Thanks to everyone who was able to join me and Jeff Koch (first session) and Gerry O Brien (second session) for our "Certification 101" Live Meeting on November 18th. If you weren t able to attend the session, you can still catch all the goodies when you watch the recording.
Find it here: Certification 101
One of the questions that is commonly asked by people new to certification is, "What does Microsoft consider cheating?" A Live Meeting presented in June of this year by Peggy Crowley, the Microsoft Learning Anti-Piracy Program Manager, gives a great introduction to the topic: CSI Redmond
If you have any questions, please feel free to post them in the comments on this blog.
Posted by Dana
Thanks for all the opinions. Glad to hear you like the idea. I have many people who I am going to be giving a nice gift to :) . Also, I do take your opinions seriously, so thank you once again for sharing!
To go a step further in this discussion, especially considering the number of MCP’s responding who take multiple exams per year, I thought I would show the Perk leveling gift folio. And of course, I wondered if I show you the different gifts, if it would change your opinion from the first post. Specifically, if you moved up levels and the benefits become a better ‘value’, would you would choose differently?
For example – if you were to be in level 1, you would choose x benefit; however, in level 2 you may choose something different…Do you think that the difference in where you are in taking your next exam, change the benefit you would choose?
(For the sake of helping quantify the levels, imagine a person who has achieved a TS credential in Level 1, an IT PRO or PRO Dev credential would be in Level 2, and those who have multiple credentials (including MCT’s) would be in level 3. )
Also, to clarify, this is just a vetting process, and please understand that, as always, anything and everything is changeable. I think you understand why I have to say that…
(Also, if you didn’t respond to my last post and respond to this one – I still have not reached my 100+ opinions, so the lovely gift is still on the table if you respond. Email me at email@example.com .)
I’m a PC -
Posted by Sarah Grant
Monday, November 24, 2008 10:36 PM by Michael D. Alligood
I'm a PC and I'm digging this idea!
I think you people are on the right track. If you could throw in a bottle of Patron XO Cafe (http://www.1-877-spirits.com/spirits/patron-xo-cafe), we got a deal!
Monday, November 24, 2008 11:28 PM by David Lawlor
Being able to choose what perk you want is a nice bonus, because there are definitely times when you might need something different in the later tiers than when you just started out.
Nothing like ending the year strong with ideas like these to get us excited for what is coming down the road in 2009
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 1:10 AM by Steve Maier
I like the idea of tier perks like this. I normally take quite a few exams a year and would love things like this. Of course I need to actually go and take some more soon. ;-)
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 6:57 AM by Tony Cullen
I feel that this is a long time coming.
For MCP's this is great; however I have always felt that MCT's or higher should have been getting MSDN Subscriptions foer free especially since we pay £220 per year?
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 8:11 AM by EduardoKita
I think that after taking a few (or a lot) exams would certainly change your expectations on which perk to chose.
For example, being on the 3rd level, and having a job totally grounded on all the knowledge acquired from the many certifications would lead me to the Technet Plus 100% off perk!
For newcomers, progressive discount on e-courses, e-refs and specially on exams is a nice plus.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 9:27 AM by Benjamin S
I think personally I would try the 4 month free trial of TechNet Plus as I have never tried it. Come time of the third test I would think the free TechNet Plus subscription would be most appealing. Around that time I would be nearing the end of the trial and could tell if I wanted it!
Would we be able to take a fourth test for free and get another free test? Does this end at the third passed test?
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 9:31 AM by Benjamin S
Is there a possibility of adding in a percentage off a practice test program?
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 9:59 AM by Les Bowman
I think the incentive folio you posted in this follow up is just the sort of thing to get people to stay current on their certs. I know I and many of my coworkers get a cert for our resume or the rare instance when work requires it but keeping it up can be a challenge, especially as Real Life gets in the way.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 10:01 AM by dobby10
I do think I would choose differently as I moved up. Probably technet plus at level 1. Elearning collection at level 2, and then technet plus at level 3. It seems to me that those are the best values.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 10:41 AM by Reed Wiedower
I think the perk leveling process is a *great* idea. Three points:
1) For those of us trying to get additional certifications, having a higher perk level would be a great way to encourage us to go for the entire certification, rather than just 1-2 classes.
2) Having seen the MCP eStore, it is mostly swag that isn’t terribly useful. Having it as a perk should be L1 or L2 only. Technet Plus subscriptions are good, but again, once you get to level 3, if you're working for a MS Gold Partner, you've already got MSDN, so I'm not sure what Technet Plus adds.
3) I still think that the highest level of certification should allow discounts on MS Press books. Those are tangible, BIG and extremely useful for learning. Best of all, they would be a much greater incentive for people to pass the tests. Getting a free Resource Kit book after one passes the requisite course (say, the Vista test allows you to get a discount on the Vista Resource Kit) would be an incredible incentive.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 4:14 PM by Dale Braun
I also like the perk level process. I would skip over things like the 50% goodies in favor of progressing to the next level and getting the 100%-ers. I especially like the E-courses being 100% at all levels, since the E-courses would tend to feed into the next cert exam, which levels you up to get another E-course, which feeds... well, you get the picture.
...and I'm a Marvel.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 10:21 PM by LawrenceGarvin
Hey Sarah... I like the levels and choices idea... I doubt they'd change how I originally commented on my first choices.. I'd still take an exam voucher or training over the other options -- but obviously not everybody has the same perspectives -- *choices* are good!!! As to which I'd take at any given time, that would be a factor of what exam I was preparing for, whether I already had an exam voucher in-hand, and what training resources I found suitable for exam prep.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008 7:02 AM by Terry Morris
I like the idea of getting TechNet Plus for free. I will go after a couple exams just for TechNet Plus. I see most people would like the vouchers. I get everything reimburshed so give me something that isn't like TechNet Plus.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008 8:18 AM by Peter Read
I guess it depends how it pans out, I've always kinda thought by the time you're in the 'MCSE club' (and/or MCITP:EA, or MCSD) should have pretty much carte blanche to use server software for non-commercial (e.g. personal/'fiddling/testing/playing') purposes, rather than being limited to eval versions. I guess that's pretty much what Technet gives us? If so that'd be at the top of my list.
Especially given some of us specify server software for our clients, so you want us all familiar with your new software right? ;)
Wednesday, November 26, 2008 12:10 PM by Pete
It seems that the one thing that is missing is the software to test/learn/build/play with. The Partner Action Pack is a nice start, but it really doesn't contain the range of stuff that we need.
I have been tempted to lease a server, upgrade to certified partner (joining with a fellow mcse to get around the whole 2 people thing) and use that software. The downside there is the cost. Server+subscription is a huge chunk of money.
Maybe if there was some MCP pack that let us have the software we could use that instead?
Wednesday, November 26, 2008 4:08 PM by TitusT
A discount on MSDN subscription for MCPD certs might be good too!
Another option could be discount on MS Press books!
Friday, November 28, 2008 5:49 AM by Pete
Oh, one other thing: can you make any exam discounts etc compatible with the Second Shot offer? SS is the most useful thing we can have, but frequently means any other offers are largely useless.
