2 Books to Prepare Oracle Java Certification Exams - OCA and OCP Java SE 6,7, 8 OCPJP 8

There was a time when Sun Certification was very hot and programmers feel proud of being Sun Certified Java Professional(SCJP). After Oracle took over Sun in early 2010, it changed names of all the examination from SCJP to OCPJP or OCJP, and now OCA and OCP for Java SE 7 and Java SE 8. I see there is a lot of confusion among certification nowadays, but essentially they are of the same level at previous SCJP. Since Java gets new language features with every new release, subsequently a new certification title is introduced. I am not agreed with upgrading your Java certification with every release, it doesn't make much sense to me, but many programmers prefer to get certified and keep it updated.

By the way, many Java programmers also ask me, whether doing Java certification benefits in a job search or in a long-term Java programming role, In short, Yes, they do. You can read my response to my post does Java Certification adds value to your career.

This post is not about debating Java certification, but about preparing for them. I received a lot of emails from my readers when I wrote my post Top 5 Java Programming books, and they asked me for the suggestion on how to excel on Java certifications like OCPJP, books, and resource to prepare, etc.

In this post, we will see a couple of good books prepare for OCA (Oracle Certified Associate) and OCP (Oracle Certified Professional) for Java SE 8 exam. In short, you can call it OCPJP 8.

Apart from the book, you should also use the exam simulator, preferably from Whizlabs, which I have personally used and liked it.  Whizlabs has two exam simulators for Java SE 8 exam, OCAJP 8 exam simulator, and OCPJP 8 simulator, they will help you to get familiar with exam patterns and types of questions asked in the actual exam.

OCA Java SE 8 Programmer Exam Book

The latest Java certification is Java SE 8 Associate and Programmer exams with exam code 1Z0-908 and 1Z0-809 and you should the OCA:Oracle Certified Associate Java SE 8 Programmer I Study Guide: Exam 1Z0-808 1st Edition by Jeanne Boyarsky (Author), Scott Selikoff (Author) book to prepare the first exam. Since there are not many choices available, you have stuck with it but nevertheless its a very good book, covering all new features of Java 8 and exam syllabus.

2 Books to Prepare Oracle Java Certification Exams - OCA and OCP Java SE 6,7, 8 OCPJP 8

For Java 8, you can also use thesefree OCAJP mock exams to get familiar with the format and difficulty level you can expect in the real exam.

By the way, I have shared a lot of resources and tips for doing well on Java certification which you can find on this blog. For example, to start with you can check this article to join some excellentJava certification courses and read this article to find some good books depending upon which version of Java certification you are preparing.

2 Good Books for OCPJP 7 Java Certification

The following are a couple of books for Java SE 7 Certification exams. These books are pretty much standard and everyone follows them, they are also updated to cover the exact syllabus of OCA or OCP Java SE 7 exams.

1) OCA and OCP Java SE 7 Programmer I & II Study Guide (Exams 1Z0-803 & 1Z0-804) (Certification Press)

This book is a revised and updated version of Kathy Sierra and Bert Bate's best seller SCJP Sun Certified Programmer for Java 6 Exam 310-065. Since things have changed, the book needs to be updated as well.

Books from this author for Java certification is pretty much like a textbook for OCPJP, as everyone advised about them and almost everyone who passes Oracle Java certification follows them. One thing, which is worth noting,

If you are not already SCJP or OCJP certified professional and becoming Oracle certified professional first time, then you need to pass two exams to become Oracle Certified Java Professional 7, instead of one.

There are two certifications as of now:

Oracle Certified Java Associate 7 ( OCA ) or Java SE 7

Programmer I Certification Code : 1Z0 - 803

Certification Cost : $300

Oracle Certified Java Professional 7 ( OCP ) or Java SE 7 Programmer II

Certification Code : 1Z0 - 804

Certification Cost : $50

Thankfully this book covers both exams. As you can see in the title as OCA/OCP Java SE 7 Programmer I & II Study Guide (Exams 1Z0-803 & 1Z0-804). If you just want to prepare with one book, this is the one. As per my experience combination of one book + a couple of mock tests from Whizlabs and other simulators can be really handy, and it’s much better than preparing through multiple books.

OCA OCP Java Certification Books

OCA Java SE 7 Programmer I Study Guide (Exam 1Z0-803) (Oracle Press)

This is another Java book, which can be handy to prepare the first part of the OCJP 7 or Oracle Certified Java Professional 7 exam. Since this book is from Oracle press, you can expect them to follow the syllabus and cover things that will be subject to examination. By the way, the book is currently available on Amazon Kindle as well and you can buy it here from Amazon.

