Yesterday I went and took the Microsoft Office Specialist exams for Word and Excel 2016. Happy to say that I passed with flying colours! The exam was unlike anything I have taken before, it was 100% performance-based.
The exam consisted of 7 projects, which are pre-generated Word or Excel documents (depending on which exam you are taking) and you are asked to perform 5 different tasks against each project.
I mainly used content from my workplace for study, although I did purchase the textbooks too (however I didn’t have time to read these; I basically flicked through them on the train on the way to the test centre) I would advise that anyone who wants to take the exam focus on the practical skills rather than reading materials, as the exam is 100% performance-based so reading materials is only going to be useful for recall e.g. where certain functions and options live. I’ve used Word and Excel for over 10 years and have used Office 2016 since it was released, so I am quite familiar with the software anyway. Oh and for excel, brush up on your functions!
When you pass a Microsoft exam you are issued with a digital badge (see above) – I have wanted to spend some time researching digital badging but haven’t got round to it yet. It was good to see how this works with a big vendor such as Microsoft (and Acclaim, they are the badge issuer) and familiarise myself with the process. I received my digital badge straight after the exam via email.
I’m going to make a note to myself to actually take a look at how this works in more depth at some point. But for now, celebration!