Friday, November 28, 2008 12:35 PM by Andy Helsby
@Pete - you can buy a decent machine from Dell for $500 - the Dimension530 is what I purchased in April this year. Add another $70 to increase the memory to 6GB, use the microsoft trials and you have a great server for testing/learning. with hyperv you have lots of servers at your disposal. Even better when you get technet plus which means you don't have to worry about the trials running out.
Personally i like the technetplus idea as my exams are refunded by my employer (as long as i pass - which I have done every time so far)
Sunday, November 30, 2008 11:34 PM by Jeff Senter
My employer only pay for the exams they want me to take. I am usually wondering though the MS blogs looking for Beta or free exams to take.I would far prefer exam discounts so I have more control over what I am taking rather than taking exams because they are free.
Monday, December 01, 2008 12:44 AM by kimbal
The levels and choices idea are great.
How about to have discount on the license?
e.g. somebody who toke MCITP SQL 08 can have discount on the license.
Some giveaways, for example mouse/keyboard set, would also be great.
Monday, December 01, 2008 1:31 PM by TitusT
When will we get our surprise gift?:-)
Friday, December 19, 2008 5:47 AM by James O'Doherty
I really like your idea of perk levels because it rewards the effort and dedication that is required to achieve a certification. There are definitely some perks that are more valuable than others. I realize that this somewhat subjective but for me free eLearning courses are more valuable than 4 month trial of TechNet Plus because I already pay of TechNet Plus and MSDN. I also think that the perk level should be reflected in the number of eLearning courses i.e Level 1 – one course, Level 2 - two courses and Level 3 – three courses. I think the most valuable reward that you can provide is one that helps candidate increase their own learning and cluefullness - http://blogs.msdn.com/shawnmor/archive/2003/08/19/24623.aspx.
Level 1 is relatively easy to achieve with 1 or 2 exams. Level 2 requires far more exams – often 3-5 exams. Level 3 is much harder to achieve and this should be reflected in the perks.
I do however have some questions. Do the perk levels work like a frequent flyer program i.e. are they valid only for the current year? Do you have to achieve further credentials to renew the perk level for the following year or do you stay on the perk level once you have reached it? How do you reward someone say who achieve MCPD – Enterprise Application Developer in .Net 2.0 and MCITP - Enterprise Administrator on Windows Server 2008 in one year but then wants to continue with exams in .Net 3.5 in the following year- in that case it would be able difficult to achieve the highest perk level?
Monday, January 05, 2009 12:24 PM by Sarah Grant
Just a quick update for everyone on your gift. I have them all on order - it is just taking a bit to get. I guess everyone was on holiday or something. LOL.
Take care -
writing this on a PC
MCP Perks. Maybe a good coffee blend? Surely, it would be of distinguishing taste of a global variety and different blends to create the best. No, it is not coffee, but is something quite good!
MCP Perks is a project being vetted to help the MCP community with their continued engagement and relationship with your Microsoft learning. Together, if we are able to help you with your IT / Dev career and knowledge, the better of a channel for Microsoft we will be right? Right.
With this scenario, I would like to understand if you took one or two exams this coming year, what would you most likely think was a value to receive from the list below to help you continue your engagement and relationship with your Microsoft learning?
Elearning Course FREE
ERef Title at 20% off
MCP eStore Coupon for $15 off
TechNet Plus 4-Month Free Trial
MCP Exam Voucher at 25% off
Elearning Course FREE
ERef Title at 20% off
MCP eStore Coupon for $15 off
TechNet Plus 4-Month Free Trial
MCP Exam Voucher at 25% off
Then to go further, the more you do to continue your engagement, the bigger the discount… Examples would be free Elearning collections, a free TechNet Plus subscription, & free exam vouchers.
Does this incent you? I am guessing that the more you are involved with MCP, the more likely you are to be reading this blog, so if you don’t mind – please let me know how many exams you take per year average (or any other information about your MCP status you wish to share). Please post your comments and send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. For the first 100 or so individual’s comments + emails I get, I have a lovely gift for you.
I’m a PC and proud that I can be whatever I choose.
Friday, November 21, 2008 10:04 PM by Jim Goodwin
I would take the 4 month Technet Plus trial. That would seem to be a great incentive. I take 5 - 6 Microsoft exams per year most years. I kind of have to as a MCT working for a Gold CPLS, and the fact that I don't have to pay for training materials, practice tests, or exams doesn't hurt either. So I might be a little ambitious than most.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 12:06 AM by abarkl
I take about one exam per month. As an MCT I already receive exam discounts. I vote for the MCP eStore Coupon for $15 off. I'm all for collecting trinkets that I can use as gifts or prizes in the classroom.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 12:36 AM by Michael D. Alligood
I think the items listed is a great gesture on the part of Microsoft Learning. The knowledge and experience alone used to achieve any distinguishing certification is enough. However, incentives are always well received! Here is my thought to add to the posted idea. Start with one incentive per exam or exams. For example, if you take one exam you will receive XYZ incentive. If you take your 3rd exam within the year, you will earn another ABC incentive. Take exam number 5 and you will receive yet another incentive. At the magic number (to be determined) you will reach your cap of incentives for the year. On that thought, you don't have to give away the bank. Swag is always well received - and relatively inexpensive.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 1:56 AM by lukasbeeler
I think the TechNet trial provides the most value for IT professionals (maybe MSDN for developer tracks?).
There's one thing that i would see as an even greater incentive, and that would be internal use licenses.
Books & Swag doesn't interest me much, as i prefer learning using online content and Swag doesn't provide any value whatsoever.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 2:34 AM by Steve
I took more than 10 last year. About half of them are beta exams.
But coming year is tough, expected to take less exam as my company will definitely cut cost on sponsoring training and exams. Bit I guess I'll still took more than one or two exams.
To me, Free Elearning Course will be most attractive, exam disount voucher will also be good.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 5:10 AM by Andrew Storrs
I would be most interested in either the TechNet Plus subscription or exam discounts. I like the idea of being cumulative, so multiple exam passes would result in a cumulative effect (pass 3 exams, get 12 months free TechNet Plus, etc). SWAG doesn't interest me and I tend not to be overly impressed by the eLearning courses - although collections would be nice.
This past year I finally started down the certification path (after 12 years in IT) and wrapped up 13 Microsoft exams (including 2 betas). Next year I would be looking at less, but I could still see myself doing around 6 next year.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 6:27 AM by Sven Schubbe
I take approximately 10-12 exams per year on average. (most of them are betas)
I would agree to the idea of Michael to provide "progressive" incentives. (after 1..3..5 exams)
I work for a Gold Certified Partner and through the Partner Program I have already personal access to a MSDN/Technet subscription and also receive a 32% exam discount.
Therefore I would free exam vouchers or free Elearning courses/collections regard as an attractive incentive.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 9:36 AM by Anders Bratland
Am I the only developer here? Technet Plus, I dhardy know it exists. MSDN subscriptions on the other hand, thats a great thing!
