured Query Language), how IDS 11.50 is installed, how to create databases and database objects, security, transaction isolation, backup and recovery procedures, and describe replication technologies and purposes.
This certification targets:
3. Stay in Touch
DB2 training and certification on Facebook
Become a fan to get updates on changes as they happen!
That's it for this week! I hope you've found this 4-part series helpful.
Part 1) Benefits of Getting Certified
Part 2) How to Prepare to Pass
Part 3) Details of the Db2 Certification Program
Part 4) This post
The extremely popular Assess & Save promotion is back again... and it starts today, April 1 and continues to June 1. Don't miss your opportunity to save while you earn a very well accepted certification.
According to Kate, people who took part last year saved $100 on each exam they took and passed. And, they passed. At least 90% of them passed the exam that they took.
How does Assess & Save work?
First take and pass an assessment exam. This will cost you $10 USD. On passing the assessment exam, you'll be sent a voucher to take the actual exam at 50% off the regular price.
To find more information, see the Voucher detail web page.
To study, see a few of my previous blog entries:
Good luck on your exams!
Enjoy the savings :)
Thanks to a few persistent people, I have been funded to attend IDUG Prague this year! As a result, I’ll be setting up a bookstore at the event and will work with a local bookseller to sell books during the Expo hours. I’m creating a list of books I think the audience will like to buy. If you have some suggestions, send them my way!
Do you remember the DB2’s Got Talent Competition that I took part in earlier this year? The winner of that Competition, Norberto Gasparotto Filho from Brazil, won a trip to an IDUG event of his choice. He chose to attend Prague, so Scott Hayes and I will be able to meet Norberto in person! Norberto is not only excited about attending the conference and excellent sessions, but it is his first time in Europe. I am very fond of every country I’ve visited in Europe, so I’m very happy that Norberto chose this IDUG location.
To refresh you on who Norberto is, I encourage you to check out a few of the recorded episodes as well as the guest blog Norberto did for me:
Remember that the Early Bird registration period is still open, so register before it closes on Monday October 17th. You’ll save 330 Euro by registering before the deadline. There are other discounts and promotions available if you qualify, including the Mentor and Multiple Attendee discounts. See the details on the registration site.
Some other highlights include:
Need more reasons to attend? Check out Conor O’Mahony’s latest blog entry Top 10 Reasons to Attend IDUG EMEA in Prague this November.
Worth attending? I think so and hope to see you there!
svisser1 2700018UK9 Tags:  infomgmt education books facebook im certification information_management fan 5,490 Views
And… here’s another Facebook change:
We have a NEW Facebook page!
Enjoy the new page!
Making it Big in SoftwareSadly I haven't spent time in Europe in the spring... but I hear it's nice! I've just been approved for IBM's Information on Demand (IOD) Conference that takes place in Rome this spring: May 19-21, so finally I'll get a chance to experience the loveliness of myself! I hope many of you are able to attend the conference as well.
My purpose at the conference is to sell books to attendees. We have a spot set up in a central location and have plans to showcase many of the books that have been recently published. For an idea of the books that you'll see there, see my previous blog entries:
I'll also be setting up book signings for a few of the authors:
Magnus Lindkvist, keynote speaker and facilitator
Author of Book: Everything We Know Is Wrong – The Trendspotter’s Handbook
Magnus is a trendspotter and futurologist based in Stockholm, Sweden, His mission is to help companies make sense (and money) out of future possibilities and inspire people into action. He founded his company Pattern Recognition AB in 2005 and have a mix of large conglomerates and nimble upstarts within finance, energy, media and IT on the client list. Furthermore, he was elected Sweden’s Business of Speaker of the Year in 2009.
Mario Godinez, Eberhard Hechler, Klaus Koenig, Steve Lockwood, Martin Oberhofer, and Michael Schroeck
Authors of Book: The Art of Enterprise Information Architecture
Learn from this team of authors who are high ranked specialists in this field.
I might add a few other author signings... and wanted to add Sam Lightstone, but he is not able to attend this conference. His book Making it Big in Software will be available for purchase at the conference even though Sam will not be there.
Besides the books, you'll also be able to buy IBM-logo merchandise. A wide range of items are being made available for you to purchase.
And then of course the conference:
1) Susan Dykman will be administering Certification Exams at the event, free to attendees.
2) Expert speakers from Analysts, Industry, IBM , and customers will share ideas and experience on the value of combining information and analytics.
3) Join in on an industry round table to get the latest in strategy.
4) Browse the Expo Centre for a wide range of real-world solutions, the latest innovations, and demos.
5) Meet IBM executives, solution and industry experts one to one.
6) Take part in Hands-on and Usability Labs.
7) And my favourite... network! Meet people from a variety of backgrounds and amaze yourself at the amount you have in common by being part of IBM's IOD.
Do you need some ideas to justify attending the conference? Get some tips from the "Why Attend?" web page.
SIX more weeks! Lots of work to do... so let the countdown begin!
