How to Prepare for Java Certifications like OCAJP, OCPJP, or OCEJWCD?

No doubt that Oracle's Java certification is one of the most valuable certification for IT industry and helps you to get a better job, a better pay, and a better rise in your current salary. It also improves your recognition and job prospects because many big clients demands certified Java programmers for their mission critical applications. Because of huge popularity and usefulness, many Java developers and computer science graduate aspire for Java certifications. I often receive queries like, what is the best way to prepare for Java certifications like OCAJP or OCPJP? or I am already coding in Java, do I need to prepare explicitly for this exam to do well or my Java development experience is enough? I have 5 years of experience in Java, do I need to prepare for OCAJP 8 or OCPJP 8 exam? etc.

These are some of the burning questions you might have or might have seen all over the internet. I do receive many such questions over emails and facebook chat, hence I decided to share my approach to prepare well for Java certifications.

This is the same approach I followed many years ago when I pass several Java certifications e.g. Sun Certified Java programmer, Sun Certified Web Component Developer, Sun Certified Mobile Application Developer and even though certifications and exam topics have changed the process to prepare for Oracle Certified Java exams are still relevant.

Best way to Prepare for Java Certifications like OCAJP and OCPJP?

If you have been browsing Java certification forums on CodeRanch especially OCAJP and OCPJP certifications and have read success stories you have realized that there are many common things on successful candidates e.g. they all read a good study guide, they all have done several mock exams from Enthuware or Whizlabs and they all recommend to code daily.

In fact, that's exactly was I did when I completed my Java certification a few years ago. I had solved almost every single free mock exams available on the internet along with mock exams from Whizlabs and Enthuware. I had the command to tell which answer is correct and why? as well as why a certain answer is not correct and with god grace I did very well on the exam. I have just refined that process a little bit as per my experience and presented here.

Understand Exam Process and Format

The one thing which is really tricky about Oracle Java certifications is the exam process and format. Even though the questions are multiple choice questions, the format is not pre-defined or written on stone. The better way is to familiarize yourself with the process of the certification you are giving e.g. OCMJEA requires multiple exams to be passed and you not only have to solve multiple choice questions but also you need to write essay and design document. Similar to become Java SE 8 certified developer, you need to clear both OCAJP 8 (1Z0-808) and OCPJP 8 (1Z0-809) exam. OCAJP 8 exam process.

Regarding the format of questions on the exam, you may get questions with just one correct answer or multiple correct answers. You may get fill in the blanks or word arrangement type of questions. The best place to get yourself familiar with the exam format is to buy a good mock exam e.g. Enthuware, Whizlabs, or David Mayer's Java 8 Certification Questions.

Read the Syllabus

This is one of the common mistakes many Java developers and programmers aspiring for Oracle Java certification make. They don't even look at the Syllabus hoping that the book or study guide they are reading will cover everything. Well, this is more or less true because study guides generally do a good job of covering exam topic but they are not perfect, especially if you are preparing for update exams like 1Z0-805 to upgrade to Java SE 7 from Java 6 or before, 1Z0-810 for upgrading to Java 8 certification from Java SE 7 certifications, and 1Z0-813 for upgrading to Java 8 from SCJP 6 or before.  A quick glance is enough to start with and just keep looking it once in a while, you will find something which you have not covered yet.

Use a Study Guide

It doesn't matter whether you are a fresh computer science graduate or a Java programmer with 5 years of experience, it is mandatory that you take a good book or study guide relevant for your Java certification. Why? because Java is vast and even after working in Java for years, there is a good chance that you might not be exposed to all the topics covered in exams e.g. many Java developers are not familiar with NIO or Localization because they hardly get a chance to work on that.

A good study guide will ensure that you are exposed to all exam topics e.g. for example if you are preparing for  OCAJP 8, you can use Mala Gupta's OCAJP 8 Study guide for preparation.

How to Prepare for Java Certifications like OCAJP, OCPJP, or OCEJWCD?

Code, Read, and Code

Daily Coding is the single most reason which can make a difference in you just passing the Java 8 exam or scoring good i.e. above 90%. You must develop a habit of writing code daily, running Java program and see the result yourself. This will encourage you to experiment with the code and analyze how changing one line of code makes difference.,

You learn more when you do things and that's why you should develop the habit of writing a small program to test Java concepts you learn by reading study guide and doing mock tests. This will help you to remember them for a long time.

