Jeanne’s experience taking the 1Z0-819 in the time of COVID-19

Update (11/05/2020): Read The 1Z0-819 Exam page to learn how you can easily our Java 11 Study Guides to prepare for Oracle’s 1Z0-819 Exam, as well as the 1Z0-817 Upgrade Exam.

I took the 1Z0-819 exam today. I guess that makes me “triple qualified” having already passed the 1Z0-817 upgrade exam and the 1Z0-815/1Z0-816. I took the AWS Associate Architect exam two weeks ago.

COVID-19 logistics

I’m not willing to take the exam online so I signed up at a local testing center. I took this exam at a different center than where I took the AWS one since it wasn’t offered there. This exam center is a short bus ride away. (The AWS one was walking distance.) Overall, I think this center handled it better. They have more space so I was naturally further away from other people. I was also given hand sanitizer immediately on entry.

I was asked to take off my mask twice (once to verify I match my id and once to take a photo). That seems like it could have been combined.

Writing instruments

I haven’t been offered pencil/paper at an Oracle exam in years. This was the first time I wasn’t given an eraser for the erasable board. The proctor did come by towards the middle to see if I needed a second one though. (I did not).

Getting the score

I received my score immediately on completing the exam. It appeared right when I clicked finish. I was then given a printout saying “Your exam results are not available at this time… 30 minutes”. It looks like they are transitioning how it works. I’m happy to get a real time score again though! It’s been a while. (My score was 72%. That’s just barely passing. But that’s a story for another blog post)

Exam timing

You get 90 minutes to answer 50 questions. I can easily imagine someone running out to time on the exam. I finished going through a first pass of all the questions with 30 minutes left. However, I essentially skipped two (aka I guessed.) They weren’t hard – about control/flow. But they were time consuming. And I wanted to use the remaining time to go through the questions again to make sure I could say that our Complete Study Guide prepares you for the 819 exam. And it does.

Test taking skills are definitely important on this exam. For example, I looked at the answers before reading questions with a bunch of code. This gave me a clue what to look for. And also told me that I could read faster if there was “do not compile” option.

Question Distribution

When taking an exam, you have to agree not to share what was on it. So no details about what was covered. Sharing the distribution of questions by objective is fair game though!

Objective# Questions
Working with Java Data TypesAbout 5
Controlling Program Flow3
Java Object-Oriented Approach10-15
Exception Handling4
Working with Arrays and CollectionsAbout 4
Working with Streams and Lambda Expressions10
Java Platform Module System4
Java I/O API3
Secure Coding in Java SE Application2
Database Applications with JDBC1

(The counts don’t add up to 50 because a few questions covered multiple objectives for the early objectives)

815 vs 816 topics

Our books are labeled with 815 and 816. On the 819, it was split almost evenly. However, the difficulty of questions was uniform. It was just the topics that got distributed.

Where the topics what expected?

Almost. Enthuware wrote that doPrivileged was on the exam. We had used the Secure Coding Guide when writing our security chapter. Oracle updated the guide since the 816 came out. They also revised the exam. The word “privileged” was not in the objectives for the 816!

Should I take the 817 or 819?

Those who hold a Java 6, 7 or 8 certification are eligible for their choice of the 817 or 819 exams. They cost the same. The 819 allows half the time, but has a little over half the questions. So you have less time per question on the 819. Additionally, the 817 passing score cutoff is a bit lower.

While the 817 has a lot on modules (3/10 objectives), there are a lot of topics on the 819 not on the 817 (concurrency, secure coding, JDBC, localization, and annotations). Combined with the longer time for the 817, you are likely to find it an easier exam.

An important disclaimer about randomness

With only 50 questions, randomness is a bigger factor. This means you could easily not see questions on a topic. Or get more than someone else on another topic. Be careful as you read the experiences of people who have taken the exam. Just because they didn’t get a question on X doesn’t mean that you won’t! So you don’t get to skip studying topics.

35 thoughts on “Jeanne’s experience taking the 1Z0-819 in the time of COVID-19

  1. Can you please write a blog about the topics we need to study from OCP 815/816 study guide? As per Enthuware team. they cover almost everything But bigger concern is that they seem to cover a lot more than required.

  2. Hi my son who graduated from high school this year is going for java certifications . He is studying for OCA 808 . After reading your article I am confused should he go for 808 , will it be waste of time or he should start preparing for 819 as you said by studying your book on 815 , 816 , 817 , which I have already ordered . Please guide me thanks

  3. Hello, I have OCA 8 and now I want to prepare for OCP. Which would you recommend, OCP 8 or the new OCP 11 ? Are there many differences…? Thanks in advance.

  4. Thank you for reply Jeanne

    Your blog mentioned the chapters to study under particular section but they do not mention chapters according to exam’s objective.

