AWS Certification FAQ

Frequently asked questions about getting AWS Certified and AWS Certification

AWS Certification helps learners build credibility and confidence by validating their cloud expertise with an industry-recognized credential and organizations identify skilled professionals to lead cloud initiatives using AWS. 

Take a look below for some common questions.

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Certification account and exam registration FAQs

  • Top questions
  • About AWS Certification
  • Prepare for your exam
  • Schedule your exam
  • Exam scoring and content
  • Benefits and certification validation
  • Top questions
    • Are there any mandatory training or exam requirements to take an AWS Certification exam?

      Training is recommended as part of your certification preparation, but it is not mandatory for the completion of the certification.

      Go here to find the role-based learning path that's right for you.

    • Which AWS Certification is right for me?

      Learn about each AWS Certification exam here. To learn more about the benefits of AWS Certification, go here.

    • How do I register to take an AWS Certification exam?

      To register for an exam, sign in to aws.training and click Certification in the top navigation. Next, click the AWS Certification Account button, followed by Schedule New Exam. Find the exam you wish to take and click either the Schedule at PSI or Schedule at Pearson VUE button. You will then be redirected to the test delivery provider’s scheduling page, where you will complete your exam registration.

    • What is the retake policy?

      Test takers who do not pass an exam must wait 14 days before they are eligible to retake the exam. There is no limit on exam attempts until the test taker has passed. For each exam attempt, the full registration price must be paid. Beta exam test takers are eligible for one attempt only.

    • How can I know which services and features are covered in an exam?

      AWS Certification does not publish a list of all services and/or features that are covered in a certification exam. However, the exam guide for each exam does list the current topic areas and objectives covered in the exam. Exam guides can be found here.

    • When will I get my exam results?

      Upon completing your exam, you will receive a pass or fail notification on the testing screen.

      Most of our exams use a scale-scoring method. You will receive an email confirming your exam completion. Your detailed exam results will be available within five business days of completing your exam on your AWS Certification Account under Previous Exams. Our practice exams, as well as the AWS Certified Advanced Networking – Specialty and AWS Certified Big Data – Specialty exams use the original percentage scoring method. You will receive an email after completing your exam, which includes your detailed exam results. Within five business days of completing your exam, your AWS Certification Account will have a record of your exam results under Previous Exams.

      Beta exam results are typically available 90 days (13 weeks) or less from the close of the beta exam. You will be notified via email once your exam results are available in your AWS Certification Account.

    • Is there an option to reschedule my exam if I cannot make my scheduled appointment?

      Yes. You can cancel or reschedule your exam up to 24 hours before your scheduled appointment without additional fees. To reschedule or cancel your exam, go to your AWS Certification Account and click the Manage PSI Exams or Manage Pearson VUE exams button. If you scheduled with PSI, click the "View Details" button on the scheduled exam you wish to manage. If you scheduled with Pearson VUE, you can select the scheduled exam you wish to manage from the Upcoming Appointments menu. Once you reach the 24-hour window before your scheduled appointment, you will not be able to cancel or reschedule your exam. If you miss your scheduled exam appointment, you will forfeit the exam fee and are not eligible for a refund. You will not be able to register again for the exam until 24 hours after your missed exam time. Missing the exam does not result in a “fail” status.

      Please note that you may only reschedule two times after scheduling your original appointment. If you wish to reschedule a third time, you must cancel and schedule a new appointment. The reschedule limit will apply to the new appointment. Exam appointments cannot be cancelled less than 24 hours prior to your appointment.

    • How can I verify an individual's certification status?

      To verify a certificate, you can ask the certificate holder to share their Validation Number, which can be found on the bottom right of their certificate. Your certification can be found in your AWS Certification Account. Once they have provided you with the Validation Number, you can verify the certification on our website here. You can also verify by clicking an individual’s shared digital badge, which includes a link to verify certification status.

      To register for an exam, sign in to aws.training and click Certification in the top navigation. Next, click the AWS Certification Account button, followed by Schedule New Exam. Find the exam you wish to take and click either the Schedule at PSI or Schedule at Pearson VUE button. You will then be redirected to the test delivery provider’s scheduling page, where you will complete your exam registration.

    • Can I get a list of AWS Certified individuals?

      The AWS Privacy Policy does not allow us to share personally identifiable information or exam pass/fail results without explicit candidate consent. 

