Next Round's on Us: Microsoft Picks Up the Tab for Certification Renewals

You won't have to do much fishing to save money on your next Microsoft certification renewal.

Hey! Want to kick off 2023 with a free and easy boost to your certification portfolio? If you qualify (see following heading), then definitely check out the Certification Renewals page at Microsoft Learn. There's exciting news there for individuals who hold any current associate, expert, or specialty Microsoft certification and need to recertify.

If you're in that boat, then you can renew your credential for free simply by passing an online assessment test before your certification expiration date. If you've lost track of timing, then you can simply sign in at Microsoft Learn to check your credentials and their status.

A Short, Swift 3-Step Process

All you need to do is walk through the simple and speedy three-step certification renewal process:

1) Connect your Microsoft Learn profile to your certification profile and look for a "Renew" button on your profile page.

2) Prepare for your renewal assessment exam online by working through its associated self-paced review modules. Links to access these materials are available on each credential's renewal page.

3) Pass the assessment (which is unproctored and online) before your certification expires. Note: As per the Microsoft renewal page "Assessments are open book" (emphasis mine) so you can consult prep materials while testing.

Regular certification exams are NOT open book, so this is an amazing opportunity. Microsoft Learn has also put together a short video (MP4) that walks you through this process with more explanation and details. (It’s just over 2:00 in length, and definitely worth watching.)

Who Qualifies? What’s the Timing?

All certification holders who are within six months of their credential's expiration date can participate. That is to say, anyone within this time window is eligible to take the certification renewal assessment. Of course, you can start prepping sooner if you like. The main thing to remember is that you MUST renew before your certification reaches its expiration date.

Jumping in before the expiration date is what makes you eligible for the open book assessment that should make it simple and straightforward to renew for the vast majority of credential holders. So set as many reminders as you need to, but don't miss the date.

Extend the Life of Your Microsoft Credentials with a Little Planning and Effort

Don't lose track of time the next time your Microsoft certifications need to be renewed.

If you ask me, this is an unbeatable offer. It makes it a great idea to link up your Microsoft Learn and Microsoft Certification profiles (if you haven’t done so already). It also makes it worth adding a reminder to your calendar to check your combined profile every six months to see what certs are open for renewal.

Give your self as much advance warning as you need to stay on top of what you must refresh, get started on the self-study materials, and make sure you get through the assessment before your cert expires. And don't forget the best part: It’s free!

Would you like more insight into the history of hacking? Check out Calvin's other articles about historical hackery:
About the Author

Ed 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 also writes on certification topics for Tech Target, ComputerWorld and Win10.Guru. Check out his website at, where he also blogs daily on Windows 10 and 11 topics.