In recent times, Microsoft has continuously increased awareness about its certifications across the Azure tracks, especially the fundamentals path. Examples of the Azure fundamental certifications are Microsoft Azure AZ-900 fundamentals, Microsoft Azure AI-900 fundamentals and Microsoft Azure DP-900 fundamentals.
In this article, we will talk about one of the Microsoft Azure fundamental certifications which is AI-900 (Artificial Intelligence). What category of learners can take this certification, what should be expected from the content of the exam, what mode of preparation is ideal to ace this certification exam, and finally how can you register for this certification? All of these, we will explain in this article. So, stay glued as we move in this journey.
What is AI-900: Microsoft Azure AI Fundamentals (Microsoft Azure) Exam ?
AI-900 is the beginner level certification offered by Microsoft for learners who have interest in Artificial learning, Machine learning, Natural language Processing (NLP) and enthusiasts. Whether you’re just transitioning into the AI section of technology, or you’re even a professional.
In other technology roles, then starting with this certification exam path is the appropriate one to begin with.
Getting your fundamentals and basic concept of Microsoft Azure AI cleared by passing the AI-900 exam, rest assured that advancing into the complex operation, administration and functionalities associated with the Microsoft Azure solution will be very easy to ascend. It also provides the opportunity to demonstrate knowledge of machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI) concepts and related Microsoft Azure services.
Azure AI Fundamentals can be used to prepare for other Azure role-based certifications like Azure Data Scientist Associate or Azure AI Engineer Associate, but it is not a prerequisite for any of them to say the least. However, going through AI-900 will not be a bad decision before heading to the advanced roles.
Benefits of becoming Microsoft Azure (AI-900) Fundamentals Certified
Business owners will continuously push for innovations, growth and adoption of modern world-class technology in their services. Of course, this is done in order to scale up their businesses for current customers and likewise attract new ones. One of these interesting innovations is AI (Artificial Intelligence). Now is the time to get certified in order to provide these AI services in order to reassure the businesses that adopting the usage of AI in their business operations will be done by capable certified individuals.
The following are some of the imperative reasons why individuals need to become Microsoft Azure AI Fundamentals certified:
• Microsoft Azure is one of the major cloud-based solution providers with well-built infrastructure in Artificial intelligence
• Microsoft Azure platform has seamlessly penetrated the business operations of a good number of Fortune 500 companies.
• Azure provides services not only for companies but for countries.
• With the massive adoption of cloud services, cloud computing is rated to be a highly profitable rather multi-billion-dollar business globally.
Prerequisites for AI-900 Microsoft Azure Fundamentals Exam
Before sitting for the Microsoft AI-900 exam, it’s not from the requirements that you should be someone who has passed through a formal training on AI, data, machine learning or NLP (Natural Language Processing). Furthermore, you don’t need to have used Microsoft Azure services beforehand, however, the most important criteria is the ability to learn new things.
Here are examples of those who the AI-900 certification exam is suitable for:
• If your business model is essentially about selling AI or machine learning solutions, then the AI-900 Exam will be of benefit for you.
• If you are just starting out to learn AI and do not have any or technical background, then the Microsoft AI-900 exam should be a stepping stone though awareness of cloud basics would be beneficial.
• For candidates who have a considerable IT background, and aspire to learn AI or perhaps are transitioning into the world of machine learning, enrolling in the AI-900 exam will be a good idea.
• For those who are already in the field of AI and only exposed to tools such as Pytorch and TensorFlow but are not exposed to Microsoft’s provision for AI and machine learning in Azure, it’s highly recommended to commence their journey with the AI-900 exam. Of course, the concepts will not be new, rather it could even be a walk in the park. The only difference will be Microsoft’s terminologies and tools used for particular scenarios that will be new.
In the Microsoft Azure AI Fundamentals Exam AZ-900, candidates are usually faced with two format of questions. The first one is the multiple-choice type and the second one being the multiple-response question. The multiple-choice type has one correct option with three incorrect options. The incorrect options are known as distractors.
As for the multiple-choice response, there are usually more than one right response out of a possible four or five options.
Note: Getting one response correct and another one wrong in a multiple-response type does not earn one a correct mark for the question but only the one passed.
