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Fees for Many Microsoft Certification Exams To Increase Worldwide in July

BREAKING NEWS: Microsoft Learning Group announced $25 price increase for selected Microsoft exams in U.S., with similar increases for exams worldwide.

The Microsoft Learning Group this morning announced that they will be increasing prices on most certification exams by $25 in the U.S., starting July 1. The price increase affects exams under the older generation MCP (such as the MCSA, MCSD and MCSE exams) as well as new-generation MCTS, MCITP and MCPD exams. Exams under the Microsoft Office Specialist, Microsoft Technology Associate, Microsoft Certified Master (and, thus, the Microsoft Certified Architect) programs are not affected.

According to MLG senior director of certification Don Field, the price increase is not limited to the U.S., but pricing in other areas will go up on a regional basis. Field said that Japan, Greece, Spain, Portugal and Ireland were among some of the countries that would not see exam price increases at this time.

"We've heard from customer feedback that they want us to continue to invest in improvements in the program," said Field. He said that customers have been asking for new certifications that correlate to new technologies, exam updates, new question types and exam security and integrity were at the top of the list.

Field said that some of the improvements that customers have been asking for have already gone live, such as the creation of the Microsoft Technical Associate credential last summer, and the localized implementation of some of the components of the higher level Master and Architect programs (MLG had required candidates to travel to Redmond to complete labs and oral exam). Revenue generated by the price increase would help fund more customer-requested improvements and the possible expansion of the group to carry out some of those goals, said Field.

Field believes backlash to be minimal from customers due of the price increase, and said that the group will continue to offer certification candidates with exam discounts and second-shot offers as well as incentives to take lower-priced exams that are availeble via certification training through academic institutions. 

The last time MLG increased prices was about nine years ago, when exams were incrementally increased from $100 to $125. To read the official press release, go here.

[Editor's Note: Academic pricing is also increasing. Article has been corrected to reflect this information.]

About the Author

Michael Domingo has held several positions at 1105 Media, and is currently the editor in chief of Visual Studio Magazine.

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