- Microsoft Exam Formats and Question Types
- SQL Server Learning: Basic Query_ OFFSET-FETCH; LEAD AND LAG; RANK
Last Updated on August 15, 2022 by Sean Lee
According to Microsoft:
“To protect exam security and the value of our certifications, we do not identify exam formats or question types before the exam. Microsoft continually introduces innovative testing technologies and question types and reserves the right to incorporate either into exams at any time without advance notice.”
However, in order to better prepare for the exam. it is critical and always helpful to know the question type and be familiar with the exam format. Listing below are the different types of questions you probably will find in the 70-461/70-761 exam:
1. Multiple Choice_ Single Correct Answer
You have certainly seen this question type in many other exams. On most Microsoft exams, the vast majority of the questions will be multiple choice. This item type presents a scenario, a question, and often a minimum of four answer options.
Multiple choice questions fall into two categories: one category is a question in which you choose a single correct answer, that is, you choose one correct answer from a few (usually four) possible answers. Here the choices are listed as radio buttons instead of checkbox. Below is an example of such a question:
One variation of this kind of multiple choice questions is referred to as Best Answer. It is a standard multiple-choice question that may have one or more correct answers, but exam candidates must pick the BEST answer.
Please see the official video on Best Answer question type by Microsoft below:
2. Multiple Choice_ Multiple Correct Answers
Another category of multiple choice questions is a question in which there are multiple correct answers. You must choose all of the correct answers to answer correctly. In this category the choices are listed as checkbox. Here is an example of such a question:
See a video from Microsoft on Multiple Choice question below:
3. Repeated Answers
Repeated answer choices are like multiple choice questions, but with a much longer list of options from which test-takers must choose one or more correct answers.
These questions appear in sequence, and each question in the series has the exact same answer options as the previous question. Each question is worded slightly differently but with the same set of answers, however, the answer could be different for each question. This type of questions is somewhat more challenging as the correct answer is different even through the choices are the same and the question may be very similar.
Below are two example repeated Questions:
See a video from Microsoft on Repeated Answers questions below:
4. Drag and Drop
This type of questions will ask you to drag the objects from the given list of options and drop them into the appropriate target location. This might get tricky since there might be cases when the same answer option needs to be dragged multiple times, but sometimes all of the options are used, sometimes some are left unused. Below is such as a question:
You can watch the official video on Drag and Drop question type by Microsoft below:
5. Build List
This is a kind of Drag and Drop type question but you need to put your selections in the correct order.
You will see two boxes. The box on the left contains a number of smaller boxes, each of which contains the item you may need to drag and drop into the right box. The box on the right might be empty. You must drag the objects from the box on the left into the box on the right and arrange the steps so that they are in the correct order. Here is an example of such a question:
You can watch the official video on Building List question type by Microsoft below:
6. Active Screen
These questions have a screen shot of GUI tool where you have to fill out the screen by choosing options on the screen. To correctly answer Active Screen questions requires the exam candidate has hands-on knowledge of a given scenario. This type of questions often appears in SQL server admiration exams such as 70-462 Administering Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014 Databases.
Below is such as a question:
You can watch the official video on Active Screen question type by Microsoft below:
7. Hot Area
Hot area questions are similar to multiple choice questions, but rather than selecting a text-based answer, you are required to click on one or more “hot areas” within a graphic.
Hot area questions use a split screen. The actual exam question appears at the top of the screen and the graphic on which you have to click the correct answers appears at the bottom. The graphic is usually a copy of a dialog box from the software on which you are being tested.
You as a test taker will be able to quickly identify selectable elements as they are marked with a border and are shaded when you move the mouse pointer over them. Clicking an element will select it and will be identified as such when the area around the element turns gray. If the test taker wishes to make changes to their selection or selections they can either click a single choice a second time to deselect it or click the Reset button to reset that entire question.
Below is an example of such a question:
You can watch the official video on Hot Area question type by Microsoft below:
8. Short Answer (Write SQL Code Snippets)
This type of question will require a test taker to actually write the code into a text box/area. The questions test your hands-on knowledge of the correct code use, the proper order of the code and syntax of the code.
You might be asked to either writing a stored procedure, trigger, user defined function or similar code snippets. SQL Keywords are provided in a separate tab to assist you with writing code. There will be no intelligence when you start writing your code in this text area.
People have seen this type of questions appear in both Exam 70-461 and Exam 70-761. Below is an example of such a question:
You can watch the official video on Short Answer question type by Microsoft below:
9. Case Studies
Case study questions are found on some of the more advanced Microsoft exams such as Exam 70-463 Implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014. Case study questions start by providing a long and detailed description of an organization’s current state and its goals. You can expect to receive six to ten or even more questions based on this information.
The questions themselves are usually just multiple-choice questions, but you have to base your answer on the case study information. You will have to spend more time reading through the case study than you would with other questions. You will also need a high level of reading comprehension to extract the information required to answer the questions presented in the case study.
Here is the official video on Case Studies question type by Microsoft:
10. New Question Type that You Can’t Review: Yes/No Questions
About a year ago Microsoft introduced a new question type: Yes/No Questions.
In this new type, what you will see is a series of multiple choices questions that state a problem, a potential solution, and then ask you to indicate if the solution solved the problem (by selecting “Yes”) or not (by selecting “No”).
One thing is particular for this type of questions: you can NOT return to questions, review, and possibly change your answer, as a result, these questions will not appear in the review screen.
You will see the instructions preceding the questions like the following:
This question is part of a series of questions that present the same scenario. Each question in the series contains a unique solution that might meet the stated goals. Some question sets might have more than one correct solution, while others might not have a correct solution. After you answer a question in this section. You will NOT be able to return to it. As a result, these questions will not appear in the review screen.
Below are two example yes/No Questions:
Here is the link you can read for the Yes/No Questions type by Microsoft:
Revisiting a New(ish) Question Type: Understanding Questions that You Can’t Review
In the next several classes in this Exam 70-761 Mini Crash Course, we will learn how to answer the various question types in detail.