IDUG's annual North American conference is taking place in Tampa Florida this year. May 10 - 14, 2010. Have you been able to get funding to attend the conference yet? If not, maybe this information will help you.
The educational opportunities available at the conference will help make you smarter! And if you're smarter about your job, you'll be more effective, make fewer mistakes and be a real asset to your employer! Right?
Take a look at the conference schedule that is now available online. With this tool, it is now easier for you to build your conference curriculum by allowing you to search by program or project to find sessions specific to your area of expertise.
Here is a sample of the sessions you’ll find this May in Tampa:
D06 (DB2 for LUW): "DB2 Security – Ammo From the Trenches", Rebecca Bond, Author of "Understanding DB2 9 Security"
B10 (DB2 for z/OS): "Package Versioning for High Availability", John Maenpaa, Health Care Service Corporation
C08 (DB2 for LUW): "Successfully Managing the DB2 LUW Workload Manager", Scott Hayes, Gold Consultant, DBI Software
C09 (DB2 for LUW): "DB2 pureScale: Why It's So Much Better than Oracle RAC", Paul Zikopoulos, IBM Corporation
S03 (Cross-platform): "The Vision of Integrated Data Management - Past, Present and Future of Tooling", Curt Cotner, IBM Fellow, IBM Corporation
New this year at IDUG, you will also find a full-offering of hands-on labs. Available all four days of the conference, the labs include individual work-stations that allow you to explore new DB2 features and try out products without the hassle of obtaining and setting up software. This year’s hands-on labs include:
DB2 Lab 1: DB2 for LUW - All About DB2 9.7
DB2 Lab 2: DB2 for z/OS - Getting Started with DB2 for z/OS pureXML
DB2 Lab 3: DB2 for LUW - DB2 9.7 Performance Metrics and Monitoring
DB2 Lab 4: DB2 for z/OS - Develop High-Performance Java Applications on z/OS Using IBM pureQuery
DB2 Lab 5: DB2 for LUW - Workload Management
DB2 Certification Exams:
Do you have your current certifications yet? The exams are available free of charge to attendees of the conference (3 exams per attendee). This is a HUGE savings of $200 PER EXAM!
Make sure you are ready to pass the exam by taking a crammer course on May 10 for last-minute preparation for the exam. These full day seminars require an additional fee.
Z04: DB2 for Linux, UNIX and Windows - DBA Certification (541) Preparation Course
Date: May 10, 2010 09:00 AM – 04:30 PM
This training is designed to introduce the student to the concepts a test candidate must know in order to take and pass the DB2 9.7 DBA for Linux, UNIX and Windows certification exam (Exam 541). The material for this course is aligned with the 541 exam objectives.
Z01: DB2 9 for z/OS DBA Certification Crammer Course
Register now to qualify for discounts on your conference fees:
Early Bird Discount: Register on or before March 26, 2010 and save $150 on your full-conference registration.
IDUG Mentor Program: Need to get thrifty with your training dollars this year? Through this incomparable loyalty reward program, IDUG members who have attended five or more IDUG conferences in the past ten years have the opportunity to bring a first-time attendee from the same company for an unprecedented 80% discount!
Visit IDUG.org/na to learn more about IDUG 2010 North America.
Do you need more help justifying your attendance at this confernece? See IDUG.org/na for further tips.
svisser1 2700018UK9 Tags:  blog best certification db2 bestpractices techbooks books 5,400 Views
I noticed that Conor O’Mohony just posted a similar entry so it gave me an idea to do the same. Thanks for the inspiration, Conor!
Last year on Dec 20, my blog had had 994,747 unique views since I started blogging on devworks. Today, I have 1,994,943. The difference is just over a million views! I will definitely reach 2 million views this week! Very exciting.
So, what posts did people like to read on my blog this year? Here are the entries based on number of views:
2. FREE stuff
I’m happy that these 5 entries were well-read since I think that they contain valuable information and reflect the type of content that I like to post.
To complete the list, here are the all-time most read entries:
I like these posts as well, but the certification posts are sadly out of date. I will update them in the next while so you have better content to read.
If you like what I tend to share, I encourage you to “follow” my blog. As of writing this entry, I have 192 followers and thank every single one of you. I’m in the midst of reading Antonio Cangiano’s book: Technical Blogging: Turn Your Expertise into a Remarkable Online Presence and am learning tips from his expertise. I would like to put many of his tips into practices in the next few months…. I wonder if you’ll notice? Asking you to follow my blog is just one of his tips!
Are you going to IDUG in Tampa, Florida this year? The conference takes place May 10 - May 14 and if you are going, you have 4 weeks to prepare to pass the free exams that you can take while attending the conference.
Why get certified? It's getting harder to keep your skills up to date these days with everything changing so quickly and the huge volume of information that you are bombarded with every day. Certification exams are focused on a specific topics and cover a limited number of objectives that are related to the tasks performed in that job role. So when you are studying for the exam, you are studying only a subset of the content that is available for the product. This targeted studying can be a more achievable way to increase your skills as you'll do a piece of learning and then testing at a time.
