Microsoft retires MCSA, MCSD and MCSE certifications

Martin Brinkmann
Mar 1, 2020
Companies, Microsoft

Microsoft will retire MCSA, MCSD and MCSE certifications on June 30, 2020 according to a new post by Alex Payne, GM, Global Technical Learning at Microsoft Worldwide Learning, on the Microsoft Learning Blog.

Microsoft shifted its focus to role-based training and certifications in September 2018 and has added 34 different certifications since then to its portfolio "across Azure, Modern Workplace, and Business Applications".

Since Microsoft is now focusing on role-based training and certifications, it will retire all remaining Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA), Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) and Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) certifications on June 30, 2020.

microsoft role-based certification path

MCSA, MCSD, MCSE certifications can still be achieved until June 30, 2020 and "nothing happens" to certifications that customers already have. Existing certifications that are retired on June 30, 2020 remain on a customer's certification transcript for two years after the retirement date before they are moved to the inactive section of the transcript.

Microsoft notes that there won't be any Windows Server 2019 or SQL Server 2019 certifications and that Server 2019 and SQL Server 2019 content will be included "in role-based certifications on an as-needed basis for certain job roles in Azure Apps & Infrastructure and Data & AI solution areas".

The following Microsoft certification exams will be retired on June 30, 2020:

  • MCSA: BI Reporting
  • MCSA: Dynamics 365 for Operations
  • MCSA: SQL 2016 BI Development
  • MCSA: SQL 2016 Database Admin
  • MCSA: SQL 2016 Database Dev
  • MCSA: SQL Server 2012/2014
  • MCSA: Universal Windows Platform
  • MCSA: Web Applications
  • MCSA: Windows Server 2012
  • MCSA: Windows Server 2016
  • MCSD: App Builder
  • MCSE: Business Applications
  • MCSE: Core Infrastructure
  • MCSE: Data Management & Analytics
  • MCSE: Productivity

The following Microsoft exams will be retired on June 30, 2020:

  • 70-333: Deploying Enterprise Voice with Skype for Business 2015
  • 70-334: Core Solutions for Microsoft Skype for Business 2015
  • 70-339: Managing Microsoft SharePoint Server 2016
  • 70-345: Designing and Deploying Microsoft Exchange Server 2016
  • 70-457: Developing Mobile Apps
  • 70-410: Installing and Configuring Windows Server 2012
  • 70-411: Administering Windows Server 2012
  • 70-412: Configuring Advanced Windows Server 2012 Services
  • 70-413: Designing and Implementing a Server Infrastructure
  • 70-414: Implementing an Advanced Server Infrastructure
  • 70-417: Upgrading Your Skills to MCSA Windows Server 2012
  • 70-461: Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014
  • 70-462: Administering Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014 Databases
  • 70-463: Implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014
  • 70-464: Developing Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014 Databases
  • 70-465: Designing Database Solutions for Microsoft SQL Server
  • 70-466: Implementing Data Models and Reports with Microsoft SQL Server
  • 70-467: Designing Business Intelligence Solutions with Microsoft SQL Server
  • 70-480: Programming in HTML5 with JavaScript and CSS3
  • 70-483: Programming in C#
  • 70-486: Developing ASP.NET MVC Web Applications
  • 70-487: Developing Microsoft Azure and Web Services
  • 70-537: Configuring and Operating a Hybrid Cloud with Microsoft Azure Stack
  • 70-705: Designing and Providing Microsoft Licensing Solutions to Large Organizations
  • 70-740: Installation, Storage, and Compute with Windows Server 2016
  • 70-741: Networking with Windows Server 2016
  • 70-742: Identity with Windows Server 2016
  • 70-743: Upgrading Your skills to MCSA: Windows Server 2016
  • 70-744: Securing Windows Server 2016
  • 70-745: Implementing a Software-Defined Datacenter
  • 70-761: Querying Data with Transact-SQL
  • 70-762: Developing SQL Databases
  • 70-764: Administering a SQL Database Infrastructure
  • 70-765: Provisioning SQL Databases
  • 70-767: Implementing a Data Warehouse using SQL
  • 70-768: Developing SQL Data Models
  • 70-777: Implementing Microsoft Azure Cosmos DB Solutions
  • 70-778: Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Microsoft Power BI
  • 70-779: Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Microsoft Excel
  • MB2-716: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customization and Configuration
  • MB6-894: Development, Extensions and Deployment for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance
  • MB6-897: Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Retail
  • MB6-898: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Human Resources

Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) and Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA) certifications will remain available.

