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Exploring AWS: Studying for Certification

email-5-anything-aws-cant-doEditor’s Note: This is the final post in a series of five posts by trainer Jeremy Cioara exploring Amazon Web Services. 

As I round out my “mini-blog series” focusing on AWS, I’d like to give you some study tips for those interested in becoming AWS certified.

  1. The AWS exams use a “simple” question format. This could be because they’re still “young” in the certification realm, or just their testing strategy. Regardless, be prepared for a test full of nothing but multiple-choice questions (could be good or bad depending on your test-taking skills).
  2. Questions are “clever factoids.” While many of the questions are scenario-based, they are often searching for “do you know the facts about… <fill in AWS service here>.” Know your AWS services well (i.e. When would I use S3 over EBS? If my server instance is becoming overloaded, what are my options? When should I reach for DynamoDB rather than RDS?).
  3. Try a Kryterion practice exam. Kryterion (a little known testing company for me) administers the AWS certification exams. When you go to sign up, they have an option for a $20.00 practice exam. Do it. Take the practice exam. I found the practice exam to be a very close gauge of what the real exam is like.
  4. Prepare for NO scratch paper. Kryterion testing policy states that you cannot take scratch paper into the exam… which is brutal for someone like me who processes through writing and drawing.
  5. Get in and DO it. AWS has a significant advantage of offering cloud services to the masses, which means your “lab requirements” for study are VERY easy and VERY low-cost. Anyone with a credit card can sign up for a full-access AWS account. Combine this lab AWS account with a CBT Nuggets AWS training course and you should have everything you need to rock the exam.

Ready to begin your AWS adventure? Browse Jeremy’s AWS training now!


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