Microsoft announced, at Inspire 2018, some additions and changes to the Microsoft Certifications surrounding the Microsoft Azure cloud that are starting to be released, and will be expanded upon in the near future around the timing of the Microsoft Ignite 2018 conference in September 2018. These announcements were made in the LER01 – The future of modern learning session at MS Inspire 2018, in addition to a blog post on the Microsoft Learning blog written by Liberty Munson.

New Azure Certification Paths

Microsoft announced 3 new Azure Certification paths coming for Administrators, Developers, and Solutions Architects working with Microsoft Azure. Each of these certifications consist of passing 2 exam to earn.

Here’s the 3 new Azure Certification paths, and the exams that need to be passed in order to earn each of them:

Upgrade Path from 70-533 Implementing Azure Infrastructure Solutions Exam

If you’ve already previously passed the 70-533 Implementing Azure Infrastructure Solutions certification exam, then you’ll be able to take and pass the AZ-102 Microsoft Azure Administrator Certification Transition “upgrade” exam. This exam covers the delta between the 70-533 and the 2 new exams, and will only test you on what wasn’t already covered on the 70-533 certification exam. Yay, an upgrade path!!

Better Alignment Towards Job Roles

The big reason Microsoft is making this change to the Azure Certification paths it to better align the certifications towards the job roles professionals in the workplace are working in. The current, existing certification exams for Microsoft Azure are really broad in topics and cover a very broad range of skills that are difficult for most professionals to master.

This is certainly an interesting change to the MCP (Microsoft Certified Professional) program, and I’m really interested in seeing what the new exams end up being for the new Azure Developer and Azure Solution Architecture certification tracks!

Additional Tracks / Roles Coming in 2019

The first 3 Azure Certifications coming in 2018 are just the beginning of these new changes to the MCP (Microsoft Certified Professional) program. Another thing announced is that Microsoft will be releasing many more Role-based Certification Tracks / Paths in the first half of 2019. This is to include an additional 10+ roles. When the new certification changes are finally rolled out then there will be More Than 13 New Certifications for Microsoft technologies from Microsoft Azure to other Microsoft technologies!

Happy studying!

If desired, you can watch the LER01 – The future of modern learning session from Microsoft Inspire 2018 to see the full announcement they made at the conference.


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Posted by Chris Pietschmann

Chris is a Microsoft MVP and has nearly 20 years of experience building enterprise systems both in the cloud and on-premises. He is also a Certified Microsoft Azure Solutions Architect (both MCSD and MCSE), a Microsoft Certified Trainer, and self proclaimed Cloud Advocate. He has a passion for technology and sharing what he learns with others to help enable them to learn faster and be more productive.


  1. […] to the Build Azure blog, two additional certs — Azure Developer and Azure Solutions Architect — are rolling out […]


  2. Hi Chris,

    What about already completed exams status? Will it not be considered? Is it mandatory to clear the new exam paper to earn the specified credentials?
    In my case, I have cleared my 70-533 and booked for 70-532 paper by next week.
    How does Microsoft consider me?
    I am focusing to gain MCSE certified professional, for which I need to clear two more papers 70-532 & 70-535. Please suggest.


    1. Chris Pietschmann July 18, 2018 at 7:56 am

      I recommend to go ahead and earn the MCSE. It won’t be going away now and will still give you a great certification to show/prove your skills! Congrats on passing 70-533!!


  3. Thanks you very much Chris.


  4. johndeardurff July 20, 2018 at 4:55 am

    Chris, did you mean this announcement was at Inspire and more will be announced at Ignite.


    1. Chris Pietschmann July 20, 2018 at 6:16 am

      Oops, thanks for pointing that out! I fixed the article.


  5. […] Three new Azure Certifications were announced this week, the first of which is available now. A key thing to note is this is the first of the new changes to the Microsoft Certification Program (MCP). Microsoft plans to release 10+ more role-based certification paths in the first half of 2019. You can get a high-level overview here. […]


  6. Hi Chris,

    I am new bee for azure certifications. Started preparing for 70-532 paper. Thought of register for exam but after went through your article i am paused 🙂

    Do I need to wait till September announcement from Microsoft. please suggest me.


