Validating and Renewing IT Certifications

Validating and Renewing IT Certifications
Validation of IT Certification and the Process of Renewing the Certificate

IT Certification recognises the knowledge and expertise of an individual on any particular skill or product. Most of such certifications come with validation for a certain period. It is imperative to keep the certificate up to date to be competitive in the job market.

 Earning such certificates is not an easy task, and the candidates must spend countless hours and put immense effort to achieve such certifications. So, it is essential to know about the validity of the certificate and the process to renew the certificate after the validation period is over. In this discussion, we will review the process of renewing such certificates, once the validation period is over.

What Are The Reasons Behind Expiration?

 The validation period of any IT Certification depends on the type of the exam and the Vendor, as well. The key factor that works to determine the validation period is the rapid growth and change in the paradigm and practice of IT across the world. The technology that is considered as the leading one today might be the obsolete one after a couple of few years. Product-based certifications expire in rare cases. For example, if you are certified in Microsoft Windows 7 Operating System, the chances are high that your certificate will never expire, as the next version of Microsoft Operating System will be Windows 8 or later, that has very few things to be done with Windows 7. That is why skill-based certification is required to be renewed after a specific interval to keep the candidate in synchronisation with the latest technology in the industry. For example, a leading programming language in recent days may be replaced by another programming language after a couple of years later, and so on.


AWS (Amazon Web Service) Certifications are remaining valid for three years. The recertification process of AWS is the most convenient one, as you can either appear for the latest version of the same certification or you can go for a higher understanding of AWS certification exam, as well. For example, AWS Certified Solution Architect Associate exam could easily be replaced by AWS Certified Solution Architect Professional. The best part is, you will get a 50% concession while renewing any AWS certification exam.


Most of the CompTIA Exam has a validation period of 3 years. These exams include:

  • CompTIA A+
  • CompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+)
  • CompTIA Network+
  • CompTIA Linux+
  • CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP+)
  • CompTIA Cloud+, and so on.

You are lucky enough if you are already done with CompTIA Server+ and CompTIA Project+ Certification exam, as you never have to renew any of these exams in your entire life.

You will find several options ahead while you are going to renew any CompTIA Certification.

The Certification renewal process for CompTIA is a bit different from the renewal process of other IT-related Certification exams. CompTIA has a Continuing Education Unit, known as CEU. Each CompTIA certification requires a certain number of CEUs within the first three years of renewal. You have the option to earn CEUs through attending IT webinar, publishing blog posts and having work experience, as well. Following is a list that will give you an idea about how many CEUs, you may earn for different CompTIA Certifications:

CertificationsNumber of CEU

Renewal of CompTIA certification is more straightforward and convenient compared with other certifications. You may also renew your CompTIA certification by appearing one or more of the exams, mentioned below:

  • Earn a higher level of CompTIA Certification.
  • Appear and pass the latest release of CompTIA Certification.
  • Earn any non-CompTIA IT Certification.
  • Complete CompTIA CertMaster CE.

CISCO offers different network and network security based Certification, which remains validate between 2 to 5 years. You have to appear and pass the certification to become a Cisco Certified Professional. Once, the validation of your certificate expires, you have to repeat the entire process and appear for the certification exam again. Followings are some Cisco Certification and their validation duration:

CertificationNo. of years for validation
Entry, Associate and Professional Level3 Years
All CCIE Certification2 Years
Specialist Certification2 Years
Cisco Certified Architect5 Years
ISC (2)

ISC(2) is a program that helps you keep your certificate updates, which is similar to CompTIA Certifications. If you are already a member of ISC(2), you have to earn a certificate number of CPEs, within the lifecycle of the first three years of the lifecycle of your certification. You may earn CPEs in many ways like, through professional training, reading books, attending conferences and so on. Unfortunately, your certification will expire if you are unable to fulfil CPE requirements within the three months after the expiration of your certificate.

Following is a list of ISC(2) certification and the duration of certificate expiration period:

CertificationDuration of Expiration

AgileSHIFT, MoV, ITIL, MoP, Prience2, P30, MSP and Resilia Certificates have no expiration date. The only Certification that expires from AXELOS is MoR, which expires after five years once you have earned it. To keep your MoR Certification updated, you must appear for the exam before your certificate expires within five years.


The best part about Microsoft Certification is, in 2018, Microsoft announced that none of their certifications will expire ever. Previously, certification programs like MCSE, MSCD and MSCA offered by Microsoft had a particular duration of the lifecycle, and the candidates had to appear for these exams again to keep their certificate up-to-date, which is no longer required.

Microsoft has categorised its certificates either as ‘Active’ or ‘Legacy’. ‘Active’ means, the skill and technology related to that certificate is considered as the most current version of the product and still updated. It also indicates that the work and talent related to the certificate have still operational and not reached to its end of life-cycle.

On the other hand, ‘Legacy’ means the skill and product-related with the certificate has already been obsolete, replaced and no longer in operational mode.

That is how your Microsoft Certificate will never expire. It will fall into either one of two criteria. However, it is recommended that you should try to keep all of you Microsoft Certificates at ‘Active Status from ‘Legacy’ status (if any).


The validation duration of PMP certification is for three years. If you are keen to keep your certificate updated, you must earn a certain level of Professional Development Unit (PDUs). One unit of PDU means you spend one hour time after teaching others, learning new stuff and volunteering what you have learned and earned. To keep your certificate validate, every three years, you must earn sixty PDUs. PDUs are again of two types. One is relevant to your learning process, and another is to assist your profession back through what you have learned.


VMware is genuinely flexible in terms of recertifying your credentials. Previously, VMware used to ask the certificate holders to renew it after every two years. In 2019, VMware declared that it is up to the certificate holders, whether they will continue their certificate through appearing for an exam again or not. It does not mean that VMware validates all the credentials it offered from the beginning. VMware still declares the certificates invalid, which is no longer in use. As VMware is offering Product base certificates, candidates have the option of getting certified for the most recent version of the product, if they are not three consecutive certifications behind.