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How to make the most out of certification pages for Azure exams

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In this post I want to cover how to make the most out of certification pages for Azure exams. Because I think it will be useful.

By the end of this post, you will know how to take advantage of additional information in the certification pages for Azure exams.

To set realistic expectations here, this post is mostly intended for those who do not use the certification pages much. For the rest of you, there are some recommended links about certain exams towards the bottom of this post.

Previously, I did post containing study tips for SQL Server and Azure exams before which you can read in detail here. In fact, I did not realize the post was two years old already.

In reality, these exam pages can be useful in their current form. I have used them many times over the years and I have nineteen active certifications that helps backup that claim. So, I thought I better provide some advice on how to make the most of them to help others.

However, this time catering for more Microsoft Data Platform services as well as the Azure exams.

Not intending to do exams?

Even if you do not intend to do any exams, I recommend reading the below for two reasons.

First, it can be useful to help you formalize your knowledge in certain areas.

Secondly, you’ll be able to provide colleagues tips about where to go for learning resources. For example, below shows an ideal starting point for people wishing to know more about Azure Databricks.

Certification requirements and retirement dates

Just like in my previous post, make sure you check the certification requirements and the retirement dates.

For example, if you look at the requirements for the DP-200 exam here you will see it’s due to retire at the end of June. Due to the fact that both the DP-200 and DP-201 exams for the Azure Data Engineer Associate certification will be replaced by the DP-203 exam.

If you scroll down on any of these requirement’s pages, you will see under the skills measured section that there are two ways to prepare. All the links under the Online-Free option lead to learning paths within Microsoft Learn.

I strongly recommend going through the learning paths here. However, you may have to check the requirements against the recommended learning paths in case you need to learn anything else.

For example, the DP-201 mentions Azure Data Factory. But if you look at the recommended paths, you can see that a learning path is not shown for it.

However, a learning path for Azure Data Factory exists in Microsoft Learn here.

Some of these learning paths come with sandboxes as well, which enable you to do exercises in Azure for free. So, if you have limited Azure credit this can be useful. In addition, some of the exercises check the sandboxes to make sure you did the exercise correctly.

Other services

You can use this advice for other certifications as well. For example, if you view the DP-300 exam it also has a variety of Microsoft Learn learning paths you can use.

In addition to using these for exams, these are also ideal starting point for colleagues who are new to Azure SQL Database.

Of course, this applies to other exams outside of the Microsoft Data Platform. For example, the popular AZ-104 exam. If you are intending to take this exam, please be aware that the content for this exam will be updated on the March 26th.

Paid training

Of course, paid training is always a very good alternative. You can learn some valuable things from a trainer who is skilled in the area you want to learn more about.

Recommended reading

In reality, there are lots of posts from people with offering advice for specific exams. A couple I have read recently are below.

In addition to this, Gregor Suttie done a video about the DP-200 and DP-201 Azure Data Engineer Associate exams. You can view that video here.

In reality, even posts that were published before the exams changed can contain really useful information. So, it’s worth reading them as well.

Final word

I hope this post about how to make the most out of certification pages for Azure exams is useful. For you and even your colleagues as well.

If you have any queries or comments about this post feel free to reach out to me.

How to make the most out of certification pages for Azure exams
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