New AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate SAA-C03 Exam Launched

New AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate SAA-C03 Exam Launched

AWS updates its certification exams on a regular basis to keep up with the rate of development of new features and services. AWS recently announced that the AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate exam will be updated from SAA-C02 to SAA-C03. New versions of an exam are typically quite minor, with only a few new services and topic areas introduced. After reviewing the new exam guide, I can say that there is definitely a lot of coverage of new services that were not previously covered. In fact, the exam guide for the SAA-C03 now includes over 30 additional services, a significant increase from the previous update in 2020! Let us look at some of the updates.
About SAA-C03
This new exam version includes updated content to reflect the AWS platform’s rapid pace of innovation as well as the most recent best practices for architecting on the AWS Cloud. This is consistent with AWS services and innovations in areas like security, resiliency, high performance, and cost optimization.
Target Audience – The ideal candidate will have at least one year of hands-on experience designing cloud solutions using AWS services.
Exam Details
Only multiple choice and multiple response questions are asked.Type: AssociatePearson VUE and PSI delivery methods; testing center or online proctored examThe number of questions is 65.Duration: 130 minutesThe cost is $150 USD.English, French (France), German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese (Brazil), and Simplified Chinese are the available languages.
Course Outline
Let us now have a look at the detailed course outline –
Domain 1: Design Secure Architectures
This exam domain focuses on securing your AWS architectures and accounts for 30% of the exam. Task statements include the following:
Task 1: Create secure access to AWS resources.Also, Task 2: Create secure workloads and applications.Furthermore, Task 3: Determine appropriate information security controls.
Domain 2: Design Resilient Architectures
This exam domain, which accounts for 26 percent of the exam, focuses on designing resilient architectures on AWS. Task statements include the following:
Task 1: Create scalable and loosely coupled architectures.Also, Task 2: Create highly available and/or fault-tolerant architectures.
Domain 3: Design High-Performing Architectures
This exam domain focuses on designing high-performance architectures on AWS and accounts for 24% of the exam. Task statements include the following:
Task 1: Identify high-performance and/or scalable storage solutions.Also, Task 2: Create high-performance, elastic compute solutions.Furthermore, Task 3: Identify high-performance database solutions.Moreover, Task 4: Develop high-performance and/or scalable network architectures.Also, Task 5: Identify high-performance data ingestion and transformation solutions.
Domain 4: Design Cost-Optimized Architectures
This exam domain focuses on optimizing solutions for cost-effectiveness on AWS and accounts for 20% of the exam. Task statements include the following:
Task 1: Create cost-effective storage solutions.Also, Task 2: Create cost-effective computing solutions.Furthermore, Task 3: Create cost-effective database solutions.Moreover, Task 4: Create cost-effective network architectures.
Let us now look at the differences between both the exams –
Differences
There are some differences between the exam guides for the SAA-C02 and the SAA-C03, but there is a lot of overlap from the SAA-C02, and it does reference some of the latest services and features within existing services. From a domain standpoint, there are still four different assessment domains to focus on, with minor differences as shown in the two domain tables for each exam.
For Old Version –
SAA-C02 DOMAINS% OF EXAMDomain 1:Design Resilient Architectures 30%Domain 2: Design High-Performing Architectures28%Domain 3: Design Secure Applications and Architectures24%Domain 4: Design Cost-Optimized Architectures18%TOTAL100%
For the new Exam –
SAA-C03 Domains% of examDomain 1: Design Secure Architectures30%Domain 2: Design Resilient Architectures26%Domain 3: Design High Performing Architectures24%Domain 4: Design Cost-Optimized Architectures20%TOTAL100%
Based on these comparisons, we can see that there is now a greater emphasis on cost management and security, as the percentages in these two areas have increased by 8%. When compared to the SAA-C02 exam guide, the new SAA-C03 exam guide contains a lot more information about what is in and out of scope. It also includes detailed information on what knowledge you should have for each domain, as well as the skills required to meet the domain’s requirements. Let us now look at some common queries –
Is this a beta Exam?
There is no beta for the new exam, which is unusual, and they are going straight from the SAA-C02 to the SAA-C03 with no overlap. As a result, you must either pass your SAA-C02 on or before August 29th, 2022, or study for the SAA-C03 and book your exam on or before August 30th, 2022.
Will the exam include exam labs or hands-on labs?
In the most recent update to the AWS Certified SysOps, Administrator Associate certification AWS introduced hands-on questions where you must use the AWS Management Console to complete a series of tasks. Some expected the new versions of other certifications to also include exam labs. They have not included exam labs in the new exam guide for the SAA-C03 so it looks like it will be multiple choice and multiple response questions only.
How can you prepare for the exam?
There are some resources that you can use to prepare –
Whitepapers
Candidates preparing for the AWS can benefit from AWS whitepapers. These are legitimate study resources that can help candidates understand AWS services. Whitepapers, on the other hand, are essentially pdf versions of the topics found on Amazon’s official certifications page. Whitepapers not only help you prepare better, but they also help you develop a strong strategy to focus on. Furthermore, AWS provides sample papers to candidates to help them gain additional knowledge and skills in preparation for certification exams.
AWS Training
AWS provides candidates with training to help them develop competence, confidence, and credibility through practical cloud skills. Candidates can learn at their own pace online or from an accredited AWS instructor built by AWS experts. This will be beneficial to both novices looking to improve their existing IT skills and professionals with cloud knowledge.
Practice tests
Finally, we reach the crux of your preparations: the AWS Certified Advanced Networking – Specialty Practice Tests. This is an important component that will help you prepare for the exam better. In other words, practice tests are useful because they allow you to assess your own weaknesses and strengths. So, by practicing, you will be able to improve your answering skills and save a significant amount of time.

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