Objectives of Microsoft Azure AI Fundamentals Exam
Learners who register for the Microsoft Azure Fundamentals (AI-900) certification course, will gain knowledge on:
- Understanding of Microsoft Azure cloud concepts
- General knowledge of Azure service lifecycle and Service level agreements (SLAs).
- Azure pricing and subscriptions for their services
- AI workloads and considerations
- Fundamental principles of machine learning on Azure
- Features of computer vision workloads on Azure
- Features of Natural Language Processing (NLP) workloads on Azure
AI-900 Exam Course Outline
Microsoft has clearly defined, clarified, and simplified the course outline or exam guide in such a way that the modules to be covered are presented along with the percentage level of coverage. It’s encouraged that potential candidates have clear knowledge and insight about these modules before even starting preparation for the AI-900 exam.
This exam measures learners’ knowledge of artificial intelligence (AI) concepts, machine learning (ML) and related Microsoft Azure services.
Exam AI-900: Microsoft Azure AI Fundamentals exam course includes 4 domains. Details of these domains are given below along with percentage weightage :
- Describe Artificial Intelligence workloads and considerations (20-25%).
- Describe fundamental principles of machine learning on Azure (25-30%).
- Describe features of computer vision workloads on Azure (15-20%).
- Describe features of Natural Language Processing (NLP) workloads on Azure (25-30%).
Describe Artificial Intelligence workloads and considerations (20—25%)
Identify features of common AI workloads :
• Identify features of anomaly detection workloads
• Identify computer vision workloads
• Identify natural language processing workloads
• Identify knowledge mining workloads Identify guiding principles for responsible AI
Identify guiding principles for responsible AI :
• Describe considerations for fairness in an AI solution
• Describe considerations for reliability and safety in an AI solution
• Describe considerations for privacy and security in an AI solution
• Describe considerations for inclusiveness in an AI solution
• Describe considerations for transparency in an AI solution
• Describe considerations for accountability in an AI solution
Describe fundamental principles of machine learning on Azure (25—30%)
Identify common machine learning types :
• Identify regression machine learning scenarios.
• Identify classification machine learning scenarios.
• identify clustering machine learning scenarios.
Describe core machine learning concepts :
• identify features and labels in a dataset for machine learning.
• describe how training and validation datasets are used in machine learning.
Describe capabilities of visual tools in Azure Machine Learning Studio :
• Automated machine learning
• Azure Machine Learning designer
Describe features of computer vision workloads on Azure (15—20%)
Identify common types of computer vision solution :
• Identify features of image classification solutions.
• Identify features of object detection solutions.
• Identify features of optical character recognition solutions.
• Identify features of facial detection, facial recognition, and facial analysis solutions Identify Azure tools and services for computer vision tasks.
• Identify capabilities of the Computer Vision service.
• Identify capabilities of the Custom Vision service.
• Identify capabilities of the Face service.
• Identify capabilities of the Form Recognizer service.
Describe features of Natural Language Processing (NLP) workloads on Azure (25—30%)
Identify features of common NLP Workload Scenarios :
• Identify features and uses for key phrase extraction.
• Identify features and uses for entity recognition.
• Identify features and uses for sentiment analysis.
• Identify features and uses for language modeling.
• Identify features and uses for speech recognition and synthesis.
• Identify features and uses for translation Identify Azure tools and services for NLP workloads.
• Identify capabilities of the Language service.
• Identify capabilities of the Speech service.
• Identify capabilities of the Translator service Identify considerations for conversational AI solutions on Azure.
• Identify features and uses for bots.
• Identify capabilities of the Azure Bot service.
Ensure your study plan surrounds these topics.
How to Prepare for the AI-900 Microsoft Azure Fundamentals Certification Exam ?
After fully knowing the objectives and outlines of the Microsoft Azure AI Fundamental certification and why distributed teams should get certified for it, now is the right time to outline the ideal strategy to pass the exam.
Here is a step by step guide to effectively ace the Microsoft AI-900 or Azure AI Fundamentals certification in 2022:
1) A Cloud Guru
A Cloud Guru is one of the major cloud learning platforms with tons of high-quality videos and illustrations that appeal to learners. One interesting thing to note about A Cloud Guru is the fact that it provides very detailed hands-on lab. The hands-on mode is divided into two:
The guided lab mode allows learners practice new skills and instructional support are provided for them. As for the challenge mode, learners are meant to prove their skills without any instructor of any sort while receiving a score.
