Update: As expected, IBM has released a new certification exam for Worklight 6.0 that can be found here. The existing exam for IBM Worklight 22.214.171.124 will be sunset by the end of November 2013. IBM is also planning a new certification exam for Worklight administration that will be released soon.
I recently became an IBM Certified Mobile Application Developer by passing the IBM Worklight certification test. I wanted to share my experience on how I got ready for the test and what you can expect from the exam questions.
When I first considered taking this test, I noticed that it is for IBM Worklight V126.96.36.199, which is a bit old now. I am using Worklight V6.0 for developing applications, and I was concerned that taking an exam for an older version would confuse me. I considered waiting until the updated version of the test is released; however, the certification is still fairly new and not many mobile developers are Worklight certified. And the earlier you get certified, the more recognition you will get among your peers. There was a tradeoff between waiting for the latest and greatest test or getting the early recognition. I chose to get certified right away because such immediate recognition in a world with a booming mobile industry will definitely push my career forward.
How to get ready for the test? Here are a few tips:
Study the free “Getting started with IBM Worklight” material: This is a detailed training provided by IBM that covers topics on how to build, test, deploy and manage applications using IBM Worklight on different platforms. It includes self-paced modules, exercises and sample code. In fact, this material is so detailed that I think it should be called “Getting to work” instead. “Getting started” material for the latest Worklight version is located here, while the “Getting started” material for IBM Worklight 188.8.131.52 (the exam subject) and other previous versions is located here. Make sure you go through this material word by word.
Chase answers and details: While you are studying the “Getting started” material you might want to get some more info on a topic or might have some questions on a feature. Don’t be afraid to chase these thoughts, as this is how you build your knowledge. Your primary location for more details is the IBM Worklight Information Center (latest here, a previous version here), which includes the detailed product documentation.
Your next way to get answers is by joining IBM MobileFirst conversation, where you can get in touch with subject matter experts and forward thinkers from all over the world. There you will definitely get the answers you are looking for. Chasing knowledge is something all developers do on a daily basis, but it should be done more intensively while studying for the test.
Read the exam objectives carefully: In fact, print it and keep it in front of you while you are preparing for the exam. It will help you stay focused.
Last but most important, get hands-on experience: This exam is one of the most practical exams I have ever gone through in IBM. It is not hard and it does not ask about theoretical information but rather about practical situations. It keeps asking things like “Which parameter should be passed to this function?” or “Which configuration should be used to do that?” and things like that.
How to get this kind of hands-on experience? I’d say by working in a single, large Worklight development project or by working on three or four proof of concept–sized projects. What if you are not lucky enough to work on any? My advice is to go through the Getting started material and re-implement all of the sample code yourself. Do not just depend on reading them; you have to do it yourself and see it working to get the needed hands-on experience.
What to expect from the exam questions?
They will cover it all: Expect questions that will test your all-around knowledge with the different Worklight elements, from the development environment to the application center, from using Apache Cordova in UI to adapters on the server side to analytics.
They will test your hands-on experience: I might be repeating myself here but I can’t stress how important this is. Most of the questions ask about practical items and not just some theoretical knowledge, so make sure you write code and do procedures yourself to get ready for these questions.
They will be thorough: The exam is thorough to the level of asking about function parameters and their structure.
They will test your adapters skills: Give a special focus to adapters. Make sure you know everything about them inside out, and write code for some of them covering all their types.
I hope these tips are helpful as you prepare to become a Worklight certified application developer. Get in touch with me on Twitter if you have questions or comments on the IBM Worklight development certification exam.