Welcome!

Related Topics: Linux Containers, Open Source Cloud

Linux Containers: Article

The MySQL Certification Program

Facts and Viewpoints from the Inside

For this installment of my recruiting/certification column, I have decided to turn my attention to the MySQL certification. It's another one of the open source-based certification programs that seems to be gaining a lot of traction in the marketplace. We, as most of you probably know, continue to see companies implementing MySQL as an alternative to proprietary databases on the market. As a result we have seen a dramatic increase in searches by companies looking for people with MySQL experience. Therefore, it's only prudent that we take the time out to learn more about this relatively new certification.

As with the previous article on the Zend Certified Engineer, ZCE, I have decided to take the same approach when exploring the ins and outs of the MySQL certification. In essence, I figured the best way to learn about the certification is to get viewpoints from people in the field. To learn the basics about the program, I spoke with Carsten Pedersen, who heads up the certification program for MySQL AB. From there, I exchanged e-mails with Ian Gilfillan of Independent Online, a leading newspaper in South Africa, and author of a book on MySQL to get an insider's viewpoint as to why he feels it is of value to spend corporate dollars on providing the certification for his employees. Last, I spoke with Mark Nielsen, who at the time of this interview was a MySQL DBA at Google and is now at CNET, to learn about the benefits he has gotten from being certified and how it has assisted him in his job searches over the recent past.

Interview with Carsten Pedersen of MySQL...

LWM: How long has the exam been in existence (Core and Professional)?

Carsten Pedersen: We started with the Core exam in the late fall of 2002. The Professional exam came into existence about half a year later (early 2003).

LWM: What is the number of certified MySQL professionals presently (Core and Professional)?

CP: To date, we have delivered more than 1,200 exams worldwide. About a quarter of these are Professional certification exams. It's been a slow start, but we're really seeing things pick up now. At our recent User's Conference, we had two certification tutorials and they were both among the ones most attended.

On our Web site (www.mysql.com/certification) you can find a list of certified people (it's incomplete, as not everyone wants their name published).

LWM: What is their breakdown of location? How many in the U.S., Europe, etc?

CP: North America accounts for about 50% of the delivered exams; of these, 85% are in the U.S. and 15% in Canada. In Europe, which accounts for another 40% of the exams, most are delivered in Germany and the United Kingdom. The remaining 10% are delivered across the rest of the world.

LWM: What percentage of the people move on to take the Professional certification exam after obtaining the Core certification?

CP: About one-third of the people who have the Core certification move on to attempt getting the Professional certification.

LWM: What is the pass rate of the number of people who take the exam (both Core and Professional)?

CP: For first-time exam takers, the pass rate on the Core exam is about 65%. For the Professional exam, this number is close to 50%.

LWM: What is the level of experience that you recommend for someone looking to take the exam (Core)?

CP: We recommend that those who want to take the Core exam have at least a few months worth of full-time experience, and those who go for the Professional title have six months or more of experience. But this is very hard to quantify: if you take one of our courses and do some intensive self-studying, you might be able to do the whole thing in three weeks. If you're learning on your own and not doing full-time MySQL work, it may take you many months to gain the knowledge and experience needed to pass just the Core exam. The type of work you do during the time you are getting ready for the exam also influences how much time you should expect to invest.

LWM: Do you advise people to purchase the study guide?

CP: Certainly! Of course, being one of the co-authors, I'm bound to say so. :-)

From what we are told the Study Guide does help those studying for the exams. I've also had many people telling me that it's one of the best sources around for learning the ins and outs of MySQL and (after the exams) a great reference tool. The main authors, Paul DuBois and Stefan Hinz, are both recognized as some of the best authors on the subject of MySQL.

There's good financial sense in getting the Study Guide, too. It contains a voucher that pays back 25% of the exam cost when you go to your first exam. For a lot of people, this means that you basically get the book at zero cost or some even get money back!

LWM: Do you happen to have any data that suggests the differentiation in salary levels for people with the certification as opposed to those without it? Any increase in compensation for people with Professional versus Core?

CP: We do not and, quite frankly, I doubt that any certifying body has the numbers to make such claims with any sort of reliability. Sure, there are studies out there claiming that certified people tend to get a higher salary. However, once you start digging into the background data, several questions on statistical validity and methodology raise their ugly head.

For MySQL certification, the problem is compounded with certification holders being spread across the globe - salaries and benefits vary too much from one area to another to make any valid comparisons.

That said, I have indeed spoken with several people who have told me they got hired into a company or got a better placement within their organization because they had invested the time in studying for the exams. I have also heard from consultants who are convinced that they would not have landed a specific job, if they had not been certified. Mind you, in all of these cases, certification was only part of the overall picture they were able to present to their employers or customers - but they were indeed what put people "over the barrier."

MySQL is becoming more and more accepted in the enterprise sector, and here certification is the norm, not the exception. If you're to even be considered for a job with one of these companies, there's no way around getting certified.

LWM: Is it strictly a multiple-choice exam? If not, what else is involved?

CP: On the current exams there are also a few questions that will require you to "fill in the blank" with a word or two. However, for a number of reasons, we are moving away from this type of question and strictly into multiple choice.

LWM: Where is the exam administered?

CP: Our exams are mainly distributed through more than 3,000 Pearson VUE testing centers across the globe (www.vue.com/mysql). At times, we also offer exams during events such as the MySQL User's Conference and other conferences or trade shows.

LWM: Do you plan on collaborating with other vendors, such as Zend, to offer a certification that comprises more components of the LAMP stack?