Now You: are you affected by the change? (via Born)

Microsoft retires MCSA, MCSD and MCSE certifications
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Microsoft retires MCSA, MCSD and MCSE certifications
Microsoft will retire MCSA, MCSD and MCSE certifications on June 30, 2020 according to a new post by Alex Payne on the Microsoft Learning Blog.
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  1. Anonymous said on September 21, 2020 at 4:07 am

    honestly, my concern is with everything being shited to azure does the mean the death of non-enterprise support for Microsoft clients? A lot of these courses that have and will be shut down cater to individual and small business needs, whats it supports going to look like for home users in 5 years with these programs no longer being available, sure Microsoft will have great business solutions but if it wants to maintain a stronghold in the consumer market they cant keep axing the programs that give their customers home service (unless they are no longer interested in the average user). i see a time in the near future where Microsoft is no longer king desktop and relegated to a side role.

  2. HoftHome said on March 8, 2020 at 11:05 pm

    Per ‘notanon’ (It’s a cash grab for Microsoft . . .)

  3. André said on March 6, 2020 at 1:12 pm

    This is really short notice. I am also busy upgrading from MCSA to MCSE but now have very little time to attend training and study for exams. I am a father of twins with a full-time job so doing all of this in the next few months is a big ask. How can Microsoft make such a massive decision without giving learners an appropriate timeframe to respond in? Also, not all countries are like the USA, it doesn’t mean because the USA is ready for cloud adoption on a grand scale that other countries are equally equipped to follow suit. Surely they need to give some kind of extension, at least on writing exams.

  4. Jim said on March 5, 2020 at 10:25 pm

    So if your company is an AWS database shop then there’s no chance at a Microsoft certification?

    Details on the new exams are … where exactly?

    Nice job announcing retirement of three exams I passed without publishing details on what they replace.

  5. Josh Cavallo said on March 5, 2020 at 1:45 pm

    Trying to push professionals to adopt cloud technology too fast is a disaster waiting to happen. The truth is that full cloud is still too costly,

  6. entry-level in my 40s said on March 3, 2020 at 3:56 pm

    MSFT has been requiring multiple exams to certification path since as long as I’ve known so not new.
    All vendors have been retiring certs and pushing out new versions of them for awhile so the cert you earn is only temporary so not new.
    What makes me mad about this is they announce the retiring of these certs a mere four months in advance. Can you imagine having just paid money for study materials for these certs the week prior and the next week MSFT announces they’re gone in four months. Better give up any other aspect of your life and rush to take the exams!!!
    What if you actually have obligations outside of your job and little time? Not everyone in IT goes home and does nothing but play video games. I have a child with special needs and a spouse with a mental health diagnosis, in addition to a full-time job. How much time do you think I have to study? The answer is none.
    You think I’m going to risk dropping cash I can’t afford to spend on study materials and exams when these vendors retire the certs without giving you any time to earn the cert? I’ll be Help Desk until I retire….

  7. Hortz Mueller said on March 3, 2020 at 3:26 pm

    IT has ALWAYS been a sector that demands your skills be updated to the technologies being utilized in the enterprise TODAY/TOMORROW.

    What I did when I first started doing this work NO LONGER exists in the enterprise; but I’m still in the industry. You need to adapt; no one’s forcing you to write anything.

    Don’t! Why bother?

    The World still needs coal diggers I hear….

  8. notanon said on March 3, 2020 at 2:26 pm

    It’s a cash grab for Microsoft, now instead of needing just 1 certification, you’ll need 7.

    Congratulations, Microsoft realized why sell a car once, when you can sell it 7 times.

    They’ll be some people with 1 certification wondering why they can’t get a job. The job was given to someone with 7 certifications, because the company knows they can hire this guy, & pay less for 3rd party outsourced IT help, since the 7 certification guy has more expertise (translation – the 7 certified guy can do alot more himself, so the company won’t have to pay as much for outsourced help).

    Why hire 3 people with 1 certification each, when you can hire 1 person with 3 certifications.

