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How To Apply For AWS Solutions Architect Exam ?

Last Updated : 21 Feb, 2024
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The AWS Certified Solutions Architect certification is provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS) and validates the knowledge and skills needed to develop distributed systems on the AWS platform. The exam evaluates candidates in a variety of areas, including creating robust and performant architectures, ensuring security, managing costs, and fostering operational excellence.

This AWS certification path is intended for solution design engineers, architects, and anybody else who wants to understand how to build applications and systems on the AWS platform. This path contains two sub-paths:

1. AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate

The associate level requires an understanding of how to create, manage, and distribute applications using AWS tools. This certification requires IT professionals to develop and deploy highly scalable and available systems on AWS and comprehend security, disaster recovery, and troubleshooting concepts. Although it is not required, persons wishing to pursue this certification should have at least one year of hands-on experience developing and operating highly fault-tolerant and scalable AWS systems. This exam takes 130 minutes and the AWS Solution Architect Certification Cost is $150 US.

The SAA-C03 exam is a multiple-choice exam with 65 questions. You can take the exam in a testing facility or from the comfort of your own home or office via online proctoring. You have 130 minutes to complete the exam, and the passing score is 720 points out of 100 (72%). If English is not your first language, you can seek accommodation while scheduling your exam, which will entitle you to an additional 30-minute exam extension.

2. AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional

To pursue this professional-level certification, it is suggested (but not required) that you take the Associate-level AWS Certified Solutions Architect exam and have at least two years of hands-on experience building and deploying AWS systems. This certification requires IT professionals to demonstrate an understanding of complex AWS applications, such as how to apply application design best practices, optimize AWS architecture or a business, and migrate apps to AWS. The exam takes 180 minutes and costs $300 US.

To earn this certification, you’ll need to take and pass the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional exam (SAP-C02). The exam features a combination of two question formats: multiple-choice and multiple-response.

Who should take this examination?

AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate is an excellent starting point on the AWS Certification path for persons with any of the following:

  • Experience with AWS technologies.
  • Expertise in on-premises IT and cloud migration, as well as familiarity with alternative cloud services.

What will you learn?

Preparing for and achieving this certification will demonstrate:

  • Knowledge and abilities in compute, networking, storage, and database AWS services, as well as AWS deployment and management services.
  • Knowledge and skills for deploying, managing, and operating workloads on AWS, as well as applying security controls and compliance needs.
  • Ability to use the AWS Management Console and the AWS Command Line Interface (CLI).Understand the AWS Well-Architected Framework, AWS networking, security services, and the AWS global infrastructure.
  • Capability to discover which AWS services match a particular technical requirement and create technical criteria for an AWS-based application.

AWS Exam Scheduling Options

Typically, you have two alternatives when registering for a AWS Exam:

1. Online Proctoring

Online proctoring enables you to take your AWS exam from the convenience of your own home or business. This option is ideal for people looking for flexibility and convenience. Online proctoring is provided for all AWS Certification examinations through two test delivery providers: Pearson VUE and PSI. Pearson VUE and PSI both provide English-language online proctoring. Pearson VUE also offers online proctoring in Japanese, and PSI supports online proctoring in Mandarin.

Online proctoring connects you to a real proctor who will monitor your exam session. The proctor will ensure that the examination environment complies with AWS security standards and is tamper-free. The proctor will assist you in resolving any technical issues that may arise during the exam.

While exam appointments are accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week, it is recommended that you plan your exam in advance to increase your chances of finding a time that works for you (in your time zone).

While online proctoring is regarded the best option for the majority of test takers, applicants in mainland China, Japan, Slovenia, and South Korea do not currently have access to it.

2. Testing Centers

Alternatively, you can take the exam at a physical testing center. This option is appropriate for persons who need technical equipment for an exam (such as a computer that meets system and security criteria). Of course, because you are taking the exam at an authorized physical testing site, you must account for travel time and expenses. To find a Pearson VUE or PSI testing location near you, search availability by ZIP code.

Keep in mind that availability may be limited depending on your location. Testing centers may still be closed due to local health guidance. Therefore, check the availability of testing centers before you start the booking process.

How to Book your AWS Certification Exam – A Step by Step Guide

Now that we’ve covered the essentials, let’s walk you through the process of scheduling your AWS exam.

