Preparing for GCP Associate Cloud Engineer Certification Exam

September 6, 2018 | Comments(14) |

I cleared my first Google Cloud Certification Exam in June 2017, which was for their Professional Architect Track. Since then many new features have been announced and another Certification, Associate Cloud Engineer has been introduced. Recently, I cleared the exam for Associate Cloud Engineer Certification and I am sharing my experiences for the same in this blog article.

One major difference between the Associate Cloud Engineer and Professional Cloud Architect is that Architect Certification Exam expects you to know the best practices and theory around high availability, application deployment, managing security, resiliency, etc. whereas, the Cloud Engineer Certification Exam expects you to have hands-on experience working on certain GCP services. So, a lot of practical implementation level details are required for most of the core infrastructure services. You are also expected to have a very thorough experience in using the command line utilities like gcloud, gsutil and kubectl. Although this exam does not discuss a lot about data services e.g. PubSub, BigQuery or DataFlow, etc. it is still recommended to at least be aware of what each of these services is used for.

Let’s quickly look at what to expect in the exam:

  • The exam consists of 50 Questions
  • All questions are multiple choice (single answer) type
  • You have 120 minutes to complete the exam, which is more than enough
  • The passing score for the exam is confidential and might change over time
  • You only get Pass or Fail status after completing the exam and not the detailed score or percentage
  • The certificate is valid for 2 years from the date of getting certified
  • At the time of writing this blog article, the cost for Associate Cloud Engineer Certification Exam is $125
  • The exam is conducted at Kryterion Test Centres

How to prepare:

Like I mentioned above, the Associate Cloud Engineer Exam requires a good amount of hands-on practice to be familiar with many implementation level details. Here are some tips to prepare for the exam.

1. Command Line:

Work a lot with gcloud command line utility. You should be able to use it with multiple services like Compute, IAM, App Engine, etc. to an extent that you remember basic command patterns. The exam might ask you to choose from a set of answers that’ll require you to know the right syntax for gcloud CLI.

Also, use the gcloud to handle multiple projects by managing different gcloud configurations.

2. Security:

Be ready for a lot of IAM related questions. You should have an in-depth knowledge of how to use IAM Users, Roles and Service Accounts. It’ll also help, if you can practically grant access to certain users/resources using service accounts within the same project and across projects. You should also be able to check the audit trail either by logs or activity history.

3. Compute:

GCE VMs are definitely one of the core infrastructure components that you should read about. You should be aware of scaling activities, authentication types, using keys and metadata.

Kubernetes also has its definite place in the exam. Be ready to handle some Kubernetes questions. Even if you have Kubernetes experience outside the context of GCP, it’ll be quite helpful.

The third type of Compute service that the exam asks about is Google App Engine. Ensure that you know how to handle multiple services and versions of the application in GAE.

4. Networking:

Although the exam was not very heavy on networking concepts, but a basic understanding of how VPCs, Firewalls and some other networking components work helps a lot. Also, read about using multiple VPCs together in GCP or with your on-premise network.

In the end, I would say that the exam was a good test of my GCP knowledge.

If you are planning to prepare for this exam or other GCP Certifications, please check out our Google Cloud Platform (GCP) courses on

Feel free to post your comments in the comment section below.

14 Responses to “Preparing for GCP Associate Cloud Engineer Certification Exam”

    • Himanshu Sachdeva

      Well that will depend if you completely new to the cloud or have experience with some other cloud e.g. AWS
      I would say 4-6 weeks should be good enough if you are starting from scratch.

      • Chris

        I plan of obtaining my GCP certs as well. In your opinion, is the associate cloud engineer more difficult than the GCP Solution Architect Cert?

        • Himanshu Sachdeva

          Both the exams have their own objective. If you are already Architecting on any other cloud platform and are not doing a lot of hands-on, it might be easier to apply those best practices to GCP cloud and write the Architecture exam. Engineer exam expects you to have implementation level hands-on knowledge and just high-level concepts or best practices might not be good enough.

  1. Nihaz

    Iam Planning to go for GCP Associate Cloud Certification… Have so many queries as i have learned self… Could someone help me as number is 855xxxxxxx

    • Himanshu Sachdeva

      Hello Nihaz,

      Thanks for contacting. Someone from our team will give you a call to understand your requirement.
      For security reasons, I have masked your phone number in the comment above.

  2. Tar

    Himanshu- Besides the hands on what case studies and docs/articles do you think helped most with prep for the associate exam? Some chapters at Google documentation have over 515 articles included

    • Sangram Rath Sangram Rath

      FAQs and command line ‘how to’ documents on the scoped services definitely helps.

  3. Dami

    Hi, thanks for the detailed information.
    I do not have any experience with GCP with looking to have a career change to Google Cloud. I was looking to take the Associate Cloud Engineer training and then get certified. Do you think this is a good start based on my lack of experience in the cloud environment? If not, which of the certifications would you recommend. Thanks.

    • Sangram Rath Sangram Rath

      Hi Anil, please post your queries or get in touch with our sales team @ 88800 02200.


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