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Today I took the SAS Certified Base Programmer Exam and passed! I wanted to share a few thoughts for people who are interested in taking the exam.

1. Ensure that the exam material is relevant how you use SAS. The certification is extremely detailed and mainly covers data importing, basic data manipulation and basic reporting (full description of exam content). If you use SAS primarily for predictive modeling purposes and already have an established method of getting data into SAS, this exam may not be a good use of your time.

2. Buy the exam book. Unless you have been using SAS for years, you won’t be able to pass the test without it (and even if you have been using SAS for years, I’d be shocked if you were able to pass without this book). Ensure that you read each chapter and make flashcards along the way. Also, take the practice exams at the end of each chapter and record which questions you got wrong. Then revisit those questions periodically until you are able to complete all of the practice exams with 90% or greater accuracy.

3. Consider purchasing the practice exam. I was not excited to shell out another $55 for this test, on top of the cost of the book and the cost of the exam, but it was definitely worth it. This is far more robust than the book and is very representative of the type of questions you will see on the exam.

I hope that this was helpful and good luck with your studies!