Zend Certified Engineer
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The Zend Certified Engineer (ZCE) certification is an internationally-recognized PHP certification established by Zend Technologies. An exam must be passed in order to be awarded the certification. It is intended to prove that a person is fully qualified to develop PHP web applications.
To help Zend Certified Engineers gain exposure to potential employers, Zend lists all Zend Certified Engineers in its directory, Yellow Pages for PHP Professionals and allows ZCEs to join its exclusive LinkedIn group. They also allow Zend Certified Engineers to place a ZCE logo on their personal web site and resume.
There are almost (approaching) 5,000 Zend Certified Engineers in the world with either PHP 4 or PHP 5 certifications. Zend's PHP 5 examination was introduced in August 2006, and the PHP 4 exam was retired in March 2007. Both versions are multiple choice examinations with the pass/fail score kept secret. Zend's PHP 5 exam costs US$125 as of October 2009 and is offered exclusively at Pearson VUE testing sites.
As PHP is mainly used as a web development language, the ZCE tests the candidate over a variety of skills necessary for developing web applications. The PHP 5 Certification exam covers:
- PHP Basics
- Object-oriented programming
- Security, including Cross-site scripting (XSS) and SQL injection
- XML and Web Services, including SimpleXML, Xpath, SOAP, and REST
- Strings and patterns, including PCRE
- Databases and SQL
- Web Features, such as sessions, forms, GET and POST data, cookies, and HTTP headers
- Streams and Network Programming
- Differences between PHP 4 and 5
- Design and Theory
- Php.ini settings
Although these are the Study Guide contents, there are more topics to consider in order to be prepared for the exam, such as use of the new extension PHP Data Object (PDO) layer to access databases, and the Standard PHP Library (SPL), a new set of classes specially created to manipulate objects as sets of arrays or files.