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Will Exam Prices Increase?

A reader recently joining the MCP game (he's still going for that MCSE; I told him to hurry it up!) asked me whether, through the course of completing his certifications, exam fees would increase. The possibility is there, and I believe the folks on the Born to Learn blog hinted around that it might happen. (Really, I swear I saw it there, but I can't be absolute in my conviction right now.)

That exam prices have remained at US$125 for the most part is a minor miracle, if you ask me. The Microsoft Learning Group isn't a profit center for the company by any measure, and in fact, directors in years past have told us that its goals have been to break even. I can't say that that goal has held fast all these years, but from the looks of things -- reduction in benefits, creation of more virtual and e-based training offerings, to name a few -- the group is doing its best to rein in costs. Still, to keep materials fresh in both the training offerings and exams themselves, especially as products go through new revs, it behooves the group to keep up and maintain relevancy. No, it can't skimp here.

So, while Microsoft might reset the fee upward due to incremental but increased costs in developing and delivering exams (I've yet to ask them point-blank what their plans are here; for now, it's an assumption), the group does its best to ease the burden. Just look at its popular Second Shot program, the delivery of exams through its academic program (it's like taking exams for half the price), free e-training courses (there's gobs of them), and free downloadables from Microsoft Press for quick evidence.

So, don't hate them if they gotta increase prices. It's part of doing business.

Agree or disagree? Chime in here or e-mail me.

Posted by Michael Domingo on 03/12/2009 at 11:59 AM

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