    • Are there benefits offered to AWS Certified individuals?

      In addition to validating your technical skills, AWS Certification gives you tangible benefits to help you showcase your achievement and further advance your AWS expertise. View the AWS Certification Benefits page for a complete list of benefits.

    • What are the prerequisites to take Professional or Specialty exams?

      In October 2018, we removed prerequisites to give candidates more flexibility. Candidates are no longer required to have an Associate certification before pursuing Professional certification, and they are no longer required to have Cloud Practitioner or Associate certification before pursuing Specialty certification. We still encourage exam candidates pursue our recommended learning paths as they advance and validate their skills.  

    • What’s the best way to certify a group of people?

      You can purchase AWS Certification exam vouchers, which eliminates the need for candidates to have to pay when scheduling their exam. They simply enter a voucher code when scheduling exams at either Pearson VUE or PSI. Learn more here.

    • Which certification exams are available to take from home or office with online proctoring?

      We offer the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam via online proctoring using the third-party test delivery provider Pearson VUE. You can learn more about this certification here. To learn more about online proctoring—how it works, requirements, etc.—visit the Pearson VUE site. Pearson VUE handles your information in accordance with their privacy policies, posted on the Pearson VUE site. Providing Pearson VUE with your information may involve transferring it to another country.

  • About AWS Certification
    • Why should I consider AWS Certified?

      AWS Certification helps learners build credibility and confidence by validating their cloud expertise with an industry-recognized credential and organizations identify skilled professionals to lead cloud initiatives using AWS.

    • Which AWS Certification is right for me?

      Learn about each AWS Certification exam here. To learn more about the benefits of AWS Certification, see aws.amazon.com/certification/benefits.

    • How do I become AWS Certified?

      You must earn a passing score via a proctored exam to earn an AWS Certification. Upon receiving a passing score, you will receive your certification credentials. 

    • How long will my certification be valid?

      You will be required to update your certification (or recertify) every three years. View the AWS Certification Recertification page for more details.

    • What is the difference between an exam and a certification?

      An exam is a test that validates an individual's technical knowledge of AWS products and services. A certification is a credential that you earn upon successfully passing an exam. This credential is a digital badge and title that you may use on your business cards and other professional collateral to designate yourself as AWS Certified.

    • What is a beta exam?

      We offer beta exams to ensure a new exam meets our quality bar before full production release. Candidates have the opportunity to take the newest exams first. If the beta is successful, candidates who passed the exam will be among the first to hold the new certification. Discover what’s coming soon to AWS Certification, including available beta exams, here.

    • I am a US veteran. Is my exam fee eligible for GI Bill reimbursement?

      Yes. Any qualifying US veteran covered under a GI Bill with an education provision can submit a reimbursement request to Veterans Affairs for AWS Certification exams taken after December 10, 2015. To qualify, you must purchase your exam via your AWS Certification Account and submit the VA application for reimbursement.

      The VA will only pay for the exam fee. Costs connected with preparing for a certification (e.g., training courses or practice exams) are not reimbursable. Learn more.

    • I am a US veteran. Is my AWS Training class fee also eligible for GI Bill reimbursement?

      No. Only AWS Certification exam fees are eligible. Learn more.

    • I am a minor. Am I eligible to take an AWS Certification exam?

      Candidates must be 13 years or older to take an AWS Certification exam. For candidates ages 13-17, please see the answer to the question below.

    • Is there a special process for testing candidates under the age of 18?

      Candidates ages 13-17 are permitted to take AWS Certification exams with the consent of their parent or legal guardian. Candidates must be at least 13 years old at the time of scheduling an exam. This special process is outlined below:

      1. Create an AWS Certification Account: The parent or legal guardian must create an AWS Certification Account for their teenage candidate, and the account must be in their teenage candidate’s name. After creating the account, the parent or legal guardian must select the “My Profile” tab, followed by the “Identification” subtab that appears below it. On the next page, they must note the login ID (AWSXXXXXXXX) for their teenage candidate; this will be needed in step 2 below.

