AWS Solutions Architect Associate Study Update # 4

Hi Everyone. If you’re following along this is my fourth study update in a series of posts on the AWS Solutions Architect Associate certification. A lot has happened since my last post, so let’s get right into it.

First, I have to share that I successfully completed the exam last week and passed.

Do you have any Takeaways?

Yes! Here are my two big takeaways that you should know, especially if you are used to taking Cisco exams.

  1. Unlike Cisco exams, you can mark questions and go back to them. I did this with a few that I was unsure of. You get to review them at the end and that may be helpful.
  2. I felt the exam was more weighted towards knowing the solutions, rather than the configurations. So for a bit of clarification here, on a Cisco exam you see questions that show some CLI or an ASDM interface or something of that nature and questions are asked around that. I did not find this to be the case. What I saw was more along the lines of “A customer needs this… what will solve that problem or fulfill their request?”

Does this negate the need to spend time in the labs?

Absolutely not! To really understand the solution you need hands on. Spend time in the labs. It’s a big part of what links services together and when you try to think of how to address a customer issue the hands on makes it much easier.

How did I do with the plan I shared last time?

I read the overviews of all of the services listed. Dug deeper into many of them. In the Cantrill course I was about 45% complete and then I jumped to the exam tips section. I am still going through the course, but at a slower pace now since It’s an excellent level of detail mixed with lots of labs/demos. I also have poured over a ton of youtube videos, and training at work, so I felt comfortable enough with the core services to take the exam. If you’re just starting out, I recommend pushing through all of it.

What’s next?

Currently I have three AWS certifications on my personal list to complete. The AWS Certified Solutions Architect Professional, the AWS Certified Advanced Networking Specialty, and the AWS Certified Security Specialty. Since my focus at work is on Cloud Infrastructure Security I may look at the Security Speciality first, but I’ll update everyone once I make a decision.

In the mean time, I’ll be at the AWS Summit in San Francisco, April 20 – 21, as well as the AWS Summit in Washington D.C, May 23 – 25. If you’re in the area or at the Summit and want to meet up please reach out.

Until then, Happy Labbing!

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