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Pre certification test self-assessment tool for IT security personnel.

ISC Squared : 29 January, 2008  (New Product)
ISC-Squared provides test simulator for information security certification exam including assessment analysis function.
ISC-squared has announced the launch of a new online self-assessment tool known as studISCope (pronounced "study scope"). The tool aims to enable security staffs and individuals to assess their knowledge of the (ISC)2 CBK, a taxonomy of information security topics that serves as the foundation for all (ISC)2 certifications.

studISCope provides a simulation of the (ISC)2 Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) and Systems Security Certified Practitioner (SSCP) certification exams. Questions used in this self-assessment are comprised of retired questions from previous versions of the actual certification exams and newer questions developed by (ISC)2-certified subject matter experts. At the conclusion of the simulation, the test taker receives his or her score based on the official algorithm used in the actual exam, helping them assess their overall exam readiness.

"studISCope is beneficial to both certification candidates and employers," said John Colley, CISSP, managing director of EMEA for (ISC)2. "It helps candidates focus their study efforts more precisely and enhances their comfort level prior to sitting for the official certification exam."

"For employers, studISCope is an indispensable management tool, providing an objective, low-cost way to assess their staff's information security knowledge, skills and abilities," Colley said.

studISCope offers a personalised reporting system with learning progress indicators that provides insight into a candidate's knowledge strengths and weaknesses, as well as a readiness gauge that pinpoints the candidate's comprehension level of the specific areas of the CBK. These features allow candidates to efficiently identify their knowledge level in each of the CBK domains and focus their study efforts on areas that need the most attention. Candidates can take the assessment as many times as they wish.

"studISCope was developed to aid individuals who are pursuing top industry-recognised certifications by following a simple three-step process: assess, focus and certify," said Mano Paul, CISSP, founder of Express Certifications, an (ISC)2 affiliate company that developed studISCope. "The unique personalised study plan assists candidates on their certification path by identifying their weaker areas so they can more effectively target their studies."

Originally developed to meet the increased demands placed upon the US Department of Defence (DoD) to certify its personnel, studISCope is available in three formats: as a one-off purchase by any individual, as a subsidised or voucher purchase where all the performance results are tracked for an organisation separately for one year, and to corporations who purchase the assessment tool as part of a package including an education program or other services from (ISC)2.

"Those early in their careers wanting to progress to a higher level or those looking to make the transition from another field into security will find studISCope a powerful career enabler. By allowing candidates to assess their skills and knowledge, it gives them some level of much-needed comfort as they take that critical career step toward certification," said Colley. "The studISCope assessment tool is part of our continuing commitment to provide services that support information security professionals throughout their careers."

The simulated exams can be purchased online in a variety of set combinations ranging in price from US$99 (around £50 or 68 euros) to US$219 (£110 or 150 euros) for the CISSP and US$49 (£24.50 or 33.5 euros) to US$109 (74 euros or £55) for the SSCP, depending on the number of questions the candidate chooses.

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