How to prepare for AWS exam?

Updated: Jan 5

Preparing for AWS exam is a long process and requires understanding all aspects of the exam. This article will explain how to prepare for AWS exam from three aspects: exam scope, learning materials, and study plan.

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How to prepare for AWS exam?

Hashtags:#AWS #AmazonWebService #AWSCertification #CloudEngineer #CloudComputing

Exam scope

The Associate Level exam mainly examines candidates’ comprehensive evaluation of cloud computing architecture design, AWS cloud service security, functional details of various services, and troubleshooting. The exam guide on the official website should be carefully studied to have a general understanding of the scope of the exam. What is worth studying is its scoring standard, as shown in the figure below:

Among them, designing a highly available system and data security account for the largest proportion, which directly influences whether you can pass the exam smoothly. Therefore, when preparing for the exam, these two aspects should be mastered. Amazon's various cloud computing services, as required by the AWS certification exam, all have special names, but their functions are much the same as those of other cloud computing vendors, with different names. (I want to praise Amazon here. It is worthy of being the leader of cloud computing. It has deep technical precipitation in this industry. The functions and details of its various products are greatly ahead of other vendors such as Azure. Therefore, after being certified by AWS, we basically take up the cloud computing circle).

The whole learning process requires about 80 hours of study time and 32 hours of computer operation. I will introduce the detailed review plan later. You can refer to my estimated study time as a reference and make your own study plan. If you are already familiar with certain services, you can shorten the learning time appropriately. Most of the students who take the exam certification are the backbone of the company, presumably, they are very busy on weekdays, so it is very important to make a good study plan. Everyone should evaluate how much time can be allocated to study each week. For example, if an average of 8 hours per week is used to study calculations, it will take about 3 months to prepare for the exam.

Learning materials

The official study materials available at

And there are also some websites which are very useful.


AWS white paper:

Common problems of various cloud services:

Introduction of AWS services:

Blog learning materials:

Markosrendell’ s Sample Questions Answered and Discussed provides a detailed interpretation of 7 sample questions. By the way, it also interprets related test sites. It is a very practical material for getting started with the exam.

Jayendra’ s blog has a very good summary of some test sites, with some analysis of the answers to the test questions, which is very practical.

Study plan

According to the test site analysis table listed above, candidates can divide the entire study plan proposal into 3 parts.

The first stage

In the early stage, you should be familiar with the content and functions of each service. Reading documents is expected to be 80 hours, hands-on experiments are expected to be 32 hours, and a total of 112 hours are required. Based on 8 hours of study per week, it will take about 10-14 weeks. You’d better complete the following items in the first stage.

  • Read the exam guide

  • Read related white papers and FAQ

  • Understand and practice various cloud service functions. The test center will participate in the AWS services test center list in the following chapters

  • Take sample test papers and read Sample Questions Answered and Discussed

The second stage

In the mid-term, you’d better focus on question bank on the Internet, and practice your error-prone questions over and over again. This process takes about 36 hours, which is 8 hours a week and lasts for 1.5 months. In this stage, the project to be completed:

The third stage

In the later stage, you can spend $20 to participate in the preliminary examination. Through the preliminary examination, you can be familiar with the process and know their weak points through the test scores, which is beneficial to candidates. After the pre-test, focus on strengthening the study of your own weaknesses, and review the unfamiliar test sites and test questions again. This time is 24 hours, for about 3 weeks.

Finally, if you feel that the review is basically over, you can go to the Amazon website to book an exam. The total review time is 152 hours, and everyone should reasonably arrange their weekly study time. There is no time limit for registration, so you must wait until you are almost ready before you go to the exam. If you are still not sure whether you can pass the exam after reviewing all the materials, go to the mock exam again to strengthen your weaknesses.