Step 1: Create an Account with AWS Certification

To schedule your AWS exam, first create an account on the Amazon Web Services Certification website. Creating an account is simple. All you need to do is provide your personal information and submit your application. AWS uses a highly secure system that needs you to enter OTP numbers delivered via email and mobile phone to ensure that your account is not compromised.

Creating account

Step 2: Sign the AWS Certification Program Agreement

You will be unable to advance with any further steps until you have completed the AWS Certification Program Agreement. The agreement outlines the criteria and requirements for taking the AWS test. Signing the agreement confirms that you are at least 18 years old and have read and understood all of the terms and conditions.

Sign in to the Program


By the way, candidates ages 13-17 are permitted to take AWS Certification exams with the consent of their parent (or legal guardian). For more details, please see the AWS Certification FAQ (“About AWS Certification”)

Step 3: Verify Your Name

You must verify your name before you can proceed to the next step. AWS requires this for security reasons, as they want to make sure that only authorized individuals book an exam.

Verifying your details

Step 4: Click the Exam Registration Button

On the left side, you will see the Exam Registration button. Click on this to proceed to the next step.

Scheduling the Exam

Step 5: Scroll Down To See Eligible Exams

You will find a list of all the eligible exams on this page. Scroll down to find the exam that you want to book. Here, you will find a wide range of exams including Associate-level, Professional-level, and Specialty-level.

Choosing Eligibility of  Exams

Step 6: Choose a Vendor

you have to click authorize on the certification you are eligible to schedule your exam. Then you will be able to select the exam options.To take the exam online, click “OnVUE online with OnVUE” button. It is recommended to run a system test. This will help to ensure that your computer meets all of the requirements. Also, make sure your webcam, internet speed, and microphone are okay before taking the exam.

Choosing a Vendor

  • Select your preferred language and click next.

Perferring the Language

  • When you click next, you will be taken to a new window that contains information about the exam you intend to take.
  • Next, “agree to online exam and Amazon Web Services policies” and make sure to check all the boxes.

Agreement confirmation to Online Exam

  • Select the proctor language on the next screen.

Proctor Language Selection

  • On the “Find Appointment” Screen, select the exam date.

Setting the Time Zone

  • Go to the payments screen and pay for the exam.

Payment Page

  • Well done! You have booked your AWS exam!

50% Discount Voucher from AWS

When you pass an AWS exam, you will receive a 50% discount voucher from AWS. Your coupon can be used for recertification or any other exam.

For example, after passing your AWS Cloud Practitioner test (and paying the $100 exam fee), you will now obtain a 50% discount coupon that you may use towards your Associate level exam (exam fee $150). With your discount ticket, your exam fee has been reduced to $75, resulting in a total of $175 ($25 more) for two AWS certifications! The discount also applies to specialist and professional tests, which are more expensive, making it an excellent method to cut costs.

Be warned that these offer codes cannot be transferred to another person. The certificates are only “intended for one-time use by the individual and certification account to which they were awarded o assigned.” Never buy a voucher from someone else because you risk having your exam results invalidated.

ESL (“English as a Second Language”) Time Extension

If your first language is not English, you may request an ESL (“English as a Second Language”) time extension. Non-native speakers will have an additional 30 minutes to finish the exam with the ESL +30 option. You will only need to request ESL +30 once; it will be applied to all subsequent exam registrations with both test delivery providers. Follow these procedures before registering for your exam:

Step 1: Sign in at

Step 2: Select “Go to your Account”.

Step 3: Select “Request Exam Accommodations” and then “Request Accommodation”.

Step 4: Select “ESL +30 MINUTES” from the “Accommodation Type” selection.

Step 5: Select “Create”.

AWS Solutions Architect Exam – FAQs

Which Domains Are Covered In The Exam?

The principal domains covered include: Design Resilient Architectures, Define Performant Architectures, Specify Secure Applications and Architectures, Design Cost-Optimized Architectures, and Define Operationally Excellent Architectures.

How Do I Prepare For The Exam?

AWS advises a combination of hands-on experience, training classes, whitepapers, and practice tests. Reading the exam guide and sample questions is also highly recommended.

What Is The Exam Format?

The exam consists of 65 multiple choice and multiple response questions that have to be completed within 130 minutes. The exam is available at Pearson VUE test centers.

What Certification Will I Receive After Passing?

After passing, you will receive the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate certification. The certification is valid for 2 years.

Is There a Penalty For Guessing On The Exam?

No, there is no penalty for guessing. It is advisable to answer every question, as there is no negative marking for incorrect answers.

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