FAQs About the CCIE Security Written Exam

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This section answers some common questions about the written CCIE Security exam. These frequently asked questions should help dispel any confusion surrounding this exam.

1. How many questions are on the CCIE Security written exam?

There are 100 questions. All questions are multiple choice. Some questions require a single answer, whereas other questions require more than one answer to earn a point.

2. What is a passing score?

Cisco no longer publishes a set passing score for the written exam. Instead, Cisco supplies you with a pass or fail grade. The actual passing score (a percentage) is based on a statistical-analysis system that checks the scores of all candidates over 3 months and adjusts the score needed to pass accordingly. For example, the passing score for one candidate might be 70 percent, but it might be 75 percent for another candidate, depending on what results candidates are attaining in the same 3-month period.

3. Can I change an answer after working through all the questions? Yes, as long as time remains, you can return to any question.

4. How long is the exam?

The exam is 2 hours long. Make sure you use your time wisely—you want to have an opportunity to answer as many questions as possible. If you find that you are spending too long on a single question, mark it and move on. If time permits, you can return to difficult questions later.

5. What happens when I finish the exam?

The computer scores your test within minutes and indicates whether you passed or failed. You receive a printed score sheet with a grade for the entire exam and a percentage score for each of the topics. If you fail, you must wait at least 72 hours before retaking the exam.

6. Can I use Windows Calculator during the exam?

No. You are not permitted to use any Windows tools. You are supplied with a pencil and some white paper or an erasable sheet.

7. How many times can I retake the written exam?

You can retake the written exam as many times as you like. Each written exam attempt will cost you U.S.$300.

8. What do I do after I pass the written exam?

You do not need to fax your test results to your nearest CCIE lab administrator. Visit the following URL to set a lab exam:


9. Where can I find further information about the CCIE Security exam? Cisco provides additional information online: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/learning/le3/ccie/security/index.html

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