AWS Solutions Architect – Associate Certification Preparation for AWS

AVG Duration42h
Course Created with Sketch. 31 Exams Created with Sketch. 11 Labs Created with Sketch. 23


AWS Solutions Architect – Associate Certification Preparation Update


  • 16th August 2019 - Added: 'Using Elastic Load Balancing & EC2 Auto Scaling to support AWS workloads' & 'Deployment Orchestration with AWS Elastic Beanstalk'
  • 20th May 2019 - Compute Fundamentals for AWS updated to include content on Amazon Elastic Container Registry (ECR) & Amazon Elastic Container Service for Kubernetes (EKS)
  • 10th April 2018 - One Zone Infrequent Access storage class for Amazon S3 added to Domain Four - Storage Optimization
  • 7th June - moved DynamoDB Lab from Fundamentals to Domain One / removed Amazon RedShift Lab from Fundamentals/
  • 7th June 2018 - Added Database Fundamentals course to LP

Learning Path Overview

The AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Associate Examination is intended for those individuals who perform a Solutions Architect role. This exam validates an examinee's ability to effectively demonstrate knowledge of how to architect and deploy secure and robust applications on AWS technologies. The Cloud Academy Certified Solutions Architect - Associate Learning Path has helped thousands of students master the AWS Solution Architect - Associate Certification. Our certification Learning Path is specifically designed to prepare you for the AWS certification exam released Feb 2018. "Hands-on experience" is mentioned in the first three prerequisites of the AWS Exam Blueprint, so we have included more hands-on Labs in this latest release of our Learning Path to fast track your learning and help you succeed.

Intended Audience

This Learning Path is suitable for anyone wanting to become an AWS Solution Architect and to pass the AWS Solution Architect Associate Certification exam. Until August 2018 AWS will have two versions of the Solution Architect Associate Exam available. If you are new to the Solution Architect Associate exam, we suggest starting this new Learning Path building around the latest certification exam guide.


A basic understanding of cloud computing will help. We provide an introduction to AWS services, however, if you are new to cloud computing you might want to consider completing our What is Cloud Computing? Course first. 

What's Included in the AWS Solution Architect Associate Certification Preparation:

  • 28 high definition video courses
  • 23 hands-on labs
  • 10 quiz sessions
  • A final preparation Exam

Learning Objectives

  • Recognize and explain the core AWS services and applications
  • Determine and define Resilient Architectures
  • Determine and define Performant Architectures
  • Determine and specify how to secure architectures and applications
  • Determine and define cost efficient architectures
  • Determine operationally efficient architectures


Built around the five domains of the AWS exam guide, this Learning Path provides over 57 hours of curated content - including 24 hands-on Labs, summary checkpoints, chalk talks, flash cards, exam tips, and a final preparation Exam to help get ready for sitting the certification exam. With this Learning Path, you will have everything you need to prepare for demonstrating your ability to design cloud solutions on Amazon Web Services. 

The Learning Path agenda is as follows:

Introduction to AWS Compute, Storage and Databases

First, we learn to recognize and explain the fundamental compute storage, and database services that we need to know for the AWS Solutions Architect–Associate exam.

Domain one: Designing Resilient Architectures

  • Learn how to recognize and select the most appropriate storage service
  • Learn how to select and design decoupling mechanisms using AWS services
  • Determine how to design a multi-tier architecture solution
  • Determine how to design highly available, architectures using AWS services

Domain two: Defining Performant Architectures

  • Learn how to recognize and select performant storage and databases
  • Learn how to select and apply caching to improve performance
  • Learn how to use AWS services together to design solutions for elasticity and scalability

Domain three: Securing Applications and Architectures

  • Learn how to secure application tiers
  • Determine how to secure data at rest and in transit
  • Learn how to design and secure a virtual private network and manage access to assets and services within it

Domain four: Designing Cost-Optimized Architectures

  • Learn how to select and design cost-optimized storage
  • Determine how to select and design and cost-optimized compute

Domain five: Defining Operationally-Excellent Architectures

  • Learn how to apply your knowledge of AWS services to define and continuously optimize a solution design for operational efficiency

Exam Preparation

  • Flashcards
  • An Exam primer
  • A final 130-minute exam simulation to help you prepare for sitting the AWS certification Exam


We welcome all feedback and suggestions - please contact us at if you are unsure about where to start or if would like help getting started.


