Microsoft increasing exam prices on July 1st 2011

Microsoft will be increasing the cost to take any of their technical or developer track exams worldwide on July 1st, the first increase for several years. This change will affect pretty much all their exam tracks except for the top-tier MCM and MCA, the Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA – aimed at school and college students mainly), and the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS, currently managed by a different exam provider anyway).

In the UK this means an increase from £88 to £99, so if you want to save that extra £11 then get your exams done before the end of June. Both of these prices are ex-VAT, so for those of you paying your own way through a certification track that means you will need to find an extra £13.20 from your own pocket, or £15.40 more than a year ago thanks to the VAT increase as well. If you already have pre-paid vouchers which are still valid, you should be able to use these for some time, but read the small print on the page linked below.

More information on prices for other countries, details of voucher eligibility and plenty of FAQs on the Microsoft page about the exam price rise.

UK MCTs will have already seen that their exam discount will increase at the same time by 5% which takes out a lot of the sting here, but early adopters in the training community will no longer get the super-bonus discount for taking exams within the first 90 days of release, which is not such great news.

Microsoft Second Shot is back again for 2010

After a very long wait (and some said it might never happen), Microsoft have reintroduced their Second Shot campaign so that you can register to take an exam and if you fail you get a second chance to do a free retake. You register with Prometric,  then they email you a code. You use this voucher code when you register online to take your chosen exam, for which you pay the normal fee (or reduced rate for students, if applicable). Last time round you could not use second shot and a discount voucher (eg one from a Self-paced training kit) since you can only put in one code. Once I actually get a breathing space to take an exam (things are pretty busy right now) I’ll update to let you know if this is still the case.

Offer details:
Dates: January 13, 2010 – June 30, 2010.

Details: You must register, obtain a voucher code, schedule, pay, and take the first and (if necessary) the retake exam before June 30, 2010.

Applicable exams: This offer applies to all Microsoft Learning IT professional, developer, project management, and Microsoft Dynamics exams, including academic exams. Visit the Learning Catalog and search for your next exam

Eligible countries and regions: This is a worldwide offer that is available at Prometric test centers only.

Note Only one Second Shot voucher is available per purchased exam.

Notice that the deadline for taking the first time and retake is the same – June 30th 2010. Previously the first exam had an earlier deadline and the retake had an extra month or so if you were taking one.

Read more about Second Shot »

Microsoft second shot exam offer back again for 2008

It seems that Microsoft have listened to the community and brought back their Second Shot offer much earlier than most people expected. Previously this seemed to run only once each year (albeit for several months at a time), and the last one only closed for taking exams the first time round at the end of May and the retakes by the end of June. Re-opening this in August 2008 and leaving it open right through to June 2009 seems to indicate that this will effectively become a permanent fixture, but you can’t just roll your retakes forward forever, you will have to use the second chance within the year-long programme, which seems perfectly fair.

The same launch page is being used as last time, although until today this was not live for the new offer and still showed the old information.

Microsoft Second Shot Exam Offer 2008

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Microsoft Exams free second chance offer

Soon you will be able to get a free second shot to pass a Microsoft exam. They have run this kind of offer before and it always seems really popular.

Basically, you register for the deal with Microsoft, which gets you a voucher number. You then use this voucher number when you register and pay for your exam on the Prometric site as usual. If you fail the exam when you take it you can re-register to take the same exam again in a fixed timeframe.

The offer should be available from September 15th until January 31st, though whether that end-date is for the first try or your second attempt is not clear yet.

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