2) A Programmer's Guide to OCP Java SE 7 Certification: A Comprehensive Primer (4th Edition)

When I prepared for SCJP, a long time back, I followed one book + many exam patterns. Though I followed the Java Certification book from Khalid Mughal, It seems this book will cover, what needed for Java SE 7 exam.

Khalid Mughal books were quite popular earlier but it seems Kathy Sierra books have been more popular nowadays. Nevertheless, I expect it to be a good book, given the author’s previous record.

Good books for Oracle Java Certification

3.Oracle Certified Professional Java SE 7 Programmer Exams 1Z0-804 and 1Z0-805: A Comprehensive OCPJP 7 Certification Guide By SG Ganesh and Tushar Sharma

This is another worth noting book to prepare the OCPJP 7 exam. This is the only book available for OCPJP 7 currently in the market, so if you are going to give an exam in a near time, you only left with this book.

I haven't read this book completely, but the good thing is that it covers all topics and contains 2 mock exams, which gives the feel of real exams.

The quality of questions in the pre-test is also good but better than many online materials. Ganesh and Sharma's book are only options right now for giving OCA or OCP Java SE 7 exam.

best book for Java SE 7 Certification

Lots of things have been changed from original SCJP exams to this OCJP 7 exam, including two exams, but I believe the fundamental pattern of the exam will remain the same.

Since there is a lot of material available FREE of cost on the internet, preparation is not that difficult, but you need to get syllabus right.

I also suggest taking relevant mock exams from Whizlabs e.g. OCAJP and OCPJP7 Exam Simulator contains lots of questions with the actual difficulty level.

You can also try these free OCAJP 7 mock exams, those are really good, they help you to be familiar with exam patterns and types of questions asked on the actual exam.

I have used them in the past and really impressed with the quality. Not only giving their test but also learning from there an explanation and finding a reason why a certain choice is good and others are not.

Java Certification Books for SCJP 6 and OCAJP 8

Some of my readers also ask me books for doing SCJP 6, or better known as OCJP 6 or Oracle Certified Associate, Java SE 5/SE 6. Since Java 1.6 is still used a lot in Investment banks and other software companies, there is no harm in doing SCJP 6.

Though if you ask me personally, I would probably recommend doing Java Certification for Java SE 8 version. Anyway, if you are still pursuing SCJP 6, the following books can help you to prepare well.

SCJP Sun Certified Programmer for Java 6 Exam 310-065 By Katherine Sierra and Bert Bates

This is the most respected Java Certification books and a lot of programmers have already used this book to clear SCJP 6 with a brilliant score. It is highly popular from the older days of Sun Certification and one of the most recommended books during SCJP 5.

It covers complete topics, presents lots of subtle details, and brings on several confusing, interesting Java questions.  If you can, read this book two times before setting up for SCJP, it's worth it.

Though I prefer to read multiple books to get the view from different authors, as some author connects to me more than others if you are running short of time and have a goal to become Oracle Certified Java programmer within a few months, I think following only one book is enough, provided it covers everything.

In short, if you already finalized the examination date or purchase exam voucher with limited validity then start with SCJP Sun Certified Programmer for Java 6 Exam.

OCP Java SE 6 Programmer Practice Exams

This SCJP book is also from the same authors, but it only contains a mock question and practice exams. It's a good supplement to the earlier books and together with the form best study material for SCJP 6.

Apart from these two books, you can also read Java language specification as it's from Oracle itself and it also provides lots of useful information with good examples. If your goal is to score more than 90% marks then you can also try Java Certification simulators from Whizlabs and Enthuware.

I have personally used Whizlabs exam simulators for SCJP and found it very useful. Their quality of the question, the pattern is very close to real exam and most wonderful thing about their product is the detailed explanation of each question and options. You will not only learn why a particular option is correct but also why other options are not correct.

That's all about some of the best books to prepare for Oracle's Java Certification for Java SE 6, 7, and 8. If you are looking for a course to prepare Java SE 8 certification then Oracle Java Certification - Pass the Associate 1Z0-808 Exam! from Udemy is a good place to start it. It explains new features of Java 8 like lambda expressions, streams, functional interfaces, Optional, new date, and time API and other miscellaneous changes required for the OCAJP 8 exam.

Useful Links

David Mayer's 1Z0-808 and 1Z0-809 dumps

OCAJP 8 Syllabus and Exam objectives

Register for OCAJP 8 Exam,

Best Exam Simulators for OCAJP8 and OCPJP8

Best Java 8 Books for further reading

Benefits of doing Java Certification

Practical tips to Prepare OCAJP8 Certification

Thanks for reading this article so far. If you have found these books useful for Java SE 8 Certification then please share with your friends and colleagues. If you have any question or feedback then please drop a comment.

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