Sometimes, the numbers just make sense!

Oracle took the crystal ball out and predicted that by 2025, 80% of businesses are projected to fully move to the cloud. Statista reported that the public cloud market alone generated $130 billion. This goes to show the flow of money in the cloud market. 

It should come as no surprise that cloud computing is the #1 most in-demand hard skill, according to LinkedIn. There are many job opportunities in this industry. Site reliability engineers (SRE), cloud developers, enterprise account executives, customer success managers, solution cloud architect are just few of the high paying roles available in the cloud industry.

In this blog we will talk about AWS Cloud Developer.

But first, what is a cloud engineer?

A cloud engineer is a full stack developer who knows how to use cloud services of a public cloud provider such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) or Azure or Google Cloud Platform (GCP).

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is one of the most popular cloud providers that has over 175 cloud computing applications.

BLOG: Check out our AWS beginners guide if you are new to AWS

So, how much does a cloud developer make?

As per job site Glassdoor, the average annual pay for a Cloud Developer in the United States is $100,465/year. So, it makes sense to know about cloud and get certified.

AWS Developer Certification Exam Details

Because this is a developer exam, it is expected that you are familiar with application lifecycle management. This exam doesn’t have any pre-requisites. However, at a high level, you should be familiar with at least one programming language.

Below are the exam details: 

  • Exam Duration: 130 minutes to complete the exam
  • Cost: 150 USD
  • Total Number of Questions: 65 questions
  • Types of Questions: Either multiple choice questions or multiple response questions
  • Passing mark: Scaled scoring (100-1000) with minimum passing score of 720.

AWS Developer Certification Exam Topics and Important Services

First of all, check out the official guide for any recent changes. Link to the official guide for DVA-C01 exam is here

TopicTopic DetailsImportant Services IncludedPercentage
DeploymentDeploy written code in AWS using existing CI/CD pipelines, processes, and patterns. Deploy applications using AWS Elastic Beanstalk. Prepare the application deployment package to be deployed to AWS. Deploy serverless applications.Elastic Beanstalk, CloudFormation, AWS SAM, AWS CodeCommit, AWS CodeBuild, AWS CodePipeline, AWS CodeStar, AWS CodeDeploy, EC222%
SecurityMake authenticated calls to AWS services Implement encryption using AWS services Implement application authentication and authorization.S3 encryption, Amazon Cognito, IAM, KMS, 26%
Development with AWS ServicesWrite code for serverless applications Translate functional requirements into application design. Implement application design into application code. Write code that interacts with AWS services by using APIs, SDKs, and AWS CLI.AWS Lambda, Amazon API Gateway, Amazon DynamoDB, AWS CLI, SDK, SQS, SNS30%
RefactoringOptimize applications to best use AWS services and features. Migrate existing application code to run on AWSAmazon ElasticCache, Amazon API Gateway cache10%
Monitoring and TroubleshootingWrite code that can be monitored Perform root cause analysis on faults found in testing or production.Amazon CloudWatch, VPC Flow Logs, AWS X-Ray12%

Resources to prepare for AWS Certified Developer Associate

There are a lot of resources available for the exam preparation. We have compiled a few cost effective list that won’t burn a hole in your pocket as the preparation can get expensive based on what’s out there. 

  • AWS provides FREE sample questions. These are more important than ANY tests you take since they show you exactly how the wordings will be for the questions in the exam and if you are lucky, you’ll probably get a few questions word for word on the test. Link from AWS here.
    • Here is link to another FREE set of practice questions from ReviewNPrep.
    • Free Practice question sets from AWS. Link here.
  • There are a lot of in-person and online courses out there. Choose wisely! Here is a link to good course on ReviewNPrep without breaking your bank.
  • Here is a link to FREE flashcards from ReviewNPrep to help you memorize the key AWS services, cloud best practices and more.
  • Read the AWS FAQs and whitepapers for popular services like S3, EC2, DynamoDb, ECS, Lambda to name a few. 
  • There is no substitute for actual practice out there. Get a free tier account AWS provides you free account for a month with credits that you can use to do hands on labs. Sign up today and get that extra practice. This is a MUST. 
  • Take full length practice exams that will help you prepare for the real exam. Link to practice exams here. This is a MUST. 

AWS Developer Associate Certification preparation tips

  • This is a developer certification, so get comfortable with the command line. AWS Console knowledge is a must but as a developer you should know how to do things from the command line. Execute scenarios from the command line to get a feel of the different APIs and commands. Make sure to tear down your test resources after each run, otherwise you might rack up some hefty cloud bills. 
  • For the real exam, pay special attention to the services included in the “Exam Topics” section. Most of the questions will be based on the services mentioned there. Commonly-asked services are:
    • Lambda
    • DynamoDB
    • API Gateway
    • ECS/EKS (via Fargate)
    • X-Ray (debugging)
    • AWS SAM (deployment)
  • Retake the Practice tests till you score at least 90% in each practice exam. 
  • Practical knowledge is important to pass this exam. Spend time in AWS console daily to get comfortable with the services. 

Related Blog: Path to becoming AWS Professional Architect

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Exam tips for AWS Developer Associate Certification

  • If you are not a native English speaker, you are eligible for a 30-minute time extension. If you are a nervous test taker, use this time to your advantage.
  • If you prepare thoroughly with enough hands on experience, you’d have enough time at the end. However, plan your time wisely. Bookmark the questions you aren’t sure of, but give each question at least a minute to read thoroughly.
  • Often times you may find answer to questions in other questions. Bookmarking will come in handy here and at the end when you review the questions, see if any other question has answer to your problem question.
  • Often times the answer is in the question itself. Look for keywords like most, least, cost-effective, scalable, highly available etc.
  • Because this is a developer level exam, you may see some command level questions. Example – What would this command do, when to use it, etc.
  • Know how to do Read Capacity Units (RCU) and Write Capacity Units (WCU) calculations. You might get one or two questions on determining RCU/WCU.


Certifications are great ways to show employers what you know about technology. You can demonstrate your skills by using certifications that prove you’re an expert in the field. Employers may be impressed by having several certifications, but if they see that you’ve been certified for something that’s outdated, or doesn’t apply to the job you want, then you won’t impress them. AWS Developer certification is just one of the many reputed ones out there, that’s in demand and increases your chances to get hired.

Finally, certifications are not just about validations of knowledge, but also about showing commitment, dedication, willingness to learn and the drive for staying at the forefront of innovation. Sometimes this demonstrates more to people than the actual certification stands for.

Further Reading:

Everything about AWS Certifications

How to prepare for AWS Solutions Architect

Have questions? Participate in AWS discussions on our Forums. Click here.