The test was 114* minutes for 78 multiple choice questions. There was a small amount of math (1 question.)
Why was I surprised? That boils down to two answers. The first is that there were about 10-15 questions that were about concepts that were not in the testing material (self study book or the supplemental case study.) The second was that about half the test was a level of questioning akin to the SPHR rather than the previous 8 tests I had taken through this certification track.
When I state the questions were SPHR level, the questions were not straight forward what is X? In stead you had to use your knowledge of the concepts and vocabulary to extrapolate and think about the situation presented and each of the answers for the best answer (as sometimes two or three were correct, just one was better than the others.) Considering the majority of the previous 8 tests were much more straight forward and representative of the material rather than its applications this was… challenging.
I was also surprised that not a single one of the “Test your knowledge” or end of module questions were utilized, as had been on the previous 8 tests. That and there was no survey afterwards to give feedback about the test itself.
The one math question fits into the category of “was not in the preparation material.” I took a guess at how to calculate the answer. For having numerous equations and financial concepts, to ask about one NOT in the material felt underhanded.
I feel that the materials provided did not accurately prepare one for the test.
While I did pass it, I don’t feel much satisfaction from doing so.
Considering much of the material for the course was a repeat from a number of the other courses, having this new test added to the required track for certification just feels like a money grab rather than actual preparing and ensuring one is knowledgeable on the topic and can act in a means to benefit their organization or advance their career.
I recognize the course (and thus also the test) is new. There are many bugs to work out.
*6 minutes for the “tutorial” if one has not taken a test before. If you don’t use the full six minutes then you lose that time, it is not added to your time for the “real” test.