In December 2020, we notified the learning community of a couple changes to the Microsoft Certification program. Today, we’re announcing the effective time and date for the change in certification validity period. Starting 12 AM GMT on June 30, 2021, (5 PM PT on June 29, 2021), all newly earned role-based and specialty certifications will be valid for one year from the date the certification was earned. All required exams must be passed before 12 AM GMT on Jun 30, 2021 for certifications to remain valid for two years from the date they were earned; if the required exam(s) are passed after 12 AM GMT on June 30, 2021 certifications will be valid for 1-year from the date they were earned.
And, as a reminder, those who have earned role-based and specialty certifications can renew them annually for free by passing an online assessment on Microsoft Learn. This can be done at any time within six months before the certification expires. When the learner passes the renewal assessment, their certification is extended by one year from the current expiration date.
The shift to validating skills every year—rather than every two years—helps align Microsoft Certifications to evolving job roles and in-demand skills as a result of the rapid pace of change in cloud technologies. This new approach is intended to enable tech professionals to prove that their skills are relevant in the market and to help them stay up to date with evolving technology, while also reducing the stress, complexity, and cost of maintaining an active certification.