I think that as MCT's we should get the licences that we are certified to teach for free. No evaluation install/uninstall crippled version. Make it easy for us to help you.
We also have to take in concideration that there are two types of MCT's those ho pay for licenses, cerifications by themselfes and those who gwt all that from their company. The first grup of people probably likes a good discount, the other group couldn't care less. Conclusion is that it's neccessary to have atleast two benefit models.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 10:48 AM by Aaron Margeson
I'd like the free elearning courses. For those of us who have their employers paying for books or exams, discounts on those don't help us much. But they often won't pay for elearning courses.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 11:49 AM by eliahhan
Hi Sharah, I've also sent you a more detailed email, but here's the core:
I'd prefer exam discounts, as most companies don't pay for employee exams even if they pay for their training.
IT staff in almost any mid-size company and upwards have access to TechNet and/or MSDN through their VL agreement with Microsoft, so this can't be useful to everyone.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 1:38 PM by LawrenceGarvin
Hi Sarah.. given the options listed for an immediate ("Congratulations on passing your second exam this year") incentive I would choose  The exam discount voucher (as if I've already done 2, I probably have one or more pending to complete an MCITP/MCPD cert) or  The free eLearning course (as access to training might be what's keeping me from taking that last -- usually most difficult -- exam).
I already have access to the MSPress eReference Library and Technet Plus, so those are definitely not incentives to me, directly.
I've never purchased anything from the MCP eStore so I can't say whether that would be of value or not. If there were a $15-$20 item in the store that I wanted, then a $15 discount would be very motivational, but I've not looked, so I don't know. However, I doubt an eStore discount would incent me to sit for a certification exam in any case.
I definitely like the idea of encouraging the engagement with Microsoft Learning, and from a long term perspective, and the interest of the MCP program as a whole -- while I'd love to take free exam vouchers all day long -- I don't think free exam vouchers would incent the type of exam candidates that we really want to see in the program. In that scenario -- long term incentives -- I'd go with the free eLearning collections -- which would actually encourage *education*, rather than just sitting for a no-risk exam session.
**btw.. whilst we're trying to incent people to engage with Microsoft Learning, maybe somebody could consider repairing the eons-old defects in the Microsoft Learning Web UI? Being able to see an *ACCURATE* transcript of my completed eLearning coursework over the past six years would really be useful!
Saturday, November 22, 2008 1:45 PM by LawrenceGarvin
Oh.. I forgot to answer... according to my transcript I've taken seven exams in the past 12 months (five of those were Win2008 beta exams) -- and in my current efforts to achieve active certifications I've taken 11 exams in the past 34 months. I have five more exams on the schedule to complete by 3/31/09.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 4:01 PM by serg_x
For me will be useful to receive Free e-Learnings or discount for exam Voucher
I've never bought anything in eStore due to that fact - delivery to Russia will be cost several times more than cost of the item.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 6:30 PM by Rob Roach
For me the best incentive would be the MCP store credit. I do however like the idea of a credit toward your next test - nice incentive to get another exam completed!
Saturday, November 22, 2008 8:05 PM by Mike Clarke
The free eLearning courses would be the greatest value to me. The other discounts don't interest me.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 10:39 PM by Jeff Senter
I take between 10-20 exams in a year. My company pays for some and not others so I am always scouring the MS blogs for free exams.
I would be interested in exam discounts and then in e-learning material.
Saturday, November 22, 2008 11:11 PM by Christopher Kusek
I like the idea of the ELearning course or other things for free, though my reasoning may differ from others.
I take many exams each year. Whether it is just 'keeping current' or trying out the latest thing in my arsenal, and my study and learning techniques tend to utilize freely available information and methods.
However, if I gained perks such as vouchers for free learning, etc - I would give it away.
I personally greatly enjoy giving these things away to others who want to excel in a particular area, and it helps provide that extra hand (especially given the current economic climate) of someone who wants training but cannot afford it or otherwise.
Infact, I partially see it is an added benefit of our experience to help contribute back to the community - and if we have extra collateral and leverage to be able to assist those who really need it most. I'm fully in favor of more I can provide to others so we continue to raise the bar of knowledge within Certification and IT as a whole.
I'll take whatever it is, because I'm going to continue to take tests, regardless of perks - But the more I can give away (or we can toss into a Pool of "help the others") the better!
Though on the flipside I could see there being a benefit or incentive (Perhaps a kind of modified second shot program, where if you fail an exam you provided with an ELearning program in the course you failed, so as to make the next time a little better!)
And if you pass... well, the ELearning of your choosing!
Just some ideas I hashed around in my head while writing this up, haven't committed one way or another to how I'd execute given in your position :)
Sunday, November 23, 2008 3:00 AM by email@example.com
I have passed 6 exams in last year. I think that Technet Plus trial have the biggest value. I work for Gold Partner, so I already have MSPP discounts.
I've never bought anything in eStore due to delivery fees to Poland.
Sunday, November 23, 2008 9:47 AM by dobby10
I'm new to MS Exams and have taken (and passed) my first 2 this month. And I am shooting for taking one more next month.
I'll be aiming for an additional 5 (non-beta) next year.
Technet Plus or the Elearning would probably be the most beneficial.
A different suggestion is to expand on an offering you have now with the % off a test if you pass one of your first try. Make it stack with a 2nd chance. If you pass test A on the first try, take test B at 20% off plus get a 2nd shot if you don't pass. Test C you get 20% off if you passed B, or you pay full price for C if you didn't pass B.
Sunday, November 23, 2008 10:49 AM by rsolima
Free exam vouchers would definitely encourage many professionals to take more exam and upgrade current certifications...
Sunday, November 23, 2008 2:01 PM by cjs
The Free Elearning course is the incentive that would interest me most. I find the second shot promotion that is currently being offered an incentive as well, so I would hope Microsoft would continue to offer this in addition to any of the promotion ideas listed here.
Sunday, November 23, 2008 3:02 PM by Søren Fisker
I've done 3 MCTS and 2 MCITP this year and next year will probably be approximately the same.
The idea of increasing the discount (or add more stuff) with the number or difficulty of exams is great.
I'm not a big fan of the MS elearning (I do most studying with the pdfs from MS Press books).
Eref is great but I'm about to become an MCT and that's a 50% off...
MCP eStore: $60 shipping to Europe ?! If you give "free shipping" as a benefit it would be cool!
TechNet plus would be OK (haven't tried it)
MCP exam voucher is in all the MS press books so no biggie :(
Sunday, November 23, 2008 3:02 PM by Peter Doherty
Technet subscriptions and e-learning interest me most.
I currently do between 3-6 exams per year all paid for by my employer
Sunday, November 23, 2008 3:52 PM by TitusT
I took more than 10 exams this year. I would definitely love the discounted/free exam vouchers as I do most of my learning using msdn/technet online. The courses don't attract me much as they are too time consuming. My employer doesn't pay for the exams. For me, I can easily find the learning material online and through books (with minimal cost). Getting discounted exams and software to try will be a great benefit to me and encourage me to do more exams. My choice would be discounts on exams and technet/msdn subscriptions.