What skills are required for cloud computing?

In today’s cloud computing sphere there are numerous skills and abilities required to be considered capable to be able to professionally and successfully execute. These skills include (and are not limited to): Database and programming skills, Linux, DevOps, quality assurance, and information security.

What does a Cloud Architect do?

A Cloud Architect is an IT specialist who is responsible for deploying overseeing a company’s cloud computing strategy. This includes cloud adoption plans, cloud application design, and cloud management and monitoring. Cloud architects oversee application architecture and deployment in cloud environments.

How many AWS Solution Architects are there?

As of today, there are around 26,000+ Solutions Architects in the industry. With AWS offering, both Associate and Professional, certifications; you can push your skills and credibility to further success with these invaluable certifications.

How long does it take to study for AWS certification?

To study for an AWS certification around other commitments usually takes around two months. This involves investing about 80 hours of study. For complete beginners 120 hours would be more advisable, giving a chance to start with the fundamentals and then moving on to the next stages.

How long does AWS certification last?

Recertification is required every three years for all AWS Certifications. six months before the credential is about to expire, AWS will send an email notification reminding you to recertify your credentials.

What is the difference between a Solution Architect and Technical Architect?

Though similar in name and both ensuring that networks operate efficiently, the Solution Architect and Technical Architect roles both specialize in different areas. Focusing on an organization’s overall needs, a solutions architect varies from a technical, where the technical focus on a specific area.


Your certificate for this learning path

Learning Path Steps


This is a notification to advise you that a new version of the AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Associate is now available, this being SAA-C02.


This course introduces the "AWS Solutions Architect – Associate Certification Preparation for AWS" learning path.


This course dives into the fundamental elements of AWS compute services, discussing the features and advantages of each one.


This course explains how to implement both ELB and EC2 Auto Scaling and how they work together.


By completing this hands-on lab, you will be able to create your first Amazon EC2 instance using the AWS Management Console.


Knowledge Check: AWS Compute Fundamentals


This course covers the wide range of storage services within AWS, their key features, and when and why you would use them.


Learn to create your first Amazon S3 bucket, create a logical folder for organizational purposes, and upload content to it and set custom metadata using the S3 console


EC2 instances can use multiple storage volumes, learn how to add and manage them using EBS.


Knowledge Check: AWS Storage Fundamentals


This course provides you with an introduction to the cloud database services offered by AWS and how to use them.


You will learn the steps to create and use the MySQL Relational Database using Amazon RDS.


Knowledge Check: Database Fundamentals for AWS


A hands-on lab introducing you to the high performance and high availability Amazon Aurora database engine.


In this course, you'll learn how to manage AWS Cloud services such as CloudTrail, Config, Trusted Advisor, CloudWatch, and Personal Health Dashboard.


This course gives you an overview of the AWS Virtual Private Cloud and its associated networking components.


Knowledge Check: Working with AWS Networking and Amazon VPC


Learn how to create an isolated network using Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)


Knowledge Check: Foundations for Solution Architect Associate


This course briefly introduces Domain One - Designing Resilient Architectures.


This course explores business continuity and disaster recovery, the well-architected framework, and AWS services for designing resilient, fault-tolerant architectures when used together.


This lab introduces the basics of Auto Scaling in Amazon Web Services. The Amazon Web Services (AWS) Auto Scaling service automatically adds or removes compute resources allocated for your cloud application, in response to changes in demand. For application...


Amazon Simple Queue Service (SQS) is a fast, reliable, scalable, fully managed message queuing service. You can use SQS to transmit any volume of data, at any level of throughput, without losing messages or requiring other services to be always available.


CloudWatch is a monitoring service that AWS provides. You can use it to monitor AWS resources or custom resources, inside or outside AWS.


This course explains the various features and use cases of Amazon CloudFront and includes a walkthrough of how to create a Web Distribution.


You can easily and inexpensively use Amazon Web Services (AWS) to host a website that uses client-side technologies (such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript) and does not require server-side technologies (such as PHP and ASP.NET). This type of site is called a st...


