The day has finally come to take your Azure exam! You’ve spent months going over the course material, the interactive diagram, the flash cards, and taken the learning activities and practice test multiple times! You are as prepared as you’ll ever be.
If you’ve never taken a certification exam before, this can be a scary event. I’m here to tell you that it shouldn’t be scary. In fact, here are a few tips and tricks on exam day to put your mind at ease and help you perform the best you can on your Azure exam.
- Rest and eat breakfast
No matter what, make sure your body, and most importantly, your brain is fueled. This is more important than you think. Get enough rest the night before and make sure to get some sustenance. This will serve you well during the exam and will prevent you from “forgetting the name of that one service” or even worse, passing out!
- Have your route mapped in advance
Make sure you have enough time to get to your testing center. Give yourself at least an extra 10-15 minutes. Ideally, you want to arrive at the testing center 10 minutes early to give yourself enough time to walk in and wait in line or perhaps go to the bathroom (recommended). If you are taking the exam from your home or office, have your entire desk cleared (including the floor and walls). If you have external monitors and you are not using them, you will need to show the exam proctor that they are unplugged using a camera. Check the system requirements here!
- DO NOT CRAM!
Do not continue to study up to 2-3 hours before the exam. Everything you need to know is already in your head. Everything else, you will not retain, and will just jumble up and create additional stress which is not helpful. Start to go over terms and scenarios in your head, but don’t try to learn anything new until after the exam.
- Have your documents ready
Have your government ID ready to present to the exam proctor. Also, print out your exam purchase confirmation and present this to the exam proctor. Leave all other personal items at home or in your car. This includes your cell phone, loose change, pens/pencils (they will be provided), hair ties, and any other accessories. Please, I beg you, please don’t write anything on your hand or try to tuck a cheat sheet in your sock or shoe. They will check these places beforehand, so save yourself the embarrassment of getting caught cheating.
- Dump your brain
As soon as you sit down, before the exam begins, write down any essential items on your provided board with marker (or pen and paper). This will help you clear your mind for the upcoming questions and also serve as a way to jog your memory.
- Skip questions, if necessary
Don’t be afraid to skip questions. You can always mark the question and go back to it at the end of the section. This is a recommended method to not get hung up wasting time, but also can be useful if a different question reminds you of how to solve the previous. This has happened to me many times. Some questions you may not be able to return to. You will be warned about this prior to clicking on the next button. Read the instructions carefully and you will be fine.
During the exam, you will be filmed, so try not to look around, put your hand over your face, or act like you are reading or talking to the person next to you. They will warn you about this prior, but if you continue, they may disqualify you from taking the exam and you will get a failing grade. This is not meant to scare you, but simply to ensure that you follow the directions and not create unnecessary distractions for you and for others taking their exam in the same facility.
In summary, if you follow these steps and you have memorized all the content in the course, practiced, and studied effectively, you should be able to focus on nothing but the content of the exam on the big day.
I wish you the best of luck on your exam!
Once you’ve completed the exam, please share your achievement on the Linux Academy Community webpage. From all of us at Linux Academy, we look forward to hearing from you!