A lot of people wonder what TOGAF really is, TOGAF is an acronym that stands for the The Open Group Architecture Framework–yes it’s a mouthful and you’ve probably never heard of it before, but I personally believe architecture is a great place to be in these days, and ever since I moved into solution architecture (slightly more than a year ago) I’ve never regretted it.
Studying for the exam was straightforward enough, and the entire exam takes about 2.5 hours, not bad in comparison for the 4 hour PMP exam or the 3.5 hours for the CCBA. However, where TOGAF slightly differs is the fact that the certification involves two exams, aptly called part 1 and part 2.
Part 1 consist of 40 multiple choice questions, and unlike most other examinations this one has 5 possible options. In my opinion this is actually the harder of the two exams, but this one is a pre-requisite for part 2. If you fail part 1, you go home.
Part 2 consist of 8 ‘complex scenario questions’, which unlike the straightforward questions in part 1 consist of a complex scenario and 4 possible answers. However, the scenarios are quite elaborate AND take time just to digest and read –let alone answer. Once you’ve digested and truly understood the question, there’s still a matter of choosing an answer from a list of 4 possible answers–the only catch is that the answers aren’t right or wrong–there is a gradient to the answers and only the ‘fully right’ answer scores you full marks, the other ‘partially right’ answer score you fewer points. The last thing to note about part 2 is that it’s open book, which is helpful only if you know where to find the information from the 700 page TOGAF documentation.
Resources for taking the Exam
By far, the most important thing you want to do before taking the exam is to actually attend a TOGAF training. While it is possible to take the exam without the training–I would strongly recommend it. The training I took (almost a year ago) was done in Malaysia by the Architecting the Enterprise. As far as I know they’re the only providers of TOGAF training in Malaysia–I could be wrong.
Another essential component of preparing for the exam was the TOGAF documentation itself–the training course provides the the pocket guide to TOGAF which is great for some ‘light’ reading but in my opinion insufficient for the exam. I’d recommend starting with the pocket guide to get an overview of TOGAF but at some point start reading the full documentation in it’s PDF format (which is the same document you’ll get in the exam).You could buy the hard-copy, but at 75 EURO it maybe too expensive for most, especially when a book isn’t as searchable as a PDF.
Other great resources available online which include this great video that provides a high-level overview of TOGAF. In fact, I recommend starting off your TOGAF studying journey with the video. However, the best online resources would be the free practice exams you can get from www.theopenarch.com and this one from Chris Eaton (which is actually the same as the 3rd exam on the open arch). There’s also a great demo exam on the TOGAF website.
Also if you’ve taken the TOGAF training, you get free practice exams from the provider–but no sweat because you can download a free practice exam from the TOGAF website for part 1. The practice exam for part 2 cost USD0.99 from TOGAF. However, be warned, the practice exam is the exact same thing as the one the training provider will give you.
I especially enjoyed my time preparing for the TOGAF certification–and hope you enjoy yours too. Good luck!
For those interested in taking the course, here’s an email I received from Architecting the Entreprise:
[box icon=”chat”]We Architecting the Enterprise are running a one off special for our upcoming Kuala Lumpur course commencing Tuesday, 7 October 2014 as noted below. Something to cheer you up.
TOGAF® 9 for Practitioners (Level 1 & 2) •Kuala Lumpur : Oct 7 – 10th
Special Price of US$1,800 per person for this 4 full day accredited course inclusive of the combined exam voucher. This course is normally US$2,894. This special offer gives you a good 37% discount.
If you like to take a refresher and take advantage of this offer, please contact us as soon as you can.
Please do feel free forwarding this email to your friends/colleagues who may also be interested.
Also as an value add on top of this offer, we are providing free access to our Enterprise Architecture for Telecoms (Foundation) Online course (valued at $165.00). This course is designed to provide an example of how the Telecoms industry integrated TOGAF® with their existing industry best practice framework. Even though the industry market might not be relevant to you personally, the insight in how you could incorporate TOGAF® with other frameworks would be of real value.
We look forward to hearing from you. Have a great day!
Tel: +61 (0) 2 8935 9466 or +44 (0) 2081 229 150
Quotes are valid for 30 days