MCPD Upgrade Exams Get Beta Tested Mid-February
Microsoft to beta test four upgrade exams beginning next week for MCAD and MCSD holders who want quick route to new-gen MCP certs.
Microsoft is planning to release a slew of new-generation MCP exams that target developers already holding the MCAD and MCSD certifications:
- 70-551: UPGRADE: MCAD Skills to MCPD: Web Developer by Using the .NET Framework
- 70-552: UPGRADE: MCAD Skills to MCPD: Windows Developer by Using the .NET Framework
- 70-553: UPGRADE: MCSD .NET Skills to MCPD: Enterprise Application Developer by Using the .NET Framework: Part 1
- 70-554: UPGRADE: MCSD .NET Skills to MCPD: Enterprise Application Developer by Using the .NET Framework: Part 2
While in beta, those exams will be numbered "71-" on the Pearson Vue and Prometric test center Web sites.
The beta test phase for these exams will stretch out longer than for the other exams, with testing to begin February 13 and concluding on March 10. Recent exam betas have been running around 14 days.
According to the exam objective guides for those exams, Microsoft plans to release those exams to the general public in May.
When they go live, exams 70-551 and 70-552 can be used only by MCAD certificate holders. Candidates need only pass one of those exams to immediately obtain MCPD: Web Developer or MCPD: Windows Developer status. (Otherwise, non-certified candidates must pass three exams for either MCPD title.)
MCSD title holders will need to pass both Exam 70-553 and Exam 70-554 in order to upgrade to the MCPD: Enterprise Application Developer certification. (Non-certified candidates will have to pass five exams if taking the traditional certification path.)
The exam are regularly priced at $125 each, but exam candidates who get an invitation from Microsoft to take the beta exam can take the exam for free. The company usually sends out invitations to qualified individuals who subscribe to the company's "MCP Newsflash" newsletter. To find out more, go to http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcpexams/status/beta.asp. Beta exams often take longer to complete than regular exams, and candidates usually have fewer training and self-study resources.
Michael Domingo has held several positions at 1105 Media, and is currently the editor in chief of Visual Studio Magazine.