Microsoft Cloud Skills Challenge 2021 & Microsoft Virtual Training Day — Microsoft Events

In my first blog on Tech, diving into the most coveted certifications of all Microsoft Developers/Business & IT Professionals. I am here to give you the most simple and non-detrimental practices to ensure you are not left behind with changes Microsoft has made from Jan 2021 and a road-map of .NET 5 and C# 9( Will be covered in my next blog ).

From my personal experience on Microsoft Virtual Academy and Channel 9 along with the latest live videos on YouTube by MVPs this is something very simple. As very least to no hands-on experience is required to take up the Challenge. Also there is no need to read extra material, purchase books or go through live scenarios to understand these. This is as Good as it gets IMHO.

Here is a link ( Click here ) for offers on vouchers that appear on the certification dashboard for a value of $165 for these exams. Terms and Conditions link is described here.

As the site suggested there are 3 simple steps and mind you Microsoft provides discounts but no short-cuts so either go through and make notes on learning paths on your desired exams. And/or make notes and do reading on key concepts and practice diagrams and labs from these learning paths of your respected certifications.

As you are aware since March of 2018 microsoft has moved all its certifications from MCTS, MCPD, MCP, etc to paths which begin with prefixes such as MS, DP, AZ, DA, etc. and the paths to follow are described in Click here( https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/certifications/ ) for the below screen-shot mentioned link.

For some this is easy and coverable with the amount of time they have and the resources from their resp. Company’s disposable. For the rest of us like you and me; we have to make our paths. Like dedicating 2–3 hours a day for study prep and material preparation. Sample questions from practice guides such as Udemy, Whizlabs, ITexams, etc. Head-up the above challenges has an end-date. Feb 28th 2021 is the last date for registrations to complete on these challenges.

So not only depending on this link how we get around this problem. We have Microsoft Events. These are conducted On-Demand by Microsoft itself. There are points to note that not all provide voucher codes/discounts. However, it is much better than joining some institute / depending on online forums on youtube. ( Mind you there are very useful forums on Medium.com/ITNext.com and reddit for Microsoft certifications ). Having said that they also only follow what Microsoft prints/provides on its own handles such as Ignite/Channel9/MSLearn/Mindhub, etc.

So here is the link for checking out all the exam training you are interested in. Mind you slot availability is limited just like flight/train bookings on refresh of a page you may see the slots vanish. It’s best to book 2–3 weeks in advance. Here is the link for search and register.

The search tags in the screen-shot should give you an idea as to how to filter-out too many events from the search.

Also As I am an Azure Cloud Engineer myself I go through the same events but with help of a different url. Which is Azure Events (https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/community/events/)

So mix and match your calendar with the events provided above. Or better yet. Get ppts and notes pdfs from these events. Prepare online sandboxes from accounts provided while registration. And of course apply discounts from attending these events on your dashboard to take it up for free or $165 less. In India I think the price for all these exams is Rs.4800/- more or less.

Mix and match the all authentic training, material and labs from the Big horse Microsoft and if any issues post it to them itself at their support forums. Within a maximum of 2 weeks you receive a reply. Here is the link.

I hope this is informative and useful and I have written this blog from my personal experiences. And I myself have taken up 3 challenge courses and numerous events to attend. ( P. S no restrictions on the number of events you can register. And do not focus on India time; usually they are free timings in PST/CET and GMT zones).

Let me know via comments below if anything.

My next blog is how I cleared AZ-900 with using the above mentioned links.

Have been working as a Techie for the past 15 years and excellence in domains such as IoT 4.0, BFSI, Telecom, e-com and more recently AI.