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How Peter Cracked His CISSP Exam

My journey to CISSP began in December 2016. I was sent on a week's course, but it seemed more of an overview and I clearly wasn't ready. Life got in the way and I sporadically studied with good intentions, but

So last August I decided to throw myself into it and I did....studied on the train to work, every weekend I split baby duties with my wife so I got 2 half days, and nearly every evening I studied,7 days a week.

Got to Christmas and felt ready to take exam, but my boss pulled me into something then I had to reschedule. New Year came and felt I wasn't as ready as I had a break of Christmas (who wouldn't?), so again rescheduled, but threw myself into it. And then I hit a wall! A BIG wall. The information just wouldn't soak in as much...I was tired, over worked but I kept going....still nothing....and I lost confidence.

So I decided to book myself into bootcamp, which I did. I learned nothing new, BUT, what it did do was condense the 8 Domains into 5 days (12 hour day classes + 3 hours evening study). We worked on the concepts.... we worked on UNDERSTANDING the concepts, NOT remembering the concepts.... And we did NO practice exam questions.

Exam came and it was crazy...crazy questions. My advice is just UNDERSTAND the concepts. Remembering like a brain dump will absolutely not work because of how the questions are structured. They test your ability to understand. Its not easy and sometimes you have to choose the 'least stupidist' answer...and hope its one of those 25 eval questions. I used the Sybex books, 11th Hour, Sunflower and LinkedIn Learning Mike Chapple videos as my core.

After Xmas I added Luke Ahmed's StudyNotesAndTheory resources and they helped MASSIVELY. The journey to CISSP is long, it's hard....It feels like you are Frodo on the journey to destroy the Dark Ring and the Dark Ring is the CISSP manual, but once you complete the exam and pass...oh my days does it feel good. I actually cried and hugged my tutor upon receipt of the results....I'm a grown man and I was reduced to tears!

Good luck on your journey..... It's well worth it!

So today I have completed my journey to CISSP, passing my exam this morning, 1st time round at 108 questions. I can tell you a few things. A manager's hat is essential and understand the concepts. That's a lot of study, a lot of hard work, you gotta live the life and put the work in. There are no short cuts. To be honest the only materials I would use would be Luke Ahmed's SNT and Sybex books. The exam is crazy and there are no comparisons. Luke's practice questions help you go through the concepts. Take my advice and use them.

I want to thank Mark Gosden who has truly adhered to the ISC2 ethics of 'Advance and Protect the Profession' by being in my corner, encouraging me and answering every question I threw at him, including a constant stream of exam questions! A true friend and professional - Note I put friend first!! - Just don't put water near his seat!

Thanks Everyone! Good luck on your journey.


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