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Do you guys read the books first or watch videos? I don't know which I should be doing. I already read, but Kelly Handerhan videos really help me out. 

6 Replies
Advocate I

Everyone learns differently.


I've done classes, watched videos, and read books. I also feel that doing practice tests/exercises is a good thing.


For me, whether I'm doing a class or watching a video, I like to have notes that I can follow along, and return to as needed.  I've actually gotten frustrated with some video classes when I don't have this and basically have to take a lot of notes.


For me, I read the CBK book and did exercises and passed.  But I have been in the field awhile, done prior classes and such, so that worked for me.  Might not with others.  YMMV.

Newcomer I

100% agree, we all have our own method to work through material.


I would personally go through any video material first, because I tend to find them more engaging in shorter bursts (when I have 10-15 minutes to kill, or concentration levels are lower). I would typically try and do any pre-assessment questions, and prioritize my studies accordingly.


I'm busy preparing for my CCSP at the moment, and this is the method I am following, but I do this for all my certifications:


- Decide on material (based on reviews and recommendations). This usually ends up being a blend of about 70% official material, and the rest being articles, blogs, opinion pieces, etc.

- Take pre-assessment to identify weak areas, and prioritize my study time accordingly

- Watch the videos I have and read the required material from books. Reading tends to happen in the mornings, videos in the evenings. Personal preference, my energy levels dictate this 🙂

- As I finish specific topics or sections, I make a point to put together a high-level (5/6-slide deck) overview I present at our internal competency forums on what I've learned and how it applies to me, my role, and the business. This is a nice way to not only gauge my own understanding and progress, but it also instills confidence with my employer that I'm committed to my cloud security journey.


Just my 2c...

Community Champion

Most importantly use the exam outline as your study guide. Align your study material to each and every job task to be successful.


Thank you so much for your response. I am working on getting all the methods together so I can pass this exam. 

Newcomer I

First, best of luck with your studies and exam!


As an earlier poster pointed out, everyone learns differently, and I think all of the above suggestions are good. For me personally, I try to work as many practice test questions as possible when studying for a certification. That helps me identify where my weak spots are so that I can focus where I need to study more.


Chuck Kesler, MBA, CISSP, CISM
Viewer II



You need to have a proper study plan that you put together to pass this exam. Here is mine: