The SOLIDWORKS Sheet Metal Certification is challenging to even the most experienced SOLIDWORKS user, but it can be readily attained with the right tools and preparation.
The SOLIDWORKS Sheet Metal exam tests for knowledge of several key aspects of the add-in, how they work together, and how edits can be made to dimensions and features. Understanding the details of each feature is where SolidProfessor can help the most – offering in-depth guides with fantastic visuals and other tools that help the user understand and engage with the software.
Key benefits to becoming certified include:
- strengthened resume,
- improved efficiency,
- and the completion of one of four prerequisite certifications for the CSWE.
From the SolidProfessor homepage, you can quickly find a full 2-hour course on SOLIDWORKS Sheet Metal. Entering the course launches you straight into the first video – an introduction to the sheet metal add-in and a review of the many details covered in the course.
If you pause the video and look around – you’ll see a simple layout which yields a lot of real estate to the lesson currently playing, along with an extensive preview of all lessons to be covered in the module. Below the video is a button that reads “Other Versions”, which you can search to find the lesson most pertinent to your version. Click “Exercise Files” to access the full set of the SOLIDWORKS models seen in each video.
SolidProfessor provides content in bite-sized lessons — organized by sections — which comprise the entire course. Users are free to pause, rewind and fast-forward, skip back, and even skip ahead through lessons because all videos are available from the beginning, there is no action required to unlock future lessons. The indexing of lessons by narrow topics allows users to learn what they want, right when they need it, which also makes for easy reference when coming back during a test.
For example, users who have spent a lot of time doing drawings in the past can quickly review the drawing content without going through every detail but may need to take a deeper dive into understanding “k-factor” and how it affects bend tables.
Each video must play to the end before a Technical Certificate will be awarded.
Guided Exercises and Practice Exams
The sheet metal course has guided exercises that serve as a step-by-step homework assignment in which the user is challenged to engage the software hands-on and explore the topics covered in the preceding section. Although not available in every SolidProfessor course, these are incredibly useful for content retention. At the end of each exercise, an additional tutorial is available to demonstrate the optimal way to complete it.
SolidProfessor offers a series of related courses aimed to prepare the user for various SOLIDWORKS Certifications called learning paths. Just as some courses include guided exercises, some also include practice exams that mirror the style of the SOLIDWORKS Certification exams: they test for generally the same types of abilities and incorporate what is arguably the most crucial element of the exam, the clock. Thankfully, these practice exams can be repeated as often as desired so the user can hone their skills before diving into the real thing.
I found these exams not only help prepare modeling skills, but they also help identify IT permissions issues related to file download and set up prior to beginning the official test.
Another useful prep tool for the CSWPA, and the last component of achieving a SolidProfessor Technical Certificate, is taking the SolidProfessor Test. This test is not in CSWPA fashion, but instead consists of multiple-choice and true/false questions regarding the material covered in the tutorials. This test is timed but can be retaken if needed and will help you identify areas of strength as well as those needing improvement.
All these SolidProfessor tools serve as an excellent resource for certification prep, and in addition, SOLIDWORKS also offers a practice CSWPA exam via PDF with numerous sample questions. Be sure to review this to determine which skills will be required on the exam, and practice timing yourself on the different modeling challenges.
By working through a combination of SolidProfessor courses and Practice Exams ahead of taking your exam, you are setting yourself up to earn your SOLIDWORKS Certifications with more ease and in less time – putting you lightyears ahead of both the industry competition and your colleagues.