Microsoft is retiring the old Microsoft Professional Program and has introduced Microsoft Learn. Dan Mygind is committing himself to start on a learning path in the new year, looking at Azure Cloud Computing.
In a few weeks’ time the fireworks and Big Ben will announce the start of a New Year where it is time to take stock of the previous year and look forward to the opportunities in the new.
What’s your New Year resolution? Sorry, it’s probably a bit too early to contemplate when Christmas is still a few days away and the turkey hasn’t been eaten yet. But maybe you would like to upgrade your IT qualifications or you simply want to get a certification that documents your existing experience and knowledge?
My New Year Resolution
I have already made my New Year resolution and to ensure I am committing myself to the resolution, I’ll tell you what it is. Please don’t tell it to others; it will be embarrassing if I don’t succeed, so let’s keep it between us.
I would like to look more into Azure and am planning to take some Azure cloud computing certifications.
The Microsoft Professional Program used to provide different courses to become proficient in Microsoft technologies, but this program will end on December 31st, 2019.
Instead, Microsoft have introduced Microsoft Learn. Microsoft Learn guides you through different learning paths which enables you to take different certifications.
Role-based Cloud Certifications
The relatively new role-based Azure certifications let you choose a certification which is appropriate for your current or future job role. You can choose to become a certified Azure Administrator, Developer, Architect, Security Engineer, DevOps or Data Engineer.
You have to pass an exam to achieve the certification. Microsoft has defined one or more learning paths to help you prepare properly for the exam of your choice, which is quite useful.
The learning paths consist of online modules which are provided for free, while you have to pay a small amount for the actual certification exams.
AZ-900 is the fundamental level for Azure certifications and is for people with no or just a basic knowledge of cloud technologies.
Depending on your previous experience, it can be a good idea to take this certification before you embark on any of the other certification paths.
Having previously worked with Amazon’s AWS, I know the fundamental cloud computing technologies, so I could probably skip this course, but I always find you are picking up important bits of information in introduction courses to a specific technology/product even though you have worked with something similar.
Never assume you know everything.
That’s why I will start in the new year on the learning path which will prepare me for the Azure Fundamentals exam. You can read more about the certification here and you can have a closer look at the learning path here.
Many Paths to the Cloud
As I have a developer background I am aiming to become a certified Azure Developer or rather an Azure Developer Associate, which is the official Microsoft term.
You can become a certified Azure Developer Associate by passing the AZ-203 exam. It is recommended that you have at least one year of experience with a programming language and experience in building scalable services and apps. You can read more about the prerequisites and how to prepare for exam AZ-203 here.
For this certification there are several other learning paths you could take instead:
1. Create serverless applications
2. Connect your services together
3. Work with relational data in Azure
4. Store data in Azure
5. Deploy a website with Azure virtual machines
You will notice that each learning path consists of several modules. Microsoft has been helpful in estimating how much time you should use on each module, which makes it easier to plan your exam preparations.
As mentioned before, there are several other Azure certifications that are interesting: DevOps, Data Engineer, Security Engineer, Solution Architect, not to mention AI and Data Scientist. Have a look at the different Azure role-based certification types here and see if you are inspired to commit to a New Year’s resolution.
Totally Unrelated Bonus Information
In Denmark and several European countries it is a tradition to watch Dinner for One or the 90-years birthday at New Year. You are supposed to drink every time the British actor Freddie Frinton makes a toast as Admiral Von Schneider, Sir Toby, Mr. Pommeroy or Mr. Winterbottom.
It is not advisable to play this game just before, or during, your certification exam.
What’s your resolution going to be? To commit yourself to it, write about the resolution and your motivation in a comment below.
Go on, I won’t tell anyone.