Microsoft Announces New Architect Certification

Microsoft will add a new high-level certification, the Microsoft Certified Architect (MCA), to its credentialing program in the near future. The certification, which will verify IT professionals’ ability to develop and implement enterprise-level IT solutions, will be divided into industry architect standards (comprising 75 percent of the program) and Microsoft technology (25 percent).


“We feel that we’re responding to a very clearly articulated customer need and very well understood job role that’s already in the industry, but really lacks a recognized accreditation around it,” said Al Valvano, business and product strategy group manager for certification and assessment operations at Microsoft Learning. “In this case, we’re trying to validate a very influential, very high-impact and very technically challenging job role: architects working at enterprise organizations who are tasked with the infrastructure, the overall technology road map. The skills domain that you have to measure to accurately credential that is very, very broad.”


One unique feature of the MCA is the testing method, which will be a board-based review not unlike those Ph.D. candidates have to go through, Valvano said. “I think one of the biggest things that will catch people’s attention about the Microsoft Certified Architect program is that we’re actually not using our traditional test technology at all. You have to sit down face-to-face in front of a board of your peers—other people who are in that job role—and actually defend a written solution, much like a dissertation, around your ability to architect technology in business. The…


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