Heading Down the Path to MCSE: Communication

For those that know me, it is no shock that I support certification. That said, I have been diverted from the path, recently. As a Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT), it has always been important to keep my certifications current. Since I have haven’t been training the last two years, the requirement just wasn’t there anymore.

Well, requirement or not, I am going to start down the path again.

http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en-us/mcse-communication-certification.aspx is my starting point. Basically, I need to pass five exams.

Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE)

Yes, it is a new MCSE from the old MCSE. The old MCSE was Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer. The “Engineer” part of it was controversial because some locations (for example, Canada) there are special requirements to have a title of Engineer.

Here are the requirements to be considered an “expert” in this case.

Three exams are Windows Server 2012 exams.

410: Installing and Configuring Windows Server 2012

411: Administering Windows Server 2012

412: Configuring Advanced Windows Server 2012 Services

Two exams are Lync Server 2013 exams.

336: Core Solutions of Microsoft Lync Server 2013

337: Enterprise Voice & Online Services with Microsoft Lync Server 2013

So, my plan is to document this trip. I plan on attacking it pretty hard in the next couple of weeks. Please keep in mind that Microsoft requires a Non-Disclose Agreement as part of taking an exam, so I can’t tell you what I find as far as questions, but I will provide my personal perspective in such a way as to not violate the agreement.

Why Windows Server 2012?

It is kind of an interesting question that I have heard over the years. Why should I have to take Windows exams when my goal is to achieve and advanced certification in a particular product? It is a valid question, but I have always defended Microsoft in this case. If you do not understand how to manage the Operating System, it makes it really hard to use it as the platform for your application.

The Plan

I plan to take an exam a week at a minimum. I will try to do more, but I do have a job that takes a great deal of my time, and a family in flux that is just eating every other bit of free time that I have available. So, no guarantees, but that is the plan.

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