"Coding without reading" and "Reading without Coding" is just like "Thinking without doing" and "doing without Thinking". Since there only two people fails, who think but don't do anything and those who just do without thinking, so you must learn from this tip and both code and read daily.

You will also get a Java Certified T-Shirt if you complete your Java certification before 30th June 2017.

Solve Practice Questions 

Other than solving practice questions given in your study guide or books, you would also need to solve a  reasonable number of practice tests before you take the real exam. That will help you to assess your topic-wise preparation level and concentrate your preparation on weak areas. It will also give you a chance to be familiar with the variety of Java certification exam questions and set the right expectations. For example, if you are preparing for OCAJP 8 or OCPJP 8 and you want to take a look at some of the sample questions you can try Whizlab's Free OCAJP 8 Practice Questions.

Choose a Good Exam Simulators

Even though you can easily clear the OCAJP, OCPJP, or OCEJWCD exam without buying an exam simulator, I strongly recommend buying a good simulator for doing better. They help you to score high as well as improve your knowledge of Java programming language by presenting some tricky and hard questions. I have learned so many core Java concepts by doing mock tests because I found my mind is more attentive when I do mock tests in real exam like scenario.

You should find a quite place for 2 and half hour and do the mock tests to check your knowledge, speed and accuracy. Once you done with the mock tests, you first analyze each wrong answers and why they were wrong. After that, you should also check right answers and explanations given by Whizlabs or Enthuware, Sometimes you discover information you didn't know.  This is the best way to take most from your mock tests.

If you are preparing for OCAJP 8 and OCPJP 8, I recommend you to buy Whizlab's Java 8 Exam simulator, you can get 25% discount if you buy both OCA and OCP simulators, just use the coupon code "JAVACOMBO2"

Join a forum

In order to do well on Java certifications like OCAJP, OCPJP or OCEJWCD,  you have to keep yourself well-informed as well as motivated. By participating in a good Java certification forum you will not only know about recent changes in exam topic or structure but also read many success stories of Java certification candidates. This will give you an opportunity to check your preparation process and learn from their experience.

It is also true that when you prepare for Java certification, you get doubts and you need someone to help you and provide guidance. By registering in a good Java certification forum like CodeRanch or Oracle Java certification forums you can post questions and discuss certification exam preparation related queries. This will be helpful for your study.

How to Prepare for Java Certifications

Useful Resources for OCAJP 8 and OCPJP 8 Exams
OCAJP 8 dumps pdf
OCPJP 8 dumps pdf
OCAJP 8 (1Z0-808) Books and Study Guides
OCPJP 8 (1Z0-809) Books and Study Guides
OCAJP 8 (1Z0-808) and OCPJP 8(1Z0-809) Exam Simulators
Free OCAJP 8 (1Z0-808)  and OCPJP 8 (1Z0-809) Mock Exams
OCAJP 8  and OCPJP 8 Syllabus

Useful Resources for OCAJP 7 and OCPJP 7 Exams
OCAJP 7 (1Z0-803) books and Study Guide
Free OCAJP 7(1Z0-803) and OCPJP 7 (1Z0-804) Mock Exams
OCPJP 7 books (1Z0-804 and 1Z0-805) Certification guides
Java Certification Simulator for 1Z0-803 and 1Z0-804

Useful Resources for OCEJWCD 6 Exam
OCEJWCD 6 (1Z0-899) Books
OCEJWCD 6 (1Z0-899) Free Mock tests

That's all about how to prepare for Oracle Java certification. You can follow these steps to prepare actually any Oracle Java exams e.g. OCAJP, OCPJP, Oracle Certified Expert, Java EE 6 Web Component Developer, and Enterprise Architect level exam e.g. OCMJEA. All you need to do is choose the right book, right exam simulator and right forum to discuss your queries and problems. That should do the trick.

All the best for your Java certification preparation.


  1. Every issue of Java Magazine ( publishes sample questions for both OCA and OCP, with very detailed answers, including advice on how to handle other similar questions on the exams. The section of the magazine is written by one of the authors of the certification exams.

  2. Nobody in the industry cares about certificates for a programmer. In fact, when we have one in the interview we go extra hard on him to let him show he doesn't know jack shit.

  3. Here are some of the free Java certification dumps and sample questions from the Oracle itself:
    8 questions -
    8 question -

    They just contain 8 to 10 questions but very useful and not easy to answer, so you can check how ready you for the real exam.