Beta exam MB-500

Today I took the beta exam MB-500: Microsoft Dynamics 365: Finance and Operations Apps Developer; I think it’s going to be made generally available on January. I was already planning to take it when I received an email with a significant discount, therefore I had no reason to hesitate.

They didn’t show me my score – they’ll do it „within two weeks after the exam’s live publication date“. But I don’t think I have to worry…

I usually dislike many exam questions – they’re often vaguely formulated, outdated, off the exam topic, testing things that are easy to test but irrelevant and so on.

Questions of this exam are firmly on topic – I don’t remember any where I would question whether the topic itself is relevant. But there are surely things to improve.

Here a few examples:

All answers of one question mention an action in GUI which simply doesn’t make sense, so technically neither answer is correct. It’s clear that the actual question was about something else, but it may be confusing and it doesn’t look very professional.

In one lab, the ALM process described there doesn’t make a good sense to me and it goes directly against Microsoft best practices, therefore I don’t think it’s a good idea to put it there. Then you must answer questions not based on how things should be done in practice, but what fulfills the artificial restrictions – and hope that authors of the exams didn’t forget about them when defining “correct” answers.

In one question, I was asked to implement a very common piece of code, but the options didn’t include any of the ways how it’s normally done. What I assume is the right answer is technically correct, but nobody would ever do it and I don’t believe that many people remember the method – I didn’t it. I’m convinced that this isn’t what exams should test.

I also found some basics mistakes in code, such as incompatible types that would cause failure already on compilation, or answers that can be correct or not depending on context (which wasn’t provided).

After taking an exam, there is time for evaluation and I was keen to cover all these points in detail there. But the time allocated was completely insufficient; then it simply kicks you off. And when I got a warning popup that I had only one minute left, the UI became unresponsive and I was unable to complete at least the thing I writing at the moment. Effectively, I got even one less minute that intended.

It sounds pretty strange to me – you invite somebody to take a beta exam and give you feedback, but they you make providing detailed feedback impossible. The time slot for evaluation should be longer – even for regular exams, but especially for beta exams that should be all about collecting feedback. And a bit more review of technical correctness wouldn’t harm either.

8 Comments

  1. I’ll take the examen in 2 weeks, I’ll add my feedback as a comment over here as well!
    As for now, I’m prepared to rush within the feedback opportunity time window 😉

  2. Can we have those ‘beta’ exams stopped and rather get ordinary exams that don’t contain flaws / issues?
    Just wondering what would non-insiders / employers think if somebody shows a ‘beta’ exam in their CV…

    • I don’t think it’s the case. I won’t get any special ‘beta’ thing – I have to wait until the final version is released and then I’ll get exactly the same thing as if I passed the exam after the release date.

  3. Hi there,

    I firstly went through all the study material they indicated for the exam. No retail component, imagine my relief when I saw that.
    I took the exam 5/12. I would definitely agree with Martin. There are a lot of relevant questions for me, but a lot of badly formulated ones as well, where no answer is correct. I even had a few where all the answers are correct.
    I also found that the test was highly inconsistent. In some examples, they will go into the grainy detail of “right-click” being one of the answers and in other examples they will exclude that.
    I think if MS can devise a test where the test is consistent, there are definitely wrong answers and at least 1 right answer, and they use the same terminology in the exam as in the study materials, then it would be a good test.

Leave a Reply to Michael Wilhelm Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published.