    This will force people to get more certifications (if they want to be hired), so Microsoft makes more money selling them training & certifying them.

    Also, existing people with the older certifications will need to pay for the newer certifications, otherwise, they will give their companies an excuse to fire them (saying they are no longer qualified for the newly redesigned job descriptions) & replace them with younger, cheaper, replacement employees.

    Ka-ching! Advantage Microsoft.

    It found a new way to monetize something it owned.

  9. Alex said on March 3, 2020 at 1:41 pm

    I’ve looked at the new certification path, how’s a .NET developer such as myself able to certify with Microsoft? Development of apps & deployment/hosting of apps are totally different areas, Azure only tests deployment/hosting.

    1. Rutger said on March 9, 2020 at 3:09 pm

      That’s my concern as well. As a C# .Net developer I’m more interested in a certifcation which shows I’m able to develop C# applications, whether standalone or hosted in the cloud.
      I’m not interested in some certificates about the hosting or deployment of it.

  10. Sujay Joardar said on March 3, 2020 at 8:02 am

    Please share new Certification Details

    1. Angular said on March 4, 2020 at 7:37 am

      I wish someone would invent a website where you could, like enter a search term, and it somehow, magically probably, returns a page of matching results, from previously trawling and cataloguing lots of web sites. Probably never take off.

    2. Hortz Mueller said on March 4, 2020 at 12:34 am
  11. Blake Duffey said on March 2, 2020 at 7:08 pm

    Am I the only one who continues to support on-prem Windows systems?

    (or heaven forbid, hosted in another cloud provider?)

    What motivation do I have to take Azure training if we leverage AWS or Google as our provider of preference? Or have a significant on-prem footprint?

    1. Glenn Beeson said on March 3, 2020 at 11:28 pm

      You are not the only one supporting on-prem Windows system. In my area of the country, that is still the most predominant style of system. This change is a hard sell for me and seems short-sighted for the sake of possibly pushing people to Azure.

  12. Hortz Mueller said on March 2, 2020 at 6:42 pm

    If you haven’t written the new role based exams, then you’re in no way able to provide any comments about the new exams.

    Try writing the Azure AZ-103 exam; and you’ll see what MS is looking for in their certified IT staff; or the security exam for Office 365.

    There will ALWAYS be people trying to circumvent the requirements. I assure you, they won’t be working very long in the industry and are EASILY found out about their actual ability when the entire responsibility rests on ONLY their own shoulders to deliver a solution to a client.

  13. Anonymous said on March 2, 2020 at 3:46 pm

    Yeah Microsoft, keep retiring, repeatedly changing, and diluting (flooding) the IT community with certifications. It’s already happening, and pretty soon no one will value or trust that the certifications mean anything. Further, IT workers will no longer trust that their hard work in getting a certification will: 1)last anytime before it’s retired, 2)have any value to hiring companies who no longer trust the cert path at Microsoft, 3)be keep up to date, because the cert writers know that the short shelf life for the cert doesn’t warrant spending time and resources updating them, and 4) putting burdensome requirements on partners (and employees) to getting fulling certified has contributed to so much cheating (i.e. exam dumps), that a large percentage of certifications holders don’t even know the content for which they are certified.

  14. chavv said on March 2, 2020 at 2:06 pm

    aaand what certifications will be available? link maybe?

  15. bahaa said on March 2, 2020 at 12:00 pm

    Unfortunately, this step is not sufficiently studied, never thoroughly studied, especially in the Middle East and Arab countries, and it will not be simple to change easily to Claude easily, and it will not be 5 to 10 years ago, for several reasons, including that there are medium and large companies that rely heavily on internal servers and do not have an idea or even the counters. From it to Claude, and if the trend to Claude is largely it should be gradual from 5 to 10 years, and no certificate should be suspended in this way. There are companies that are now using Windows Server 2003. Unfortunately, this step that was taken will affect negatively and more in the Middle East region. It will not be in material big earnings

  16. Kenneth said on March 2, 2020 at 5:15 am

    Looking at the roles Microsoft are obviously pushing their admins away from on-premises systems admin to cloud-based admin: Azure, Microsoft 365 and Dynamics, as a lever to drive adoption by their employers, likely also with an eye on the increasingly popular AWS Certifications. No more just Windows Server 2019 MCP any more.

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