I always wondered why people take certification exams. Preparing for a vendor exam has always seemed like a lot of work for very little return on your time. I have never really understood the idea or the benefit of being certified in so and so.
Well, a friend of mine got me thinking about taking one of those Microsoft certifications as a way of validating my own skills. When you ask an average programmer on the street, especially the so called experienced ones, what is the benefit of vendor certification, I can guarantee you that most will say, it is not worth the time because blah, blah, blah. The list of don'ts is usually really long and varies from individual to individual, but the general opinion is that the certifications are of no value.
I’ve been looking at these Microsoft .Net certifications since they first came out in 2001. And every time I looked I always found reasons for not taking them, usually after few water cooler heated discussions with my co-workers. There was always a good reason for not taking them.
Anyway, later last year I looked at those dreaded Microsoft certifications again, and I found one that kind of appealed to me: MCPD Enterprise Developer 3.5. Having done development of most tiers on most platforms, the Enterprise Developer name looked appealing.
So what is this MCPD certification? Well, it consists of 5 exams testing your knowledge of .Net framework library, ASP.NET, ADO.NET, Windows Forms and WCF. There is one additional exam on designing and deployment.
Looking at the contents of these exams, one can easily be overwhelmed by the shear volume of the material. It all looks scary at first, but once you start working with it, it is not so bad. Actually, the material is straightforward. What is hard is to remember all of it. At least it appears so.
I have my eyes set on IEEE CSPD certification as it looks more vendor agnostic, theoretical type of certification.
But first thing first: I need to complete MCPD before my wife and my kids reclaim their God given right to spend more time with me. [More]