What Microsoft C# Certifications Are Available?
There are two main certifications available for you if you’re interested in getting a Microsoft C# certification:
- Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA)
- Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD): Windows Store Apps using C#
The MTA is more of an entry-level certification, and the MCSD is the next level up in the Microsoft certification path.
What C# Certification Exams Do I Need To Pass?
You’ll need to pass a few exams to become certified in Microsoft C#. These exams are different for each certification.
You can get the MTA certification by passing only one exam, the 98-372 Microsoft .NET Fundamentals. This is targeted towards those who are new to the industry or have minimal experience. It’s based on understanding the .NET concepts, including C#. More information on this exam can be found here.
To get the MCSD Windows Store Apps using C#, you’ll need to pass three exams:
- Exam 70-483 Programming in C#
- Exam 70-484 Essentials of Developing Windows Store Apps Using C#
- Exam 70-485 Advanced Windows Store App Development Using C#
What Are The Requirements For Each Certification?
What’s different about these two certifications compared to other organisations, and even older Microsoft certifications, is that they don’t have any strict requirements.
For the MTA, there are no requirements needed, it’s just targeted towards the entry-level IT professional who wants an understanding of .NET and C#.
For the MCSD, there are no requirements. You don’t need to have the MTA to get the MCSD, and the exams don’t cross over (as in, the exam for the MTA is not included as one of the exams in the MCSD). There is a recommended experience for each exam, though:
- Exam 70-483 Programming in C#: one or more years of experience programming the essential business/application logic for a variety of application types and hardware/software platforms using C#.
- Exam 70-484 Essentials of Developing Windows Store Apps Using C#: two to five years of experience developing C# and XAML applications, including one or more years developing applications that conform to the Windows Store app guidelines.
- Exam 70-485 Advanced Windows Store App Development Using C#: two to five years of experience developing C# and XAML applications, including two or more years designing and developing Windows Store apps.
So, it’s suggested that you have at least two to five years of experience developing C# and XAML applications in order to pass these exams.
How Can I Get A C# Certification?
Getting a Microsoft C# certification is just like getting any other certification:
- Choose a certification, either the MTA or the MCSD.
- Determine how you study, based on your budget and preferred method. Microsoft offers courses for each exam, so you can take those if needed. You can also browse the Internet or read books on each of the exams.
- Schedule the exams. Find a time to enrol in the exam when you’re ready to take it.
- Sit and pass the exams. Once you’ve passed the exam, you’ll either become certified (if it’s your last exam), or you’ll need to move on to the next exam.
Which C# Certification Should I Get?
Well, as there are only two to get, which are recommended for different levels of experience, it’s an easier decision to make than other certifications.
If you have over two years experience of developing C# and XAML applications, and are quite confident in your skills and abilities, and known the subject matter of the MCSD exams (484, 484 and 485), then I suggest going for the MCSD certification.
If you don’t, however, or if you have less experience or are new to the industry, start with the MTA. It’s one exam and gives you the understanding at a certain level about C#.
Following the C# certification path means you can start with the MTA and move on to the MCSD, but as you don’t need to pass one to get the other, it’s only a suggestion.
How Much Does The C# Certification Cost?
The prices for each exam depend on where you take the exam and what country you’re in. I did some research for my market (Australia) and this is what I found (at time of writing and converted to USD):
- MTA Exam 98-372 Microsoft .NET Fundamentals: Cost was $157 AUD ($147 USD) from Prometric.
- MSCD Exam 70-483 Programming in C#: Cost was $206 AUD ($193 USD) from the Microsoft website.
- MCSD Exam 70-484 Essentials of Developing Windows Store Apps Using C#: Cost was $206 AUD ($193 USD) from the Microsoft website.
- MCSD Exam 70-485 Advanced Windows Store App Development Using C#: Cost was $206 AUD ($193 USD) from the Microsoft website.
So, according to these prices, it will cost $157 AUD ($147 USD) to get the MTA and $618 AUD ($580 USD) to get the MCSD.
Note that these prices may change, so it’s best to do your own research.
I hope that this answers your questions on the Microsoft C# certification. If you have any other questions, share them in the comments section below!
Career Action Tip: If you’re a C# developer or wish to move into this area, consider getting the MTA or MCSD to improve your career.
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