If you want to succeed in the field of cloud architecture, it’s important to be at the top of your game with your skills and knowledge. That’s why the Google Cloud Certified Professional (GCP) program was developed. Passing the GCP certification exam allows you to distinguish yourself from other cloud architects by showing that you have an advanced understanding of Google Cloud Platform (GCP). To pass the GCP certification exam, you must first prepare by familiarizing yourself with key topics from six broad categories (or domains): design, deployment, development, operations, security, and training.


Preparing for your GCPA certification is not an easy task, but with enough study and preparation, you can make it through. There are prerequisites, which consist of core exam requirements and elective exam requirements. It’s vital that you become familiar with both before you begin studying. The core exams cover three areas: design, development and operations. The elective exams allow more freedom in terms of what topics can be examined, as long as you’re prepared for all three areas again. The electives also vary from specialization to specialization—you can pick from Big Data & Machine Learning; DevOps & Networking; Identity Management; or Security & Privacy. If one of these areas interests you, then by all means study it!

Where Do I Start?

Well, let’s start with what you need to know and then we’ll break down each of these topics into an individual post. For example, there are seven different exams that are required to become a GCP architect. They include: 1) G Suite; 2) Designing Multi-Region Solutions on GCP; 3) Building Mission Critical Applications on GCP; 4) Securing and Auditing Enterprise Data on GCP; 5) Deploying Applications using Kubernetes Engine (the last two are really part of passing #4); 6) Machine Learning Fundamentals for Developers (this is part of passing #5); 7) and Big Data on Google Cloud Platform.

Required Materials

The free trial includes all of Google’s standard suite of products, including G Suite, Gmail, Drive, Docs and Sheets. There is an optional $300 per month Premier Support plan with dedicated service and support from expert engineers. Lastly, if you don’t have your own hardware for Google Compute Engine or App Engine then you’ll need a $150 VPS (virtual private server) on DigitalOcean that comes with 1TB of storage and 5GB of RAM (this will be used to run your apps). If you do want digital ocean but would like more storage or RAM than what is offered on their free trial period then digital ocean has hourly pricing at as low as $0.004/hour for unlimited disk space/bandwidth & 512MB RAM!

The Exams

According to Matt Dravic, Senior Solutions Engineer, Apps and Developer Relations for Google Cloud Platform, Google is introducing two new exams for anyone interested in becoming a Google Certified Professional: one focused on infrastructure, and another on app development. Both of these exams are designed specifically with developers in mind; there will be no questions about networking or systems administration. The exams are offered in English worldwide as well as Japanese and Chinese. There are three certifications available under each exam: an entry-level certification suitable for those just starting out their career in cloud computing; an advanced-level certification; and an expert-level certification.

Get Ready for Hands-On

You don’t need prior experience with Google Cloud Platform (GCP) to become a GCP architect, but you should have some familiarity with high-level tech concepts. A high-level understanding of relational databases, virtual machines, and networking is useful. And although it isn’t required, hands-on experience is highly recommended; do you want your certification or not? Be aware that exams are proctored by Prometric and feature both multiple choice questions as well as performance-based problems that must be completed on a computer connected to GCP services. More details on exam content can be found here . In addition, please remember that at least 15 days of training is required in order for you to sit for your certification exam.

A Day In The Life Of an Architect on the Job

To become a Google Cloud Certified Professional (Cloud CPA), you will need to pass three exams covering Infrastructure as a Service, Platform as a Service, and Software as a Service. Each exam is administered by Kryterion and has 180 multiple-choice questions. When you’re starting out, it will help if you know what to expect on these tests. Imagine your day in 20 questions… Here are some things an architect might do on any given day at work


So that’s what you need to know about becoming a GCP certified professional architect. What do you think? Are you excited or have questions? Do you see anything in here that would help with your cloud certification efforts? If so, leave me a comment. I always love hearing from my readers!

Sample Resource List For Studying

The self-guided learning path provided by Google provides an excellent resource list for studying. This book has many different resources you will need while studying, not just while practicing. It is very important that you have all of these items when taking your exam. These are just some examples of what we recommend during your studies.

Self Test Tips

If you’re just starting out with certification, there are a few basic things you should know. First, don’t rush into taking any exams – take your time and take them only when you’re ready. The certification process can be overwhelming at first and it’s not always easy to self-study for all of the exams. That said, if you do decide that now is the right time for you to earn your certificate, here are some tips that can help make your journey easier


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