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Microsoft 70-463 Value Pack
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Exam Code: 70-463

Exam Name: MCSA Implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014

Vendor: Microsoft

Certs Covered: MCSA, MCSE, MCSE: Data Platform, MCSA: SQL Server 2012, MCSE: Business Intelligence

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This exam is also referred to as implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012.  It will measure your ability to perform technical tasks, such as, designing and implementing a data warehouse; extracting and transforming data; loading data; configuring and deploying SSIS solutions and building data quality solutions.  The MCSA is the launching point for people who want to advance through the Microsoft certification system.

ETL and data warehouse developers who create Business Intelligence (BI) solutions should take this examination.  Also, persons whose work responsibilities include:  data cleansing, data warehouse implementation and Extract Transform Load (ETL).  The exam’s aim is to assess skills that are used in implementing software and services.  This exam is a part of a set of exams necessary for the path or track to certification as a MCSA: SQL Server 2012; there are other MCSA tracks available for other MCSA certificates, which require a different set of exams. 

Exam description:

Why is this exam required:

Successful passage of this exam is needed for the following certification: (MCSA) Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate.  This exam leads is part of a package which leads to a certification that covers key skills from older software versions, like Server and SQL Server 2008, as well as Windows 7, so this exam and its subsequent certification will lead you into a promising future while covering all your bases.  Examples of jobs for which you may be eligible after obtaining this certification are:

  • Computer systems administrator
  • Computer network specialist
  • Database developer
  • Database analyst
  • Information systems manager

Associated exams:

Related exams for the MCSA:  SQL Server 2012 Certification include:  461 Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012; 462 Administering a Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Database and this (463) is the final exam which will lead you to a MCSA SQL Server 2012 certification.  You should take tests in the order listed above.


The MCSA is a prerequisite to the MCSE certification.  You should have already taken and passed exams 461 and 462 prior to sitting for this exam.  Two or more years of experience and a solid working knowledge of relational databases are necessary.  You must also possess networking skills.

Objectives of the exam:

This examination may ask you to perform various jobs with data, such as, but not limited to:  loading, extracting, transforming, warehousing, designing and implementing.  You will also be assessed on various solutions:  building data quality and SSIS.

Design and implementation of a data warehouse 11%

You will be charged with introducing star and snowflake schemas, as well as managing the performance of a data warehouse.  This section of the exam will also ask you to design and implement dimensions and facts tables.

Extraction and transformation of data 23%

Herein you are asked to define Connection managers; design data flow; control flow tasks and Containers, Precedence Constraints; manage SSIS package execution (SQL Server Integration Services).  Also, you will need to show proficiency in implementing data flow with transformations and Script tasks in SSIS.

Loading data 27%

This section includes designing control flow; slowly changing dimensions, preparing a package for incremental load and packaging transactions, checkpoints and event handlers.  Also included here are questions regarding the implementation of control flow; data load options and script components in SSIS.

Configuring and deploying SSIS solutions 24%

In this section you will find questions regarding the implementation of SSIS fuzzy transformations and audits, logs and event handling.  You may be asked to configure SSIS security settings ; troubleshoot data integration issues; deploy SSIS solutions; install and maintain SSIS components; configure SSIS security settings; prepare data for mining and mine data: task and transformation.

Building data quality solutions 15%

Here you may be charged with using DQS (Data Quality Services) and the DQS Cleansing Transformation, as well as Master Data Services Add-ins for Excel.  Also included in this section of the test may be: creation of a knowledge base (and maintenance thereof) and a Data Quality project which cleans data, profiles data and improves the quality of the data.  You may be asked how to install and maintain data quality services or how to implement Master Data Management (MDM) solutions.  Lastly, you could be asked to use DQS and its Cleansing Transformation.

Career Prospects:

Someone holding this certification can expect to find themselves on the upper end of the IT payscale.  Global  Knowledge and Tech Republic reports that a person holding only this certification can expect to earn $77,000 USD or greater annually.  The workweek is forty to fifty hours for these types of IT jobs.  In the next five years, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates eighteen to twenty-eight percent growth for this type of employment opportunity.  Aside from long and sometimes inconvenient hours, you will also be expected to stay abreast of all new developments in technology as they relate to your job.


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