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What does 2 to 3 years java programming experience mean to you??
Summary: What does "2 to 3 years java programming experience" mean to you? We are asking for members to write
a short statement of what this phrase means to them to gain more insight into what this requirement means. The value
of this exercise is to help AJUG members find jobs by being better prepared. Please read on for more details.
The objectives of the Sun Certified Programmer test are stated at a very high level, are difficult to understand, and are
not useful as a basis to prepare training materials such as test questions. How do you ask someone to demonstrate
competence in the following Sun objective:
"Identify correctly constructed source files, package declarations, import statements, class declarations (of all forms
including inner classes), interface declarations and implementations (for java.lang.Runnable or other interface described
in the test), method declarations (including the main method that is used to start execution of a class), variable
declarations and identifiers."
The java certification group is addressing this problem by producing what are called behavioral objectives or learning
objectives. These are statements describing behavior that a programmer can perform in order for an observer to infer
that the programmer knows the material. The previous Sun-stated objective would be decomposed into many learning
objectives such as:
"Given a request to define a class that involves and one or more interfaces, write the class definition that implements
These learning objectives have given us a very clear target to shoot at. They are provide a basis for constructing
sound test questions.
We are wondering if these objectives could also be used to help Java Programmers find jobs. For example, could they
help job seekers break the invisible barrier called " 2 to 3 years java experience". Is doing the 2-3 years time really the
requirement here? I think not. So what is the real requirement?
This information is valuable because it provides the applicant many creative ways to demonstrate the skills that the
employer is really looking for.
As in many business markets, the seller (employee) can add value to the buyer’s experience by helping the buyer
(employer) understand their needs. If I need a vacuum, when I start shopping I don’t know a thing about vacuums but a
good retailer will help me determine my needs first, and then sell me the right vacuum based upon those needs. Ok. So
you say you need a java programmer? And off we go...
It seems to me that these learning objectives possibly with some augmentation could be used as a substitute for this
erroneous job requirement.
So here is where experienced java programmers can help. How would you describe this job requirement in a statement
of scope (no more than a paragraph)? This statement would describe the capabilities of a person that has completed 2-
3 years of java programming. It could include information about dimensions such as the efficiency of performing the
task, tasks beyond the basic programming tasks, complexity, etc. Whatever differentiates a person that enters the 2-3
year time warp and the person then leaves it.
I plan to compile these statements and map them to our learning objectives looking for goodness of fit.
If I get sufficient feedback, I will compile the results and publish them to the members that contributed so please take a
little think time and send me your views.
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