SQL Server certifications are changing; do you know where you stand?

Picture of Ed JonesEd Jones works for Firebrand Training, a Microsoft Gold Learning Partner. He has worked in the IT training and certification industry for the past 3 years. He is a tech enthusiast with experience working with SharePoint, Windows Server and Windows desktop.

The launch of SQL Server 2014 has brought significant enhancements to the #1 most-used database system in the world. The new features and functions in the latest release bring with it the requirement of fresh knowledge. These knowledge requirements bring great change to the existing SQL server certification track.

These changes divert from the traditional certification changes that occur when a new technology is released. For those of you left wondering how these changes affect you, we’ve created a comprehensive FAQ to guide you.

Certification FAQ for the release of SQL Server 2014

Q. When will the MCSA: SQL Server 2014 certification be released?

A. Breaking from the tradition of launching a new certification to reflect a technology launch, Microsoft have announced there are no plans to launch a separate MCSA for SQL Server 2014.

Q. How will the MCSA: SQL Server 2012 credential be affected by the launch of SQL Server 2014?

A. There are no current changes to the MCSA: SQL Server 2012. The curriculum and associated exams (70-461, 70-462, 70-463) remain unaffected by the launch of the new platform. The credential will continue as the prerequisite to the MCSE: Data Platform and MCSE: Business Intelligence certifications.

Q. Are there any changes planned for the MCSE: Data Platform and MCSE: Business Intelligence certification?

A. Yes, the Microsoft Official Curriculum for Data Platform and Business Intelligence certifications have already been updated. New topics were added in April 2014 to reflect the enhancements in SQL Server 2014 post launch. These topics are reflected in the associated MCSE exams.

The exam numbers will remain unchanged for the MCSE: Data Platform (70-464, 70-465) and MCSE: Business Intelligence (70-466, 70-467).

Q. How will the changes to the MCSE: Data Platform and MCSE: Business Intelligence affect me?

A. If you have already attained your Data Platform or Business Intelligence certification then you don’t need to do anything. You won’t be tested on the new SQL Server 2014 knowledge until your recertification date.

If you’re currently working towards attaining certifications then you should ensure you study the correct material for the associated exams. You can do this by reviewing the exam objectives found on the existing MCSE: Data Platform and MCSE: Business Intelligence pages. If you are just starting out, you can avoid all the hassle and book yourself on a SQL server course where you will be guided through the up to date material by a Microsoft Certified Trainer.

There are no course corrections required for the MCSA: SQL Server 2012. As already mentioned, there are no changes to the curriculum or associated exams, so if you are currently working towards the certification, you can continue without any course corrections.

Q. I’m not planning on taking a Microsoft certification, how can I learn about all the new features in SQL Server 2014 and how to use them?

A. The MSDN library has a fantastic collection of documentation on the new features in SQL Server 2014. You can also find a series of free training materials on the Microsoft Virtual Academy from Microsoft certified experts. Resources include in depth webinars, associated slide decks and self-assessment questions to reinforce your learning.

This post was originally written for Firebrand

Does this article answer all your questions? If you have any additional questions let us know in the comments section below or via @TechNetUK

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