To help you target your studying, we have a set of study guides that you can use to prepare to pass the exam.
Here are the books:
DB2 9 Fundamentals Exam 730
Roger Sanders' book: DB2 9 Fundamentals Certification Study Guide
DB2 9 DBA for Linux, UNIX, and Windows Exam 731
Roger Sanders' book: DB2 9 Database Administration Certification Study Guide
DB2 9.7 DBA for Linux, UNIX, and Windows Exam 541
This exam was updated to the V9.7 level, while the book is at the V9 level. This might cause you a slight problem on some of the questions but overall, you should still be able to pass the exam with this book. If you're concerned, you should examine the exam objectives to see what was added. You could also take the Exam Prep for Exam 541 course that will be taught by Roger Sanders on May 10 at the Conference.
DB2 9 Advanced DBA for UNIX, and Windows Exam 734
DB2 9 Advanced DBA Certification Study Guide by Roger Sanders and Dwaine Snow
DB2 9 for z/OS Database Administration Exam 732
DB2 9 for z/OS Database Administration Certification Study Guide by Susan Lawson and Dan Luksetich
These books will be for sale at the conference, but if you can, purchase the books before the conference so that you have time to read them and study to the degree that you need to.
If you aren't able to purchase the books outright, check amazon or other sites for used copies of the books. Also, libraries might have copies of the books. I know our skill's center library has many copies of these books... and they are VERY well used!
Check to see if your company has a subscription with Safari Books Online or Books 24x7. Both of these electronic book engines carry these books which will allow you to read the entire book or to search and read parts of the book as needed.
The publisher of the Certification Study Guides, MC Press, is working on getting the books available in Kindle format, so that could be an option for you as well.
If you are working with DB2 in your daily job, you may be ready to pass the exam with minimal studying. I suggest that you try an assessment exam to guage your readiness. You may also wish to answer the sample questions that are in the Certification Study Guides. If you are able to pass these questions correctly and easily, you may be ready to pass the exam.
If you want a little more help, consider taking the Exam Prep courses that take place on May 10 at the conference. You can prepare for Exam 541 or Exam 732.
For more information about getting certified, see my previous blog entry: Certification 101.
Have fun in Tampa! Get certified :)
One thing I neglected to mention in my blog posting yesterday about the value of Certification is the Take it Again program that is active again this year.
Earning IBM Professional Certification is a smart career move. But many of us are nervous when taking the certification exam. Our “
By the way, I've been invited to be guest on Episode #12 of The DB2Night Show coming up this 12 February 2010 at 10am CST. Our theme for this show is "The Wild Wonderful World of DB2 Information Resources". Claim your free seat in our virtual studio audience by registering at http://www.DB2NightShow.com. I hope you can join Scott Hayes and I!
The Central Canada DB2 Users Group (fondly known as CCDB2UG) Event takes place in June in Toronto every year. I’m once again planning to attend and hope if you are in the area you do as well.
Dates: Monday & Tuesday, June 27 & 28
Location: BMO Financial Group Institute for Learning
3550 Pharmacy Avenue
Toronto, Ontario Canada M1W 2Z3
Registrations must be received by Friday Jun 17th, 2011.
I’ll be taking part in the Vendor Reception which takes Monday from 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm. As always, there will be prizes. The prizes I will bring are books. Lots of them.
Agenda & Speakers
Keynote: Sal Vella “DB2 Trends & Directions "
For the schedule and details on each talk, see the website.
Also at the conference is an opportunity for you to take a Certification Exam for free. The test day is Tuesday June 28. Make sure you come to the exam prepared to pass. Here are a few blog entries that you may want to read before taking the exam:
Benefits of Earning a Certification
Sign up for an exam when you register for the conference. (Note that exams are normally $200 each, so this is a great savings!)
I hope to see you at the conference.
Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends! I hope you have a safe and beautiful holiday with those who you love!
For those of us who are not in the US, this is typically a quiet week. If you are looking for something to do if you are experiencing a few quiet days, here are some suggestions:
Replay of Raul Chong's DB2 9.7 Technical Update: Ignore the message that the session is over... as there is a replay button on the page as well. There were many people who joined the session live... so if you missed it, by all means take advantage of the replay!
Replay of the DB2 NighShow episodes. Join Scott Hayes and his guests for a variety of topics. All sessions are recorded and more are planned. Enjoy!
IOD at Your Desk... Yes, you can replay many of the sessions that took place at IOD in Vegas at the end of October, including the Malcolm Gladwell session.
Continue or Begin your Certification Journey. Use the checklist that I created or read more about the process of getting certified.
Join or catch up with one of our communities, including PlanetDB2, ChannelDB2, (DB2 in Books), and My DeveloperWorks (see the list of available books... but there are many opportunities to learn on this site!!)
Read one of my favourite blog entries: Trying to Get Fired?
Thanks for reading!!