Both the MCSD and MCT certifications were discontinued by Microsoft in 2017. They were replaced by newer certification programs that reflect the changing demands of the tech industry and the evolving needs of professionals.
The MCSD certification was replaced by the Azure Developer Associate certification, which is a newer certification program that is designed for developers who want to demonstrate their expertise in buildingand deploying cloud-based solutions using Microsoft Azure.
The MCT certification was replaced by the Microsoft Certified: Learning Consultant certification, which is a program that recognizes individuals who have demonstrated expertise in designing and delivering training programs on Microsoft technologies.
Microsoft offers a wide range of certification programs that are designed to validate the skills of professionals in a variety of different roles. Some of the most popular certification programs offered by Microsoft by role include:
Developers: Microsoft offers several certification programs that are designed for developers, including the Azure Developer Associate certification, the Microsoft Certified: Power Platform Developer Associate certification, and noth the Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect Expert certification and DevOps Engineer Expert.
IT Administrators: Microsoft offers several certification programs that are designed for IT administrators, including the Microsoft Certified: Azure Administrator Associate certification, the Microsoft Certified: Azure Security Engineer Associate certification, and the Microsoft Certified: Windows Server 2016 certification.
Data Professionals: Microsoft offers several certification programs that are designed for data professionals, including the Microsoft Certified: Data Analyst Associate certification, the Microsoft Certified: Data Scientist Associate certification, and the Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Engineer Associate certification.
Business Professionals: Microsoft offers several certification programs that are designed for business professionals, including the Microsoft Certified: Power Platform Fundamentals certification, the Microsoft Certified: Dynamics 365 Fundamentals certification, and the Microsoft Certified: Dynamics 365 Marketing certification.
Educators: Microsoft offers several certification programs that are designed for educators, including the Microsoft Certified: Educator certification, the Microsoft Certified: Trainer certification, and the Microsoft Certified: Learning Consultant certification.
We will focus in this post on Developers role. So, actually for a dotnet developer the best Microsoft certification to achieve is by following the DevOps Engineer Expert Certification path. Currently the different missions of a dotnet developer require some experience on the devops side for the build and release parts and as well as on the Microsoft Azure part too.
According to The 2021 Pearson VUE Value of IT Certification survey 91% of certified IT professional get more professional credibility, 76% are more valuable to their employers, and 28% of the surveyed candidates reported a salary increase as a benefit of getting certified.
Azure DevOps Expert Certification is a three-stars certification that falls under the Microsoft expert-level certifications.
AZ-400 Exam Prerequisite
A candidate for this exam must have written either or both of the assoiate Microsoft certification in the schema bellow. Note that the Exam AZ-900: Microsoft Azure Fundamentals are optional and it open to you to pass it.
From my part i choose to write the Azure Developer Associate because of my experience as a software developer. For Devops engineer it more recommended to pass the Administrator Associate certification in order to achieve the DevOps Engineer Expert one.
Study for your exam
The AZ-400 Exam contains about 40-60 questions; however, the number can vary depending on the exam. with a duration of about 180 minutes. Candidates are required to have a passing score of 700/1000 to earn the certification.
Structure of the exam
Single-choice questions(with YES/NO options) Cannot be reviewed, skipped, or returned to later.
Arrange in the right sequence questions.
Case-study with multiple questions.
A typical study plan may last for a month at about 5 hours of daily study. The study plan depends on the level of experience candidates have on the various topics measured in the exam. Experienced DevOps professionals may spend less time compared to the beginner fellows.
This exam measures your ability to accomplish the following technical tasks: develop an instrumentation strategy; develop a Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) strategy; develop a security and compliance plan; manage source control; facilitate communication and collaboration; define and implement continuous integration; and define and implement continuous delivery and release management strategy. The following materials should be helpful.
Microsoft learn: Azure DevOps Learning Path
Azure Devops Labs: get hands-on experience using various Azure DevOps services to solve real-life scenario business problems.
Azure DevOps documentation
Practice question materials
The listed links below are very helpful and may tell you what the questions may look like. All the objectives of this exam are covered so you'll be ready for any question on the exam.
Scheduling and Taking your exam
It is important you arrive at your test center 15-30 minutes before your scheduled appointment time. This will give you adequate time to complete the necessary sign-in procedures. If you arrive more than 15 minutes late for an exam and are refused admission, payments are due for the exam and delivery fees.
Be prepared to show two (2) valid forms of personal identification, a National Identity card, Drivers license, or an International Passport.
Mark questions whose answers you are not sure about for review, and revisit them when done with the others.
Don't leave any questions unanswered and make sure to submit before proceeding to the next section.
Case-study questions come after the first section.
Make sure you keep to time.
You will receive your transcript upon submission in less than an hour, and an acclaim badge upon passing the exam in your mailbox. Share your badge on social networks like LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook.
Voila, congratulations, you are now a Microsoft Certified: Azure DevOps Expert, you deserve it. Keep your skills sharp and transfer your knowledge to real work situations.
Thank you for reading, I hope this helps you prepare and pass the AZ-400 examination.
You can view my Azure DevOps badges here 😊