Master the Art of Getting AWS Certified

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Master the Art of Getting AWS Certified 

As an aspiring IT professional I recently discovered the advantages of getting an Amazon Web Services (AWS) certification and wanted to know if coding is a requirement. I want to demonstrate and validate my cloud knowledge and skills by becoming AWS certified. I want this because an AWS certification can help me get a higher salary and it also opens doors to new avenues.

Is coding necessary for AWS?  Although you don’t need any coding or programming skills to learn AWS you can greatly benefit from the knowledge of networking and hardware. However, this is not a prerequisite and AWS is easy to learn with courses that are accessible to large groups or individuals. 

Currently, there are six different types of AWS certifications that are grouped into four main paths with a specialty path that is divided into five subpaths. The four main paths that you can choose from are Cloud Practitioner,  AWS Architect, Developer, and Operations. If you are pursuing the Developer Path then you will need to prove some code level knowledge and have more than one year’s experience in maintaining AWS applications.

What Skills Do I Need to Start My AWS Career? 

Even though coding is not a prerequisite for AWS, knowing at least one programming language will benefit you. This is because you will be building applications and deploying them into the AWS cloud. Some good programming languages to look at are Java, Python C# or other programming languages that have an official AWS software development kit.

As an architect programming can help you to create logical and viable solutions that will work as intended. It can also help you to generate a demo or proof of concept so that you can demonstrate how to use the latest technologies. However, keep in mind that you don’t need any of this knowledge beforehand and you can pick it up as you go along.

Another skill that will greatly benefit you is knowledge of networking. Networking is essential for creating secure and scalable cloud-based solutions. Route 53 (DNS), CloudFront (CDN), and Virtual Private Cloud (VPS) are all services that you will be using as a cloud architect. This means that you will be designing cloud networks using private and public subnets, VPC peering and internet access.

Knowing how to work with databases is something that almost every software architect needs to know. There are many data storage options available in AWS and knowing when to use the right one is important. By knowing data storage fundamentals you will be able to make the best choices when it comes to storing a company’s data.

A good cloud architect also needs a strong foundation in security so that you can ensure that only authorized personnel and code are allowed to perform specific tasks. A good knowledge of identity and access management can help you to determine which resources can be accessed by specific services and users. It will be important to secure your networks using access control lists and security groups.

Because cloud vendors provide components that back front-end and back-end technologies it is good to have knowledge of AWS service selection. Having knowledge of what services are relevant to an organization and also at your disposal will help you to be a better cloud architect. Simple Queuing (SQS),  Notifications (SNS), Relational Database Service (RDS) are some services that an AWS architect should know.

Having a good working knowledge of cloud-specific patterns and technologies is also a great asset for anyone who is learning AWS. This is because the rules change once you move your code into the cloud. If you harness AWS infrastructure correctly and design your workloads then recovery, scalability, and availability becomes much easier.

Having good communication skills are also essential as you will have to explain your vision to other software developers, architects, and managers. Being able to convince your team why your solution is the best, is the key to having your vision come to life. That is why it is important to be able to present an idea in a clear and concise way that will help others to understand exactly what you are saying.

What Is the Best Way to Learn to Become an AWS Solution Architect?

When you have a clearly mapped out path it is much easier to reach your goals successfully. When starting out on your quest to become AWS certified there may be a lot of overwhelming information. The following information will help you navigate your journey efficiently so that you can reach your goal as quickly as possible.

  • Get a better understanding of cloud computing
  • Get a deeper knowledge of what AWS is
  • Become more familiar with core AWS services
  • Get better insight by watching re: Invent videos
  • Watch as many AWS webinars as you can
  • Make use of AWS and partner white papers as  a resource
  • Read APN and AWS blogs 

The first place to start is by understanding cloud computing and what its advantages are. The internet is a powerful resource for this and there is lots of helpful information that can help you get a deeper knowledge of what cloud computing is all about. There is also lots of helpful information on the official AWS website

Getting a better understanding of what AWS is will also help you a great deal. The official AWS training website has everything that you need to know on the subject and more. You should also look for other helpful sources on the internet as broadening your understanding of AWS will help you to grasp concepts and learn quicker.

The next step will be to become more familiar with the AWS services. A good online resource for this where you can get some first-hand experience is Qwiklabs. Another great resource for learning about AWS services is the AWS documentation

AWS and its partners organize an annual event called re: Invent. This event educates software developers, cloud architects, and other IT professionals about  AWS service offerings and architecture best practices. Two great sources where you can get re: Invent videos are the AWS Youtube Channel and the AWS Tutorial Series.

An AWS Masterclass Webinar will help you to get a much deeper understanding of the subject. Many times an expert AWS Solution Architect will be asked to speak at these online webinars and this will help you to learn many great things. A great place to start is the AWS webinar channel as they have many helpful videos for you to watch.

One of the best resources where you can learn about architecture and services best practices in the AWS and partners whitepapers. Much of the material is written by expert Solution Architects at AWS where they discuss subject matter in detail. Do yourself a favor and head over to the AWS White papers to find the most definitive information on architecture and best practices. 

Another great aid on your journey to becoming AWS certified is APN and AWS blogs. These blogs often have lots of detailed information that will help you understand important concepts. The AWS partner network has many helpful blog posts that make for a good starting point.

What Kind of People Should Consider Amazon AWS Training?

Knowing whether to do AWS certification and which path to choose is crucial to your success as a cloud architect. There is a big demand for people who are skilled in cloud computing and now is probably the best time to get AWS certified. People who will do well with Amazon AWS training includes:

  • Professionals that seek project experience when it comes to migrating and deploying AWS solutions
  • Professionals that possess a background in IT infrastructure
  • Professionals that have a working knowledge of Virtualization software
  • DevOps executives
  • People with knowledge on how application, server and network security and compliance work.

Related Questions 

Can I learn to code while doing AWS?

Coding is not a prerequisite for learning AWS. However, you may encounter times when you will be expected to utilize some coding concepts and apply them in certain situations. When this happens you can easily study up on the relevant material online

What are the benefits of AWS?

An AWS certification can open up several new career avenues by helping you to validate your cloud computing knowledge. Because AWS enhances your personal credibility you may be able to get a larger salary for a cloud computing role. AWS dominates when it comes to on-demand cloud computing market space.

What is the difference between AWS and Azure?

AWS is not very open to third-party cloud providers while Azure is more open to Hybrid cloud systems. Both Azure and AWS follow a pay as you go, model, Azure has a more exact pricing system because they charge per minute instead of per hour. There are also a few other differences when it comes to storage, networking, deploying apps, and database options.

What are the subpaths of the AWS Speciality path?

AWS has five specialty certificates to offer for the following technical areas:

  • AWS Certified Big Data
  • AWS Certified Security 
  • AWS Certified Machine Learning
  • AWS Certified Advanced Networking
  • AWS Certified Alexa Skill Building

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