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:
- Windows Server 2008
- Windows Server 2012
- SQL Server 2012
- Windows 7
- Windows 8
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.