Cloud Computing is the most popular IT field that has been growing rapidly in recent years, and Amazon Web Services (AWS) is among the major cloud service vendors leveraged by organizations all around the world. Several companies around the world are using AWS to run various instances and are looking to hire professionals who are experts in it. This blog will guide you to clear the AWS Solutions Architect Associate exam and become a certified professional in this IT domain.
This AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate Certification study guide will cover the following topics:
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First, let us understand who these professionals are and what they are responsible for.
Who is an AWS Certified Solutions Architect?
It is not unknown that AWS is a one-stop solution for most organizations in the world who wish to store and access their data in the cloud, leading to a more efficient and profitable business. Among the various AWS Solutions Architect Associate roles and responsibilities, the primary one is that they are responsible for deploying applications into the AWS cloud infrastructure.
What do they do?
One of the reasons why organizations have either already moved or are on the verge of moving their data to the cloud is to reduce the cost that is spent on the on-premises storage facilities. Although the process may sound simple, it is not. If the data is not stored in the cloud in the right manner, organizations may have large outstanding bills, costing them more than any physical storage infrastructure. It is the job of solutions architects to create designs that reduce the expenses along with addressing crucial issues on scalability, usability, performance, and reliability.
Additionally, solutions architects are responsible for minimizing risks, such as calculation errors, data breaches, application downtime, etc., that organizations may face otherwise. To do so, these professionals need to know how the puzzles of AWS fit together to build a secure environment.
Further, you will come across the steps that need to be followed to get into this profession.
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AWS Solutions Architect Associate Preparation
To become an AWS Solutions Architect Associate, you need to clear the AWS Solutions Architect Associate certification exam. As mentioned earlier in the blog, SAA-C02 is the new and updated version of this certification exam, and it covers the latest content and objective w.r.t. the AWS cloud including security, databases, and cost optimization. This AWS certification is updated constantly to keep up with the latest AWS cloud practices and innovations.
While taking the exam, you can either opt for this version or the previous one, i.e., SAA-C01. Now, you might be wondering how to pass the AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate exam?
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About the AWS Solutions Architect Certification
Before appearing for the certification exam, you need to be familiar with its format and other details. Some of the details regarding the exam are listed below:
- Exam duration: 130 minutes
- Passing score: 720 (on a scale of 100 to 1,000)
- Exam pattern: Multiple choice and multiple answers
- Cost: US$150
- Practice exam cost: US$20
- Languages: English, Korean, Japanese, and simplified Chinese
After reading about the details of the examination, you may think how tough is the AWS Solutions Architect Associate exam? With the help of the right resources, practice, and effort, getting the certification will not seem too difficult. Besides, you can get a basic idea of the AWS Solutions Architect Associate exam questions that are generally asked by checking out the syllabus of the exam.
AWS Solutions Architect Associate Syllabus
Your knowledge, capabilities, and skills will be tested across four distinct sectors, wherein each sector contributes a specific percentage to the overall exam. The sectors or categories in which your SAA-C02 certification exam can be distributed, along with their percentage of weightage, are as follows:
- Designing resilient architectures: 30 percent
- Designing high-performing architectures: 28 percent
- Designing secure applications and architectures: 24 percent
- Designing cost-optimized architectures: 18 percent
Let us discuss them briefly.
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Designing Resilient Architectures
The questions asked in this section of the exam are based on developing advanced cloud-based systems with the help of AWS. You will also get questions on the following:
- Using Glacier, AWS S3, EBS, and other AWS services, which are resilient and reliable to opt for storage
- Designing decoupling mechanisms with AWS SNS
- Developing a multi-tier architecture in Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)
- Architecting fault-tolerant and highly-available systems
- Amazon storage services and Amazon Route 53
- Business continuity strategies and disaster recovery
Designing High-performing Architectures
The following topics will be covered in this section:
- Using Redshift, RDS, and Amazon DynamoDB to choose high-performing databases and storage
- Using ElastiCache to make improvements in storage performance
- Designing scalable and elastic solutions with the help of AWS techniques and tools, such as CloudWatch, Lambda, and Data Pipeline
Designing Secure Applications and Architectures
The topics that are covered in this category of the syllabus are as follows:
- Using AWS services such as CloudTrail, IAM, and Inspector to secure applications
- Securing data with AWS Macie and CloudHSM
- Defining the infrastructure of a network by using VPC, CloudFront, and AWS ELB (Elastic Load Balancer)
Designing Cost-optimized Architectures
Under this section of the exam, you may get questions related to the modules listed below:
- Designing a cost-effective solution for computing with the help of Amazon Elastic Beanstalk, Lightsail, EC2, and AWS Lambda
- Creating cost-optimized storage solutions with AWS services, namely, Amazon Glacier, S3, Elastic File System, and Amazon EBS
Now that you have read the brief version of the syllabus of this certification exam, let us check out the numerous job opportunities that are available for those who clear this certification.
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AWS Solutions Architect Associate Jobs
Major organizations around the globe, including Amazon, Accenture, IBM, Intel, and more, are hiring AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associates. Following are some of the job profiles that recruiters from these popular organizations are looking for:
- AWS Solutions Architect
- AWS Cloud Architect
- Amazon Redshift Architect
- Infrastructure Architect
- Cloud Solutions Architect Manager
- AWS Cloud Engineer
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Check out the range of salaries earned by these AWS Certified Solutions Architects below.
AWS Solutions Architect Associate Salary
According to Indeed, associates in AWS Solutions Architect salary is on an average of US$125,000 p.a. in the United States. The salary range of these professionals lies between US$117,750 p.a. and US$140,834 p.a.
In India, these professionals earn in the range of ₹798,913 p.a. to ₹1,225,420 p.a., depending on their skills, work experience, organization, etc.
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Path to Become an AWS Solutions Architect Associate
Get a head start in your career by enrolling in our online courses and becoming capable of clearing the AWS SAA-C02 certification exam. This will help you to become an AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate. Acquire the necessary skills and work on the projects offered to gain industry experience in AWS.
Visit our AWS Community and ask and clarify all your doubts regarding this certification exam.