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I've been working as a vb.net ASP.NET web developer for the past 4 years, and I'm currently making the change over to C#

Apart from school/sixth form qualifications, I'm currently lacking any industry related qualifications, and I'm keen to start working towards a Microsoft qualification.

What would be the best suited qualification for me to work towards? Any relevant links would be most appreciated.

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Why not practice C#? It isn't like the ASP.NET is radically different when you use C# instead of VB.NET. Just start learning C# well, and go from there. –  Jetti Oct 13 '11 at 20:52
None. Work on your github commit logs. Will help you get hired at much cooler places than certs. –  Wyatt Barnett Oct 13 '11 at 21:09
Some thoughts about whether certifications are worth your time: blog.objectmentor.com/articles/2010/04/27/… –  user414076 Oct 13 '11 at 21:26
Not sure if this question has a life: will depend on whether there actually are specific, canonical certifications for ASP.NET and people provide those as an answer instead of using the answer section as a commentary on whether certs are useful. See Are certifications worth it? for answers about that. –  user8 Oct 13 '11 at 21:39
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1 Answer

up vote 8 down vote accepted

Microsoft Certified Professional Developer (MCPD) is the big certification for developers.

There are versions they describe as "MCPD on Microsoft Visual Studio 2010", "MCPD on Microsoft Visual Studio 2008" and "MCPD on Microsoft Visual Studio 2005", but really, you should read those names as "MCPD on .NET 4.0", "MCPD on .NET 3.5" and "MCPD on .NET 2.0".

Then within those, there are versions for different types of development.

I would assume that you would be wanting to get certified as a web developer with .NET 4.0 (I don't think there's much value pursuing certification in an older version of the framework).

The Web Developer 4 version of the MCPD requires four exams:

70-515 is definitely the one to do first. This covers a broad range of web dev topics, and passing this one immediately gets you Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification.

70-513 and 70-516, take your pick and either do whichever one would be easier first (based on your knowledge of WCF and data access frameworks), or whichever one you feel would be most useful first. They will also each give you another MCTS certification.

70-519, do last. It's a more design-y exam whose only certification benefit is to complete the MCPD once you've done the other three.

And in a pre-emptive response to the "certifications are useless" crowd, don't forget that for companies to maintain Microsoft partnerships, they need a certain number of staff with a certain number of certifications. A Microsoft certification will give you a real and tangible advantage in getting employed by a company that seeks to maintain a Microsoft partnership.

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Cheers @Carson63000, this is very helpful. I'm currently looking through the details for the 70-515 exam. Theres a few things in the exam criteria which I don't think I understand well enough to pass. How would I learn these things? Is there a book for the exam or would this be a case of me purchasing relevant books? (For example, a book on ASP.NET MVC). I would prefer a book that covers the curriculum –  Curt Oct 14 '11 at 8:16
@Curt, sorry, only just saw this comment. Yes there is a book (see Preparation Materials), "MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-515): Web Applications Development with Microsoft .NET Framework 4". I haven't done 70-515 but I did the .NET 3.5 equivalent working from the Self-Paced Training Kit, and it was great for making sure I covered everything I needed to cover. –  Carson63000 Oct 18 '11 at 22:49
Cheers I've bought the book off amazon and I'm now studying for this module :) –  Curt Oct 24 '11 at 11:01
Good stuff, all the best with the study & the exam! –  Carson63000 Oct 27 '11 at 0:56
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