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TOGAF 9.2 Certified

I recently finished the TOGAF 9 Part 2 exam.  Believe it or not, this exam is the follow-up to the TOGAF 9 Part 1 exam.  Having completed the Part 1 exam and certification process already, completing this exam upgrades my certification from TOGAF 9 Foundation to TOGAF 9 Certified.

If you don’t know what TOGAF is, or are unfimilar with the Foundation certification see my post on the Part 1 exam.

About the Exam

There are a couple things to be aware of with Part 2.  First off, it is an upgrade to Part 1.  This means that all the concepts are the same.  The big difference is that Part 1 focuses on knowing the TOGAF Standard, and its components.  Part 2 focuses on how it is used.  It’s also worth noting that the TOGAF 9 Certified certification replaces the TOGAF 9 Foundation certification.

The exam, on paper, looks deceivingly easy.  It is all of eight questions long.  No, these aren’t 8 questions with 14 sub-parts.  Nor are they simulations or other types of questions.  Just eight questions, with four answer choices each.  To pass you need to score at least 60%.  Also, each answer is weighted with the most correct answer being worth 5 points, the second best is 3 points, the next is only 1 point, and the worst answer will get you 0 points.  If you do the math, you can pass by getting the best answer five times, and completely missing the rest.  You could also get the second best answer for all eight questions and still pass.  The test is also open book.

Sounds easy, right?  Well, here’s where that takes a bit of a turn.  The questions are scenario based, which means there’s a lot of reading during the exam.  Also, because the answers are weighted it means it can be difficult to pick which of the four choices really is the best.

How I prepared

I took the Part 2 exam a week after I did the Part 1, so all of that studying was still fresh.

I picked up the Official  TOGAF ┬« 9 Certified Study Guide

For this exam I decided to try one of the practice tests in the back of the book first, and use that to guide my studies.  I found that with the knowledge I had after my Part 1 training, combined with some critical thinking and I was able to pass the practice test with flying colors.

I then went through the questions a second time and I ranked the answers from what I thought was best to worst.  I had about 85% accuracy with that, so I felt confident enough in my understanding that I went ahead and scheduled the test.

The Exam

As usual, this is a proctored exam from a Pearson VUE test site.  The exam experience was uneventful.  I’ve taken plenty of tests at this site, so getting in and out was a breeze.

The one thing about the exam that I will say is that critical thinking is important.  You need to be able to evaluate four different answers to a scenario, and at times it can be difficult to really decide which one is best.

TOGAF 9.2 Foundation Certification

About the Exam

I recently passed the TOGAF 9.2 Part 1 exam.  This is an Enterprise Architecture exam from The Open Group.  The Open Group is an open group (who would have guessed?) that includes a number of big names.  You can read more about them at their site: https://www.opengroup.org/

The TOGAF certification actually contains two parts, Foundation and Certified.  You can earn the Foundation certification, and then upgrade to the full Certified status by completing an additional exam.  You can also sit both exams back to back and go directly to the Certified status.  More info on the certification can be found here: https://www.opengroup.org/certifications/togaf

For me, since I’m new to the TOGAF standard, I decided to do the Foundation exam first, and once I’ve finished that then move on to the Certified upgrade.

How I Prepared

For my study materials I bought the TOGAF┬« 9 Foundation Study Guide – 4th Edition

After reading through the book I think it’s a decent read.  It can be repetitive at times, but since some of the concepts are new to me I actually think it’s helpful.  There are practice tests included in the book, and they are almost identical to the separate practice tests sold by The Open Group.  If you get the book then I wouldn’t bother getting the practice tests.

I also watched Pluralsight video series on TOGAF. The thing I liked about the video series was the use of a fictional enterprise that was going through an Enterprise Architecture process.  In the Study Guide I had some trouble really understanding what some parts would look like in practice, so this material helped fill in some gaps.

There’s also the TOGAF library which contains a lot of useful information about the TOGAF standard.  However, for this exam that material really isn’t needed.

Taking the Exam

The TOGAF exam was similar to most other Pearson VUE exams.  The registration is done through The Open Group’s site, which redirects you to the Pearson VUE site for scheduling.  I was able to take the test at the same site I’ve used for Cisco and VMware exams, so the test environment was quite familiar.

The test itself is pretty straightforward.  It’s 40 questions, all multiple choice.  The passing score is 55% with each question equally weighted.  That means if you get at least 22 correct you’ll pass.  Since it’s not an adaptive test you are able to go back and review questions prior to completing the exam.

I really didn’t find the exam to be too terribly difficult.  There were a few questions that I had to guess on, but I was confident on about 70% of my answers.  Since the passing score is 55% I didn’t worry too much about the ones I was unsure of, and I ended up passing.

What’s next

It can take up to 6 business days for the score report to become official.  I am planning to start studying for the TOGAF Certified exam, and I hope to sit the exam in 2-3 weeks.

Update: I took the exam after, and wrote another post about it.