Door: Taco Zoetemelk 16-11-2017
Part 3 | My first encounter with MongoDB University
As a partner of MongoDB we have unlimited access to the MongoDB University (on demand). What does unlimited mean in this case? If you don't have this kind of access to the MongoDB university, then you can still do the courses for free, but the only limitation is that you can't do the courses on your own pace. New course subjects will be available on a per week basis. This means that if you've done one course subject, that you have to wait a week for the next subject to become available.
So I thought it was time for me to dive into the world of MongoDB. There are many online courses in the MongoDB university, ranging from "MongoDB basics" to more advanced courses like "MongoDB performance" and "Diagnostics and debugging". So where to start? As I scanned through the course subjects I saw the "MongoDB for DBA's" course. This should be a good starting point for me. The courses in the MongoDB university are build up by using video's to explain the subject matter, quizzes to see if you understand the subject matter, "homework" and a final test. The tests/questions are not part of the final grading, but you have to complete all homework and the final exam to receive the course completion certificate.
I really love the possibility to do the MongoDB university courses on my own pace. There were moments where there were 3 weeks apart between subjects, but there were also days where I did two subjects in one day. The quizzes were a great way for me to check if I understood the concepts, to let me think about the subjects and even try some stuff out on my own system. The homework assignments are well worked out. They give you some assignments in which you implement various MongoDB techniques on your own system. You then run a script and you need to copy/paste the output of the script into the university site (usually a text string or a number). With this output your progress on the assignment is checked. If you did something wrong in the assignment, the result will not be correct and you need to try the assignment again until you've done it correct or until you've tried 3 times. The final test works the same way as the homework. Once you've completed a course, a course completion certificate can be downloaded.
A downside for me personally is that all courses are video based. This means that there is no possibility to read back on the subjects or lookup something quickly. There is also no way to skip forward if you already understand a subject. This does help you to stay focussed on the subject matter. I sometimes have the tendency to fast read through training material. As this is not possible with videos, I was bound to follow the videos and spend a good amount of time watching concentrated and trying stuff out along with the videos.
Overall the quality of the MongoDB University impressed me very much. Especially as the content is completly free to use (with some mentioned limitations).
What i liked the most about MongoDB was that the product was build with scalability and performance in mind using commodity hardware. On every level you see that these subjects are very well thought of. If you need a database which can be expanded very easily, runs on commidity hardware, and uses json (bson) to store data, then MongoDB is your best pick.
Now all i need to do is pass the MongoDB for DBA's exam so i can call myself a certified MongoDB DBA Associate.