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MCSA: What Goes Around Comes Back Around

When I learned that MS is altering is MCSA exam requirements for Windows Server 2012 and SQL Server 2012 to include one elective along with two required exams, my first reaction was to ask: "Wasn't that the way the original MCSA worked, too?" I checked: it was. This is a case where it's nice to see Microsoft returning to its certification roots.

I had to resort to the Internet Wayback Machine to double-check my dim recollection (which I found confirmed in print in the 2003 edition of my book IT Certification Success (Exam Cram 2)). Yes indeedy, the "old" MCSA (Microsoft Certified System Administrator) did include electives -- 10 or 11 of them from MS, in fact, along with acceptance of either the CompTIA Security+ by itself or the CompTIA Network+ and Server+ together. So it's good to see that what comes around from the old MCSA also goes around to the new MCSA (now decoded as Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate). The following tables bring the revised requirements to light:


Table 1: MCSA: Windows Server 2012 Exams, Including Electives

Required Exams

(Take Both)

Exam ID

Title

70-410

Installing and Configuring Windows Server 2012

70-411

Administering Windows Server 2012

Elective Exams

(Take Any One)

70-346

Managing Office 365 Identities and Requirements

74-409

Server Virtualization with Windows Server Hyper-V and System Center

70-412

Configuring Advanced Server 2012 Services (one of prior “required three”)

70-462

Administering SQL Server 2012 Databases

Table 2: MCSA: SQL Server 2012 Exams, Including Electives

Required Exams

(Take Both)

Exam ID

Title

70-461

Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012

70-462

Administering SQL Server 2012 Databases

Elective Exams

(Take Any One)

70-411

Administering Windows Server 2012

70-463

Implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012

70-412

Configuring Advanced Server 2012 Services (one of prior “required three”)

70-483

Programming in C#

If you'd like to learn more, please check out the Born to Learn blog post entitled "Electives for Windows Server 2012 & SQL Server 2012 MCSA Certifications now available."