This course covers AWS Elastic Beanstalk, its uses, how it's configured and the various monitoring options available.


This course summarizes what you learned in Domain One - Designing Resilient Architectures.


Knowledge Check: Domain 1: Designing Resilient Architectures


This course introduces Domain Two - Designing Performant Architectures and what will be covered in the module.


This course explains how and when to use Amazon S3, AWS Storage Gateway, and AWS Snowball for backup and disaster recovery.


 During this lab we will understand how to launch an Auto Scaling group behind a Classic Load Balancer


In this course, you'll learn the fundamentals of Amazon DynamoDB, including table design, reading, writing, and working with large tables.


Move your first steps using DynamoDB. Create tables with and withoud secondary indexes, learn how to add new rows and query your data by using the AWS Management Console.


In this beginner-level course, you'll learn the basics of the Amazon ElastiCache service.


ElastiCache is a web service that makes it easy to deploy, operate, and scale an in-memory cache in the cloud. This lab experience will guide you during the creation of an Elasticache cluster and its the first usage.


Learn how to listen to DynamoDB update streams and process batches of records with AWS Lambda to augment your database behavior.


Amazon Simple Notification Service (SNS) is a fully-managed, highly-scalable service that facilitates message delivery. Learn how to send messages and process them with AWS Lambda.


Learn how to configure and use AWS CloudTrail and CloudWatch in cooperation with each other to monitor AWS infrastructure and services. Whenever an Instance is stopped or terminated and alarm will trigger (using AWS SNS) and deliver an email notification to...


This course summarizes Domain Two - Designing Performant Architectures.


Knowledge Check: Domain 2 - Designing High-Performing Architectures


This course introduces Domain Three - Specify Secure Application and Architectures.


In this course, you'll learn to recognize and explain what encryption is at a high level as well as the various encryption options provided by AWS.


This course explains AWS Identity & Access Management (IAM), what it is, and how to implement it.


Knowledge Check: Overview of AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM)


Learn how to create and manage IAM users, groups and policies to securely control access to AWS services and resources.


In this course, you'll learn about security mechanisms around AWS Authentication, Authorization, and Accounting, using a variety of services.


This course discusses the responsibility between AWS and the customer when architecting both abstract and container services


Learn how to increment the network security creating a public and private subnet on VPC and filter traffic using network ACL


Learn how to manage our organization using IAM Users and Groups and IAM Roles 


In this course, you will learn the basics of KMS, what it will cost to implement, how to encrypt data, and more...


Learn how to use CloudWatch to monitor EC2 instance logs for failed SSH attempts


This course summarizes Domain Three - Designing Secure Application and Architectures.


Knowledge Check: Domain 3 - Specify Secure Applications and Architectures


This course covers cost optimization concepts and practices, the various instance types available, and purchasing options.


In this lab you will learn how to create EC2 spot instances, how they can be used in AWS and how to handle instance interruptions.


Knowledge Check: Domain 4 - Design Cost-Optimized Architectures


This course introduces Domain Five, in which you will select and combine AWS services together to create a highly available web site.


This course covers how to create a solution architecture in the AWS console from the design stage all the way through to review.


CloudFormation is an infrastructure as code tool for AWS. In this lab, you will use CloudFormation to launch an EC2 with a full WordPress installation.


For controlled deployments and efficient deployment services of code on EC2 instances, Elastic Beanstalks provides a superior interaction model and developer tools experience.


This course concludes Domain Five, in which you select and combine AWS services together to create a highly available web site.


This course summarizes the AWS Solutions Architect – Associate Certification Preparation for AWS learning path.


This course provides study aids that help refresh your knowledge of the core concepts covered in the Solutions Architect Associate learning path.


Cert Prep: Certified Solution Architect - Associate for AWS (Retires on June 30, 2020)

About the Author
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Head of Content

Andrew is an AWS certified professional who is passionate about helping others learn how to use and gain benefit from AWS technologies. Andrew has worked for AWS and for AWS technology partners Ooyala and Adobe.  His favorite Amazon leadership principle is "Customer Obsession" as everything AWS starts with the customer. Passions around work are cycling and surfing, and having a laugh about the lessons learnt trying to launch two daughters and a few start ups.