Earning MTA from MS Gets You MCP Status and Access Privileges
Though the Microsoft Technology Associate exams and credentials occupy a different part of the Microsoft Certification universe than do the higher-end exams and credentials for such certs as MCSA, MCSE, MCSD, and so forth, there's apparently one common thread between them that not many other people knew much about until recently — including me.
Thanks to a discussion thread I stumbled upon at LinkedIn, I learned several interesting things about what earning the MTA means by way of its place in the overall MS cert universe, and the kinds of status and access it confers:
1. While some people report receiving a letter or email from MS upon earning an MTA that gives them access to the MCP website and their store, others report receiving no such communications. This may reflect delivery of MTA training and certification through two distinct channels.
There's the academic channel, wherein high schools, community colleges, universities, and technical schools deliver MTA curriculum and training, and provide testing facilities for candidates to take and pass MTA exams (thereby earning such certifications). And there's the commercial channel, wherein all kind of training outlets, self-study, video-based training, and so forth does likewise. Certiport administers the academic side, while Microsoft itself handles the commercial side, so it may represent a minor disconnect between the way each side does business.
2. The recipient of the email quotes sections that indicate earning an MTA confers MCP status and, along with that status, access to the MCP Member website and the MCP store, plus the ability to register as an MCP with third-party online recruitment agencies.
3. Others report that examination of one's Microsoft Transcript for those who've earned only MTA credentials that said transcript also indicates that the holder has achieved MCP status as well.
This particular point also provides an easy way for MTA certified professionals to check the veracity of these claims: if you examine your Microsoft Transcript, you'll be able to tell if the MCP appears thereupon as well as whatever MTA certs you may also hold. This feedback item comes from at least two individuals who teach in a Microsoft Academy school (both community colleges, in fact).
4. I found a Born to Learn blog post from an MCT identified as "Greg" from Boston, which states the following: "The MTA certification is an MCP-qualifying certification, so when you pass your MTA you also meet the requirements for the MCP. It's a double whammy. By default, you will not receive a physical copy of your certificates.
"However, at any time you can log into your MCP portal (https://mcp.microsoft.com) to download and print your certificate(s), or purchase a physical print. You can click the 'Get a certificate' pane to the right, or the 'Download or purchase a certificate' link under Tools to the bottom left of the page. That takes you to mcp.microsoft.com/.../certificatemanagerpage.aspx where you can either download or purchase a certificate."
Though you shouldn't let an easy-intro to the MCP program deter you from tackling other Microsoft exams and certifications (most notably those whose exam IDs begin with 70- for regular MCP exams, and 74- for beta exams), it's nice to know that Microsoft is opening its MCP umbrella certification to all those who partake of its various programs. I'd often wondered about the notion of a two-tiered environment, so it's nice to understand that the difference between MTA and higher-level certifications is a matter of degree, not a matter of kind.
So don't forget that MTA = MCP as well as for other exams in the Microsoft collection. Be sure to obtain and use your MCP ID as and when it makes sense to do so. Enjoy!