How to Develop a Study Plan to Pass Level 1 and Level 2 of the TOGAF Exams

During the past months, I realized that by far most visitors of my blog search for ways to pass the TOGAF exams. For this, I decided to review and republish the most popular post once again. Therefore, let’s get started:

How Do the TOGAF Exams Look Like?

There are two levels that you can take: Level 1 “foundation” and level 2 “certified”. According to TOGAF, most people do both levels and I also strongly recommend this, as you naturally develop the skills to pass level 2 when you study well for level 1. If you need more specific information on the level 2 exam, make sure to also read this article about passing TOGAF level 2 in addition. The levels can be either taken separately or as “combined” exam. All options are described here by TOGAF.

Level 1 consists of 40 multiple-choice questions from which one is correct and there are no negative points for wrong answers. The passing grade is 55%, which translates to 22 correct answers. You have 60 minutes for this part. Level 1 questions would typically require to know specific lists, overviews, illustrations, or terms from the TOGAF standard. Passing is very much based on learning by heart and doing many realistic test questions upfront.

Level 2 consists of 8 complex multiple choice answers, from which the best answer gives you 5 points, the second best gives you 3 points, the third best answer gives you 1 point, and the worst answer gives 0 points. For this part, you need at least 60% to pass, which are 24 out of 40 points and you have 90 minutes for this part. Level 2 questions are very different from level 1 questions. A typical question is half a page long and has answers that fill another half a page or more with text. Most of the content is just there to distract you. Typically, it should be enough to just apply common sense to the questions and choose the answer that sounds most sophisticated. If you have practical experience with enterprise architecture projects, you should not have any problems in passing – even without studying explicitly for level 2! To ensure that you pass, I will provide some additional tips on level 2 in my next post. 

Develop Your Personal Study Plan Based on Your Personal Needs and Skills

The first question that you should answer is: How many hours per day can I study? I decided to take one week of holidays for my exam, so I studied about 8 hours per day for 7 days, which makes a total of 56 hours study time. If you have 2 hours from Monday to Friday and then 4 hours on Saturday and Sunday (i.e. 18 hours per week), you might therefore need about 3-4 weeks before you should attempt the exam. 

Your Study Plan Should Have the Following Steps:

1) Get familiar with the TOGAF study guide (this is now adapted to the new TOGAF version 9.2) or other summarizing material that you think is useful. The study guide is sold by TOGAF for 59.90$, but I found it quite useful as the content is well summarized to about 300 pages. In addition, it includes some first-hand test questions for both levels. If you take a TOGAF training course, these documents might also be included in the price. When you read through the content, do one or two test exams, for example on this website from the open arch to get a feeling for the level of detail that is required. Afterwards, read again through your study material. 

2) In the second phase, you should go through all possible test questions that you can find on the Internet. However, you should also sense whether the questions are realistic or not. There are some websites that state to provide real test questions, but their questions are actually too difficult. I found this website from extremely helpful when going through phase 2. 

3) In phase 3, you should do all real test exams that you have available. You can get those from sources such as:
TOGAF Study Pack
Simply Learn
Test Questions purchased from TOGAF website (the packs cost 0.99$ and are quite worth the price)

The most important in this phase is the analysis of your test results. Therefore, go through every wrong answer in detail. Write down the topic and look up the chapter in the detailed TOGAF standard. This is necessary, because the Study Guide answers 80-90% of all questions, but some questions can indeed not be answered with the information provided in the study summary. I made “cheat sheets” for every topic that I still got wrong at this point in time. I you feel confident with 90% of the questions behind the links in this article, you are more than prepared for passing the exam.

What Else Do I Need to Know Except This Article?

Most important to your success with the TOGAF exam is that you are well prepared and that you have done your research well. Let me therefore provide you the top 6 websites that helped me to cover everything I needed:

1. A large amount of good test questions
2. A set of test exams for both levels (I find them a bit harder than the single test questions)
3. Additional test exam
4. Official test question pack to be purchased from TOGAF website (0.99$)
5. TOGAF Study Guide (59.99$)
6. And finally…revise this top 10 list for optimizing your studies as well as your test taking!

Have you taken the exam already? How was your experience? Did the article help you? Please take a moment to provide your feedback and further improve the content of this website for other test takers!