As of now, Oracle isn’t allowing developers to take the OCA 8 + OCP 7 to get OCPJP 8 certified. This means that some readers who have already bought our OCA 8 book might want to take the OCA 7. (In particular, those who need to get OCPJP certified by September or so and don’t want to take the beta exam.) Those new to Java/certs and just starting out now aren’t likely to find this constraining and can take the OCA 8.
I’m predicting the OCP 8 exam will be released in September because:
- The beta is launching April 25th.
- I’m guessing they will give two months taking us to June.
- Then Oracle needs 10 weeks to prepare the real exam taking us to September.
The beta is good because is is $50. It is bad because it is longer and you don’t get your score for months.
How do I “backport” the book for the OCA 7 exam
This matrix compares the OCA 7 and OCA 8 exams. This means you can read the OCA 8 book to study for the OCA 7 exam with the following changes:
- Skip the section on dates/times in Chapter 3.
- Skip the section on lambdas/predicates in Chapter 4.
- Skip the parts about static/default methods in interfaces in Chapter 5.
You’ll slightly overstudy this way. For example, OCA 7 doesn’t ask you to describe encapsulation. But not by any significant amount.
What JDK should I use?
Remember to either use a Java 7 JDK or compile with the -source 1.7 flag. For example:
javac -source 1.7 Jeanne.java
This will ensure you aren’t accidentally relying on a Java 8 feature. For example, the final keyword works a bit differently in Java 8. Not in a way that affects the OCA exam scope. But you could get confused if compiling with a different version