As a trainer of CIW courses I have used the official CIW curriculum materials created by ProsoftTraining.com to train the CIW Site Designer course. This book is 'Endorsed by Prosoft' so the book very closely follows the official courseware. This makes it ideal as a self study guide because it gives you extremely similar content to the official course materials. The writing style is good in that it is fairly easy to read and not too technical. There are some sections that you may not agree with (particularly regarding e-commerce practices) but you will just have to suspend disbelief until you take the exam because what CIW says is gospel as far as the exam is concerned. The only side to this book that does not reflect the instructor-led course materials is that on the instructor-led Site Designer course there is a large amount of time set aside for learning FrontPage, Dreamweaver and Flash. There are no exercises for any of these packages within this book and only one chapter to cover them all. There will be some questions in the exam of the form: "Which Dreamweaver menu would you use to choose the option 'Preview in Browser?" so you really need to familiarise yourself with these packages before you take the exam. (The answer is the 'File' menu, by the way.) Of course if you already know these packages that will not be a problem for you. If you are new to the applications you will just need to scour the web for tutorials or buy some more books! CIW exams are extremely fair in that all the test questions come from the study materials (unlike Microsoft exams in which you can be tested on obscure command line parameters that you would not read about in your average exam guide ...) This fact means that if you can read and retain the information in the book (and know the applications mentioned above) you will pass the test. Unfortunately there is a lot to read! As standard with these Sybex Study Guides the book comes with sample questions at the end of each chapter (and also in electronic form on the CD). These questions are not exactly like those you will see in the exam but they are of a similar searching nature that really makes you think. If you can answer all of these you will be well prepared for the exam. Overall this is a very good book.
32 people found this helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
Although the book contains loads of useful information which probably can help with the exam, half of it is simply out of date! At least the things I know of - like using tables for web layout???? so it makes it difficult to trust the book ...