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MCSA (Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate)

Contributor(s): Stan Gibilisco
This definition is part of our Essential Guide: The road to success begins with a virtualization certification path

MCSA (Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate) is a certification program intended for people who seek entry-level jobs in an IT (information technology) environment. MCSA is a prerequisite for more advanced Microsoft certifications. 

The MCSA credential supplants the now defunct Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator certification. Students can select any of the following specialty areas:

As they advance in the MCP program, professionals can gain any or all of the following certifications:

  • Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE)
  • Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD)
  • Microsoft Certified Product Specialist (MCPS)
  • Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT)

To prepare for the MCP exams, students can take courses at a certified training company location, in certified courses in a high school or college, or through self-study at Microsoft's self-study Web site or through certified training materials. Students who do not feel ready for MCSA can obtain the more basic MTA (Microsoft Technology Associate) certification first.

 

This was last updated in November 2012

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The follow-on to MCSA is MCSE, which is Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert
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An MCSA cert in Windows Server is definitely not "entry-level"
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