AWS Certifications Explained

We offer the entire range of AWS official courses, most of which are aligned with their certifications.

Below is a list of our most popular AWS courses, including a brief outline, the exam that they align with and the number of days the course runs for. 

AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner

Prepare with:

AWS Cloud Practitioner - 1 day

This fundamental-level, one-day, instructor-led classroom course is intended for individuals who seek an overall understanding of the AWS Cloud, independent of specific technical roles. Aligned with the Cloud Practitioner exam.


AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate

Prepare with:

Architecting on AWS – 3 days 

This course covers the fundamentals of building IT infrastructure on the AWS platform. Aligned with the Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam.


AWS Certified Architect Professional

Pre-requisites: Candidates must hold the AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate. 

Prepare with:

Advanced Architecting on AWS – 3 days

Intended for individuals who are experienced with designing scalable and elastic applications on the AWS platform it builds on concepts introduced in Architecting on AWS. Aligned with the Certified Solutions Architect – Professional exam.


AWS Certified Developer Associate

Prepare with:

Developing on AWS – 3 days

Helps developers understand how to use the AWS SDK to develop secure and scalable cloud applications. Aligned with the Certified Developer – Associate exam.


AWS Certified SysOps Administrator Associate

Prepare with:

Cloud Operations on AWS – 3 days

Designed to teach those in a Systems Administrator or Developer Operations (DevOps) role how to create automatable and repeatable deployments of networks and systems on the AWS platform. Aligned with the Certified SysOps Administrator – Associate exam.


AWS Certified DevOps Engineer Professional

Pre-requisites: Candidates must hold either the AWS Certified Developer Associate or AWS Certified SysOps Administrator Associate.

Prepare with:

DevOps Engineering on AWS – 3 days

Demonstrates how to use the most common DevOps patterns to develop, deploy and maintain applications on AWS. Aligned with the Certified DevOps Engineer – Professional exam.


AWS Certified Data Engineer Associate

Prepare with:

Building Batch Data Analytics Solutions on AWS - 1 day

Learn to build batch data analytics solutions using Amazon EMR, an enterprise-grade Apache Spark and Apache Hadoop managed service.


AWS Certified Security - Specialty

Prepare with:

Security Engineering on AWS – 3 days

- Demonstrates how to efficiently use AWS security services to stay secure in the AWS Cloud. Aligned with the Certified Security – Specialist exam.


AWS Certified Advanced Networking - Speciality

Prepare with:

Digital resources available directly from AWS education.


AWS Certified Data Analytics - Specialty

Prepare with:

Building Modern Data Analytics Solutions on AWS - 4 day course

Dives deep into Amazon Lake Formation, Amazon Glue, Amazon EMR, Amazon Kinesis, and Amazon Redshift and the current thinking in building and operating data analytics pipelines to turn data into insights.


AWS Certified Database- Specialty

Prepare with:

Planning and Designing Databases on AWS - 3 days

you will learn about the process of planning and designing both relational and nonrelational databases.


AWS Certified Machine Learning - Specialty

Prepare with:

Practical Data Science with Amazon SageMaker - 1 day

Solve a real-world use case with Machine Learning (ML) and produce actionable results using Amazon SageMaker.


Machine Learning Pipelines on AWS - 4 days

Use the machine learning (ML) pipeline to solve a real business problem in a project-based learning environment.

Which course(s) should you choose? 

We recognise that just taking the official AWS course may not be enough for you if you are re-skilling or changing career. We have produced a series of learning paths for various job roles, which include additional courses that will provide additional background knowledge suitable for that job role.  

AWS learning paths

= Required
= Certification
Data Scientist
Data Engineer
Developer Software Development
Architect Enterprise Architecture Experience
Administrator DevOps
Administrator Security

Why become AWS Certified?

With businesses increasingly relying on cloud computing in day-to-day operations, having individuals who are skilled and certified in software such as AWS has never been so important.  

As one of the most used and recognised platforms in the world of cloud computing, there are many benefits for both individuals and businesses in becoming AWS certified.  

Benefits of AWS certification for individuals: 

Certification is a matter of demonstrating your skills and establishing your credibility. Achieving credentials could open doors to get heavily involved in AWS-related projects, or present to clients as a credible subject-matter expert. 

Of course, if you are job-hunting, just having 'AWS Certified' on your CV will probably not get you hired, but it could help you get you past various gatekeepers and into an interview room. Businesses do not always have an easy way of testing the competencies of a job applicant. Also, they may be sifting through tonnes of CVs, so having the certification certainly gets you the wanted attention. 

Whether having an AWS certification guarantees you a higher salary is a question you may be asking. Now this is very difficult to comment on, but this 2023 PC Magazine article, which lists the ten highest-paying IT certifications, includes three AWS certifications, including the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional at number one! 

Benefits of AWS certification for employers:

Having AWS-certified employees helps to identify skilled team members and reduces the risks when implementing projects on AWS. Having AWS-certified employees can also help you to build your business, as it is one of the criteria for the higher tiers of membership in the AWS Partner Network (APN). 

Being a member of the APN gives access to a wide variety of benefits, including training subsidies, AWS usage credits, marketing support and much more. View the APN website for more details. 

At QA, we see many learners on our AWS courses who are going on to take the AWS certification exams as part of their employer's APN accreditation. 

It doesn't stop when you get the badge! 

The rate of change at AWS is astonishing, so AWS certifications expire every three years. 

That may seem like a short lifespan, but consider this: in the month of July 2023, AWS made over one hundred and fifty announcements about new features, services and enhancements.  

AWS have a recertification policy for the AWS Architect Associate certification, stating it can be renewed by either passing the Associate exam again, or by upgrading to the higher-level Professional certification at a discount. Either way seems appealing when it comes to the end result of being accredited in the constantly changing IT landscape. 

AWS Certification FAQs

How do I start a career using AWS?

If you are already working in IT, you can look for opportunities within your organisation for retraining. If you are not already in IT, then getting an official certification is a great way to open doors for you. In either case, studying for and passing an exam will show potential hiring managers that you are willing to put the effort in. 

How long does it take to learn AWS?

A lifetime is the only correct answer; AWS is a huge platform with hundreds of different services, some of which very few of us will ever need to use. By the time you’d learnt it all, you’d have to start over again because it all changes all the time. You can get started within a week. Our courses give you hands-on experience which is enough to get you started. But it’s only a start. There’s always something new to learn and once you’ve been working on AWS for a while, you’ll constantly be thinking to yourself “I need to change the way I did that thing”. 

What career opportunities arise from being certified on AWS?

Jobs involving AWS. As mentioned before, having that certification on your CV definitely opens doors. Having experience gets you the job. So go build things. 

Does AWS require programming skills?

It depends on your job role. Developers, DevOps Engineers and Data Scientists certainly need programming skills. Architects, not necessarily, just a deep understanding of the platform and its capabilities and how everything fits together.

Systems administrators might not need programming skills as many of the tasks they need to perform are pre-built for them in AWS. Data Engineers probably need to understand SQL, the standard language used to talk to databases. 

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