The Complete Amazon Web Services Certification Guide in 2024

Amazon Web Services (AWS) stands out as a top-tier cloud computing platform, providing an extensive array of services, including computing power, databases, storage, and enabling scalable and flexible solutions for businesses worldwide. AWS offers a range of certifications vital for IT professionals, enhancing skills, validating expertise, and boosting career opportunities.

In 2024, Amazon Web Services (AWS) offers a range of certifications categorized by levels and roles. Obtaining AWS certification requires passing an exam that includes multiple-choice questions and hands-on scenarios. To navigate this process effectively, a crucial step is understanding the various certification options. This article serves as a guide, presenting a concise overview of AWS Certifications in 2024 to help individuals make informed choices for their professional development. Additionally, we’ll uncover the principal benefits of obtaining AWS certifications, review the major updates happening in 2024, and explore tips for successful certification preparation.

Mastering AWS Certifications: A Guide for 2024

 AWS Certification Paths, as of 2024, present a systematic method to authenticate cloud expertise, catering to a variety of professional roles through their tiered structure: Foundational, Associate, Professional, and Specialty levels. The Foundational certifications serve as an introduction to the core concepts of AWS, setting the stage for the more operationally-focused Associate certifications. Moving up the ladder, Professional certifications are designed to hone advanced skills, while Specialty Certifications delve into specific domains. This structured approach allows individuals to customize their certification journey to align with their career aspirations, ensuring a deep and comprehensive understanding of AWS services. This positions them as skilled and in-demand professionals in the dynamic landscape of the cloud industry. Let’s delve into a detailed exploration of each of the 13 certifications offered by AWS.

The AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner, a foundational certification, affirms a broad understanding of AWS Cloud services, and associated terminology. Ideal for those new to the IT field, it is suitable for employees in various business roles who are looking to acquire essential knowledge about cloud computing. There are no requirements needed, accommodating candidates with no background in IT. The certification holds its validity for three years and it provides a pathway for roles like Engineer or Cloud Architect. Recommended AWS knowledge includes Cloud principles, fundamental services, economics, and security. The AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam (CLF-C02) evaluates candidates’ capacity to express the value of AWS Cloud, understand shared responsibilities, utilize best practices in security, comprehend cost economics, and position core services effectively.

The AWS Certified Data Engineer – Associate, a certification at the Associate level, confirms competence in essential data services provided by AWS. It evaluates proficiency in tasks such as managing data pipelines, resolving issues, and optimizing performance and expenses. Attaining this certification necessitates successfully completing the AWS Certified Data Engineer – Associate (DEA-C01) exam. No prior requirements make this beta exam perfect for individuals shaping data for actionable insights. Suggested expertise involves 2 and 3 years of experience in data engineering or architecture, along with 1 or 2 years of hands-on experience with AWS services. It is recommended to have general IT knowledge, covering ETL pipelines, programming concepts, Git commands, data lakes, networking, storage, and compute. Beta results release in February 2024, while the regular exam commences on March 12, 2024, maintaining validity for three years with available recertification choices.

The AWS Certified Developer – Associate demonstrates proficiency in fundamental AWS services, architectural recommended practices, and cloud-based application development, deployment, and debugging on AWS. Geared towards those with developer roles, it requires knowledge of high-level programming languages, AWS technology, and on-premises IT. The AWS Certified Developer – Associate exam (DVA-C02) gauges competency in developing, deploying, testing, and debugging AWS applications, with a focus on optimizing applications, CI/CD workflows, securing data and code, and resolving issues. Ideal candidates should have proficiency in one programming language, understanding of application lifecycle management, basic knowledge of cloud-native applications for coding, ability to develop functional applications, and experience with development tools.

The AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate demonstrates proficiency in a broad range of AWS services, emphasizing the design of solutions that balance cost efficiency and optimal performance, aligned with the AWS Well-Architected Framework. This certified qualification improves career opportunities, raises income potential, and enhances credibility in dealings with stakeholders. Basic programming knowledge is beneficial, even though significant hands-on coding is not required. Suited for individuals with expertise in AWS or on-premises IT, this certification encompasses competencies in compute, databases, storage, networking, deployment, management, security, and compliance. Achieving this certified status requires successfully completing the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate (SAA-C03) exam.