Sunday, November 23, 2008 4:20 PM by Niall
I think an MSDN sub would be nice. Discount to the eStore etc is negated with shipping to Europe (and import taxes!)
Take about 10+ exams a year, so exam discounts would be nice especially for my boss (who pays for mine)
Online courses maybe if I could transfer them to other staff, give them away at talks etc would be nice
While you are there can we get some better info from the number of MCPs etc, allowing us to run custom queries such by location which is very handy when pitching to potential customers
Sunday, November 23, 2008 4:26 PM by IanL
I would say some kind of combination of the E-Learning and exam vouchers would be an ideal addition to the program. Finding the time to study the new products is fairly difficult, so to know that you can access the E-Learning resources to add to the study regime would be beneficial.
I tend to do exams as required, rather than doing a large number consistently. I've sat a couple in the past year and am planning for quite a few more next year to update my MCSE.
Sunday, November 23, 2008 4:47 PM by Dave Lawlor
I started ramping up my exams late in the year, but I am on track to do 3 this year and probably another 6 next year according to my time table.
I already subscribe to Technet Plus, but when I first started I would have loved that bonus when I first got my MCP. It would definitely help with getting hands on with some technologies that some people might not otherwise get.
The Exam discounts would be big for me because I am paying for my own exams, and it does limit me sometimes to when I can take the exam.
Sunday, November 23, 2008 11:03 PM by Richardson Porto
I took 4-5 exams this year, and have plans to take 8-10 exams next year.
I like the idea about progressive incentives and prefer TechNet Plus and exam vouchers.
Monday, November 24, 2008 2:57 AM by Dan
My order of preference would be:
CHOICE of either :MSDN sub for development exams , Technet for sys admin OR exam vouchers OR E-Learning
As said somewhere else, a lot of employers provide MSDN/ Technet access as part of the job - so aside from a home version, this is of limited value in some instances - however I think the key is that for people who might want it, to still offer it.
Choice and all that - does it have to be a one size fits all approach?
BTW - "incent"? What's wrong with incentivis(z)e.. or "Does this act as an incentive?"
I expect incent probably is a word, somewhere - however it seems so unneccessary to use it!
Monday, November 24, 2008 3:13 AM by Peter Kremers
Good to know you guys are looking at some perks for your MCPs.
I’ve been saying for years that MCITPs should get a Technet Direct subscription, so I’m going for that option. A free e-learning course would be a nice perk too.
Over here (the Netherlands) exam vouchers are usually paid for by the company you work for, so there’s not much added value to that option.
The coupon for the MCP Store could be a nice present for people who obtain one of the entry level certificates.
Personally I take about 4-5 exams a year, which by now has gotten me a list of 30 Microsoft exams (I believe, I lost count at some point).
Monday, November 24, 2008 4:35 AM by Dan
Couple of things to add to my earlier comments...
Microsoft DID use to offer Technet etc as a perk of passing. This was one of the reasons I did an MCSD in 1998 - because of the perks you got on gaining the qualification.
When the certification programme expanded (and I suspect the costs soared) all the 'useful' benefits disappeared, leaving effectively just a certificate and even that's not quite what it used to be.
Basically, I think it's a victim of it's own success - to make it cost effective to offer these now, I would suspect either a) there is a HUGE profit margin currently that will be to be cut, or b) the price of the exams will go up.
The cost already acts as a disincentive (disincent?!!) for me taking exams (I have to know I'll pass, not just for the challenge), so adding benefits at the end probably wouldn't outweigh this.
Monday, November 24, 2008 8:14 AM by msavastano
I took 2 exams this year and plan on taking a few more next year. I would really like to have free exam vouchers. That would probably entice me to take more exams. Other related discounts, subscriptions, etc. would also be nice
Monday, November 24, 2008 8:17 AM by Paul
I would prefer the eStore discount since the exams are mostly paid for by the employer and the goodies are not :)
My second choice would be a free elearning course.
Monday, November 24, 2008 9:23 AM by Milo Gancarz
In my optinion continuing the engagement with Microsoft Learning would best be served with good and thorough exposure to Microsoft products - I understand that's what TechNet Plus provides.
To answer in a different way - all other perks can already be obtained in other promotions and neither really goes out to bring someone significantly further into the Microsoft learning realm - they only take you a small bit further.
Monday, November 24, 2008 10:01 AM by charmless
I take about 5 exams per year. And the best incentive for me would be the eStore discount. The discount on the exam voucher would be great but my employer currently picks that up for me.
Monday, November 24, 2008 10:23 AM by Michael Dragone
I would say a free e-Learning course would be my first choice, followed by the exam discount and eStore discounts.
Fourth and fifth would be TechNet Plus (I subscribe to it already and have for years, so this wouldn't be much of a benefit to me personally) and the e-Reference discount.
Monday, November 24, 2008 1:00 PM by Aaron C
I would be interested in the TechNet 4 month subscription. I take 2 or 3 a year and to keep up on what is coming out it would be nice to have an easy source for the software that would be tested on.
Monday, November 24, 2008 2:18 PM by Eduardo Kita
I just got my first MCP last week, and already begun to study for my next one in a couple of months. So I guess 2 to 3 tests a year is a good average for me, specially considering I´m my own sponsor.
The TechNet Plus 4-month free trial really interests me... but for my job-related issues.
Thinking only about my engagement with MS Learning, I would chose the MCP Exam voucher (again as I´m my own sponsor) and secondly the free e-learning.
Monday, November 24, 2008 4:22 PM by Mike Wells
I take usually 1-2 exams a year unless I am working on a particular Cert. For instance, I took all 3 MCAD exams in the same year. I think the eLearning or the Exam Voucher would be the most benefit and I really like the idea of the TechNet subscription for 2+ exams. It would also be nice if something similar could be done with an MSDN subscription for people who pass multiple Development exams.
Monday, November 24, 2008 5:15 PM by Gareth Harrison
I'm guessing I'll average five or six exams per year, maybe a few more. I already have a TN plus subscription and full access to e-learning (I think all MCTs do). The exam vouchers would be nice though... Could we please get perks for taking Betas too ?
Monday, November 24, 2008 11:29 PM by Warwick James
I'd definitely go with the exam vouchers (free or dramatically discounted) and/or free elearning.
Perks such as technet or MCP eStore don't add value, as many people here are working for partners that provide this already (technet/msdn, and for the store international shipping makes the deal less than worthless.
Just my 2 cents.
ps: I average 6-7 passed exams per year, since 1996.
Monday, November 24, 2008 11:33 PM by Ryan
Deffo the Technet sub, be nice for premium level certs to bring back the annual sub, but I like the idea of 'more exams = more months' mentioned above, encourages commitment, development and gives us access to the tools to make it happen!
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 10:12 AM by Nicole
I haven't begun any exams yet, as I would probably have to foot the bill myself. However, if there were incentives for me to take the exams, it would definately help push me along. Espcecially the TechNet plus subscription trial. This would give me time to prove its worth to my boss so they would cover that cost! However, eLearning courses are a great way to keep up with ever changing technology and prepare for future exams.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 6:16 PM by Larry West, MCSD, MCPD, MCITP, MCTSx8, MCSA, MOSx2, MCP, FLMI, ACS, ...
