Please note that this post is related to a previous version of the Specialist exam. For the current version, check here.
How difficult is it to pass the Tableau Specialist certification exam? Here’s my experience:
So what’s the exam like?
- I had a lot of trouble logging in to the virtual machine to actually start the exam. On my first attempt the proctor spent about a half hour with me trying to get me logged in, but then realized that the virtual machine was not working at all, so I rescheduled. The second time it took about 45 minutes for the proctor to suggest trying to take the exam on a different computer. I switched computers, and was finally able to log in and take the test.
- There are the same number of questions as on the Tableau Qualified Associate exam, but there are fewer hands-on questions, and the hands-on questions are much simpler… no calculated fields, just simple aggregation (sum, avg), filtering, sorting.
- A few of the knowledge based questions asked about features that I hadn’t heard of before, so I found myself googling for at least 3 or 4 of them to try to find an answer. I skipped quite a few questions that initially puzzled me, and came back later.
- Some of the knowledge-based questions ask you what steps to do to perform a task. I found it helped to open Tableau and test things, to verify the best answer to the question.
- Compared to the Qualified Associate exam, one test taker commented that the Tableau Specialist “has incredibly easy hands on part. But the theoretical questions are the vast majority and are almost same as in the other exam. Maybe just more theoretical.” I would agree with this – the hands-on questions were very simple, but the knowledge based questions seemed about as difficult as the one on the Qualified Associate exam.
I finished about 15 minutes early and got a 92% correct.
Also check out Chelsea’s post on the exam or take my Udemy course which includes two practice tests and videos covering all Specialist topics.
Note that this post applies to an older version of the Specialist exam. Here’s the post on my experience with the current version.