CP: We have talked with both Zend and LPI about doing exactly that, but currently there are no specific plans to do this.

More Stories By Brent Marinaccio

Brent Marinaccio has been with HotLinuxJobs since its inception in early 2000. HotLinuxJobs is a recruiting firm that specializes in the placement of Linux/Open Source professionals. As director of open source recruiting, Brent has gained considerable insight in the subtleties of recruiting in the Open Source world.

Comments (2) View Comments

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Most Recent Comments
SYS-CON France News Desk 12/12/05 10:48:42 AM EST

Enterprise Open Source Magazine: The MySQL Certification Program. For this installment of my recruiting/certification column, I have decided to turn my attention to the MySQL certification. It's another one of the open source-based certification programs that seems to be gaining a lot of traction in the marketplace. We, as most of you probably know, continue to see companies implementing MySQL as an alternative to proprietary databases on the market. As a result we have seen a dramatic increase in searches by companies looking for people with MySQL experience. Therefore, it's only prudent that we take the time out to learn more about this relatively new certification.

Enterprise Open Source Magazine News Desk 12/12/05 10:08:58 AM EST

Enterprise Open Source Magazine: The MySQL Certification Program. For this installment of my recruiting/certification column, I have decided to turn my attention to the MySQL certification. It's another one of the open source-based certification programs that seems to be gaining a lot of traction in the marketplace. We, as most of you probably know, continue to see companies implementing MySQL as an alternative to proprietary databases on the market. As a result we have seen a dramatic increase in searches by companies looking for people with MySQL experience. Therefore, it's only prudent that we take the time out to learn more about this relatively new certification.

Latest Stories
IBM helps FinTechs and financial services companies build and monetize cognitive-enabled financial services apps quickly and at scale. Hosted on IBM Bluemix, IBM’s platform builds in customer insights, regulatory compliance analytics and security to help reduce development time and testing. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Tom Eck, Industry Platforms CTO at IBM Cloud, will discuss how these tools simplify the time-consuming tasks of selection, mapping and data integration, allowing developers ...
In order to meet the rapidly changing demands of today’s customers, companies are continually forced to redefine their business strategies in order to meet these needs, stay relevant and continue to see profitable growth. IoT deployment and development is integral in this transformation, and today businesses are increasingly seeing the value of investing their resources into IoT deployments. These technologies are able increase ROI through projects such as connecting supply chains or enabling sm...
Most DevOps journeys involve several phases of maturity. Research shows that the inflection point where organizations begin to see maximum value is when they implement tight integration deploying their code to their infrastructure. Success at this level is the last barrier to at-will deployment. Storage, for instance, is more capable than where we read and write data. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Josh Atwell, a Developer Advocate for NetApp, will discuss the role and value...
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo, June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
You know you need the cloud, but you’re hesitant to simply dump everything at Amazon since you know that not all workloads are suitable for cloud. You know that you want the kind of ease of use and scalability that you get with public cloud, but your applications are architected in a way that makes the public cloud a non-starter. You’re looking at private cloud solutions based on hyperconverged infrastructure, but you’re concerned with the limits inherent in those technologies.
As enterprise cloud becomes the norm, businesses and government programs must address compounded regulatory compliance related to data privacy and information protection. The most recent, Controlled Unclassified Information and the EU’s GDPR have board level implications and companies still struggle with demonstrating due diligence. Developers and DevOps leaders, as part of the pre-planning process and the associated supply chain, could benefit from updating their code libraries and design by in...
SYS-CON Events announced today that EARP Integration will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. EARP Integration is a passionate software house. Since its inception in 2009 the company successfully delivers smart solutions for cities and factories that start their digital transformation. EARP provides bespoke solutions like, for example, advanced enterprise portals, business intelligence systems an...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Outscale, a global pure play Infrastructure as a Service provider and strategic partner of Dassault Systèmes, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Founded in 2010, Outscale simplifies infrastructure complexities and boosts the business agility of its customers. Outscale delivers a secure, reliable and industrial strength solution for its customers, which in...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Progress, a global leader in application development, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Enterprises today are rapidly adopting the cloud, while continuing to retain business-critical/sensitive data inside the firewall. This is creating two separate data silos – one inside the firewall and the other outside the firewall. Cloud ISVs oft...
As cloud adoption continues to transform business, today's global enterprises are challenged with managing a growing amount of information living outside of the data center. The rapid adoption of IoT and increasingly mobile workforce are exacerbating the problem. Ensuring secure data sharing and efficient backup poses capacity and bandwidth considerations as well as policy and regulatory compliance issues.
The 21st International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding busin...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 21st International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley Call for Papers is now open.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Interoute is the owner operator of Europe's largest network and a global cloud services platform, which encompasses over 70,000 km of lit fiber, 15 data centers, 17 virtual data centers and 33 colocation centers, with connections to 195 additional partner data centers. Our full-service Unifie...
For financial firms, the cloud is going to increasingly become a crucial part of dealing with customers over the next five years and beyond, particularly with the growing use and acceptance of virtual currencies. There are new data storage paradigms on the horizon that will deliver secure solutions for storing and moving sensitive financial data around the world without touching terrestrial networks. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Cliff Beek, President of Cloud Constellation Corporation, w...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Twistlock, the leading provider of cloud container security solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Twistlock is the industry's first enterprise security suite for container security. Twistlock's technology addresses risks on the host and within the application of the container, enabling enterprises to consistently enforce security policies, monitor...