How to pass the #Oracle Database 11g OCM Exam

The Oracle Certified Master Exam is among the highest rated exams in the IT industry for a good reason: It is extremely hard to pass!

Unlike most other IT exams that are done as multiple choice tests, the OCM exam means two days of  hands-on practical tasks. No chance you can pass it by just reading books or brain dumps and learning by heart without deep understanding. Without years of practical experience with Oracle database administration – don’t even think about it. Even as a seasoned DBA, you won’t find it easy to pass the OCM exam. Why is that so?

The tested topics have a very broad range and some of them are likely outside your comfort zone
Your usual tools (e.g. scripts and google) are not available
There is very limited time to complete the tasks
The exam is exhausting, so after a while oversights become a severe danger

To help you prepare for the exam, we offer a quite useful class: Oracle Database 11g: OCM Exam Preparation Workshop Ed 2

I delivered it many times and it is probably the best preparation you can get – but also expensive, I admit.

I use to give following guidance to the attendees of the workshop – and the last two paragraphs may help you even if you don’t attend it:

During the OCM Preparation Workshop:
Go beyond your comfort zone and put additional focus on the topics you are not yet so familiar with
Notify the pages in the documentation that you can copy from to resolve the tasks and memorize them
Check if & how the Enterprise Manager can help doing things more efficiently than manual procedures
Make sure that you are ABLE to do things manually in the absence of GUIs, though

After the Workshop:
Create a sandbox environment (e.g. VirtualBox on your notebook)
Practice using only the Documentation!
Practice the things that you felt not so comfortable with during the workshop in the first place
Practice things from inside your comfort zone also, but with a (short!) time limit for the task

During the Exam:
Read the tasks carefully and make sure that you understand them exactly BEFORE you begin working
If the order of tasks is not relevant, do the things first that you feel most comfortable about
Don’t waste too much time on a problematic task if other things can be done instead
You don’t need 100% to pass – so keep up your confidence even if you couldn’t complete all tasks

It is of course possible to prepare also without the workshop. See here for an impressive description about it. Good luck with your journey to become an OCM and I hope you find this little article helpful 🙂

  1. #1 by Franck Pachot (@FranckPachot) on April 29, 2015 - 16:49

    Hi Uwe,

    I’ll add one practical advice for people planning to take the exam.
    Sometimes you cannot take the exam in your country and keyboard at the exam center is different.
    You have 3 choices in order to be sure to be efficient in command line:
    – bring your own keyboard, but before you need to contact the the proctor to validate that he can accept that.
    – practice on the same keyboard as in the exam center the months before the exam
    – some people have brought stickers with letters to put they usual keyboard layout in case they can’t put their own keyboard (exam desktop environment is linux – easy to change keyboard layout).

    Besides that, preparation is hard work but exam is a great experience when being well prepared. I’m looking forward to the 12c upgrade 😉

    Regards,
    Franck.

  2. #2 by Ivica Arsov on April 29, 2015 - 20:26

    Also since time is the biggest enemy I would suggest for all who want to speed up their typing, you can practice at http://play.typeracer.com
    I’ve used it for couple of months while I was preparing for the exam 🙂

    Best regards,
    Ivica Arsov

  3. #3 by Uwe Hesse on April 30, 2015 - 10:08

    Hi Franck,
    thank you so much for your contribution! Yes, that is actually good to be aware of also: The keyboard onsite may be different from what you are used to.

  4. #4 by Uwe Hesse on April 30, 2015 - 10:09

    Ivica Arsov, good advice, thank you!

  5. #5 by Ahmed Nadeem on November 26, 2016 - 23:48

    HI how much do you charge for training please let me know thanks.

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