Navigating Microsoft SQL 2012 Certifications

Excerpted from Global Knowledge White Paper: Navigating Microsoft SQL 2012 Certifications

The whole SQL world is an interesting place, part Database Admin, part Developer, and part system administrator all rolled into one neat package. Well, knowing some of them, maybe not so neat. Theirs is a difficult world because of the different areas they must master – back up the database, write cleaner and more efficient and secure code, come up with new queries, study for the new SQL 2012 exams coming out in June (oops, didn’t want to slip that in too soon).

SQL 2012 was recently released; in fact, the launch was held March 7th, 2012. There are three main editions of SQL 2012 available: Enterprise, Business Intelligence, and Standard, with the Business Intelligence being new to SQL 2012. In addition, the Compact, Developer, and Express editions will continue to be distributed without licensing or pricing changes. The new SQL 2012 is a cloud-ready information platform that will help you and your organization unlock breakthrough insights across the organization and quickly build solutions to extend data across on-premises and public cloud, backed by mission-critical confidence.

You will need to wait until June 2012 to take the new SQL Server 2012 certification exams. However, you can prepare now for the SQL 2012 certifications by ensuring you have earned (or will have earned) a SQL Server 2008 Professional-level certification. Exams on SQL 2008 that you take now will help when upgrading from a Professional-level SQL Server 2008 certification to a Professional-level SQL Server 2012 certification. If you do so, than you must successfully pass only three exams, rather than all five.

SQL Professional-level Certifications

The Professional-level SQL Server 2012 certifications will validate that you have the expertise to design, build, and maintain the next wave of cloud-ready database and information solutions. Two new Professional-level certifications will be introduced for SQL Server 2012: the Data Platform certification and the Business Intelligence certification. In order to earn one of the professional-level certifications, you will need to successfully pass five exams, and you will need to recertify every three years by taking a recertification exam.

Exam 70-461: Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012

The 70-461 certification exam is intended for SQL Server database administrators, SQL implementers, system administrators and engineers, and SQL developers. It is expected that these individuals have two or more years of experience and are seeking to prove their skills and knowledge in writing queries on SQL 2012. There is a five day instructor-led course (10774A – Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012) that will give you the base technical skills required to write basic Transact-SQL queries for Microsoft SQL Server 2012. This course forms the foundation for all the other SQL 2012 Server-related courses; namely, Database Administration, Database Development, and Business Intelligence. As an aside, many of the exercises in this course are SQL Azure-enabled – helping you prepare for use of SQL 2012 in the cloud.

Exam 70-462: Administering Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Databases

Database Professionals whose duties are mostly installation, maintenance, and configuration tasks will be interested in the 70-462 exam. These SQL 2012 professionals are the ones who will often set up SQL 2012 database systems and are responsible for ensuring that these systems operate efficiently. They also ensure that the data they store is backed up regularly, stored effectively, and that the data is secure from unauthorized access. The 10775A Administering Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Databases class is a five-day instructor-led course that focuses on teaching SQL professionals individuals how to use the new SQL Server 2012 product features and tools.

Exam 70-463: Implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012

Those SQL 2012 Professionals who are interested in Extract Transform Load (ETL) and Data Warehousing will be very interested in the five-day 10777A Implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012 instructor-led course. This course describes how to implement a Business Intelligence (BI) platform to support information worker analytics, create a data warehouse with SQL Server 2012, implement ETL with SQL Server Integration Services, and validate and cleanse data with SQL Server Data Quality Services and SQL Server Master Data Services. SQL 2012 professionals who take this course are most likely to focus on hands-on work creating BI solutions, including data cleansing, ETL, and Data Warehouse implementation.

This course will help prepare students for the 70-463 Implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012 certification exam.

Exam 70-464: Developing Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Databases

If you are a SQL 2012 professional who is interested in building and implementing databases across an organization while ensuring high levels of data availability, than the 10776A Developing Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Databases course is for you. This five-day class is aimed for those SQL professionals whose tasks include creating database files; creating data types and tables; planning, creating, and optimizing indexes; implementing data integrity; implementing views, stored procedures, and functions; and managing transactions and locks. If you are interested in learning about logical table design, indexing and query plans, and creating database objects including views, stored procedures, along with parameters, and functions. Also, if you are curious about common aspects of procedure coding, such as transactions, concurrency, error handling, triggers, and SQL CLR, than this is the course for you. This course will help prepare you for the 70-464: Developing Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Databases – of course, a good deal of hands-on experience will help as well.

Exam 70-465: Designing Database Solutions for Microsoft SQL Server 2012

The 70-465 Exam is for SQL 2012 database professionals who design and build database solutions for an organization. These professionals will be responsible for creating plans and designs for database structure, storage, objects, and servers. They will also be responsible for creating the overall design plan for the SQL environment in which the database solutions will be housed and run.

Exam 70-466: Implementing Data Models and Reports with Microsoft SQL Server 2012

The primary audience for this exam is Business Intelligence (BI) Developers. They are most likely to focus on hands-on work creating BI solutions including implementing multi-dimensional data models, implementing and maintaining OLAP cubes, and creating information displays used in business decision-making processes. The five-day instructor-led 10778A Implementing Data Models and Reports with Microsoft SQL Server 2012 course will aid with these tasks.

Exam 70-467: Designing Business Intelligence Solutions with Microsoft SQL Server 2012

The primary audience for this exam is the BI Architect. Business Intelligence architects are responsible for the overall design of the BI architecture. This is the framework used for data organization, information management, and the technology components that are required to build BI systems for reporting data (which includes how these systems relate to other data systems in use). The BI architect’s responsibilities may include BI solution architecture and design, the provisioning of software and hardware, data warehouse and data mart design, online Analytical Processing (OLAP) cube design, and Integration with Microsoft SharePoint or line-of-business applications.

Related Post
A Look at Microsoft SQL Server 2012

Related Courses
Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012 (M10774)
Administering Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Databases (M10775)
Developing Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Databases (M10776)
Implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012 (M10777)

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