AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Professional 2020

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2018 re:Invent Thread for CSAP

Hi CSAP People!

Thanks to all the gurus who stopped by the A Cloud Guru booth at re:Invent this year. Response from you all was HUGE. In fact, we were #3 on the most tweeted behind VMWare and Cohesity! I figured I would start a thread here on stuff relevant for people preparing for their CSAP exam that I collected from reInvent. Feel free to add to it.

2 Answers

During the Certification Reception at the Brooklyn Bowl, I had a really interesting chat with Kevin Kelly…head of the AWS Certification program. He’s the guy responsible for creating and updated certification blueprints and creating exam questions. (Well not just him, he has a team of people who do this.)

Much like you, I’m always learning about AWS and I figure I would share some little tidbits Kevin shared with me on the exams:

  • In general, blueprints are refreshed via Beta cycle every two years

  • As indicated in the new CSAP course, new services must be GA for at least 6 months before they can be a scored question

  • However, (and this was news to me) new service questions can show up as un-scored questions anytime after release. So, its possible that people might see questions on…say…Lambda Layers any day now but they will not count in scoring.

  • I asked about how the exam deals with services not available on all regions. In the context of the exam, you should assume that the questions are written from the perspective of using a US-based or Ireland-based region.

  • I asked about the changing dates of the Beta exam availability on the website. It was a simple clerical error…AWS are people too. Currently the official AWS website shows that the beta is closed on November 30.

  • How do they come up with questions? The create a blueprint first that covers learning objectives. They then have workshops with SMEs to design questions that cover the documented learning points in the blueprint. They create lots of questions for the question bank and this is why people get different topics on their exam.

Some other notes:

No more recerts; you just take the full exam again.

If you are renewing, you’ll get a hefty discount code for the normal exam.

Certs will last three years instead of two.

There will no longer be any grace period after the cert expires. (Currently, there’s one year grace after it expires and you get fully booted.)

Scott Pletcher

An additional note… AWS Certifications is well aware of the technical difficulties people have been having with PSI. I’ve been told "stay tuned" and that they are "have some things in the works".

Great information Scott, thank you so much for sharing. About the certs expiration time, when do they start to count for 3 years? Is this only for the CSAP or all the others too?

Scott Pletcher

I do believe its for all certifications across the board but I can’t find that specifically stated online yet. They still have the two year timeframe on the "official" AWS recertification page.

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