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The official PASS Blog is where you’ll find the latest blog posts from PASS community members and the PASS Board. Contributors share their thoughts and discuss a wide variety of topics spanning PASS and the data community.

Upcoming Microsoft Certifications for Data & AI

Qualified data professionals are always in demand. And their importance in digital transformation is undeniable. They modernize relational SQL Server databases on-premises, migrate and administer them on Microsoft Azure, or use the best of both worlds in hybrid environments. Plus, they drive insights at cloud scale, managing great volumes of data—from ingesting and storing to reporting and visualizing.

As a PASS member and a technical professional, you can probably identify with these tasks. In fact, they might even describe your typical workday. So I’m excited to share some big Microsoft Certification news with the PASS community! Effective early April 2020, Microsoft will offer two new role-based certifications, and they’re designed especially for data professionals. Microsoft Certified: Azure Database Administrator Associate and Microsoft Certified: Data Analyst Associate will expand the Microsoft Certifications Data & AI portfolio, which includes Azure Data Engineer Associate, Azure Data Scientist Associate, and Azure AI Engineer Associate.

Microsoft Certified: Azure Database Administrator Associate

The Azure Database Administrator implements and manages the operational aspects of cloud-native and hybrid data platform solutions built on Azure Data Services and SQL Server. These professionals use a variety of methods and tools to perform day-to-day operations, including applying knowledge of T-SQL for administrative management purposes. This certification will require one exam: DP-300: Administering Relational Databases on Microsoft Azure.

Microsoft Certified: Data Analyst Associate

The Data Analyst enables businesses to maximize the value of their data assets by using Microsoft Power BI. As subject matter experts, these professionals are responsible for designing and building scalable data models, cleaning and transforming data, and enabling advanced analytic capabilities that provide meaningful business value through easy-to-comprehend data visualizations. This certification also will require one exam: DA-100: Analyzing Data with Power BI.

Should you explore these new role-based certifications?

Yes! Database administrators and data management specialists who manage on-premises and cloud relational databases built on top of SQL Server and Azure Data Services should explore Azure Database Administrator Associate certification. And professionals who use Power BI to enable businesses to maximize the value of their data assets should explore Data Analyst Associate certification.

If you’re working toward MCSE: Data Management & Analytics, be aware that Microsoft has announced that exams associated with Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA), Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD), Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) certifications will retire on June 30, 2020. The newly announced certifications offer a great opportunity to update your skills profile and to prove you have what it takes to advance in an accelerated and increasingly competitive cloud-based world. Plus, role-based training and certifications are kept current to incorporate new Microsoft features and services, helping to minimize possible skill gaps.

The PASS community is built of consummate technical data professionals. And PASS members can start their certification journey or add to their existing portfolio with these new exams and certifications for Azure Database Administrator Associate and Data Analyst Associate. Stay tuned for the official announcement on the PASS blog, the Microsoft Learning Blog, or on Twitter at @MicrosoftLearn. And be sure to follow me on Twitter at @ilikesql.

Dandy Weyn
About the author

Dandy has been active in the world of Data & AI for over 25 years. He traveled the world consulting and training on database technologies and has been a frequent speaker at many of our events. His team of content developers in Microsoft Worldwide Learning is accountable for the technical enablement, skilling and certification in Data & Artificial intelligence for Microsoft's customers, partners eco-system and employees. Born and raised in Belgium, helped to develop his distinguished taste for beer, chocolate, and fries with mayonnaise. Dandy resides with his family in the Redmond/Eastside area, being occupied with Microsoft Life and kids’ sports activities like football, lacrosse & golf.

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