The AWS Certified SysOps Administrator – Associate certification is well-suited for individuals in systems administrator roles, possessing experience in AWS or on-premises IT, as well as those skilled in other cloud services. Certification demonstrates proficiency in deploying and managing workloads on AWS, implementing security controls and compliance requirements, utilizing the AWS Management Console and Command Line Interface (CLI), and comprehending the AWS Well-Architected Framework, security services and networking. Successful completion of the AWS Certified SysOps Administrator – Associate exam (SOA-C02) is a mandatory requirement for candidates seeking this certification.

The AWS Certified DevOps Engineer – Professional, a Professional-level certification, spotlights individuals’ technical proficiency in setting up, running, and managing distributed applications hosted on AWS. This certification boosts assurance and credibility, enabling skilled professionals to promptly deploy systems that meet security and compliance standards, while also ensuring high availability and scalability. Designed for individuals having practical experience in AWS environments for more than two years, prerequisites include proficiency in advanced-level programming, constructing automated infrastructures, and managing operating systems. Competencies in modern development processes, continuous delivery, security controls, and monitoring on AWS are crucial. Achieving this certification necessitates success in the AWS Certified DevOps Engineer – Professional (DOP-C02) exam.

The AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional certification empowers individuals to showcase advanced expertise in delivering intricate solutions, optimizing security, cost, and performance, and automating manual processes. Geared towards individuals with more than two years of practical experience in designing and implementing cloud architecture on AWS, prerequisites include being acquainted with AWS CLI, CloudFormation templates, APIs, scripting languages, and Windows or Linux environments. Essential competencies encompass supplying architectural recommendations, mapping business objectives to requirements, analyzing the needs of cloud applications and formulating hybrid architectures using core AWS technologies. Obtaining this certification involves passing the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional exam (SAP-C02), featuring multiple-choice and multiple-response questions.

The AWS Certified Advanced Networking – Specialty certification supports organizations in identifying and developing individuals with vital skills for efficient cloud implementations. Achieving this certification affirms competency in designing and maintaining network architecture across various AWS services. Intended for those with five years of practical experience in intricate networking responsibilities, prerequisites include professional familiarity with AWS technology, best practices in security, storage alternatives and subtleties in networking. Competencies span routing architectures, automation script development, and expertise in network security features. Obtaining this certification involves successfully passing the AWS Certified Advanced Networking – Specialty (ANS-C01) exam.

Earning the AWS Certified Data Analytics – Specialty certification, validates proficiency in extracting insights leveraging AWS data, storage and analytical solutions. Candidates must pass the AWS Certified Data Analytics – Specialty exam (DAS-C01), featuring both multiple-selection and multiple-answer questions. The exam targets those experienced in designing, building, securing, and maintaining analytics solutions with AWS services. Prerequisites include five years engaged in the field of data analysis, practical exposure to AWS for two years, and the skill to specify and seamlessly integrate AWS services for data analysis into the lifecycle of data. Notably, the certification is scheduled to be retired starting April 9, 2024, and the final exam will take place on April 8, 2024.

Achieving the AWS Certified Database – Specialty certification confirms proficiency in suggesting, creating, and upholding the effectiveness of Amazon Web Services database offerings. The requirements comprise a five-year background in prevalent database technologies and a two-year hands-on involvement with relational and NoSQL databases. An important aspect is to possess competence in understanding and distinguishing among Amazon’s cloud database solutions. Earning this certification involves passing the AWS Certified Database – Specialty exam (DBS-C01), comprising multiple-choice and multiple-response questions. As of April 30, 2024, this certification will cease to be offered. The last opportunity to take the exam is on April 29, 2024.

The AWS Certified Machine Learning – Specialty is aimed at professionals in data science or development positions, requiring designing experience exceeding two years, constructing, or supervising machine learning and deep learning processes within the Amazon Web Services Cloud. Proficiency in adhering to best practices in model training, deployment, and operations is crucial. Earning this certification requires successfully completing the AWS Certified Machine Learning – Specialty (MLS-C01) exam.

The AWS Certified Security – Specialty certification attests to the capability to formulate and put into action security measures implemented in the AWS Cloud. Successfully passing the AWS Certified Security – Specialty (SCS-C02) exam indicates a comprehensive understanding of specialized data categorization types, approaches to encrypting and securing AWS data, protected network protocols, and appropriate strategies for implementation in AWS. Geared towards skilled individuals with a background of five years in Information Technology security, and a minimum of two years dedicated to securing AWS workloads, this certification advances skills in cloud architecture, networking, database handling, and DevSecOps. Candidates typically earn the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate and/or AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional beforehand.

