What is CKAD?

CKAD is a comprehensive certification that includes a 100% hands-on exam to provide assurance that CKADs have the skills, knowledge, and competency to perform the responsibilities of Kubernetes.

It certifies the ability of a developer to build, configure, design, and expose native cloud applications for Kubernetes. Such developers are further able to work with core resources to build, monitor, and troubleshoot applications in Kubernetes.

CKAD (Certified Kubernetes Application Developer) is developed by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) with The Linux Foundation. While Kubernetes was originally designed by Google, and now maintained by CNCF.

CKAD is one of the difficult exams to pass but you can be a Certified Kubernetes Application Developer (CKAD) in just 33 days, IFF – If and only If you follow guidelines properly.

How to pass the Certified Kubernetes Application Developer (CKAD) Exam?


If you have an adequate amount of knowledge on Docker, containers, and microservices architecture and an intermediate hands-on Linux. 

Registering for the exam FIRST 

YES, register for the exam before starting preparing for the CKAD exam because when you schedule for a particular date ( let say 14th September!) and you have approximately A MONTH, then you must take out time for Study. 

Registration cost for CKAD exam is 300$ and this price includes one retake in case you fail on your first attempt (There are some discounts & Promo available)

KEY Concepts for CKAD:

  1. Start with basics
  2. Prioritize your learning according to these groups.
    • Group 1 –> Debugging Kubernetes, Pods, Deployments, Jobs, Services, editing YAML, Volumes and PVCs, namespaces, labels
    • Group 2 –> Liveness and readiness, logging, monitoring, multi-container pods, rolling updates and rollbacks
    • Group 3 –> Service Accounts, resource quotas, security contexts
  3. Write YAMLs of all resources at least thrice!
  4. Create resources using descriptive commands
  5. Practice, practice, again practice then again practice!!
  6. Attempt Mock

Below is my recommendation:

TaskNumber of Days
Revisiting basic K8s concept 2
Practice Group 1 Topics9
Practice Topics of Group 2 6
Practice Topics of Group 34
Writing YAMLs2
Descriptive commands time2
Practice * 33
Mock Exams2
Revise Everything2
Rest before exam1
Preparation breakdown – number of days for CKAD

This CKAD exam curriculum includes these general domains and their weights on the exam:

  • Core Concepts 13%
  • Configuration 18%
  • Multi-Container Pods 10%
  • Observability 18%
  • Pod Design 20%
  • Services & Networking 13%

If you think content is useful for you for preparing for CKAD(certified Kubernetes application developer) so let us know, we will share the next Blog on What to do on exam day of CKAD!

Best of luck for CKAD!

Author: Bashir Ahmed Zeeshan is a Cloud Enthusiast and is 2 x Alibaba Cloud (ACA) | 2 x Oracle Cloud (OCI) certified. You can connect with him on LinkedIn.

Related Kubernetes Blogs: Check out CKA and more CKAD Preparation Tips

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