Microsoft is retiring three of its more popular professional certification categories as part of a move toward "role-based training." Its Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA), Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) and Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) certifications are going away, officials said via a blog post on February 28, 2020. Microsoft also has no plans to offer Windows Server 2019 or SQL Server 2019 certifications, officials said.
As of June 30, 2020, all exams for MCSA, MCSD and MCSE will no longer be available. Microsoft is advising those already in the midst of working toward these certifications should work toward passing required exams before that date, as those certifications no longer will be awarded after June 30. Individuals who passed a qualifying exam prior to its retirement will still be able to count it toward a partner competency requirement for 12 months after the exam has retired.
Those who already have MCSA, MCSD or MCSE certifications will be able to reference them for up to two years after the deadline; after that point, they will be marked as "inactive."
Microsoft puiblished today its recommendations for those with MCSA, MCSD and MCSE certifications who are interested in moving to the newer role-based certifications. Unsurprisingly, the recommendations focus around Azure, Microsoft 365, Data and AI and Dynamics 365.
Microsoft's FAQ about the certification changes said that Windows Server 2019 and SQL Server 2019 content will be included in role-based certifications on an "as-needed basis for certain job roles in the Azure Apps & Infrastructure and Data & AI solution areas."
Microsoft's blog post has a full list of certifications and exams that will be retiring on June 30, 2020.