5 great tips to pass the AWS Certified Developer - Associate exam

How can I pass the AWS Certfied Developer - Associate exam? Here are some helpful hints...

Ali KhalilAli Khalil
a month ago | 3 min read

Young girl wearing graduation cap giving thumbs up and showing a+ exam paper

I am very happy to say I am now an AWS certified developer, having recently passed the AWS Certified Developer - Associate exam πŸ‘¨β€πŸŽ“.

Here are some tips to help you pass first time!

πŸ§ͺ Hands on experience using AWS services

The exam questions are scenario based, so having practical experience with AWS services will help you understand how the services work and diagnose problems which you will come across in the exam. AWS offer Self-Paced Labs which are guided steps to learn a service.

πŸ“š AWS whitepapers

Take time to read through as many AWS Whitepapers as you can, especially on Serverless (as the majority of questions are based on Serverless, ranging from setting up to optimisation and refactoring).

πŸ“ Take mock exams

Reinforce your learning by taking as many mock exams as you can. I found mine at Udemy and Whizlabs. You can also find courses on AWS Training and Certification or A Cloud Guru. Taking lots of mock exams really helps to streamline the learning process.

πŸ•΅οΈβ€ Read the questions very carefully

The questions are a mixture of multiple-choice (where you select 1 answer from a list of options) and multi-select (where you choose more than 1 answer from a given selection). For the multi-select questions the options can be very similar so it’s important to understand the differences between key components.

An example would be knowing the difference between GenerateDataKeyWithoutPlaintext or GenerateDataKey. Both generate data keys but GenerateDataKeyWithoutPlaintext generates an encrypted copy of the data key.

πŸ”Ž Focus on AWS Serverless services

These are services based on the Serverless computing platforms which consist of:

  • API Gateway: questions which come up in the exam are usually concerned with deploying APIs, managing multiple versions, stages and environments & troubleshooting

  • Lambda: questions regarding Lambda were usually intertwined with other services; integrations with API Gateway, and many questions about redeploying legacy applications in AWS

  • Elastic Beanstalk: Make sure you study Elastic Beanstalk, questions are usually around .eb extensions, upgrade scenarios & redeploys

  • DynamoDB: determining partition & sort keys, creating a GSI & LSI and choosing hash and range keys, reading throughput and throttling errors and optimising the performance and costs of workload.

  • Cognito: this is a service providing authentication, authorization, and user management. Questions which usually come up in the exam are regarding the features of AWS Cognito which are Cognito User Pools, Cognito Federated Identities & Cognito Sync

  • And finally S3, SNS & SQS, Kinesis & ECS. There are lots of questions regarding how to set up these services and how they interact with other services so it’s important to understand these areas.


I hope these tips have been helpful!

Good luck and let us know how you get on @jdlt_tech 🀞

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