Took Another Exam Yesterday: Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Microsoft Excel

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Three days ago, I got a free coupon from Microsoft to take the 70-779 Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Microsoft Excel exam. It is currently in a beta mode, which means you don't get your result immediately until they've used the pool of beta testers to set an appropriate passing score. 

Also you don't get any preparatory materials -- no recommended study guide nor guidance from people who have taken the exam before sharing their experience online in forums. It is expected that you are an expert already in the domain the exam tests and can depend on your technical expertise to face the exam without any elaborate preparation.

In fact, they even let you select to do the exam online using your home office or room as the testing center. And that was the option I picked as I don't trust that the Nigerian testing centers will let me do an exam at their place for free (without paying directly to them).

It was no easy task setting up my sitting room as a testing center. I had to clear everything except the sofas, center table and dispenser. Then the test guide (called greeter) from the testing platform provider (Pearson VUE) had me use my webcam to show him a 360 degrees view of the room and then the ceiling and the floor. Not even phones were allowed close to me. Then I mustn't stand up or stay out of the webcam view throughout the over two hours exam or I am disqualified and exam cancelled. No one must walk in or speak to me. The whole set-up was a very tense one. I had to hold out my wrists so he can be sure I have nothing concealed there and that I am not wearing a watch. Also he had me open my computer Task Manager and guided me to close all other applications including ones that run in computer background -- like Dropbox, iCloud and Google Drive. 

The exam was over two hours long. Though I spent about one hour 45 mins, using my sofa and center table as desk made it a very uncomfortable and tiring exam for me. But I performed very well, by my own judgement, but will have to wait till November before I will see my results.

If you are interested in taking any Microsoft exam, especially ones you can do right from your home without needing to be at the scheduling mercy of a proctored exam center, visit 


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