Late last month I was able to pass my Certified Kurbernetes Administrator exam and I thought it might be helpful to share my thoughts and experience about the test.

Starting the Exam

I chose to take my exam remotely from home, and this experience was similar to other certification exams I have taken from home.

I signed in to the portal about 30 minutes before my exam as recommended. My desk and the area surrounding my desk needed to be clean and clear of other items I could use to “theorhetcially” cheat.  I took pictures of my desk, and the room I was in for review. I then needed to take my own picture and provide a form of identification.

Next were the familiar screens of NDA and additional information about the exam before I could finally click the button to begin my certification exam.

The Exam:

The exam is a virtual desktop that includes access to multiple Kubernetes environments or contexts. As stated in the Linux Foundation, the exam consists include 15-20 performance-based tasks to complete in various environments. At the beginning of each question or task is a command to run in order to make sure you are in the correct environment. Each question also has a different weight or value to your overall score. This means some questions may only be 2% or your overall score, while others may be 15% or more.

The exam length is 2 hours. Besides the obvious reasons for knowing the exam length, this also allows for a better perspective of how long each question should take. Assuming all questions were weighted equally(They’re Not) each question should take 6 minutes and be worth 5%. At the very least, this can give you an idea while you’re taking the exam how long a question should take. For instance, if you stumble across a question which weighs 15%, then the question could reasonably take 18 minutes to complete.

The exam also allows you to skip and return to questions, as well as flag questions you may want to review later. While this is nice, this means even more careful about which environments commands are run. If you start running commands in the wrong environment, you could not only get your current tasks wrong, but make others more difficult by affecting the wrong environment/context.

During the exam you are allowed to consult portions of the Kubernetes documentation. However, using this too much can consume much needed time and should not your sole source to complete the exam.

The content of the exam should look something like this per CNCF:

This hints at how many tasks of a certain domain you may see, and which tasks may have a greater weight to them.

The exam focuses on understanding what is required for each task and completing the said task quickly and efficiently. Tasks   may have multiple parts to them and the task itself may take a little time to read through and process. This is why understanding the weights and timings of each task can be important to help prioritize.

My strategy was to use as many imperative statements as I could, which are generally faster, and skip any tasks I didn’t immediately understand or knew I would need to dig into the documentation a bit to solve. This seemed to work well for me as I got through all the questions with 30 minutes remaining then take the remaining time to solve tasks I skipped or other solutions I wanted to double-check.

I hope this helps your preparation for the exam and I will post another post soon with specific tips for studying for the exam.

Categories: Kubernetes