    1. Chris Pietschmann July 24, 2018 at 5:12 pm

      No, by all means finish studying for and take the 70-532 exam. If you’re looking to earn the MCSA, MCSD or MCSE certifications, then also go ahead and pass the necessary exams. Good luck! However, if you aren’t able to study and get the exam passed by October, then you could still keep studying, but wait for the “Azure Certified Developer” certification announcement before you decide to take 70-532 or the new exams for the new certification. Just focus on studying first, and take the certification exams when you’re ready; which ever exams may be best and are released at that time. 🙂 Happy studying!


  7. can we still take the “Microsoft 70-533: Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions” now? then just get the Transition exam right after?


    1. Chris Pietschmann July 27, 2018 at 7:07 am

      Yes absolutely


  8. How does this new path impact things like the MCSA – Linux on Azure?


    1. Chris Pietschmann July 31, 2018 at 6:14 pm

      That is currently unclear. We’ll have to wait for more information to be announced around Ignite in September.


  9. What’s the best path for Data Analytics?


    1. Chris Pietschmann August 1, 2018 at 5:36 pm

      You should look at the information for the MCSE: Data Management and Analytics certification, here: That should clear things up for you. 🙂


  10. I’m about to take the newly updated 70-535 Exam (Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions) in September 2018. Will this be one of the 2 exams for the new Azure Solution Architect certification?


    1. Chris Pietschmann August 2, 2018 at 1:25 pm

      I don’t think so, it sounds like the new Azure Solution Architect cert will have new exams, like the new Azure Administrator cert. But we’ll have to wait for further announcements to know for certain.


  11. Will this exam 70-535 expire in Sept 2018 and new courses will come up ?


    1. Chris Pietschmann August 4, 2018 at 6:33 pm

      No, the 70-535 exam is not set to expire any time soon.


  12. At $165 per Exam this is going to get expensive…


    1. Chris Pietschmann August 7, 2018 at 8:47 pm

      The idea of how “expensive” it is to earn certification is really subjective and relative to your individual career goals. It’s always worth investing in your personal growth and educations, especially when working in IT where you need to be continually learning and keep up to date on technology changes. When you want to pay the fee to take the certification exams is definitely something you need to device if it’s justified when compared against the potential benefits of being certified. If it is, then cool, take the exams. If it is not, then it may still be worth studying for the exams, just without actually taking the exam itself, as you will still learn tons to help with your career. I wish you the best in navigating the path towards your career goals.


      1. While I agree on the high price structure, there are ways around it. Many testing and education centers will, from time to time, provide discounts on these exams. Please contact them to see what they provide. No one will ever penalize you for failing a test; it’s all part of the learning process.

  13. Is there going to be a similar revision for Office 365? Totally see the same category making sense there.



    1. Chris Pietschmann August 9, 2018 at 10:03 pm

      MS hasn’t announced anything for Office 365 certification restructuring, but they did say there’s plans to release additional certification tracks next year, so we’ll see. 🙂


  14. I am preparing for 70-532 to complete my MCSD. cleared 70-480 and 70-486. How MCSD path will be changed? do I need to give Az-200 or AZ-201 instead of 70-532 to complete my MCSD?


    1. Chris Pietschmann September 24, 2018 at 10:26 pm

      Since you’re already preparing for 70-532, if you plan to pass the exam by December 31, 2018, I would say go forward with your existing plans. If you don’t think you’ll be able to pass 70-532 by the end of the year, then you’ll want to reevaluate your plans, as the 70-532 is being retired on December 31, 2018 and will not be available to take after that date.


  15. Are these AZ 300 & 301 still in Beta or available GA?


    1. Chris Pietschmann October 12, 2018 at 12:35 pm

      These exams are currently in Beta. The final release should be within the next couple months.


  16. Hi Chris, Looking for getting my Team certified and was wondering if MS had any plans to allow “Microsoft Exam Replay with Practice Test: MCP exam + Retake + Practice test” to be used for the AZ exams?

    Right now they are limited to “Exam Replay vouchers are valid for 70-, 74- and MBx exams only. “


    1. Chris Pietschmann December 5, 2018 at 2:38 pm

      This I haven’t specifically seen anything for, but they may at some point. You’ll have to keep an eye out.


  17. I have gotten 533 and 534 last year and got myself a MCSA : Cloud Platform. Later I got 744 and got MCSE Cloud Platform and Infra. If I go for the upgrade 533. Would I lose the MCSA : Cloud Platform?


    1. Chris Pietschmann December 5, 2018 at 2:27 pm

      No you won’t lose MCSA, you’ll earn MCSE in addition.


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