I used to take an exam every other month, but since you all dropped Vue, and thus the ability to take exams on Saturdays, I've dropped considerably.
I would like to have it all, although if I had to choose one, it would be the software.
Actually I would like to see Microsoft set up a system where companies who want to be Certified Partners in a certain area can get together with those of us who have the desired certifications.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 9:30 PM by richarddp
I've taken a bunch of exams this year (5). Been an MCP since '02
I think the greatest benfit to MCPs would come from greater / free access to resources that will help us stay current.
So elearning would be a great start. For those of us outside the USA MCP store discounts are a non starter I would say - I had a look at the MCP store not so long ago and to order a mug I think the freight was about $65 USD! Pass on that.
Technet plus, yep some kind of free access, maybe a few months for every new qualificaton/ Exam - now that is a great incentive to keep on the certification treadmill.
Exam discount vouchers, well I would hope that most of us have employeres that pay for our exams - so so a 15% discount voucher, not a great draw card.
And I wonder how many MCPs that are in organisations that are MS Partners are aware of the Training resources available via the partner program - there is a wealth of reource there!
Sunday, November 30, 2008 8:05 PM by Breiner Queiroz
I've made just one exam this year and I confess that we need more incentive to keep studying, specially when you`re in the road for a long time...
I think that this project will be very interesting and if I had to pick one choise, I'd like the discount or the Teched Plus subscription or some gift, like a shirt, etc...
Monday, December 01, 2008 5:06 AM by Tom Van Hauwaert
I passed 8 exams in 2008, all developer related.
I prefer studying using books. Most of the books I bought have a voucher on the last page. If the MCP Perk Exam voucher can be cumulated with the book's voucher, I would go for that.
Monday, December 01, 2008 4:24 PM by Ciprian L
Well this year I took some beta exams, around 4 exams, that till now I passed successfully. The value would be Elearning course free and TechNet Plus. The most important wan was the free vouchers that was provided with Beta exams
To me, Free Elearning Course will be most attractive; exam discount voucher will also be good and also free TechNet Plus subscription
I like the idea of being cumulative and I would agree to the idea of Michael to provide "progressive" incentives. (after 1..3..5 exams)
Monday, December 15, 2008 7:02 PM by Daniel Westlake
To be honest, I really only take exams when it has a direct benefit either to my resume or to our partnership with Microsoft. That said, I took four this year, two in 06, two in 04, five in 01, and one all the way back in 99. I don’t know how many I’ll be taking next year but I’m aiming for three more for CRM, and two for SharePoint at least.
I don’t take exams for fun, so I don’t take any for any products that I’m not involved with in the real world. I don’t get involved in real projects where I don’t have any experience so I usually plan what area I want to work, then I study, then I work, and then if I have a reason I’ll take the test.
Wednesday, February 04, 2009 8:55 AM by Mick
I think incrementally reduced prices for your next exams would be a good idea, also the technet plus is a great resource, I already have a sub and get great use from it, also the elearning is very useful, already passed one MCTS in Jan 09, hoping to take 2-3 more this year
Posted by Sarah Grant
Friday, November 21, 2008 7:40 PM by Michael D. Alligood
See, that's just hawt! :)
Oh and you could get purple contacts!
Friday, November 21, 2008 7:48 PM by Erdal
Ken was mentining about that in Tech Ed EMEA
Friday, November 21, 2008 8:21 PM by Sarah Grant
Did Ken show my purple eyes too at TechEd EMEA?
Just think of the possibilities galore with this :)
Saturday, November 22, 2008 5:32 AM by TLanghans
The "View my transcript" link does not work :-)
Sunday, November 23, 2008 4:10 PM by Niall
Purple eyes usually happen after I have been to the pub for a while
Tuesday, November 25, 2008 4:24 PM by Sarah Grant
The mystery is solved: my avatar was hanging around at the pub! Wish she would have invited me.
Also, the reason the "view my transcript" does not work is because this is just a conceptual mock up I made to see if anyone liked it.
I like the hawt. :) I think that will be my pitch - it is hawt. Michael said so.
You are reading this blog - you are probably interested in Microsoft Certifications. Passing the exams is definitely not a piece of cake (I hope), but many of us are actually asking "where do I even start?" Well, there is no definite path to success, and everyone is different (I know you know). But there are some common things we all can do to get us started and keep us on track. Fellow MCP Michael Alligood wrote a great piece sharing his experience, and summarizing the seven steps to certification success (Thanks Michael!!!). Actually, it applied to more things than getting certified. :-) Check out the post.
What's your story about certification? Tips, thoughts, questions?
Posted by Joanne Lin
Wednesday, November 19, 2008 4:42 PM by Michael D. Alligood
Thank you Joanne, et al for sharing this post. The expanded version, including extended content and printouts will be completed soon. When complete, I will be glad to share it with the MCP community. If anyone has any questions about this MS certifications or the pursuit to achieve them, you can contact me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008 10:05 PM by Mike Clarke
Getting started on the MS Certifications definately takes a little bit of research. I wrote a guide that contains most of my knowledge. Enjoy!
Here is a guide for Server 2003 certs:
Here is a guide for Server 2008 certs:
Thursday, November 20, 2008 3:03 PM by Christopher Kusek
I really should re-publish my slide-deck and materials I've used presenting on this steps beginning to end in Certification.
Thanks for bringing this to us as well!
Just read this good article about the perils of blending work and life on social networks… recommended reading for those of you who—like me—don’t have much in the way of boundaries between work-self and life-self. :-)
Posted by Krosen
Help celebrate our 25th anniversary with a free e-book offer. The November offers is valid from November 19 to November 26, 2008, so download the e-books soon. You can also sign up for Microsoft Press Connection newsletter to get monthly update.
Windows Embedded CE 6.0 Fundamentals by Stanslav Pavlov and Pavel Belevsky: This book examines the architecture, built-in programming tools, drivers, and build process, and shows how to take advantage of the Windows Embedded CE 6.0 Software Development Kit (SDK).
Download this e-book!
Windows Server 2008 Networking and Network Access Protection (NAP) by Joseph Davies and Tony Northrup with the Microsoft Networking Team: Get the official resource for deploying, administering, and troubleshooting Windows Server 2008 networking and Network Access Protection (NAP) technologies.
Posted by Joanne Lin
Monday, November 17, 2008 7:27 PM by Michael D. Alligood
What?!? Windows Embedded?? Is this the prelude of the return of Trika or simply the ghost of Christmas Past? :)
Monday, November 17, 2008 7:46 PM by Joanne Lin (MS)
... just a couple of gifts for any holidays that happen to be in November... ;)
Monday, November 17, 2008 10:55 PM by Christopher Kusek
Thanks for the links!
Monday, November 24, 2008 1:02 PM by Aaron C
I am disapointed that you cannot download the book, just open the PDF and read it there.
