I recently concluded my Cisco CyberOps Scholarship program on October 20, 2017. With the conclusion came the second (210-255) of the two test to achieve your CCNA CyberOps certification.
I am sitting to write this post after several weeks of having already sat for the exam. I want to cut to the chase and report that I failed. Not once, but twice. Yes twice. I went into the the test having taken the same steps for studying for all my tests.
- Familiarize myself with the material
- Note taking
- Walk the blue print
Walking the blue print is probably the most important part, I know that if I can answer the material found on the blue print I would be able to answer the questions on the test. It was no different in this case. I was familiar, overly familiar. and.. I failed my first attempt. After posting a fail I immediately scheduled for a second attempt.
My second attempt was ten days away. I was still a bit down on myself from posting a fail but I went to take my test with assurance that I would pass my second attempt. Question 60, the last question of the test. I’m feeling good at this point, I used reasoning from my first failed attempt to justify my answers on the second attempt, I click finish… My heart sank. On the results screen read..
“We have regret to inform you…”
I was beside my self. I was upset and didn’t understand what had just happened. I called my fiance to tell her the results. She replied with comforting words, she assured me that I was still a great engineer despite failing the test. I felt embarrassed. An NP level engineer can’t pass an NA level test? I was broken for a day after posting my second fail.
I sat to compare my results from the two attempts. I posted a 792 on both attempts. Missing the mark of 820 by one or two questions. When comparing question categories, my results from my first attempt to my second showed that I had increased in some areas and decreased in others. Based on these results, I realized that my failure wasn’t a fact of not understanding the technical material but perhaps it was the state of mind I was in when I had taken the tests.
It would have been nice to walk out the scholarship program with a new certification, but what really matters is that I have a much better understanding of security. This understanding will help with my daily operation as well as my career development. I will continue to learn as much as I can in all realms of IT. For now, I will wait before deciding to attempt the test again. For those of you studying for your certifications; keep going, work hard.