AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam feedback

In this post I’m going to share my feedback on AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate exam, preparation strategy and the exam tips.

I passed all 3 AWS certifications in recent months and I took them in the order of CSA first, followed by Developer associate and finally Sysops Associate.

You can find my feedback on developer associate exam here and Sysops here.


Getting started in AWS:

If you’re new to AWS and want to do certification, then you can start preparing for Solutions Architect Associate first without any second thoughts.

This certification course covers all the core services of AWS and it’ll give you a good foundation to deep dive into AWS.

After you complete this one, you can easily pass the Developer exam as 60-70% of the Dev exam contents overlap with CSA.

Unless you have any prior AWS experience, don’t go for Sysops exam directly, it’s the hardest of all three associate exams.


Study materials:

Linux Academy & ACloudGuru

Both of their courses are good, covers all the basics needed for AWS Solutions Architect Associate exam.

They have very high success rate of students passing the exam after using their courses. So they’re highly recommended.

Also you can get their individual courses for cheap in Udemy – 10$ sale rather than going for monthly subscription in their site.

  • Pluralsight also offers a course on this exam which is been good and they have courses available covering many technologies. Currently they provide 7 days trial for first time subscription, which you can make use of.

AWS official study guide:

  • Amazon published an official study guide for AWS Solutions Architect Associate exam – which is an excellent material for the exam preparation. You will also get access to the interactive online learning environment at publisher’s website which provides you Sample Tests and Flashcards.

Link to purchase the official study guide: Paperback  Ebook



Below whitepapers are important in understanding the architecture, best practices of Cloud. You needn’t read all the pages, but a glance and high level understanding would suffice.

Architecting for the Cloud: AWS Best Practices

AWS Security Best Practices

Amazon Web Services: Overview of Security Processes

AWS Well-Architected Framework

Amazon Virtual Private Cloud Connectivity Options

Also AWS re-invent videos and deep dive videos in youtube are highly recommended.

Practice Tests:


Whizlabs is offering practice quizzes for Solutions Architect Associate exam which is really useful, if you want to test your knowledge/learning before appearing for the exam.

Their quizzes are more or less real exam like scenario questions and it will give you a good idea about how the exam questions are going to be.

You can purchase Whizlabs practice tests in this link: Whizlabs – AWS Solutions Architect Associate Exam


Since the exam pattern multiple choice questions, you won’t be challenged in hands-on tasks. But when you go to interviews, you won’t be asked questions with multiple choices but will be tested on practical knowledge.

To overcome this gap, Qwiklabs offers hands-on exercises for AWS services, which is valuable for your skillsets.

You can checkout Qwiklabs Solution Architect Associate exercises in this link: Qwiklabs – AWS Solutions Architect Associate exercises


Don’t appear for the exam without reading the faqs. S3, VPC, EC2, ELB, Autoscaling, are must read faqs.

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