Monday, November 24, 2008 1:20 PM by Joanne Lin (MS)
Hmmm... You can I think. on the page it says "Sign up to download the entire e-book (PDF, 13.7 MB). " You need to sign up for it, and it will open a PDF file. You can save it there. :)
Hope it works!
Monday, November 24, 2008 2:33 PM by Ken Jones (MS)
Joanne is right. You should be able to download the entire e-book as a PDF.
Monday, November 24, 2008 3:50 PM by Aaron C
That is what I had thought as well. For some reason the save is grayed out. I will try again and see if it was just a problem that day.
Microsoft Learning is teaming up with the SQL Server team to give away free copies of SQL Server 2008 Standard Edition to people who attend select instructor-led classroom training at a Microsoft Certified Partner for Learning Solutions (CPLS). Here's the deal:
1) Attend one of these classes at a participating CPLS between December 10, 2008 (when the courses start to become available) and June 30, 2009:
· 2778 - Writing Queries Using Microsoft® SQL Server™ 2008 Transact-SQL
· 6158 - Updating Your SQL 2005 Skills to SQL Server 2008
· 6231 - Maintaining a Microsoft® SQL Server™ 2008 Database
· 6232 - Implementing a Microsoft® SQL Server™ 2008 Database
· 6234 - Implementing and Maintaining Microsoft® SQL Server™ 2008 Analysis Services
· 6235 - Implementing and Maintaining Microsoft® SQL Server™ 2008 Integration Services
· 6236 - Implementing and Maintaining Microsoft® SQL Server™ 2008 Reporting Services
· 6317 - Upgrading Your SQL Server 2000 Skills to SQL Server 2008
2) Get SQL Server 2008:
· SQL Server 2008 Standard Edition – Full software
· 1 Client Access License (CAL)
· 32 bit, 64 bit and IA64 versions included
· Software will be English only at this point
· You can go to http://www.microsoft.com/learning/classlocator/ to find the CPLS near you.
· Each CPLS will decide whether or not they participate in this promotion campaign, so talk to your local CPLS and make sure they know about it and that they are participating.
· This offer is only good while supplies last. Plan your training early!
Call your local CPLS today and ask about SQL Server 2008 training.
Posted by Joanne Lin
Monday, November 17, 2008 10:48 PM by Early Gifts for the Holidays! FreE-books and SQL oh mY! | Christopher Kusek, Technology Evangelist
PingBack from http://www.pkguild.com/2008/11/17/early-gifts-for-the-holidays-free-books-and-sql-oh-my/
Saturday, November 29, 2008 4:11 PM by Mike Barratt
Gutted! Just completed the SQL2005 to SQL2008 3-day upgrade course (6158) and then I hear about this offer :(
Sunday, December 21, 2008 1:41 PM by pc forum
Great post, explained really well and I could really understand. Thank you.
From our friends with the reassurance that by taking part in this offer - your fingers will not turn orange (that is unless you do eat Cheetos while taking them up on the offer :) And yes, I know, I know, a different kind of snack.... )
New Learning Snacks on Vista: A Free Offer (Worldwide)
Learning Snacks are free, short, interactive presentations about popular topics that have been created by Microsoft Learning experts. Four new Vista “snacks” have just been posted to the snack landing page. Time-strapped? You can learn something new in less than five minutes! Try a “snack” today at: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/snacks
For questions, please contact email@example.com
I m a PC (and I just learned there is an orange sticker!)
Hey ho howdy to you! Recently, I have been working on an upgraded welcome kit. It would fix a problem we see with the wallet cards, update branding, get Steve Balmer s signature on there, and possibly make most of the international shipping issues a thing of the past. These changes, along with the new American National Standards Institute (ANSI) guidelines/requirements, has brought up some other challenges. What is a project without challenges right? To resolve - I am looking at moving many of the exam certificates (not the credential certificates such as MCTS or IT Pro) to online only. Today, we offer certificates online, but the library is limited. I would like to update the entire library (including Dynamics and Legacy). I really like the option of instant in your hands tangible certificate.
What do you think?
I m a PC (in Yellow and Green - Still looking for the Pink and Blue) and I blog
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 3:40 PM by Andy B.
Why not make them all available online but also mail the MCTS and ITPro certs.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 4:14 PM by Michael Dragone
I m having trouble seeing how much of a savings this would be if MCTS, MCITP, and MCPD certificates are still mailed. Many of the MCTS credentials are earned with one exam, for example.
Personally, I d vote for all certificates printable online but a really nice, high quality, you wouldn t think of not framing it, credential certificate can be ordered online for a few dollars.
This would work well with the Logo Generator. Earn the MCITP credentials you re after and then generate one logo that lists all of them and pay $5 or $10 for an awesome certificate showing it.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 4:42 PM by Michael D. Alligood
I think if you made the creditial certifications match the format of the charter member creditial certifications and had those available to download and print, you would be headed in the right direction.
Michael, you have never seen the MCP Mop Community in action! :) Even hinting that they would have to pay a cent for something they believe Microsoft "owes" them would send them hunting with pitch forks and torches. Not good.
As I shared with you and Ken, when I finish my e-Learning courses, it presents you with a certification that can be printed. I load my printer with high gloss photo paper, and set my printer settings to Best. To be honest, it comes out looking better than the creditial certification currently offered.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 4:51 PM by SQL 2k8 Data Architect
Why not just make all of the certs available online to be printed out; and the if the person wants, they can order a hard copy to be mailed to them so that they can frame it.
(I kinda thought this is how it was setup now anyways, but I just got my first certification back in June.)
I have achieved 4 credentials so far and have them all framed and hanging in my kitchen/breakfast room. I do a lot of studying there and use them as a reminder of why I m putting in so much effort for just a piece of paper (Because: It s a cool looking piece of paper, especially hanging on my walls ;-) ).
Whatever you do though, I don t think you should charge for printing and mailing.
I know that the person only paid $125 or so to sit for the exam, but they put a lot of hours into sitting there that day, and that doesn t get captured in any set of numbers.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 5:11 PM by James Hippolite
Online is good. I m from New Zealand and International Shipping sucks. We ve got a great quality colour laser here at work, no problems printing our own.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 2:23 AM by KomatoZo
Well... the actual value of certification is knowledge one acquires during preparation. Less important but still necessary part is online transcript. But certificate itself usually lose its significance after you have 4 of 5 of them. So it doesn t matter to me if I have a print copy of certificate or don t.
But as for people who achieve their first, second, third certificate... They experience proud of being certified and need material proof of it (and I did, actually =) ).
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 2:55 AM by RaFi
I still would love to have an option to order a genuine Microsoft certificate (not printed one). Please keep the wallet cards, they are nice ;-)
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 3:30 AM by Mooncalf
I was recently asked by an employer to provide hard copies of all my certificates as proof of my status. They were not willing to accept my online transcript or a print off there off. So the likelyhood of them accepting an interent printed certificate is next to none...so I think this is a very bad idea
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 5:57 AM by Pete
You need to offer both.
Instant gratification, who doesn t love that? But the issue of "fake-looking" certs is a problem when combined with clueless employers, such as those encountered by Mooncalf.
