Tableau QA Revision Tips

by Nicholas Bowskill

Tableau QA Exam Tips

The Tableau QA Exam can be a little intimidating, but there are lots of resources out there from the community and Tableau itself to help you pass the certification. Here I will go through some of the things I found most useful in preparing for the exam. I had been using Tableau everyday for around 3 months before taking the exam so had built up quite a few Tableau skills, however being exam’ed on it was very new to me! Here are some tips I would have for anyone about to take the exam:


  • Use the free resources but don’t let them trick you into thinking that these questions will be how the exam is structured! The questions are great for showing you how the knowledge questions may be but…. the knowledge questions only make up around 20-30% of the marks. After practising with these was when the shock from the paid practise example came…

  • Do a paid practise example paper from the link on as it will really prepare you for the level at which you will be tested on. I got 86% on the mock exam with little time to spare, but this allowed me to be much more calm and collected for the actual exam, finish with around an hour to spare and get 94% for the actual mark.

  • Remember that the Tableau Community and Google are your friends! You are allowed to use Google throughout your exam so make sure you know what kind of things to Google to get the information you need. A lot of the time the answer you want will be hidden within questions asking about a real use case, so learn to recognise what is useful to you and how the community can help.

  • When answering a new hands on question always open a new data source connection, even if it is using the same data source! The questions will sometimes try to trip you up by using the same data source but with different worksheets and have similar sounding questions, so take the time to open up a new data source and new Tableau sheet in order to do the new question. The data sources will all be located in the same folder, so connecting will be quick and easy, definitely worth the decrease in risk of making a silly mistake!

  • Open a new sheet for each new question and keep all of the used sheets as they were when you came to the answer. Opening a new sheet per question (alongside a new data source connection) allows a certainty that you’re starting from scratch to answer the question. Leaving the sheets after finishing the question allows an easy way of checking your answers if you have extra time at the end. Each sheet will have your answer displayed as well as the way you got to the answer, this makes it very easy to check you have selected the correct answer from the multi choice and check that you arrived to the answer in the correct way.

  • Flag up questions that you had difficulty with, don’t spend too much time getting confused over them. There is a button along the bottom of the question view that allows you to flag a question, then the question viewer allows you to view all question numbers and shows any that have been flagged. This allows you to easily go back to questions you had difficulty with if you have time at the end, and means you won’t have to worry about taking time away from questions you might be able to get with ease.


  • Go back through questions if you have enough time at the end. Prioritise going through questions that you struggled with, but then go back at start from question 1 and run through to question 36. If you have left the sheets from the questions still in Tableau then you can go to each of the sheets and quickly go through the working again, this could save you a precious few marks.


  • Read other blogs about people’s experiences of taking the exam. Luckily for me, Ellie and Louise for DS11 had taken the QA exam a few weeks before I had mine booked so I was able to asked them questions, however I still read through their blogs they had written in order to get a bit more information and follow some links. Reading about different people’s experiences will give only increase how much information you have about the exam as everyone approaches it in slightly different ways.

My Experience of the Tableau Desktop QA Exam

How to Prepare for your Tableau Specialist or Qualified Associate Exam

  • Don’t drink too much tea before and during the exam! You won’t be able to leave the room in which you are taking the exam in at any point during your exam, so make sure to go to the toilet beforehand and not drink too much during. This tip may come from personal experience…


i hope you found at least some of these tips useful for your preparation for the exam and I wish you the best of luck in becomes a Tableau Qualified Associate!


Nicholas Bowskill

Sun 20 Jan 2019

Tue 08 Jan 2019