The field of cloud computing is expanding rapidly, with companies of all sizes and industries adopting cloud technologies to increase efficiency, agility, and innovation. This is creating significant demand for individuals with cloud skills and expertise, yet the supply has not kept up. This skills gap has created an excellent opportunity for individuals at all levels of their career, including pre-professionals, to explore the career opportunities in cloud, and paths to upskill and reskill. As part of that path, obtaining an AWS Certification can increase your career opportunities, earning potential, and provide job security in a rapidly evolving industry.
In 2022, I prepared for, and earned, both the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner and AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate certification exams. AWS Certifications are industry-recognized credentials that demonstrate an individual’s knowledge and skills in cloud computing. I hoped that earning these two certifications would boost my professional credibility, create new career opportunities at Amazon, and help me succeed in my current role where I promote the value proposition of AWS. Additionally, achieving these certifications reflects my commitment to continuous improvement and curiosity.
The AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner certification serves as an excellent starting point. The exam assesses basic knowledge of AWS Cloud concepts, services, and terminology. It’s ideal for non-technical individuals without IT or cloud experience, as well as those with on-premises IT background seeking a fundamental understand of the AWS Cloud. After completing the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner, the most common next certification is AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate. This certification validates your ability to design and deploy cost-effective and scalable applications on AWS. It emphasizes designing efficient solutions that balance cost and performance while demonstrating a solid grasp of the AWS Well-Architected Framework.
If you’re looking to grow your AWS Cloud knowledge, I encourage you to consider pursuing both AWS Certifications simultaneously as it offers a comprehensive understanding of AWS, reinforces related concepts, saves time, and enhances career prospects. However, it’s important to consider your learning style, available study time, and comfort level undertaking multiple certifications concurrently. I’ll share the 10 things I did to prepare to take both exams within a few weeks of each other.
10 things I did to prepare for the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner and AWS Solutions Architect – Associate exams:
1. Download the Exam Guides. The AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner and the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate Exam Guides provide valuable insights into exam content and areas to focus your study efforts.
2. Explore the exam preparation pages. Learn more about each AWS Certification exam and the AWS resources available to help you prepare. Examples of these resources include Official Practice Question Sets and Exam Prep courses.
3. Sign up for AWS Skill Builder. AWS Skill Builder is a online learning center that provides access to over 600 free, on-demand courses, role- and domain-specific learning plans with associated digital badges, standard Exam Prep courses, AWS Certification Official Question Sets, AWS Cloud Quest: Cloud Practitioner gamified learning experience, and more.
4. Utilize AWS Cloud Practitioner Essentials digital training course. AWS Cloud Practitioner Essentials is a six-hour course perfect for anyone seeking a fundamental understanding of the AWS Cloud, regardless of your technical background (or aspirations to sit for the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam). It’s AWS Training and Certification’s most popular digital course, covering AWS Cloud concepts, services, security, architecture, pricing, and support through videos, demonstrations, and knowledge checks—and a key element in preparing you for the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam.
5. Utilize AWS Technical Essentials digital training course. AWS Technical Essentials is a four-hour course that uses videos, demonstrations, hands-on practice, and knowledge checks to help you learn how to build reliable, scalable, and cost-effective cloud solutions. It also prepares you for the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam. By the end, you’ll have the skills to make informed decisions for business solutions.
6. Complete free sample questions. After you’ve completed the above two free digital courses, use free sample questions to assess your exam readiness. Start with the 10 free sample questions for AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner and AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate. Additionally, utilize the free Official Practice Question Sets, with 20 sample questions, for AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner and AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate. These are developed by AWS to demonstrate the style of the certification exams.
7. Get hands on. Practice is crucial for developing skills in deploying, managing, and operating AWS workloads, including security controls and compliance. Getting hands-on will also increase your knowledge retention and confidence. The Individual subscription offers hands-on learning experiences including 125+ AWS Builder Labs, intensive exam preparation materials, AWS Cloud Quest: Solutions Architect, and AWS Jam Journey. Utilizing these features can help you become more familiar and comfortable with AWS services that will be explored in each of the exams.
8. Sign up for the exam. I scheduled the date and time for my proctored AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam before I began studying to give myself a deadline to be accountable to. If you’re also motivated by a deadline, I encourage you to do this. The good news is you can always push out your exam date without penalty if you feel you need more time. You may schedule your exam at Infosyte, which located at Setiawalk, Puchong.
9. Take the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam quickly after the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam. Take the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam within a few weeks after passing AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner. The content and concepts I learned for AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner served as a foundation for AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate.
10. Pair up with a friend or colleague. Studying with a partner is beneficial for certification preparation. It increases focus, motivation, and accountability. When you engage in collaborative learning, it can strengthen your understanding of core concepts through joint exploration and diversity of perspective. Plus, for many of us, sharing resources and engaging in discussions makes studying enjoyable.
People often ask me how long it takes to study and pass these exams. The answer is, “it depends.” The time required varies based on several factors, including prior experience with AWS Cloud, study time availability, and proficiency in test-taking. Candidates typically spend several weeks to a few months preparing for these two exams. Therefore, it is important to allocate dedicated study time, use the resources highlighted above, and regularly assess progress to ensure readiness for the exams.
There are another options is attend training from Infosyte. Infosyte have expert AWS Authorized Instructor (AAI), AAI will help you prepare the exam. Contact Infosyte to know more about their training.
During exam preparation, I questioned the value of AWS Certification for my career. Despite initial doubts, I’m very glad I invested the time and passed the exams. The certifications have already opened doors professionally and will continue to offer opportunities as I progress in my career path. I hope these tips help you on your journey to AWS Certification!
Credit: AWS Blog