Printables for the day we pass, orderable for long term.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 10:26 AM by .rev [askthemct.com]
Yeah I m going to have to go ahead and sort of agree with some of the others here. I think if you could go ahead and continue to send the welcome kits with a printed Certification included that would be great. Thanks. :)
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 11:21 AM by Reed Wiedower
I m confused: I never received a certification (in the mail) when I achieved MCITP: Enterprise Administrator. Was I supposed to?
I say throw them all online. It saves paper and energy.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 11:30 AM by Reed Wiedower
Oh, you mean *just* for the welcome kit. Well, that was almost 9 years ago, so I don t remember it at all.
Still, online is the best way to go.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 1:21 PM by TitusT
It would be better to keep the current option of viewing/printing online for all and paper certificates to those who need them (orderable) as it is currently.
May be an option to combine multiple related certifications into one printed Certificate will be good - for example if you have 5 MCTS in .NET 3.5, can combine all these into one certificate (like the way we can combine certifications in logo). This can be an online option so that we don t need to print multiple certs.
Good quality Wallet Card with a hologram that won t get scratched off (something like the holograms in the credit cards) is a must.
For the online transcript sharing, ability to have mulitple sharing codes with option to choose which certtifications show up in the shared transcript will be nice (but not a must).
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 2:16 PM by Sarah Grant
Yes. I absolutely enjoy the response on this. Thank you - you make my beg for resources much easier and the reenforcement of ideas. (See Ken - MCP s want this :) )
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 2:51 PM by Tarique
Please don t make us pay for the hard copy of the certificates. We have worked very hard at getting it and want to frame them and display them.
The online printable copy will definitely not be of good enough quality to frame and display.
You could do an online printable copy of the certificate default and mail the hard copy of the certificates to only those who explicitly request them.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 7:50 PM by Richard
I find it funny the attachment a lot of the people in the MCP community have to paper certificates. I thought we worked in an electronic industry? If the cost saving to Micrsoft of mailing out certificates could be re-directed to boosting real benefits for the MCP community that we would use day to day then save a tree!
We still need the wallet cards, if for no other reason than to get the free geek gear at TechEds...
Thursday, November 13, 2008 5:00 AM by Peter
@Tarique: Yes, I agree that the paper copies should only be sent when requested. That is currently the system, although if you request 3 welcome packs at once, you get 3 separate packs. It should really be one pack with 3 certs in.
@Richard: Yes, we work in the electronic industry, but we work with/for/around paper-brained people. And much like doctors/lawyers offices have certs all over the place, having MCP/MCSE/MCITP and Partner plaques on the walls reassures the non-technical that they are dealing with professionals.
Whilst you might find it funny that $1.50 of paper and plastic bolted to the walls is a sign of competence, it s an intrinsic part of being a proper business.
But yes, the wallet cards are good for free stuff. More free stuff please!
Friday, November 14, 2008 12:55 AM by Michael Dietzsch
You can print the MCTS certificates now online, but doing so results in an certificate that is green and yellow!
I think the colors are wrong on one page you see an picture and on it the colors are an nice too look brown.
Is this by design?
Friday, November 14, 2008 10:02 AM by Michael Dragone
@MDA: I know, I know. The Mop Community would have a field day. :) I certainly would rather *not* pay for a mailed certificate; I was only throwing it out as an option if/when it comes down to "Saving money, no more paper certificates at all! But you send us some dough and we ll print one for ya."
Sunday, November 23, 2008 8:44 AM by Robin
Online printing is no good. There will always be some fool who will print the certificate off on the world s cheapest Lexmark inkjet printer with a cartridge that s nearly dry, and then take that along to interview, and that just drags down all of us.
The wallet cards are cool. The little badges are cool too, even though I hardly ever wear mine, they make great fridge magnets.
Saturday, December 06, 2008 6:54 AM by Bart
I m still sort of disappointed about no longer having our flair (pins) as a part of our certification package. Wouldn t it be nice to at least be able to buy them at the MCTS and MCITP Stores?
I like the current method of being able to download the certificate AND getting a nicer one in the mail.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008 10:49 AM by rhagman
If the current performance of the www.certificationlogobuilder.com site is the usual performance then a lot has to be done to update this site If this is to become the main way of distibuting digital Certificates, at the moment it takes 12+ days for a Logo to be generated and to become availible in the logo library, b.t.w. that is 1036800+ seconds, and not the 28650 seconds (7 hours and something) from the message you get when you click on the build logo button.
(The Actual message: "Your logo is in the development queue. Once built, you will be able to access your logo from the logo library. Your approximate wait period is: 28650 seconds")
Do you have some interns build the logos by hand or something ?
Sunday, January 18, 2009 8:26 PM by Alice
rhagman: woah, that is a crazy amount of delay! I haven t done any logo generation since March 2008, and back then, it was instantly available iirc. Sure wonder why it s not instantaneous anymore.
Okay, so just let me preface this with the following disclaimers:
So if I didn’t think Springboard was so darn important for those of you supporting desktops, I probably wouldn’t be calling attention to this video featuring a somewhat loopy interviewer.
Springboard Series Presents: 7 Fundamentals of Windows for IT Pros
Note to self: don’t ever schedule a conference during the same week as a potentially history-making, world-changing election.
Actual booth conversation:
Me: “Hi! Can I answer any questions about Microsoft certification?”
Attendee: “You must be happy today! What great news!”
Me: “Yes, I’m very happy—I even stayed up all night to watch the election results live. Can’t wait to see how Obama governs. Are you certified?”
Attendee: “Yes! Did you think he would win?”
Me: “I’ve learned never to take anything for granted, so no, I wasn’t sure. Have you heard about our new performance-based testing?”
Attendee: “Yes, Howler, right? We are so happy for you!”
Me: “Um, thanks. We’re pretty pleased with the technology too.”
Attendee: “No! I mean Obama—we’re all very happy that he’ll be your president!”
…and that’s pretty much how every conversation went throughout the week (and we weren’t alone… from what I hear the election was top-of-mind for most speakers and attendees, and it made it very difficult to focus on technology. :-)
In fact, the most striking example I can cite of just how pre-occupied everyone was:
Not a single person asked, “Where’s Trika?”
TechEd Developers starts in about 90 minutes… let’s see if we can get them talking about something other than last week’s election.
(Either that, or we need to fast-track a new MCPE certification (Microsoft Certified President-Elect)
Monday, November 10, 2008 11:49 AM by Strangest. TechEd. Ever. | MS Tech News
PingBack from http://mstechnews.info/2008/11/strangest-teched-ever/
]Monday, November 10, 2008 2:44 PM by Christopher Kusek
I can imagine, I like you returning back to the topic at hand and it keeps going back to the elections :)
Hey, speaking of Trika... she had magical pull, do you guys as well?!
When the VMM Beta exam was pushed out to December - it provided a lot more time for people to take it. But the code is expired!
Do you guys have that ability to get some more vouchers activated out there? :)
Thanks, always look forward to new posting from you guys!
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 4:09 PM by Trika
That hurts, yo.
Rully, rully, hurts.
