Last month I passed the MCTS 70-445 BI exam.
This makes me one of the 338(October, 2007) Microsoft Certified Technology Specialists worldwide! (Nr. of MCP’s worldwide)
The 70-445 exam is the first Microsoft exam I tried. After some research on the internet I only found reactions from people that concluded that this exam was a very hard one.
So why is this exam difficult? I think it’s because of the amount of detail in the questions. You can expect very detailed questions about, for example, properties of SSIS, SSAS and SSRS.
Let’s look at the exam topics of exam 70-445: (full list:
The following list includes the topic areas covered on this exam. The percentage indicates the portion of the exam that addresses a particular skill.
• Managing SSAS (12 percent)
• Developing SSAS Solutions by Using BIDS (18 percent)
• Implementing data mining by Using BIDs (12 percent)
• Managing SSRS (13 percent)
• Developing Reporting Solutions by Using SSRS (19 percent)
• Developing Business Intelligence Solutions by Using SSIS (16 percent)
• Administering SSIS Packages (11 percent)
Notice that data mining is an important topic of this exam. I know that a lot of people score poor on the data mining questions so take your time to master enough knowledge!
A lot of the questions have focus on deployment and maintenance. This exam is not about, for example, SSIS tasks and transformations but it is about the deployment of SSIS packages and the working and use of transactions.
I used the 70-445 Training Kit from Microsoft Press to prepare for the exam:
This book will help you a lot while preparing for the exam! It is full of effective information and contains a lot of hands-on labs and test questions. A must have, if you ask me!
Number of questions and completing time
As last I can tell you that the exam contains 53 questions and you have 150 minutes to complete it. You will have time enough, so don’t worry about it. You need to score 700 points out of 1000 to pass.
The 70-445 exam is multiple choice, there are no questions that you need to answer by typing text.
There are 3 types of questions:
This type of question is the easiest one. One answer can be selected only. I think 60% of the questions are of this type.
This type of question is harder then type 1. More answers can be selected. In this example only 2 answers should be selected, this can vary. I remember questions with 3 answers that should be selected and also questions where you will be asked to pick 1 or more good answers. I think 25% of the questions are of this type.
Question type 3 is the hardest. You need to slide 1 or more good answers to the right and arrange them in the right order. I think 15% of the questions are of this type.Please not that if you answer 1 of more possible good answers right(with question types 2 and 3) you get 0 points. So no partial correct answers possible!
Below some links to other useful sites/weblogs about the 70-445 exam:
- Andrew Sears’s “Microsoft BI Certifications” article on SQL ServerCentral.com
- Eralper’s blog
- Peter Koller’s blog
- Wavesmash’s blog
- Gunter Staes’s Blog
- Microsoft’s preparation guide
If you have any questions, leave them as a comment and I will answer them, if I can. Also, if you have any information regarding the 70-446 MCITP exam, please leave a comment.
Update: I recently passed the 70-446 Microsoft IT Professional(MCITP) 70-446 “PRO: Designing a Business Intelligence Infrastructure by Using Microsoft SQL Server 2005” exam and wrote a blog about it. Read it here.