The AWS Certified: SAP on AWS – Specialty certification attests to the ability to design, implement, migrate, and manage running SAP operations on the AWS platform. Aimed at roles requiring both SAP and AWS experience, candidates should have five years of hands-on involvement with SAP, practical exposure to SAP on Amazon Web Services for one year, and the capability to formulate SAP solutions in alignment with AWS Well-Architected Framework as well as SAP certification/support requirements. Achieving the AWS Certified: SAP on AWS – Specialty certification is accomplished through the successful completion of the AWS Certified: SAP on AWS – Specialty (PAS-C01) exam. Termination of this certification is set for April 30, 2024. To obtain it, complete the exam by the end of April 29, 2024.

Benefits of AWS Certifications

Making the right decision in selecting the appropriate AWS certification is crucial. Being AWS certified suggests a lot of benefits. In 2024, AWS certifications are instrumental for career advancement, signifying proficiency in the forefront of the cloud computing industry. Recognized worldwide, these certifications amplify versatility and desirability in the job market. Certified professionals, armed with expertise in cost optimization, adaptability, and scalability, contribute to organizations by delivering efficient and flexible cloud solutions. This proficiency not only enhances professional credibility but also expedites career growth and elevates earning potential. Amidst the dynamic tech landscape, AWS certifications cultivate a culture of continuous learning, ensuring certified professionals remain at the forefront of evolving cloud technology.

Exploring AWS Certification Updates in 2024

 In 2024, AWS certification exams have undergone substantial updates to stay in line with the current advancements in cloud computing. This aims to equip professionals with relevant skills for success in the industry. Let’s explore the specific 2024 modifications in AWS certification exams here.

As previously highlighted, AWS has proposed its new AWS Certified Data Engineer – Associate beta. So, AWS Certifications employ beta exams to evaluate exam item performance before integration into a live exam. The AWS Certified Data Engineer – Associate certification in turn affirms proficiency in fundamental AWS data services, showcasing the ability to create data pipelines, diagnose and resolve problems, and enhance efficiency and cost-effectiveness while adhering to industry best practices. The ideal candidate for this certification typically has 2-3 years of experience in data engineering, supplemented by 1-2 years of familiarity with AWS services. The beta exam registration was open from November 27, 2023, to January 12, 2024, offering a unique opportunity at a reduced fee of USD 75. Participants in the beta exam were expected to receive their results about 90 days following the beta period’s conclusion. To add more, the standard exam registration is set to commence in March 2024, with the official exam available from April 2024 onwards.

Next in our discussion is the AWS Certified Data Analytics – Specialty credential, which is scheduled for retirement on April 9, 2024. The final opportunity to take the exam is scheduled for April 8, 2024. For those who currently hold this certification or are planning to obtain it, it’s important to note that it will remain valid for three years from the date of certification attainment. This decision to retire the certification is in line with AWS’s dedication to ensuring that their certifications remain relevant and current, reflecting the latest advancements in technology and industry best practices.

Recent updates concern the AWS Certified Database – Specialty and AWS Certified: SAP on AWS – Specialty certifications. In an environment where technology rapidly evolves, AWS continuously assesses their certifications to ensure they align with the evolving needs of customers. In an effort to more effectively serve their clientele, AWS is streamlining their portfolio by decreasing the number of specialty certifications while enriching their foundational, associate, and professional level offerings. Consequently, the AWS Certified Database – Specialty and AWS Certified: SAP on AWS – Specialty certifications will be phased out on April 30, 2024. The final opportunity to complete these exams is April 29, 2024.

Key Steps for Effective Preparation and Success

 Achieving success in obtaining AWS certification involves thorough preparation, including integrating theoretical knowledge, practical skills, and proactive engagement within the AWS ecosystem. Begin by studying the official exam guide and prioritizing high-weightage topics. Next, gain practical experience through hands-on projects and stay updated on AWS developments by following blogs and engaging with the community. Additionally, it’s important to recognize that networking with professionals is a crucial element, complemented by effective time management and the establishment of realistic goals to stay motivated. Furthermore, pay close attention to exploring additional learning resources and training programs to enhance your preparation. Ultimately, diligently adhering to these steps paves the way for a successful journey in attaining AWS certification.


In 2024, AWS certifications provide diverse paths for professionals to validate cloud expertise. Categorized by levels and roles, these certifications allow customization based on career goals, enhancing prospects and contributing to the evolving cloud industry. As we explore 2024 updates, AWS’s commitment to industry trends is evident. Successful certification journeys require meticulous preparation, integration of knowledge, and active engagement in the AWS community, emphasizing continuous learning and expertise in cloud technology.