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MCDST Courses and Classes Overview

A Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate, or MCSA, works with Windows operating system users to solve application, software and hardware problems. MCSAs have the skills and knowledge to work with complex computer systems. Read on to find out what training an aspiring MCSA must have.

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Essential Information

Individuals wishing to become an MCSA must first choose which operating system they wish to learn. Two of the most common options are Windows 8 and Windows 10. Professionals seeking certification for Windows 8 must complete two certification exams, while Windows 10 certification only requires one exam. In order to study for these tests, aspiring MCSAs may take several optional preparatory courses.

Those who complete an approved certificate program can pursue careers as technical consultants and help desk technicians. MCSAs wishing to continue their education can attain expert-level certification as a Microsoft Certified Solutions Executive, or MCSE.

The following list contains a few examples of concepts that MCSA courses often contain:

  • Device security
  • Printer access
  • User interface
  • Disks & partitions
  • Device optimization
  • Virtual applications

List of Common Courses

Configuring Windows 8.1

This course explores the details of Windows 8.1. Students begin by learning how to install and customize the operating system and essential applications. Instruction then focuses on integration of cloud services and domains, followed by a review of security features and custom configurations. Other topics covered in this course include network connectivity, Client Hyper-V, user profiles and settings, and Internet Explorer 11. This course can be completed in as little as five days.

Supporting Windows 8.1

As the second and final course for the Microsoft certified solutions associate certificate, this class is designed for IT professionals with prior experience in providing Windows support. After establishing the basics of Windows 8.1 in the previous class, students will begin to study troubleshooting system issues. Students will examine problems that may arise related to Windows Store apps, group policies, remote access, and networking. This course features extensive hands-on experience intended to give students real-world experience in resolving issues in Windows 8.1.

Deploying and Managing Windows 10

In this course, students will acquire the skills and knowledge required to successfully manage the many features of Windows 10 in a business environment. Students will learn how large organizations with many employees design and carry out deployments for Windows 10. This course also offers an introduction to several types of software that MCSAs might expect to use, such as Microsoft Intune, Microsoft Azure Active Directory, and Microsoft Azure Rights Management.

Installing Windows 10

This course is designed to introduce students to the basics of Microsoft's new operating system. Instruction begins with an overview of the new features offered in Windows 10, as well as key differences between Windows 10 and past operating systems. Students then learn about basic installation and configuration procedures before moving on to more advanced concepts such as data security, file restoration, network connectivity, and device updates.

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