for passing the CISSP Exam and gain certification
What is the CISSP?
It consists of ten bodies of common knowledge:
On the Day:
Rule number 1, start with at least eight hours of sleep; it’s a good idea to formulate your strategy on how you’re going to answer the questions and how you will prepare yourself mentally. My decision was to complete all the easy questions first and highlight questions I considered to be a challenge, as:
- no idea
The idea was that I would come back to them once I had gone through the whole exam. This way you’re always moving forward and not getting stuck on questions.
I had 5 hours to complete the exam this gave me a little over an hour to work through allotments of 50 questions (that equates to approximately 1 minute and 12 seconds per question). Keep in mind some questions are so vague and confusing that you may sit there for 4 or 5 minutes just trying to understand what’s going on. The way I mitigated this was that if I had no solid idea within the first 10 seconds I graded the question so I could come back to it again.
Arrive at the exam location at least 20 minutes before you need to go into the room. Don’t talk to other candidates as most of them will only confuse you with their wrong answers their to practice questions, or you may get psyched out if you meet someone who knows more than you, especially if they don’t seem confident of passing the exam.
The exam will be heavily supervised and the officials are very strict, so don’t even think of cheating. Further, you will be told that any hint of cheating will have you removed from the room and your exam papers destroyed. Your not permitted to take any papers out with you after the exam and you’re only allowed 3 or 4 toilet stops.
The exam is paper-based featuring a numbered booklet and a computer test sheet both of which are provided. I was advised to bring some number 2 grade (2B or HB) pencils to mark answers. My seat for the exam was assigned and I was asked to record exam booklet numbers on the answer sheet. We were told that different versions of the exam exist, and the pool of questions is said to be 1200. The questions in the pool change each year. This keeps the exam current and incidentally prevents knowledge of questions from leaking out.
Since the exam is not given on a computer, no result was available when I finished. The Web site currently advertises an 18 day turnaround, but some CISSPs tell me it can take longer. By the way, if you pass you'll never know your score, if you fail, you'll get a score and pointers to the areas you had trouble with.
You will hear many people say that the exam was very easy for them. I am not one of them, so treat this exam light hearted at your own peril. My exam was challenging because if you thought about the questions thoroughly there could have been any number of possibilities to the answers.
It’s up to you to eliminate the less correct answers. As a guide this is how I studied for the exam, I studied 4 nights a week for a minimum of 3 hours a night for 4 months, and I passed on my first attempt.
Remember the exam is a mile wide and an inch deep so you need to get a good understanding equally across all ten domains. I would suggest learning everything in this study guide and using the CISSP Tutor tool to see where your weaknesses are. Then go and purchase the relevant materials to strengthen your knowledge in that area. Also, all the questions you will find are always loosely related to the real questions, this is because the pool of 1200 ISC2 questions are changed every year. So the most important thing is to get advice from a current CISSP like myself and use all the tools, study guides, and questions at your disposal to make you a finely tuned analyzing CISSP machine.
Best of luck.
QNA-Group CISSP Team.