March 5, 2021
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Programming Certifications: Java 2

  • By Steve Rowe
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Sun Certified Developer for Java 2 Platform

This certification is for the programmer who is already well versed in the basics of the Java 2 language and syntax. This certification will require you to apply your skills and knowledge with the Java 2 language and the J2SE platform in the creation of complex, production-level applications. You will be required to have passed one of the Sun Certified Programmer exams, mentioned above, before attempting this exam. To attain this certification you must successfully pass two steps, as described next:

  • Successfully complete the Sun Certified Developer for Java 2 Platform Programming Assignment (CX-310-252A)
    • This assignment requires you to perform the job tasks that will demonstrate your advanced abilities with Java 2 technologies. You will be required to complete four parts to the assignment, as described next:
      • Create a GUI that demonstrates principles of good design
      • Have a network connection with a specified protocol. This connection will be used to connect to an information server of some type.
      • Have a network server that will connect with a Java technology database that has been previously specified.
      • Take a previously written piece of code and extend the functionality to create a database. Sun notes that limited documentation for the code will be available.
    • $250 price to complete this step
    • 320 out of 400 points are required to pass this step
    • Assignments are delivered via CertManager database
  • Pass the Sun Certified Developer for Java 2 Platform Essay Exam (CX-310-027)
    • 4 total questions
    • $150 price
    • Delivered at authorized Prometric testing centers
    • 120 minutes allowed
    • Evaluation of the essay exam and the successful completion of step 1 determine the over score for certification.

As mentioned earlier, once you pass a Sun Certified Programmer for the Java 2 Platform exam you can move in two different directions. One direction was to move to the Sun Certified Developer for the Java 2 Platform as we just covered, and the other path is to venture into the J2EE territory for the Sun Certified Web Component Developer for J2EETM Platform.

Sun Certified Web Component Developer for J2EETM Platform

This certification is best suited for a Java developer who is interested in Web application development. The person who holds this certification will show specialization in using JavaServer PagesTM (JSP) and Java Servlet technologies to create Web services and dynamic Web content using the J2EE platform. You will only need to pass one exam to attain this certification, as described next:

  • Sun Certified Web Component Developer for J2EE Platform Exam (CX-310-080)
    • Price — $150
    • Sun Certified Programmer for the Java 2 Platform (any version) is a prerequisite.
    • 59 Total Questions
    • 61% correct required to pass
    • 90 minutes allowed to take the exam

Sun Certified Enterprise Architect for J2EETM Technology

This is the final Java 2 certification currently offered. This certification is designed for architects who design and architect scalable, highly secure, flexible, enterprise J2EE applications. You must successfully complete three steps to gain this certification. All three steps will examine you on designing solutions with topics such as Enterprise Java Beans, common architectures, protocols, messaging, security, internationalization, and design patterns. The three steps you must successfully complete are described below:

  • Step 1 — Sun Certified Enterprise Architect for J2EE Technology, Knowledge-based Multiple Choice Exam (CX-310-051)
    • $150 — Price
    • 48 Questions
    • 68% correct required to pass
    • 75 minutes given to complete the exam
  • Step 2 — Sun Certified Enterprise Architect for J2EE Technology, Assignment (CX-310-300A)
    • $250 — price
    • Successful completion of the exam in step one is required
    • Tasks for the assignment are based on the eleven objectives required to master for this certification.
    • This assignment is delivered via CertManager Database
  • Step 3 — Sun Certified Enterprise Architect for J2EE Technology, Essay Exam (CX-310-061)
    • $150 — Price
    • 4 Questions
    • Successful completion of Step 1 and submission of the project given in Step 2 are prerequisites for taking this essay exam
    • 90 minutes are given for this essay exam


As you can see, there is plenty of opportunity to test and qualify your skills with Java 2 technologies. To repeat, Sun recommends 6 to 12 months of job experience with these technologies before attempting Java certifications. Since the certifications center on typical job tasks, the experience with Java technologies will certainly bolster your chances of success with these certifications. If you are relatively new to Java 2 technologies, it is advised that you educate yourself on Java 2 language aspects and platforms as you are gaining job experience. Sun offers a solid line of training classes that will help you, and there are plenty of Java 2 books available from computer book publishers.

As you begin to pursue Java 2 certifications, be sure to have several study sources and take the time to practice. Several training guides and cram books exist to help you learn more about Sun's objectives for the preceding certifications. If you learn better from instructor-led classes, research the different training centers, technical schools, and colleges for the best prices and top quality instruction. Look for training that gives you plenty of hands-on experience with the Java language, platforms, and tools. Having solid Java skills along with the certifications to boast your abilities as a competent developer with Java technologies will bolster your resume and job satisfaction!

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This article was originally published on August 1, 2003

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