      2. Open a customer support case: The parent or legal guardian must next open a customer support case with AWS Training and Certification here. In order to avoid delays in processing requests for testing their teenager(s), the parent or legal guardian must enter the following information into the case form’s fields

      • First Name: Enter the parent/legal guardian’s first name
      • Last Name: Enter the parent/legal guardian’s last name
      • Company Name: Enter the teenage candidate’s first and last name
      • Email Address: Enter the parent/legal guardian’s email address
      • Country/Region: Select your applicable country/region
      • Telephone: Enter the parent/legal guardian’s telephone number
      • Inquiry Type: Select “Certification”
      • Additional Details: Select “Scheduling/Accommodations”
      • How can we help you? Enter the phrase “Teenage Candidate” immediately followed by the login ID from the teenage candidate’s AWS Certification Account

      Please note. If a teen (13-17) files the initial ticket, they will need to have their parent or legal guardian submit a new ticket completed properly to initiate the process.  

      3. Complete a consent form: AWS Customer Support will respond to your customer support case with further instructions. They will also provide a parental/legal guardian consent form that must be completed by both the teenage candidate and the parent/legal guardian who will accompany them to their scheduled appointment. Reply to the customer support email with the completed consent form attached to it.

      4. After consent form approval, assist in scheduling the exam: Approximately 5-7 business days after receipt of the consent form, AWS Customer Support will either notify the parent/legal guardian if any further information is needed, or if the consent form is approved. Upon receiving that copy of the approved form, the parent/legal guardian can then assist their teenage candidate in scheduling an AWS Certification exam. They may do so by logging into their AWS Certification Account and selecting “Pearson VUE” as the test delivery provider for the appropriate exam.

      5. Follow proper identification (ID) steps on the day of the exam appointment:

      • The teenage candidate must present one form of photo ID. School IDs are acceptable.
      • The parent/legal guardian who is identified on the consent form must accompany the teen candidate to the test center and provide a valid, government-issued ID that matches the name listed on the consent form, as well as a copy of the consent form.
      • The parent/legal guardian must sign the log sheet next to the candidate’s signature in order to verify the candidate’s identity.
      • The parent/legal guardian is not permitted to wait in the test center after the admission process is completed.

      Because certification exam policies often change, the scheduling process above must be repeated, and a new consent form completed and submitted, for each AWS Certification exam taken by a teenage candidate.

    • Am I required to sign any agreement before taking an AWS Certification exam?

      To preserve the security and value of the certification program, you must accept the terms and conditions of the AWS Certification Program Agreement when registering for your exam appointment and before beginning the certification exam.

      The AWS Certification Program Agreement applies to all exams. It sets forth the AWS Certification Program participation requirements, responsibilities, testing rules, and consequences for noncompliance. Penalties for noncompliance include canceling the results of any AWS Certification exam, revoking any AWS Certification, requiring you to retake an exam, terminating your rights under the AWS Certification Program Agreement, and prohibiting you from participating in the AWS Certification Program.

      All AWS Certification exam content, including, without limitation, any questions, answers, and/or diagrams are the proprietary and confidential property of Amazon Web Services (AWS). They may not be copied, reproduced, modified, published, uploaded, posted, transmitted, or distributed in any way without the express written authorization of AWS. Agreeing to the AWS Certification Program Agreement is required to be officially certified and to maintain valid certification.

    • What’s the best way to certify a group of people?

      You can purchase AWS Certification exam vouchers, which eliminates the need for candidates to have to pay when scheduling their exam. They simply enter a voucher code when scheduling exams at either Pearson VUE or PSI. Learn more here.

    • How can I purchase exam vouchers?

      Vouchers are available for purchase anytime online. Learn more here.

  • Prepare for your exam
    • Are there any mandatory training or exam requirements to take an AWS Certification exam?

      Training is recommended as part of your certification preparation, but it is not mandatory for the completion of the certification. Go to aws.amazon.com/training to find the role-based learning path that's right for you. For professional and specialty certifications, it is recommended, but not required that candidates hold AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner certification and/or an associate-level certification.

    • What's the best way for me to prepare for my exam?

      The best preparation for certification exams is practical experience. We recommend six months to two years of hands-on experience using AWS. We also offer training and materials to help you prepare.

      View the AWS Certification Preparation page for recommended training, practice exams, exam guides, whitepapers, sample questions, and other resources.

    • Are there practice exams available?

      Yes, practice exams are available for all current Foundational, Associate, and Professional Exams, as well as most of our Specialty exams. The practice exams will allow you to test your knowledge online in a timed environment, and experience the exam format and platform prior to taking the full exam.

    • How do I purchase a practice exam?

