Just over a week ago, a new digital badge Serverless from AWS Cloud Computing Platform was introduced at Re:Invent. Many people were probably disappointed that this isn't in the form of a certificate, but it's certainly a good step forward and hopefully such a certificate will appear in the near future.
My personal opinion is that this is because there is too much overlap with the associate developer certificate level. However, remember that this is just my opinion.
However, let's get back to the point. The badge is associated with the AWS Serverless Learning Plan. This is a set of digital courses to learn about the topic of Serverless in a broad sense. The course itself, as well as the approach to achieving the badge through an exam, is free of charge.
The badge validates knowledge and skills in AWS Lambda, Amazon API Gateway and application design in a Serverless approach. A pass rate of 80 percent. It is not necessary to complete the entire course first.
The course can be found in the AWS Skill Builder (which offers a mass of both free and paid subscription courses) under the name Serverless Learning Plan.
The course is divided into nine modules, with the final module featuring an exam consisting of 50 exam questions. There is no time limit, you can stop at any time and return to the exam later. Please note that you must answer all 50 questions to complete the exam.
The course is very well crafted, so even experienced Serverless developers and architects will find it a nice repetition of the material. There is a short quiz at the end of each course. In addition, there is additional materials at the end of the chapter itself to expand your knowledge. The material is interactive, with numerous videos as well as transcripts from them. Pure enjoyment.
The exam consists of the following areas (starting with the most common in questions):
- Getting into the Serverless Mindset
- Designing Event-Driven Architectures
- Architecting Serverless Applications
- Scaling Serverless Architectures
- Security and Observability for Serverless Applications
- Deploying Serverless Applications
- Amazon API Gateway for Serverless Applications
From my perspective the questions looked like the Associate level AWS exams, single and multiple choice questions. I recommend reading through the questions well and knowing exactly what the expectations are for the answer (best scalable solution, least need for changes to current architecture, etc.)
The questions included:
- API Gateway (Websockets API, best practices when we have a lot of requests, what should we do then).
- What services we would recommend for individual use cases to start the Serverless journey.
- Some questions from Cognito about authentication. migration patterns to cloud computing. AWS Lambda (how to solve cold-start problems, best practices in writing functions).
- Some questions from AWS SAM (deployment pipelines, and a question about commands).
- How to keep secrets (Secrets Manager, Parameter Store).
- A few questions from EC2, Autoscalling, one from Step Functions, AppSync.
- CI/CD best practices.
For those who work with the Serverless approach on a daily basis, I recommend taking the exam without going through the course, these are real life questions :) The exam will be a pleasure.
However, if you don't pass it, there is no need to worry - you can retake the exam after 24 hours. So no stress.
Do I think it was worth it? Yes, it is always worth refreshing and confirming your knowledge, which will result in earning a badge. It took me a few hours to get my badge, I reviewed what was more or less in the course, and took the exam. For those with no experience of Serverless on a daily basis, this can be more time consuming, so I would recommend taking it easy through the course, I think a couple of evenings would be enough and then taking the exam.
I hope that wishes from people in the community will soon be heard and there will be a long-awaited certificate with Serverless, e.g. as a speciality.