Thursday, November 13, 2008 3:42 PM by Andrew Bettany
We knew already that Trika had moved on, she will be missed! She was a great MSL asset!
The MSL booth at TE08 Barca was by far the most staffed/helpful on the floor, well done.
Monday, November 17, 2008 9:14 PM by Sarah Grant
Hi ALL -
Code for the exam is: “VMM08”. I have confirmed it still is valid and being accepted by Prometric.
Sorry for the delay in response!
Somewhat old news, yet perhaps (and unfortunately) more timely now than when it was first published in September: my colleague Lorna tipped me off to this great Network World article cataloging job-hunting resources for MCPs.
Posted by Krosen
Monday, November 10, 2008 9:57 AM by Advice we hope you don???t need | MS Tech News
PingBack from http://mstechnews.info/2008/11/advice-we-hope-you-don%e2%80%99t-need/
Several of you took us up on our offer to help spread the word about user groups that advocate and support Microsoft certification… here’s a few that are well worth checking out!
Not one, but three inter-related groups are active in the Ottawa area:
All three feature certification study groups hosted by local CPLS CTE Solutions, with one for 70-528 currently in progress. New study groups will start in January, so now is a perfect time to join one or more of these groups! Thanks, Garth, for the tip!
States-side, Rob Roach informs us of the Central Ohio SharePoint User Group, which has organized certification study groups, and a bit to the west there’s the Chicago Windows User Group (thanks, Christopher Kusek!)
If you’re involved in a user group, be sure to check out Culminis (for IT Pros) and INETA (for developers). Both organizations offer a wealth of resources and assistance to help user groups succeed!
Monday, November 10, 2008 9:57 AM by More Community User Groups | MS Tech News
PingBack from http://mstechnews.info/2008/11/more-community-user-groups/
After many suggestions from you, and from our dear friend Trika, we are hosting another Certification 101 Live Meeting. This one will take place on Tuesday, November 18th and will hopefully be the start of a regular schedule of these Live Meetings.
Audience: IT Professionals, developers who think they might like to get certified, but aren t sure it s right for them and/or aren t sure where to start. People who have never taken a Microsoft exam and work with Microsoft products, or people who will be working with Microsoft in the very near future.
Registration: Join folks from the Microsoft Certified Professional team (including ME) to learn about the benefits and process of getting certified: choosing a certification path, preparing for your first exam, taking an exam, and what to expect after that. Click to register for:
Here s what we ll talk about…
Our hope is to make this less intimidating for new people.
Please send the links around if you have co-workers or user groups who might find this helpful.
Friday, November 07, 2008 1:30 PM by Certification 101: Getting Started with Microsoft Certification | MS Tech News
PingBack from http://mstechnews.info/2008/11/certification-101-getting-started-with-microsoft-certification/
Saturday, November 08, 2008 11:51 PM by Christopher Kusek
Pingback from http://www.pkguild.com/2008/11/08/certification-101-getting-started-with-microsoft-certification/
Monday, November 10, 2008 2:30 PM by Trika
If you re at TechEd this week, come say hi at the Microsoft Learning booth! We re here all week, but tomorrow is our biggest day as far as MCP-related content goes:
First, at 10:50 in Theater 1 in the Expo Hall, I ll share our new and upcoming certifications and opportunities for IT Pros.
Next, don’t miss our all-star MCP/MCT/MVP panel discussion from 14:00 – 15:00, with Andy Malone, Gheorghe Dobrea, Thomas Lee, Marco Timmermans, Mark Michault, and Eric Denekamp.
Got some free time during the day? Take an exam at our first-time-ever TechEd testing center, and get 25% off our regular price! The testing center is open all week.
Finally, tomorrow night is the International Community Party sponsored by Springboard! Hope to see many of you there!
Thursday, November 06, 2008 12:25 PM by Helmer
Cool! ;) Is everybody of you guys going to the party tonight at the Elephant Club?
Thnx for the Zune btw :-)
Thursday, November 06, 2008 6:32 PM by Jason G
This isn t the "first-time-ever TechEd testing center" I m afraid - I passed one exam on first day and 3 exams on the third day (two within 90 minutes!) of Tech.Ed 99 in Amsterdam - upgrading my MCSE to NT 4.0 (wow I am old...) in doing so ... see (http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0EIN/is_1999_March_19/ai_54153713) for an article which mentions the testing.
Monday, November 10, 2008 9:59 AM by Krosen
Congrats, Jason--it s not often someone catches me in a memory slip like that! I m impressed you remember, and that you ve been with us for so long. :-)
A colleague of mine, PK, is working on project to examine the effectiveness of localized Learning Manager tool (MyLearning & Learning Catalog) in certain countries: Germany, France, Spain, Brzil & Russia.
And we thought it would be great if she can get some thoughts directly from end users - you guys; whether you use it, not use it, find it useful, or not useful, etc. We would really appreciate your inputs on these sites as it will help Microsoft Learning determine how to make them better and easy to access for our customers.
Thanks in advanced! :-)
Here are the questions and links to the 5 sites:
· Have you ever used Mylearning & Learning Catalog? Did you access it through the U.S. site (www.microsoft.com/learning) or through a country-specific site (see below list)?
· What was your overall experience? What did you like best/least about it?
· If you have never used it, please try it out and give us feedback.
MSL Localized Sites are listed here:
Tuesday, November 04, 2008 6:16 PM by What’s your experience in finding learning resources with us? | MS Tech News
PingBack from http://mstechnews.info/2008/11/whats-your-experience-in-finding-learning-resources-with-us/
Wednesday, November 05, 2008 4:13 AM by KomatoZo
Hmmm... Actually I access learning portal entering microsoft.com/learning into my browser s address bar.
And then I work with the US version.
Russian version looks... Hmmm... It looks old =)
Wednesday, November 05, 2008 1:47 PM by PK
Hi, my name is PK. As the owner of this Learning Manager project, I wanted to say hi and thank everyone in advance for participating in this post. In order to better serve our growing international audience, it s extremely important for us to get inputs directly from you guys. So, thanks again and I look forward to hearing from you all!
Monday, November 10, 2008 9:23 AM by firstname.lastname@example.org
Hi, I am located in Germany and I use Mylearning & Learning Catalog regularly to access elearning courses etc.
I usually access it through the U.S. site (www.microsoft.com/learning) because this link is easy to remember. The overall experience is excellent(well designed entry-portal, good functionaly, I always could find what I was searching for).
The performance leaves sometimes to be desired. I experienced some issues where I could not access mylearning after adding some elearning courses using a vouchercode, but the support could always fix it. To what you have to get used to: After clicking a course in mylearning it first shows up with some options to activate it, although you have booked it already. Then you have to wait until the course shows up correctly what depending on the performance can take some time.
I miss the possibility to buy elearning courses for my company. I work for a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner in Germany and due to the german tax regulations we need a receipt issued to the company to refund the costs of courses to me.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 7:42 PM by PK
I really appreciate the feedback! I have a follow-up question: if you were to change one thing about the Catalog & Mylearning to make it a better user experience, what would that change be? Anything goes!