The course is 5.8 hours long, 48 total lessons and 9 hands-on labs. Asides the hands-on labs, there are also quizzes provided after every course chapter. This enables learners to analyze how questions are presented and how to answer them. There are 5 course quizzes within the course.
Here is the link for the AI-900 Microsoft Azure Fundamentals course on A Cloud Guru: AI-900: Microsoft Certified Azure AI Fundamentals
2) Cloud Academy
This platform is also similar to the A Cloud Guru. The platform is majorly about DevOps and cloud computing. The lessons are presented with nice illustrations and video courses. In addition, the AI-900 Microsoft Azure Fundamentals course has knowledge checks after every lesson and hands-on labs.
The hands-on labs are spread across the course but not after every lesson.
The course is 4 hours long, 4 total lessons, and 2 hands-on labs.
Here is the link for the course: AI-900 Exam Preparation: Microsoft Azure AI Fundamentals
HOW TO PASS THE MICROSOFT AZURE AI-900 FUNDAMENTALS USING PRACTICE EXAMS
An exam simulation of the real exam will give the learners the kinds of questions to prepare for and the typical options that comes after. This comes after preparing for the exam through studying the notes taken throughout the course. Here are some of the resources for the practice exams:
1) A Cloud Guru
They provide three practice exams for those preparing for the exam. Each practice exam lasts for 1hour 30 minutes duration with a total number of 50 questions. Here are the three links for the practice:
First link: Azure AI-900 Practice Exam #1
Second link: Azure AI-900 Practice Exam #2
Third link: Azure AI-900 Practice Exam #3
2) Cloud Academy
Here, learners are opportune to attempt 50 questions within a time-frame of 1 hour. The Maximum time to complete the exam is 1 hour 30 minutes and the average time is 1 hour 8 minutes. The questions can be repeatedly done without a limit to the number of times to do them.
Here is the link for the exam: Cert Prep: Microsoft Azure AI Fundamentals (AI-900)
There’s no limit to the practice exams. The motive is to understand how the questions are presented and how to answer them within a standard duration.
The questions on this exam focus on the four domains of Microsoft Azure knowledge listed below:
- Describe AI workloads and considerations.
- Describe fundamental principles of machine learning on Azure.
- Describe features of computer vision workloads on Azure.
- Describe features of Natural Language Processing (NLP) workloads on Azure.
- Describe features of conversational AI workloads on Azure.
Each domain has the same level of emphasis as it will on the official exam.
How to schedule for the exam?
After adequate studying and you’ve gained enough confidence, this is when you should enroll for the exam. You can schedule for it via Microsoft certification page on Microsoft learn.
Here is the link for registration:
How much does the Exam cost?
The exam cost $99 for those in the United States, however, the price is based on the country or region in which the exam is taken. Simply select your country from the drop-down menu to know what it cost.
You can get a free voucher by attending a Microsoft Virtual training day. Here is the link to register:
Where can I sit for the exam?
You can do this either at the Pearson Vue registered testing centers or at your personal workspace such as home, office, etc.
What is the passing score for the exam?
The exam report is reported on a scale of 1 to 1,000. One needs a passing score of 700 and above to scale the exam.
Advice and tips based on my personal experience
Whosoever wants to approach the exam with excellent grades should simply follow the mode of preparation mentioned above. Importantly, it’s common that people are encouraged to use exam dumps by online platforms offering those services. Avoid exam dumps at all cost.
This is highly discouraged because anyone who simply memorized the answers can pass the exams but this is detrimental to the community of competent certified Azure professionals. It will mean that people could be certified but cannot actually defend the certification through a transparent interview process or even head a study session by training others.
Kindly do the following things on the day of your exam:
- Wake up early.
- Eat and drink a lot of water.
- Review the practice exams again.
- Arrive at the testing center early if you plan to do it from the testing center.
- ·Ensure your internet connection is great if you plan on doing it at home, office, etc…
- Stay positive.
Thanks for reading this AI-900 Microsoft Azure Fundamentals exam preparation guide. Wish you success in your exams.