      Practice exams can be purchased from our exam deliver providers through your AWS Certification Account. The Foundational and Associate-level practice exams are 20 USD and the Professional and Specialty practice exams are 40 USD. Purchase of a practice exam provides you with one attempt. 

    • How long will I have access to my practice exam?

      Access to the practice exam will expire after 180 days, and once the practice exam is launched, you will have 30 days to complete the exam, or until the allotted practice exam time expires. You can pause your practice exam by closing out your exam browser. Selecting “End Test” will mark the exam complete and it cannot be restarted. 

    • What feedback will I get from my practice exam?

      After completing your practice exam, you will receive a score report email with high-level feedback to help you understand how you scored on the exam content covered on the practice exam. Answers to the practice exam are not provided to the test taker. You can use the exam guide in conjunction with your score report to help you with your exam preparation. 

  • Schedule your exam
    • How do I register for an AWS Certification exam?

      To register for an exam, sign in to aws.training and click Certification in the top navigation. Next, click the AWS Certification Account button, followed by Schedule New Exam. Find the exam you wish to take and click either the Schedule at PSI or Schedule at Pearson VUE button. You will then be redirected to the test delivery provider’s scheduling page, where you will complete your exam registration.

    • Where can I take an AWS Certification exam?

      AWS exams are available from both Pearson VUE's and PSI's network of testing centers.

      You can search for PSI test centers at https://awsavailability.psiexams.com.

      You can search for Pearson VUE test centers at https://home.pearsonvue.com/test-taker.aspx

    • How much does an AWS Certification exam cost?

      The Cloud Practitioner exam is 100 USD. Associate-level exams are 150 USD. Professional-level and Specialty exams are 300 USD. You can renew your certification by using your 50% off voucher code to take the current, full exam at 50% off. Please note that taxes (such as Value Added Tax) may apply. 

    • What is the retake policy?

      Test takers who do not pass an exam must wait 14 days before they are eligible to retake the exam. There is no limit on exam attempts until the test taker has passed. For each exam attempt, the full registration price must be paid. Beta exam test takers are eligible for one attempt only. 

    • Is there an option to reschedule my exam if I cannot make my scheduled appointment?

      Yes. You can cancel or reschedule your exam up to 24 hours before your scheduled appointment without additional fees. To reschedule or cancel your exam, go to your AWS Certification Account and click either the "Manage PSI Exams" or "Manage Pearson VUE exams" button. If you scheduled with PSI, click the "View Details" button on the scheduled exam you wish to manage. If you scheduled with Pearson VUE, you can select the scheduled exam you wish to manage from the "Upcoming Appointments" menu. Once you reach the 24-hour window before your scheduled appointment, you will not be able to cancel or reschedule your exam. If you miss your scheduled exam appointment, you will forfeit the exam fee and are not eligible for a refund. You will not be able to register again for the exam until 24 hours after your missed exam time. Missing the exam does not result in a “fail” status.

      Please note that you may only reschedule two times after scheduling your original appointment. If you wish to reschedule a third time, you must cancel and schedule a new appointment. The reschedule limit will apply to the new appointment. Exam appointments cannot be cancelled less than 24 hours prior to your appointment.

    • How do I arrange a special accommodation for my exam?

      Special accommodations will be arranged with the test delivery provider, prior to registering for your exam. PSI & Pearson VUE do not share accommodation request details, so the appropriate documentation will need to be provided to the test delivery provider you wish to test with.

      To get started, sign in to aws.training and click Certification in the top navigation. Next, click the AWS Certification Account button, followed by Request Exam Accommodation. This page will provide you with instructions on how to submit your accommodation requests to the test delivery provider you choose.

    • Where can I find a test center near me?

      You can search for PSI test centers at https://awsavailability.psiexams.com.

      You can search for Pearson VUE test centers at https://home.pearsonvue.com/test-taker.aspx

    • I have a certification exam voucher. Which vendor can I use it with?

      Exam vouchers (partial discount or full exam value) are valid for a single use, and you can choose to use that voucher with PSI or Pearson VUE, unless specified otherwise at the time your voucher was received. There are a few exceptions:

      • Any voucher received from PSI customer support can only be used with PSI
      • Any voucher received from Pearson VUE customer support can only be used with Pearson VUE
      • Any voucher received from AWS customer support can only be used with the test delivery provider you have elected to test with

       

    • If I want to buy a practice exam voucher, or if I already have one, which vendor can I use it with?

