I am sitting in my hotel room at the end of the first day of the first meeting of the Association for Dynamics Professionals’ GP Examination committee. What a day! Although the meeting was all day, with only the requisite breaks to get us around federal sweatshop laws, it didn’t feel I’d been there very long when I left. I think we all could definitely have kept going if the official agenda had allowed for it!
Aside from myself (off camera), that group you see to the right are the folks who I get to work with on the Exam Committee. From left to right, I got to spend today with:
Mike McDowell from Mekorma
Mark Polino from Integrated Business Group
Tan Le from IBIS
Belinda Allen from Smith and Allen
Brian Deming, DynamicsPro’s own Executive Director
David Rozsa, Acting Director of Credentialing for DynamicsPro
Tanya Henderson from S2 and
Bob McAdam from Dynamics Communities
We also had a guest appearance from Andy Hafer, who tweeted this picture earlier.
Having never been part of anything like this before, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. The association team, Brian and David, did a great job explaining to us what was expected, and some of the best practices in setting up a credentialing exam. Once we got through that and some introductions, we dug right in on designing the structure of the exams. This involved deciding, based on the exam purpose, what general categories we felt the exam should cover. Within those categories, we then identified some specific section sub topics that the we felt must be covered. While a topic would include questions on other subtopics, we felt there were certain sub topics that should always be there.
The discussion about what should and should not be covered was very thoughtful, a lot of fun, and in some cases very passionate. In the end, the motions were raised, seconded, and passed and we officially had the frameworks for the first 2 certification exams for the Association of Dynamics Professionals.
It may not read like much, but that only got up to lunch!
After a quick lunch, we began the process of going through actual examination questions. Now this is where we got to experience just how much knowledge was in the room. With David helping us to make sure the questions we came up with were “good” from a how to write an exam question perspective, we started to review some existing Dynamics GP questions to determine if they were current, important, and relevant with respect to our examination frameworks. If the question met those criteria, we set to seeing if we could do anything to improve upon what was there.
At one point Bob looked around the room and said “we just took a crappy question and made 2 great ones!”. I think it was only a few minutes later that Tanya decided she could not sit next to Bob’s laptop any more unless he cleaned the monitor and, as you can see from the picture on the right, he gave her the opportunity to go ahead and do so.
This was a really fun process, and I am so glad that I chose to come down and do this. It has been a real eye opener for me to see the exam creation process in action.
After a long day of exam writing, we all headed out for dinner. No late night at the hotel lobby bar for us tonight, though! We’re back at it first thing tomorrow for what looks to be another very full day.