Microsoft to Implement Simulation Tests for MCSE, MCSA

Microsoft is set to introduce performance-based testing for its Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) and Microsoft Certified Systems Architect (MCSA) credentials, company officials announced. New simulations, developed by the company with partners Pearson VUE, Thomson Prometric and APA, are scheduled to roll out next month, said Al Valvano, who manages business and product strategy group for certification and assessment operations at Microsoft Learning.

“We’re trying to use simulation performance-based testing technology to assess and analyze whether a candidate can actually perform the task, rather than just use a series of questions that test domain knowledge,” Valvano said. “Generally, what we’re seeing with the simulation items types that we’ll be introducing with these two exams are that they’re generally comprised of multiple-part tasks. They might have a scenario that sets out a desired end state, and you’d have to walk through various steps in the simulated environment to actually achieve that, just like you would if you were running the operating system in the real world.

“Microsoft continues to be dedicated to providing a robust certification product suite to help organizations, hiring managers and candidates prove competency around Microsoft technology,” he added. “We believe this is a key investment for us moving forward, to continue to raise the bar in testing technology and in terms of providing concrete value to people who set out their valuable time and energy in achieving a Microsoft certification.”

The performance-based test will proceed in a “branching” fashion, not unlike a training…



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