Updating your Skills to SQL Server 2012

New course has all you need to know about SQL Server 2012

As an instructor, I get to preview new courses to verify the materials for accuracy and also start preparing to teach the course in the future. I always participate in the CTP/Beta programs so technically getting to know the new release happens naturally over time as Microsoft releases more bits and I test them out. One by-product of going through the latest training is it prepares you well for the certification exams. You can do it too. Let's take a look. Microsoft usually releases courses that align themselves very nicely with the Certification Exam "Skills" or what I call the "Skill Objectives". These skills are what you need to master in order to call yourself, for instance, an MCSA: SQL Server 2012 (Associate) or better still, an MCSE: Data Platform (Expert). The skills have been identified by a group of MVP's (Most Valuable Professionals) to outline the skills needed for the job of a DBA. In order to prove those skills, Microsoft likes to ask us questions related to those skills. If we get the answers right, Microsoft assumes we indeed have those skills. (A BIG assumption as I outline here in another [url=http://www.networkworld.com/community/node/59422]blog entry[/url]). Since I am already an MCITP for SQL Server 2008, all I had to do was pass three exams to promote myself to the new MCSA and MCSE for SQL Server 2012. That's three times as many exams as I had to pass in order to upgrade my MCITP from SQL Server 2005 to 2008, but still, we have to follow the rules. Looking for some practice tests or preparation materials proved unfruitful. Most of the official SQL Server 2012 courses cover the foundation skills of SQL Server with a sprinkling of new features which is great for someone starting out but not me. What I needed was a highly concentrated view on the new features only. I already have the foundation skills down. We found the answer with two new courses from Microsoft that we have now combined into one five-day class called "[url=http://www.globalknowledge.com/training/course.asp?pageid=9&courseid=17780&methodid=v]Updating your Database and Business Intelligence Skills to Microsoft SQL Server 2012[/url]". The objectives of these courses align themselves very nicely with the MCSA/MCSE Upgrade exams. We have released this on the Virtual Classroom e-Learning (VCeL) platform first with more sessions in our Training Centers later. The nice thing about the VCeL is that you have access to the lab machines for 6 months after the class is over so you can practice for your skills. What is tricky, is that the Upgrade exams for the MCSA: SQL Server 2012 include skills in Data Warehousing and SSIS which traditionally have fallen exclusively under the Business Intelligence exams. Well, no more. So we need the BI stuff just to get through the second of the three exams, even if we are only going for the Data Platform cert. Then the third exam focuses on Data Platform Skills to prove you are an expert. If you then move on to the MCSE: Business Intelligence upgrade exam you will be asked to prove your skills with the new version of SSAS and SSRS. All I can say, is take this single combo-course and you will be in good shape to pass all the upgrade exams. I am not giving you inside-information here, it's just that Microsoft likes to align their courses with their exams and that's what they have done again. All the Skill Objectives are published under the Microsoft Learning website. Just drill down on the certification of your choice to see the exams then click on the "Skills Measured" tab to see the Skill Objectives. Then study up on those features or just come and see us for five days of concentrated learning and you will be all set. See you online soon! cheers Brian Updating your Database and Business Intelligence Skills to Microsoft SQL Server 2012 (M40008, M40009) http://www.globalknowledge.com/training/course.asp?pageid=9&courseid=17780&methodid=v MCSA: SQL Server 2012 http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/certification/cert-sql-server-mcsa.aspx MCSE: Data Platform http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/certification/cert-sql-server-data-platform.aspx MCSE: Business Intelligence http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/certification/cert-sql-server-business-intelligence.aspx

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