    I was asking to develop the following helpful approach which you have used in your books

    Java SE 11 Programmer 1Z0-819 Exam
    Study Guide
    Exam Objective Chapters
    Working with Java data types
    Use local variable type inference, including as lambda parameter 1, 12

    Thank you,

  5. @Muhammed: There are no full chapters you can skip. This means you have to read all the chapters, just skipping what we mentioned is now out of scope. 99% of the book still applies

  6. @Dimitri: Correct. I did not have the strikethrough feature either. (Scott and I took the exam at different locations in different states for what it’s worth)

  7. Is there any difference in the Certification we receive through passing 815/816 and 819?, do they print the year(2019) like what they did in 815/816 certification?.

  8. Hi Jeanne. I am planning to take 1z0-819 soon. I am following your 815 and 816 books for my preparation. As you mentioned that doPrivileged is a new thing on 819, it would be immensely helpful for people like me if you could write a blog post or add some resource somewhere on the wiley website explaining the topic. I tried reading it on the secure coding guidelines page but I felt it is complex. As your books have covered the entire breadth of syllabus, I request you to fill this tiny gap with a blog post. Thanks in advance 🙂

  9. Hi Jeanne,

    Your all the posts about certifications are really helpful 🙂
    I am a Java 6 certified guy and was planning to upgrade my skills and now decided to go for certification but I am still confused between 1z0-817 and 1z0-819. I am experienced Java Programmer and focusing on covering more concepts then just passing the certification.
    Please share you suggestion on this.

  10. Hi,

    I am kind of a beginner in JAVA and willing to take an exam.
    Which Exam should I take? Can you suggest.

    It would be of great help, If I can get some advice for my better career.

  11. Hi authors, i’ve just got the OCA 808 exam, i’m very grateful of your book, it helped me a lot.
    Now, I want to prepare for OCP so i’m confused betwen OCP 819 and OCP 809. Which would you recommend(in medium term and long term) ?
    Thank you very much.

  12. @Yassine: The 809 is the follow on to the 808. It is less work to pass the 809. However, it covers Java 8 not Java 11. And at some point (my guess is in 2021), the 809 will go away. So if you plan to take a long time to take the next test, the 819 might be better

  13. Nicholas aged 16 has just achieved the 1z0-819 certification, thanks for the content of the book.

  14. Dear Jeanne & Scott,
    on your 1Z0-819 exam page regarding the changes, I can’t find annotation processing. On the official oracle page it says you should know it: “Create, apply, and process annotations”.
    The complete study guide does not include it. Should I study it independently before taking the 819 exam?

  15. I got the 1Z0-819 exam certificate recently after 2 month’s preparation. I completed Java OCP 11 Programmer I Study Guide and Java OCP 11 Programmer II Study Guide, and took the exam.

    I am delighted that Jeanne and Scott’s guidance, and were excellent. Without their guide, it is one of the tough exams I think. The books also answered many ‘why’ questions that mean the content of the book is not only exam scope also covers some challenges in daily work as a software engineer.

    I would like to say big thanks for sharing your experience through books, that was so insightful. Finally, I enjoyed reading your books.

    Just general insights I got during the exam.

    1. Time management (don’t get stuck. if you are not sure or not understand what questions are asking, just skip it and come back later)

    2. Random is a big factor (scope of questions are various.)

    3. Well preparation and good read mostly pay off. That means please spend dedicated time for preparation. Without preparation, you will lose money and get frustration. Because the exam is designed for you to fail it.

  16. 1Z0-819 must be one of the hardest exams to pass. It covers a broad spectrum of topics. Some questions which cover the basics are actually tricky. Many hacks. One thing I was surprised to see was a FileChannel question. Another was simple but so convoluted that you had to do some calculations on paper and could easily get lost – this is time consumer.

  17. Hi everyone,
    About the 1Z0-819, do you plan to release a specific book for prepare it? If not, I imagine the best way to prepare it is through the complete study guide…
    I passed the OCA8 recently, do you think it would be enough if I study only the Programmer II Study Guide or it still would be neccesary the full guide?
    Thanks in advance.

  18. Hi,
    In 1Z0819 exam, is ‘assertions’ topic included as it’s been given in your complete Study Guide?

  19. Hi Jeanne,
    Please clarify one more point if you still remember this.
    When the time given for the exam is running out, the exam ends by itself with automatically taking all your answers or you have to push some submit button to finish the exam correctly in order all answers are taking into account? If you do not push the finish button before the exam time expires, are the answers counted as a result?

  20. @Maksym: I’m, 90% sure it automatically submits. But I’ve never let the timer run down to zero to test that out.

    The answers do get saved when you move between questions which is why I’d expect it to work.

  21. Hi,

    I am almost ready for the exam, i have a question for you. Had the exam software something to mark a question for review later. Like in enthuware software.

  22. Does Oracle still give the success kit (printed out certification, passer’s ID/license) for the passers?

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