IT Career Guide

How to Become an AWS Certified Developer - Associate

How to Become an AWS Certified Developer – Associate

The AWS Certified Developer – Associate certification is a valuable credential that attests to your proficiency in developing and maintaining applications on the Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform. This certification not only validates your technical skills and expertise in utilizing AWS services but also enhances your career prospects by demonstrating your commitment to staying current with industry standards and best practices.

Earning the AWS Certified Developer – Associate certification is a journey that encompasses a comprehensive understanding of various AWS services, including computing, storage, and database solutions, as well as mastering deployment strategies and security protocols. It requires familiarity with core AWS services like EC2, S3, Lambda, and DynamoDB, as well as a solid grasp of AWS SDKs and development tools.

AWS Certified Developer - Associate working on his computers

1. Understand the Certification Requirements

The AWS Certified Developer – Associate exam targets individuals with a developer role who have one or more years of hands-on experience in developing and maintaining AWS-based applications. It assesses a broad range of skills including:

AWS Core Services: Understanding and using services like IAM (Identity and Access Management), EC2 (Elastic Compute Cloud), DynamoDB, S3 (Simple Storage Service), and Lambda is important for AWS Certified Developer – Associate exam.

Application Security: Implementing the best practices for securing AWS applications for AWS Certified Developer – Associate.

Deployment: Knowledge of CI/CD pipelines using AWS services like CodeDeploy, CodePipeline, and CodeBuild.

Monitoring and Troubleshooting: Using AWS CloudWatch for monitoring and AWS X-Ray for debugging applications.

2. Gain Practical Experience

Practical experience is indispensable to be an AWS Certified Developer – Associate. 

You should:

Develop Applications: Work on developing applications using key AWS services. For example, create a serverless application using AWS Lambda, API Gateway, and DynamoDB.

Use AWS Management Console: Familiarize yourself with the AWS Management Console and AWS CLI for managing resources.

Practice with SDKs: Use AWS SDKs to integrate AWS services into your applications. AWS provides SDKs for various programming languages like Java, Python (Boto3), JavaScript (Node.js), and more.

Consider working on real projects or contributing to open-source projects that use AWS.

3. Study the Exam Guide and Blueprint

The exam guide and blueprint provided by AWS are essential resources to be an AWS Certified Developer – Associate:

Exam Guide: Provides an overview of the exam content and the weight of each section.

Exam Blueprint: Details the domains covered in the exam and specific areas within those domains.

Focus on key areas:

Deployment: Learn about AWS Elastic Beanstalk, CloudFormation, and OpsWorks.

Security: Understand IAM roles, policies, and best practices for securing AWS resources.

Development with AWS Services: Explore core services and their applications.

Refactoring: Learn how to optimize and improve existing applications on AWS.

Monitoring and Troubleshooting: Use CloudWatch and X-Ray to monitor and debug applications.

4. Utilize AWS Training Resources

AWS offers a lot of resources to aid your study:

AWS Training and Certification Portal: Access free digital courses, webinars, and instructor-led classes. The AWS Certified Developer – Associate Learning Path is particularly useful as it provides a curated set of resources.

AWS Whitepapers: Read whitepapers on topics like security, architecture, and best practices.

AWS Documentation: Detailed guides and reference material for all AWS services.

5. Online Courses and Practice Tests

Numerous online platforms offer specialized courses and practice exams:

A Cloud Guru: Known for comprehensive and engaging courses tailored for AWS certifications.

Udemy: Offers a variety of courses from different instructors, often with extensive practice exams.

Whizlabs: Provides both training courses and a wide range of practice tests.

Practice tests are particularly important as they familiarize you with the exam format and help identify areas for improvement.

6. Join Study Groups and Forums

Participating in study groups and online forums can provide additional support and insights to help you to be an AWS Certified Developer – Associate:

AWS Developer Forums: Engage with other AWS professionals and get answers to your questions.

Reddit’s AWS Community: Share experiences and study tips.

LinkedIn Groups: Professional networks where you can discuss AWS topics.

Slack and Discord Channels: Join communities focused on AWS certification.

These platforms can offer moral support, valuable tips, and additional resources.

7. Hands-On Labs

Hands-on labs simulate real-world scenarios and provide practical experience:

Qwiklabs: Offers scenario-based labs that help you gain hands-on experience with AWS.

Cloud Academy: Provides hands-on labs and practice exercises.

AWS Training Labs: Available through the AWS Training and Certification Portal, these labs offer practical exercises.

These labs are crucial for cementing your understanding and ability to apply AWS services.

women taking exam for AWS Certified Developer - Associate

8. Schedule the Exam

When you feel prepared, schedule your AWS Certified Developer – Associate exam:

AWS Training and Certification Portal: Register for the exam through the portal. You have the option to take the exam at a testing center or online with a proctor.

Exam Options: The exam is 130 minutes long and consists of multiple-choice and multiple-response questions.

Review the AWS certification policies and the system requirements for the online proctored exam.

9. Exam Day Tips

On the day of the exam, keep these tips in mind:

Read Questions Carefully: Ensure you understand each question before selecting an answer.

Time Management: Keep track of time and pace yourself. Aim to answer all questions, but don’t spend too long on any single question.

Review Answers: If time permits, review your answers, especially those you were unsure about.

Maintain a calm and focused mindset to help you perform your best.

10. Post-Exam Steps

After passing the AWS Certified Developer – Associate exam:

Digital Badge and Certificate: You will receive a digital badge and certificate from AWS.

Update Your Resume and LinkedIn: Showcase your new certification on your professional profiles.

Continuing Education: Stay updated with the latest AWS developments and consider pursuing additional certifications like AWS Certified Solutions Architect or AWS Certified DevOps Engineer.


Achieving the AWS Certified Developer – Associate certification is a significant milestone for any developer. It requires dedication, hands-on practice, and thorough study. By following this detailed guide and leveraging available resources, you can prepare effectively and pass the certification exam, thereby advancing your career in AWS development.

Want to become an AWS Certified Developer – Associate? At Yellow Tail Tech, we are committed to supporting individuals at every stage of their IT career, whether you’re a seasoned professional or just starting out. Our customized training sessions are designed to meet your specific needs, ensuring an engaging and enriching learning experience.

Book a quick 10-minute consultation with us at Yellow Tail Tech today. Discover our extensive range of programs, access invaluable resources, and fast-track your journey to a successful career in AWS!

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Kevin Reblora

Kevin is a seasoned network engineer with a 13-year background in deploying transport network infrastructure, including IP, optical, and fiber networks. His expertise is complemented by a profound interest in DevOps, underlined by his certification as a Red Hat Certified System Administrator. Kevin excels in his roles as a Course Maintainer and DevOps Coach, where he ensures course content is current with AWS technology advancements and provides extensive coaching to students, empowering them with essential tools and best practices in DevOps.

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