The AWS certification exams are a way for you to show your knowledge of the AWS service. Many different organisations offer these certifications, and each has its exam pattern. These exams can be challenging if you don't know what needs to be studied.
The AWS certification exams are a series of tests intended to test your knowledge and skills on the AWS cloud platform. Passing these exams can be difficult, but you will have an easier time giving them helpful study tips! In this post, we'll discuss seven tips for studying for AWS certification exams so you can pass with flying colours.
What is the AWS Exam?
AWS stands for Amazon Web Services. AWS is a collection of remote computing services or cloud services that together make up a cloud computing platform offered over Amazon.
AWS (Amazon Web Services) certification exams are a formal way of assessing your skills in AWS. These exams will validate the knowledge and experience that aspiring cloud practitioners need to succeed on the job or at their next level of education.
Being the most popular cloud provider globally, Amazon's AWS has set a benchmark for its certification. Through rigorous methods of evaluating cloud computing skills, AWS certifies you as one of their most industry-centric cloud competencies that the world leader validates in the Cloud Computing domain.
AWS offers 12 certifications as of now, and it is categorised based on the industries and the core job role in the cloud domain. Some of the industry-based career roles include:
- Cloud Developer
- DevOps Engineer
- Cloud Architect
- Solutions Architect
- AWS Network Engineer
Types of AWS Certification levels
Leading onto the AWS Certification Career, one needs to clear various exams to earn a respective role-based certification. Based on the certification level and their requirements, some exams are mandatory, and some are not. Whereas all the role-based certifications and their respective exams are based on their difficulty level as given below:
Foundational exams are not mandatory but highly recommended. They are designed to test the primary cloud computing skills like the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner.
Associate level exams are mandatory to clear and move to the next level. The certifications that fall under associate-level includes:
- AWS Certified Developer - Associate
- AWS Certified SysOps Administrator - Associate
- AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Associate
These exams guarantee one's skills at an advanced level. It shows that you are an expert in both knowledge and skills, and it aims at Solutions Architect and DevOps Engineers specifically. The certifications that fall under this level include:
- AWS Certified Solutions Architect
- AWS Certified DevOps Engineer.
Speciality exams are designed to test skills required for specific technologies. The certifications for those technologies include:
- AWS Certified Advanced Networking - Speciality
- AWS Certified Security - Speciality
- AWS Certified Data Analytics - Speciality
- AWS Certified Machine Learning - Speciality
- AWS Certified Database - Speciality
- AWS Certified Alexa Skill Builder - Speciality
AWS Exam Pattern 2021
With AWS Certification Training, you will learn that the exam patterns for certifications are different. For example, the multiple-choice format is constant throughout all exams, whereas the prerequisites and exam duration differs.
The AWS Certification exams are computer-based, and you can take the exam in English. You will have to answer 65 to 75 multiple choice questions, and the duration for each exam varies with the certification. It is also recommended that you have at least one year of prior experience in the said subject matter in the cloud computing domain in all exams.
Study Tips for AWS Certification Exams
Preparing for various AWS certification exams can be a tedious task, but with the help of the following study tips, you can perform well for the exam and obtain a good score.
- Get to know the subject areas
The AWS certifications are broken down into exam tracks, further divided into sub-tracks of particular topics. Therefore, it is essential to know what you need to study for an exam before diving in and just reading up on all the subjects covered in it.
Cloud Concepts, Security, Technology, and Billing and Pricing are the four subject areas of the AWS Domains. These domains will give you a better understanding of the preparation session. All these four domains constitute the exam syllabus of the AWS Exam.
- Begin with AWS Training class
The AWS Training Class is a good starting point for people who want to pursue the certification. The class covers the basics of what you need training in and will help prepare you for more complex tasks that come along with passing AWS Certification exams.
- Assess your knowledge with practice test
The most important way to prepare for the AWS certification exams is by assessing your knowledge with practice tests. It will help you identify any gaps in understanding and helps develop a study strategy.
You can also get acquainted with the subject areas of the AWS exams and their objectives. It will help you see what you will study and give you a better grip on preparation topics.
- Dive into AWS Facts and AWS Whitepapers
Reading up on the detailed facts about each service will help you give valuable information for the exam. In addition, officials create AWS whitepapers to educate their viewers about certain issues and specific methodologies. It proves to be the most significant source of information and knowledge that will help you pass the AWS Certification exams better.
Some of the popular whitepapers that can help you get proper preparation include:
- Overview of AWS
- How AWS pricing works
- AWS Security best practices
- The business value of AWS
- An overview of the AWS Cloud Adoption Framework
- Join online preparation groups
The AWS certification exams are an intense experience. The exam pattern is based on various topics covering everything from security to DevOps. As a result, it can leave you feeling overwhelmed with too much information for your brain to process in the allotted time frame. If this is something you're worried about, consider joining what's called an "online preparation group".
These groups help alleviate some stress by providing preparation source material from fellow test-takers, guiding you to solve specific questions or particular problems. In addition, you can find like-minded people in blogs, Facebook, LinkedIn, and journals preparing for the exam or those who have cleared the exams.
- Allocate your study time and keep yourself accountable
Many people find themselves less productive when they study in the evening or late at night, as most others are asleep. With that said, it is essential to know your own natural time of peak performance and work with it. Schedule a time for yourself every day where you can learn new concepts about AWS rather than stuffing knowledge into an already busy schedule during other hours of the day.
Make sure you set goals at the beginning of your course and check-in with yourself regularly. Having friends to keep up motivation is also helpful, so try finding a community or joining online communities for a support network. You can even ask someone else who’s taking the same class as an accountability partner. It will be easier to get more from your courses without being organised and proactive without much hassle.
- Take breaks, Stay healthy and Enjoy the process
Studies have shown that taking short brain breaks can boost productivity. Taking even one hour off of work each day can make you more productive in the long run because it gives your mind time to process what was learned during this break period.
Being unhealthy will affect how we learn, so eating right and getting enough sleep is vital for passing AWS certification exams. In addition, rest and hydration are crucial while preparing for any exams. Take time to exercise and keep yourself mentally and physically fit. You are much likely to be learning for hours over the months of preparation, so take it easy and fuel through the entire exam preparation phase.
To Sum Up
The AWS Certification exam is a measure of your knowledge in the areas of Amazon Web Services. It tests you on everything from networking and storage to compute services. The AWS Certification exam is a global standard for cloud computing professionals. If you want to demonstrate your knowledge in this area, you must prepare adequately ahead of time with our 7 study tips.
Jon Baleva is an IT professional with 20 years of experience in programming and networking. He is an expert in Python & IT Security domains as well as in Operating Systems (OS). He has trained professionals and students in IT Programming courses, Microsoft Azure, Linux & MAC OS. He is also a writer who writes on tech-related topics for various tech magazines in Philippine. He is now an IT Trainer with Edoxi Training Institute, Dubai.