This course will wrap up this learning path. It'll cover additional sources for continued learning, and next steps.
About the Author
Ben Lambert is the Director of Engineering and was previously the lead author for DevOps and Microsoft Azure training content at Cloud Academy. His courses and learning paths covered Cloud Ecosystem technologies such as DC/OS, configuration management tools, and containers. As a software engineer, Ben’s experience includes building highly available web and mobile apps.
When he’s not building the first platform to run and measure enterprise transformation initiatives at Cloud Academy, he’s hiking, camping, or creating video games.
Welcome! I’m Ben Lambert and I’ll be your instructor for this course. This brief course is going to wrap up the learning path.
Here’s what I’ll cover in this course.
First, I’ll cover what to expect when taking the exam.
Then I’ll cover some sources for additional studying.
And finally I’ll talk about next steps.
Let’s start by talking about what to expect with the exam.
In order to schedule the exam, you can browse to the exam landing page, and click the schedule exam button.
From there you can just follow the prompts, and schedule the exam for whenever works for you. Now, scheduling something online is pretty mundane. So instead of going into detail on that, I’d like to focus on what to expect with the exam itself.
The 70-534 exam as you know is about architecting solutions, and case studies are currently one of the most popular ways of assessing someone’s ability to architect solutions.
While it’s not a hard and fast rule, you can expect the exam to have a few case studies. A scenario is going to be some information about a business case, and then there will be several questions about it. Once you’ve completed a scenario, that’s it, you can’t go back to it. So, make sure to take the time to make sure you’re happy with your answers before moving on.
The exam consists of about 40 questions, and you’re given 150 minutes. Now, that may sound like a lot of time, however with the case studies you’re looking at reading a lot of text! When I was preparing for the exam I watching a video by Mark Grimes, and he had a great suggestion; well, he a lot of them, however this one in particular I found quite helpful. He suggests that when it comes to the case studies that you skip straight to the questions. The reason being that if you can answer some of them without the info in the scenario details, then you’re saving time. And for the questions you can’t answer, you can then skim through the scenario details with a specific purpose in mind. That’s a trick that works for me, and hopefully it will for you too.
In addition to the case studies there are also some other questions about the different topics. And there are a variety of different types of questions. That’s not to say you’ll see them all, however you should know that different types exist. Some have one answer, some have multiple right answers. Some require you to order a list of steps to create the correct answer.
And some questions will have multiple correct answers, and they’re looking for the answer that best meets the criteria in the question.
So, you need to read the questions carefully. You don’t want to rush, but you also don’t want to take too much time. It’s about time management, and it’s part of what makes this exam so difficult.
Keep in mind that you need to score 700 out of 1000 so every question counts. If you’re not sure, do your best to eliminate at one wrong answer. If you’re going to guess, make it as good of a guess as possible.
Here some of the topics that I recommend you review the night before the exam so that they’re fresh in your mind.
Service limits and pricing tiers.
That doesn’t mean you need to memorize all of these, however you should at least know the differences between the tiers, as well as being able to recognize roughly where the limits are.
Read over the documentation for any services you’re not proficient with. You should read the documentation for all of the services covered on the exam well before the exam. However, brush up on your weakest areas the night before.
And last, get a good night’s sleep. Studies show that sleep improves test scores more than staying up all night studying. So get your rest.
Okay, I’ve mentioned previously in the course that no single source of information will help you pass the exam. That’s because there will inevitably be gaps in the knowledge. So here are some additional sources of learning that I recommend.
The first is the Azure Documentation. (https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/) This is should be considered your canonical information source. The documentation, while a bit dry is quite useful. I recommend reading over the docs for all of the services covered on the exam. Which is a lot, however I think it’ll be worth it.
The next source for more info is the Microsoft Virtual Academy, which contains videos on a wide range of topics. So you’ll need to sift through the content to find what you’re looking for, and also make sure it’s up-to-date, however there’s some great information in these videos.
There’s also the videos from Azure Friday, which keep you up-to-date on the changes happening with Azure. Just make sure that you take note of the status of the different services that they cover. If something is in preview or just went GA, then it’s most likely not on the exam.
Another useful source for info is the Azure blog. Like the Azure Friday content, this will keep you up-to-date on the changes with the platform.
In addition to all of those sources, there are other courses out there, from different companies, which contain plenty of great information. If you’re checking out other courses, just make sure that it’s updated to reflect the changes made to the exam at the end of November 2016.
Okay, so what’s next?
At the end of this learning path, there’s a quiz that will help you to determine if you’re ready to take the actual exam. Keep in mind, it’s not the same questions that are on the exam, however it will test your knowledge of the different topics. If you score at least 90% then you’re probably ready to take the exam.
If you’re still on the fence, Microsoft offers a practice exam that costs about 100 dollars. So, it’s not cheap, however if it’s in your budget, then it’s another source to help you identify areas where you could improve.
The exam isn’t easy however, I and my fellow instructors are here to help you pass. So, if you have any questions feel free to reach out on the community forums, or you can reach me on Twitter via @sowhelmed.
Alright that’s going to wrap up this course, don’t forget to take the quiz after this, and it should help you to determine your next steps.
Thanks for watching and good luck on the exam!