Preparing for and Taking Microsoft Exam 70-768 (Developing SQL Data Models)

Microsoft Exam 70-768: Developing SQL Data Models

After taking a break from exams and certifications for a few years, I recently decided to resume studying. On May 29th, I shared my Updated Microsoft Certification Goals. On June 5th, I achieved my first goal by passing Microsoft Exam 70-767. On July 31st, I achieved my second goal! I passed Microsoft Exam 70-768: Developing SQL Data Models. By passing this exam, I became a Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA): Business Intelligence Development :)

In this blog post, I share how I prepared for the exam and what my experience was like on the day of the exam.

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Preparing for and Taking Microsoft Exam 70-767 (Implementing a Data Warehouse using SQL)

Microsoft Exam 70-767: Implementing a Data WarehouseAfter taking a break from exams and certifications for a few years, I recently decided to resume studying. On May 29th, I shared my Updated Microsoft Certification Goals. A week later, on June 5th, I achieved my first goal! I passed Microsoft Exam 70-767: Implementing a Data Warehouse using SQL. By passing this exam, I became a Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE): Data Management and Analytics. Woohoo :)

In this blog post, I share how I prepared for the exam and what my experience was like on the day of the exam. While I only shared my updated goals last week, I spent weeks before that focused on studying. More importantly, I have had real experience working hands-on in projects for several years. Without this experience, I don’t think I would have been able to pass this exam – at least not on the first attempt.

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Updated Microsoft Certification Goals

Updated Microsoft Certification Goals - MCSE: Data Management and AnalyticsIt has been several years since I last studied for a Microsoft Certification. (Insert your favorite saying about how time flies and life changes here!) Back in February 2014, I started working towards the old MCSE: Business Intelligence. The first step was to earn the MCSA: SQL Server 2012/2014. It took longer than I expected, including a frustrating experience trying an online proctored exam, but I finally passed the last of the three required exams in May 2015.

By then, my goals had changed. Varigence had announced the BimlHero Certified Expert program, and I decided to put the MCSE on hold for a while. Sorry, Microsoft, Biml was just more fun! :) In February 2016, after 10 months of working on the Biml certification, I became the second BimlHero in the world.

My plan was always to resume studying for MCSE: Business Intelligence. But, surprise surprise, things changed again. My new jobs required a lot of traveling, and I even put tech on hold for over a year while working in a community-facing role. I challenged myself in different ways by speaking and delivering workshops. In short, I chose to focus on developing other skills.

We are now almost halfway through 2018 and I am finally ready to continue working towards my next Microsoft Certification. Except for the tiny little detail that I was so slow that the certification I originally set as my goal no longer exists. Hahaha! :) Instead of the old MCSE: Business Intelligence, my updated goal is…

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Azure Data Factory v2 with Mike Flasko

One of the sessions I was most looking forward to at Microsoft Ignite 2017 was New capabilities for data integration in the cloud with Mike Flasko. In that session, he talks about Azure Data Factory (ADF) v2 and its new first-class SSIS support.

After the session, I convinced Mike Flasko and Sanjay Krishnamurthi to have a chat with me :) We talked about what’s new in Azure Data Factory v2, including the updated pipeline application model with a new visual design canvas, new Software Development Kits (SDKs) for working with Azure Data Factory, the new Integration Runtime, and the ability to run SSIS packages inside Azure Data Factory v2.

Azure Data Factory v2 with Mike Flasko

Follow Mike Flasko on Twitter @mflasko, and keep an eye out for more news about ADF and SSIS! I may or may not have convinced him to do another interview with me in a couple of months :)

Thank you Mike and Sanjay for sitting down with me on a busy day! If you were unable to attend Microsoft Ignite 2017, you can now watch Mike’s session New capabilities for data integration in the cloud on-demand:

Other interviews from Microsoft Ignite 2017

Data Science with Buck Woody
SQL Server 2017 with Bob Ward
High Performance Analytics with Sunil Agarwal

High Performance Analytics with Sunil Agarwal

At Microsoft Ignite 2017, I had planned an interview with Sunil Agarwal, and was very excited about it. Then Sunil asked if he could bring Kevin Farlee. Of course! Then he asked if he could also bring their customer, Aaron Gerdeman from FIS. Even better! :)

In this interview, we chat about SQL Server 2017, Resumable Index Builds, Adaptive Query Processing, Columnstore Indexes, High Availability, Real-time Analytics, Real-time Dashboards and the SQL Tiger Team.

High Performance Analytics with Sunil Agarwal, Kevin Farlee, Aaron Gerdeman

You can learn more in the SQL Server Database Engine Blog, follow Sunil Agarwal on Twitter @S_u_n_e_e_l and follow Kevin Farlee on Twitter @kfarlee.

I’m very happy they all managed to find time to talk to me, hope you enjoy the interview! To learn more, watch Sunil and Aaron’s session Delivering high performance analytics with columnstore index on traditional DW and HTAP workloads from Microsoft Ignite 2017:

Other interviews from Microsoft Ignite 2017

Data Science with Buck Woody
SQL Server 2017 with Bob Ward
Azure Data Factory v2 with Mike Flasko

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