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Azure Architect Exams Are Retiring!


In late January 2020, Microsoft Learning Blog announced upcoming changes to a bunch of certifications. Most notably, the changes are concerning new certification exams that will be replacing existing ones. The announcement also concerns Azure Architect candidates who are about to take Microsoft Certified Azure Solutions Architect Expert exams.

Microsoft does it all the time…

For those who took Microsoft certification exams in the past, it should not be a secret that Microsoft updates the content of their certifications quite frequently. For some people, the changes come as a source of great frustration. But some perceive it as a positive sign that Microsoft is finally updating the content of their exams to match with the latest advancements.

Unsurprisingly, the exams of Azure Solutions Architect Expert certification are also changing. The exam is one of Microsoft’s expert-level and most popular certifications as the cloud is today’s hot topic and one of the emerging technologies. The candidates wanting to earn this certification are expected to have advanced experience and knowledge across various aspects of IT operations, including networking, virtualization, identity, security, business continuity, disaster recovery, data management, budgeting, and governance.

What is changing?

The exam consists of two parts, AZ-300 and AZ-301. Microsoft will replace them with AZ-303 and AZ-304 respectively.  The new ones will be available on or around the end of June 29, 2020.

“We will leave the old exam in market for 90 days after the new version becomes available.”

Libery Munson, Principal Psychometrician, Microsoft

The good news for those who already earned the certificate is that they will still keep the title. If you’re currently studying for the certification exam, you do not need to worry. Microsoft has a plan to phase out the old and phase in the new exams over a 90-day window. During this time period (potentially until the end of September) you will still be able to choose between both exams during registration. If you have more questions, feel free to refer to the original announcement and/or reach out to Microsoft directly.

For those who are interested to take the new exams, not much has been released so far (e.g. official test exam), except some headlines on what are going to be in the new exam. The exam outlines for AZ-300 (click to get) and AZ-301 (click to get) nicely depict the skills measured and provide material for comparison of changes that will take place.

We recommend you keep an eye on the exam links regularly to stay up to date on the upcoming news! You can read about the reasons for the announced changes in the official announcement article from Microsoft Learning. Additionally, Microsoft has captured answers to the questions they have received around these changes in the following link: Updates to Azure certification exams announced in January 2020.


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