      Though practice exam vouchers are not available for sale via Xvoucher, they may be purchased directly from, and redeemed by, PSI. Please contact PSI for instructions on how to purchase practice exam vouchers. Please note that these practice exam vouchers are non-transferable and only redeemable at PSI. Practice exam vouchers are not available for purchase from Pearson VUE.

  • Exam scoring and content
    • How many questions do I need to answer correctly to achieve a passing score?

      AWS Certification passing scores are set by using statistical analysis and are subject to change. AWS does not publish exam passing scores because exam questions and passing scores are updated to reflect changes in test forms as the content is updated. 

    • How often are exams updated?

      AWS Certification regularly rotates questions in and out that adhere to the exam guide. Major revisions to an exam, including changes to an exam guide, will be made public. The exam guide for each exam lists the current topic areas covered by the exam. Exam guides can be found here. 

    • When AWS releases a new product or service, how soon will it appear on the exam?

      A new product, service, or feature must be generally available (GA) for 6 months prior to it appearing on a certification exam. Note that this applies only to certification exams, not training: training will cover new services and features more quickly. The AWS Certification team wants to ensure candidates have enough time to work with new services and features before they are assessed against the new material.

    • How can I know which services and features are covered in an exam?

      AWS Certification does not publish a list of all services and/or features that are covered in a certification exam. However, the exam guide for each exam does list the current topic areas and objectives covered in the exam. Exam guides can be found here

    • An existing service or feature has changed. How will that be reflected in my exam?

      The AWS Certification team will replace exam questions determined to be impacted by the change. 

    • How should I answer a question that I think has been affected by a change in a service or feature?

      Choose the best available answer from the options in the question. 

    • Are practice exams and live exams scored in the same way?

      No. Practice exams are scored based on percent correct. For example, if you answer 16 out of 20 practice exam questions correctly, your score is 16/20 or 80%. Practice exams are useful preparation tools that can help you gauge your readiness for a certification exam. However, passing a practice exam does not guarantee that you will pass the certification exam.

      Scores on live certification exams are reported as a score from 100 to 1000. Your score shows how you performed on the examination as a whole and whether or not you passed. Scaled scoring models are used to equate scores across multiple exam forms that may have slightly different difficulty levels. Scaled scores are a mathematical conversion of the number of items that a candidate correctly answers so that there is a consistent scale used across all forms of an exam. 

    • When will I get my exam results?

      Upon completing your exam, you will receive a pass or fail notification on the testing screen.

      Most of our exams use a scale-scoring method. You will receive an email confirming your exam completion. Your detailed exam results will be available within five business days of completing your exam on your AWS Certification Account under Previous Exams. Our practice exams, as well as the AWS Certified Advanced Networking – Specialty and AWS Certified Big Data – Specialty exams use the original percentage scoring method. You will receive an email after completing your exam, which includes your detailed exam results. Within five business days of completing your exam, your AWS Certification Account will have a record of your exam results under Previous Exams.

      Beta exam results are typically available 90 days (13 weeks) or less from the close of the beta exam. You will be notified via email once your exam results are available in your AWS Certification Account.

  • Benefits and certification validation
    • Are there benefits offered to AWS Certified individuals?

      In addition to validating your technical skills, AWS Certification gives you tangible benefits to help you showcase your achievement and further advance your AWS expertise. View the AWS Certification Benefits page for a complete list of benefits.

    • Where can I access my benefits

      Gain access to exclusive AWS Certified benefits via aws.training. Once signed in, go to your AWS Certification Account where you’ll have access to all your benefits. Benefits will be available within five business days after passing your exam. 

    • How can I verify an individual's certification status?

      To verify a certificate, you can ask the certificate holder to share their Validation Number, which can be found on the bottom right of their certificate. Your certification can be found in your AWS Certification Account. Once they have provided you with the Validation Number, you can verify the certification on our website here. You can also verify by clicking an individual’s shared digital badge, which includes a link to help validate certification status.

    • How can I get AWS Certified swag?

      The AWS Certified store gives AWS Certified individuals the opportunity to purchase AWS Certified merchandise. Access to the AWS Certified Store requires successful completion of one or more AWS Certifications. Access to merchandise is based on the certification you have achieved (e.g. Associate, Professional).

    • Can I get a list of AWS Certified individuals?

      The AWS Privacy Policy does not allow us to share personally identifiable information or exam pass/fail results without explicit candidate consent.