It was Thursday, February 12, 2009 at around 9:00 PM, when I asked my younger sister to help me on reviewing for my ISEB ISTQB Certification examination for Software Testing. Even though I have not yet completely scanned the whole contents of the manual, I requested her to ask me ‘anything under the sun’ questions based on Chapters 1 to 6 and Appendix Section. Apparently, I was only able to correctly answer almost 30% of her questions.
My excuses: (1) I have not yet re-read the manual; (2) I have not yet eaten my dinner; and (3) Honestly, I’m in cramming-mode.
After finishing my dinner and helping my sister Googling my cousin’s homework about ‘outer space’, I took one ‘MemoPlus Gold’ capsule. Then, I went upstairs, set-up my black Logitech speakers in my bed, connected it to my black iPod Nano 3G, and played repeatedly Bob Marley and the Wailers’ Three Little Birds song. After that, I started reading Chapters 3 to 6 of the manual.
What happened next? I felt asleep studying. I was awaken at around 2:30 AM. It was already Friday, February 13, 2009. Friday the 13th, the day of my ISEB ISTQB Certification examination.
Three Little Birds was still playing. I pressed pause icon in my iPod and checked the manual on what chapter I stopped reading. Alas, I was almost done. I stopped at the last part of Chapter 5. I set a 5:00 AM alarm using my black Sony Ericsson K800i. The plan was to finish reading Chapter 6 by the time my phone alarms. Before starting to read Chapter 6, I set Fall Out Boy’s Sugar, We’re Goin Down song in Repeat-Play mode.
Phone alarmed. I was done scanning Chapters 1-6. I prepared for my 7:00 AM work at UBP, Ortigas. I prayed to God; I drank a cup of coffee; I took a bath; I wore my clothes – a black and semi-fit Bench polo-shirt, a straight-cut and low-rise Bench jeans, a black pair of socks, a black Mario D’Boro leather shoes; I brushed my teeth; I took my black Oxygen leather body bag; I wore my iPod; I ensured that I have not forgotten to bring anything – these includes my handkerchief, mobile phone, and requirements for the examination; I went out our home at around 6:00 AM while smelling the scent of Friday morning.
On my way to office, I took a tricycle and then a bus. While in the bus, I scanned one of the three mock exams that I’ve taken during the Saturday review sessions. I was sleepy while scanning the mock exam. Obviously, that’s the effect of a 4-hour sleep. I took a 5-minute walk from the bus stop up to the building where I am working. While walking, I scanned the second mock exam. Since it’s a payday, I was also able to withdraw cash in an ATM machine.
Inside the building, I took the elevator, pressed no. 32, and logged at around 6:30 AM. I was one of the two early birds for that day.
I booted my Dell workstation, opened the monitor, logged in using my Enterprise ID and password, opened Microsoft Outlook WebAccess and checked my e-mails. Since there are no interesting e-mails, I went to a convenience store, MiniStop, and bought ‘Bacchus’ energy drink and ‘Tic Tac’ mint flavor. I went back again to my workplace and from there I begun doing my tasks. Actually, I was multi-tasking – training/reading KT materials; scanning the first mock exam; training/reading KT materials; scanning the first mock exam.
My ISEB ISTQB Certification examination was scheduled at 9:45 AM at the Central Business District of Makati City. It’s an hour away from my office if there is no heavy traffic. The plan was to leave my workstation at around 8:15 AM and be back right after the examination.
It was already 8:15 AM. My journey to a destination was about to begin. A destination that will help me prove to myself and to others that I’m really deserving on what I’ve decided seven months ago. A destination that will help me pursue my goals in life. A destination that will mold me to become a better person.
I walked with my headphones on. I rode MRT train at Shaw Boulevard Station and got off at Ayala Station. Again, I walked with my headphones on. I arrived in front of the Corporate Center at around 9:15 AM. Since I still have time to relax, I went on the other side of the road where 7/11 convenience store is located. I bought a bottled mineral water <insert brand here>.
It was 9:20 AM when I went up and arrived at the waiting area of the examination location. I registered, left my passport, company ID, and shoulder bag even my hanky. Guess what? I didn’t surrender my pocket-size, silver-plated papal cross – a confession revealed. haha By the way, that blessed cross was given to me by a close friend.
Exam proper: 1-hour was alloted for the 40 multiple choice questions. That would be 1.5 minutes per question. 26 questions must be answered correctly to passed the certification or a resource must get 65% correct answers.
Things I did during the examination:
- I prayed before starting to answer the first question. The miracle prayer.
- I marked the questions that I’m not sure of the answers.
- I mentioned a name to myself. One of my crushes to inspire me.
- I tried to understand the questions by heart.
- I went back on my marked questions.
- I literally maximized the allotted time.
- I waited for the time to reach 0 second.
- I clicked finish button.
- I saw a green bar on my screen.
- I smiled and thanked God for passing the certification on a Friday the 13th.
After the examination, I answered a short survey and waited for my temporary certification printout. I saw the next batch sitting in the waiting area. I knew that they will also pass the certification. I just simply knew.
By the way, you might be asking what’s my score? I’m proud and happy to say that I only got a single-digit mistake out of 40. To everyone who were involved in making this thing happen, thank you.
“This part of my life… this part right here? This is called ‘happyness’.” Christopher Gardner