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Introduction to New Microsoft Azure Certification Path

If you want to gain expert-level knowledge in the Azure Cloud platform, you need to consider the certification path that Microsoft offers to all interested. Most of its credentials no longer have prerequisites, so you can become an Azure Solutions Architect Expert with or without the fundamental- and associate-level certificates in your pocket.

Another option is to obtain the Microsoft Certified: Azure Fundamentals certification by passing the AZ-900 exam, then Microsoft Certified: Azure Developer Associate (AZ-203), and, finally, Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect Expert (AZ-300 & AZ-301). The first two steps are optional, but you may face with some difficulties in this case.

In this blog post, we will focus on the option with all the steps included and talk about the advantages you may get by choosing this Microsoft certification path.

1. Azure Fundamentals

If you are unsure of your skills and want to start with the basics, this certification will be a perfect first step. After passing the AZ-900 exam and earning the Microsoft Certified: Azure Fundamentals credential, you will understand the core Azure Services, Cloud concepts, fundamentals of Cloud security, compliance, trust, and privacy, as well as Azure support and pricing. You don’t need to have technical IT experience, but you may have general knowledge of it.

To pass the Microsoft AZ-900 exam on the first try, you need to master your understanding of the following areas:

  • Cloud concepts;
  • Azure support & pricing;
  • Azure services;
  • Compliance, security, trust, and privacy.

Also, you need to pay only $99 to take this certification test. Please note that it is available in Japanese, Korean, English, and Simplified Chinese. Like any other exams of this vendor, Microsoft AZ-900 has no exact number of questions. You should expect within 40 and 60 questions of different types. The allocated time may also differ because of the certification type, so consider checking the official webpage and the FAQ section for more details.

2. Azure Developer Associate

As we mentioned earlier, the Microsoft Certified: Azure Developer Associate credential is obtained by clearing the Microsoft AZ-203 certification exam. It is worth noting that the vendor previously launched AZ-200 and AZ-201 for this role. However, this is no longer the case as they have been retired due to their outdated relevance. As for the AZ-203 test, you can take it in Korean, English, Chinese (Simplified), and Japanese. And you also need to pay $165 for this exam.

The Microsoft AZ-203 exam is intended for the Azure Developers, especially those who are responsible for building and designing Cloud solutions on the Azure platform. There are no formal requirements for this certification test but you will have a huge advantage considering the following points:

  • You may have the proficiency to effectively develop apps and services by implementing Azure tools and technologies.
  • You may also have at least 1-year experience in scalable solutions development.
  • Moreover, it will be better for you to be skilled and knowledgeable in a minimum of one programming language that supports Cloud services.

There are 6 domains you need to cover in Microsoft AZ-203. They are:

  1. Develop Azure Infrastructure;
  2. Implement Azure Security;
  3. Develop Azure Platform;
  4. Develop Azure Storage;
  5. Connect and Consume Azure Services & Third-Party Services;
  6. Monitor, Troubleshoot, and Optimize Azure Solutions.

When preparing for this test, you are always advised to check out your level of preparation with verified practice tests. They will show you how well you have mastered all the material. You can also take free or paid training courses right from the official Microsoft website.

3. Azure Solutions Architect Expert

With the current path of the role-based Azure credentials, the candidates must clear two exams: Microsoft AZ-300 and Microsoft AZ-301. After clearing both of them, the students will obtain the certification. In addition to this, the individuals will also receive a badge. Both the certificate and the badge can really help you advance in your career.

  • Microsoft Azure Architect Technologies (AZ-300)

Microsoft has made several changes to its certification path in 2018. One of the newly introduced exams was the beta version of Microsoft AZ-300. The credential for it was released on September 24, 2018. To become an Azure Solutions Architect, you will have to take and clear the test first. The exam provides you with the knowledge and skills in architecting secure and reliable solutions.

To boost you up, you can have the following:

  • Knowledge of data management, identity, security, and IT operations in order to answer the questions.
  • Knowledge of Azure administration, Azure development, and DevOps.
  • At least one year of experience in order to attempt this Microsoft certification.

Microsoft AZ-300 comes with 40-60 questions and 120 minutes of allocated time. The exam languages are English, Korean, Simplified Chinese, and Japanese. This certification test costs $165.

Knowledge domains covered in the Microsoft AZ-300 exam are as follows:

  • Workloads and security implementation;
  • Infrastructure deployment and configuration;
  • Architect Cloud technology solutions;
  • Development for Cloud;
  • Authentication and secure data implementation;
  • Creation and deployment of apps.

When preparing for the Microsoft Azure Architect Technologies (AZ-300) exam, you should visit the official website to find the relevant study materials, such as books, training courses, practice tests, video tutorials, etc. These tools will help you evaluate your level of preparedness.

  • Microsoft Azure Architect Design (AZ-301)

This test was released together with AZ-300. You need to have advanced knowledge and experience of security, networking, data management, virtualization, governance, budgeting, and even more. It is important to be proficient in DevOps, Azure development and administration. The exam objectives covered in the Microsoft AZ-301 exam include designing of the following areas:

  • Data platform solutions;
  • Business continuity strategy;
  • Deployment, integration, and migration;
  • Identity and security;
  • Workload requirements;
  • Infrastructure strategy.

Microsoft AZ-301 has the same exam format and structure as Microsoft AZ-300. You also need to pay $165, and then you can take the test in English, Simplified Chinese, Japanese, or Korean.

Conclusion

If you obtain all the certifications mentioned above, you can become an all-round expert in Azure Cloud technologies. The knowledge and skills you will gain will definitely change your life, as you will get a prestige job position and a high salary.

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