Microsoft announced a major change to its certifications in 2019. You could still browse Microsoft exams up to November 2019 and find exactly what your would expect: a list technology certifications and information about them.
Microsoft’s release of role-based certifications changed the focus from product knowledge towards a skills-based approach that focuses on specific job roles.
Microsoft’s Career Development Approach
Microsoft finally admits to what IT professionals have been saying for years with role-based certifications. There is a gap between the knowledge required for a certification and the knowledge required for job tasks. Microsoft acknowledges this fact and tries to correct it.
They also announced new role-based certifications to better prepare learners for careers. This shifts the focus from technology to the skills required for specific job roles.
Learn how to become a security expert with SPOTO’s Cybersecurity Training
Start trainingIn 2019, the first role based certifications went live for three Azure job positions: Azure Developer, Azure Administrator and Azure Solutions Architect. Microsoft has gradually increased the number of role-based certifications they offer since then.
The complete list of Microsoft role-based Microsoft certifications can be found in our Microsoft Certification Guide.
Microsoft Continues to Retire Exams
Microsoft recently announced that 15 certifications would be retired on June 30, 2020. This was the most drastic change and marks the end to all MCSA, MCSE and MCSD certifications. These are the exams that will be retiring:
MCSA: BI Reporting
MCSA: Dynamics 365 For Operations
MCSA: SQL 2016 BI Development
MCSA: SQL 2016 Database Admin
MCSA: SQL 2016 Database Development
MCSA: SQL Server 2012/2014
MCSA: Windows Platform
MCSA Web Applications
MCSA: Windows Server 2012
M: Windows Server 2016
MCSD: App Builder
MCSE: Business Applications
MCSE: Core Infrastructure
MCSE: Data Management & Analytics
You can do the following if you are part of your retirement MCSA (meaning that you have passed at least one associated exam):
Continue studying for the remaining exams. To earn certification, you must pass them before the retirement dates.
Instead of preparing for the original exams, start preparing to take the transition exams (see below). A role-based certification will be awarded to you for passing the transition exam.
You have until the retirement date to pass all exams if you are preparing for your MCSE. To earn certification, you must pass them before the retirement dates.
Role-Based Replacement Exams
It’s helpful to look at the progression of the old exams to the new exams in order to understand how the new role-based certifications are compatible with the old system. Microsoft can’t help you map old exams to the new exams. Sometimes this is because there isn’t a clear analog in the new role based system. However, in some cases there is a one-to-1 comparison. Here is a list of the most favored retired exams and their equivalents in role-based systems.
NOTE: Microsoft also released and retired a few beta exams. Several of these are also represented here.
70-532: Developing Microsoft Azure SolutionsAZ-203: Developing Solutions For Microsoft Azure70-533. Managing Microsoft Azure Identities and RequirementsMS100: Microsoft 365 Identity & ServicesMS101: Microsoft 365 Security and Mobility70-347. Enabling Office 365 ServiceMS-100. Microsoft 365 Identity & ServicesMS101: Microsoft 365 Security and Mobility70-695. Deploying Windows Desktops et Enterprise Applicat