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Exam Retirements Signal Pending Changes for Microsoft Learning

It's Golden Acres time for a host of Microsoft Learning certification exams. The mass departure begins today, and will continue in June and September.

Dictionary definition of retirementAce psychometrician and cert program custodian Liberty Munson posted her quarterly update to the Microsoft Exam Retirements list on March 29. And while it contains few suprises, it does confirm the ongoing pivot in the Microsoft Learning certification program away from old MCSE and MCSD credentials toward their new-fangled replacements.


Thus, March 31 (tomorrow as I write this post) will see the retirement of these MCSD and MCSE recertification exams, along with the credentials that go with them:


● 383: Recertification for MCSE: SharePoint
● 384: Recertification for MCSE: Communication
● 385: Recertification for MCSE: Messaging
● 469: Recertification for MCSE: Data Platform
● 470: Recertification for MCSE: Business Intelligence
● 980: Recertification for MCSE: Server Infrastructure
● 981: Recertification for MCSE: Private Cloud
● 490: Recertification for MCSD: Windows Store Apps using HTML5
● 491: Recertification for MCSD: Windows Store Apps using C#
● 494: Recertification for MCSD: Web Applications
● 517: Recertification for MCSD: SharePoint Applications


This pretty much completes the process of closing out the older, Windows 2008- and 2012-based MCSE and MCSD credentials. It should therefore come as no shock whatsoever that the next wave of retirements, scheduled for June 31, does away with numerous Windows Server 2008 and 2012 exams, including:


● 243: Administering and Deploying System Center 2012 Configuration Manager
● 640: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory, Configuring
● 642: TS: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure, Configuring
● 646: Pro: Windows Server 2008, Server Administrator
● 694: Virtualizing Enterprise Desktops and Apps


Exams scheduled for Sept. 30 retirement include some holdovers for the MSCA for developers. They also reflect an extension of a previously announced retirement schedule that was supposed to kick in March 31 as well, but had to be extended to give Microsoft Learning time to slot in replacement exams that are apparently running behind on the delivery schedule:


● 354: Universal Windows Platform - Application Architecture and UX/UI
● 355: Universal Windows Platform - App Data, Services, and Coding Patterns


Thus, we’ve pretty much reached the point of “out with the old, and in with the new,” except for some of the fundamental developer exams still in development. With the upcoming release of Windows 10 Creators Update now scheduled for April 11, I expect some turnover in related exam content to hit by the summer as well.


Stay tuned, and I’ll keep you posted on anything new that pops up in the MS cert realm, and keep you informed about upcoming exam retirements as well.



ed-tittel120Ed Tittel is a 30-plus-year computer industry veteran who's worked as a software developer, technical marketer, consultant, author, and researcher. Author of many books and articles, Ed blogs on certification topics for Tom’s IT Pro, and on Windows desktop OS topics for TechTarget. Check out his website at