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Architect Certification

Posted by Igor Moochnick on 06/05/2011

Currently in the Software Industry there is no such thing as an “Architect Certification”. Yes, I know, that there some that claim to be like OCM (Oracle Certified Enterprise Architect/Master) or MCA (Microsoft Certified Architect), but they are concentrated on a certain technology or certain aspects of an architect.

In my opinion, to be an architect means that you should be a generalist enough to know a wide range of technologies (not only .NET or Java) and to be able to make an educated decision when and how to use them.

Pick a right tool for the job!

An architect should be bold and well spoken and be able to convey his/hers opinion to the team, the company and the management. He should not rely on his old achievements to support his “respect”. He should be able to defend his ideas at any moment of time by providing a reasonable explanation and a proof that the chosen way is the best one at this moment of time.

In simple words – an Architect should be “Bull**it-free” (an opposite to “full of bull**it”).

The only way to certify a person to be a “Bull**it-free” is to put him on a spot in front of a large audience with a wide variety of knowledge , technologies and experience and let him defend his decisions. This is the best way to see what this person worth.

So, if you want to be a great Architect, get out there, start contributing to the community. Start with the local user groups and continue making your way up to the conferences. Get visible!

What do you think?

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2 Responses to “Architect Certification”

  1. Ruben Steins said

    For the most part I agree with you, especially on the ‘getting your ass out there’ part. But do you feel that certifications in general are a waste of time? Personally I feel that it can really help to focus on a particular topic very intensely and us an exam to test you knowledge. Doing an actual project with those technologies is obviously the best way to gain knowledge, but an architect who is both MCPD and JCP could benefit from having studied those topics, right?

    • I do not diminish this type of certification, but I imply that the name is totally misleading and let people to call themselves “Architects”. This is what is really disruptive.
      How a person without a real field experience, after passing an exam, to be qualified to make decisions for a company? How often do you see a student, graduating after a series of exams (even after PhD), lead a company?

      So, bottom line, how can we create a certification that can quantify a “real field experience”? An amount of “blood” spilled on the “software battlefields” and a number of virtual “scars” received from using wrong technology or methodology?

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