Passing AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Associate Exam

Amazon Web Services Certified Solutions Architect - Associate exam is for professionals seeking to understand the basics of the AWS cloud and its major components. You can train yourself and pass this exam even if you have never logged into the AWS console.

The AWS Certified Solutions Architect certification is the termed and the #1 cloud certification for 2 years in a row. The average salary for an AWS certified engineer averages above $100,000 USD. This certification is a must-have for any IT professional looking for a career in the cloud industry.

There are many ways by which you can train yourself for the AWS Solutions Architect Associate exam. You can take online training courses from platforms like Acloud.guru, Linux Academy, Udemy, edX, Cloud Academy, Lynda and many more. There is also official training material available from the AWS website and you can choose from Digital Training and Classroom Training. You can get yourself started by learning the fundamentals of the AWS cloud by taking the AWS Cloud Practitioner Essentials course, which is a free digital training offering from AWS. Official exam guide from AWS is available here.

The training course offered from Acloud.guru is very good for the basic grounding in AWS but is not by itself sufficient to pass the AWS Solution Architect Associate Exam. This view was reinforced by the fact that a number of people on various forums have said the same.  Our guess is that Acloud.guru covers 70-80% of what you need to pass the exam.

Linux Academy runs an AWS Solution Architect Associate course and from what we have seen so far it looks like a reasonable strategy to cover the gaps which were left by Acloud.guru. The layout and explanations of the concepts seem much clearer and the whole thing seems to be more up to date than Acloud.guru.  The other advantage with Linux Academy is that there is a scheduler tool which helps one keep track and move forward at a consistent pace. The students input the days of the week he would like to study and the numbers of hours he would like to study on those days and the course outlines what material you need to cover daily to finish within a specific time period (e.g. five weeks).

Apart from the above, a number of people on the forums have recommended Whizlabs. This company has several practice exams (with explanations to the answers) and seems to be a good resource to finish one’s training for the exam. One should target to score above 80% in the Whizlabs practice exams. Once this is done, one can safely assume that the preparation for the exam is at a good level. To get a feel for the type of questions asked in the exam, go over the official sample questions from AWS.

We believe that hands-on experience is a great plus when it comes to taking this exam. You can create a free account on AWS and leverage AWS Free Tier which is a great way to get some hands-on experience free of cost (subject to limitations).

We also recommend that people should also go over some of the whitepapers published by AWS. These will help greatly in building a better understanding of the AWS Cloud. The FAQs section of AWS is also a great way to understand some of the real-life scenarios which come across while working on AWS. Links to some relevant whitepapers and FAQs are given at the end of the blog.

We wish the best of luck to all the people getting ready to take the AWS Solutions Architect Associate Exam and we hope that this blog will prove beneficial in the training process.

Whitepapers:

http://media.amazonwebservices.com/AWS_Cloud_Best_Practices.pdf

http://d0.awsstatic.com/whitepapers/Security/AWS%20Security%20Whitepaper.pdf

http://media.amazonwebservices.com/AWS_Development_Test_Environments.pdf

https://d0.awsstatic.com/whitepapers/Backup_Archive_and_Restore_Approaches_Using_AWS.pdf

http://media.amazonwebservices.com/AWS_Amazon_VPC_Connectivity_Options.pdf

http://d0.awsstatic.com/whitepapers/aws_pricing_overview.pdf

FAQ’s:

https://aws.amazon.com/ec2/faqs/

https://aws.amazon.com/s3/faqs/

https://aws.amazon.com/vpc/faqs/

https://aws.amazon.com/route53/faqs/

https://aws.amazon.com/rds/faqs/

https://aws.amazon.com/sqs/faqs/

https://aws.amazon.com/elasticloadbalancing/faqs/

https://aws.amazon.com/autoscaling/faqs/

https://aws.amazon.com/efs/faq/

https://aws.amazon.com/dynamodb/faqs/

Moiz Arif

Bluestack IT Solutions