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How to renew your Microsoft certification for free?

Important information about Microsoft Certification expiration and renewal




Microsoft role-based and specialty certifications expire every year, unless renewed. You can renew a Microsoft certification by simply passing the online renewal assessment on Microsoft Learn. Certification renewal is designed to promote continuous learning and help you keep up with technology updates. Renewal content covers technology updates only, making it shorter and less time consuming. Renewal is free, and the process doesn’t involve taking an exam with Pearson VUE. Learning modules are available to help you prepare for renewal. You can renew any time at your convenience soon after the renewal window opens, approximately six months prior to certification expiration


Three steps to renew your certification

  1. Go to Microsoft Learn to connect your learn profile with your certification profile.
  2. Prepare with the collection of learning modules on Microsoft Learn.
  3. Take the free online assessment and pass it before your certification expires.

Benefits of renewing your certification

  • Maintain your Microsoft Certification with a continuous learning mindset and keep your skills current at no cost.
  • Validate your skills with the latest technology updates that affect the job role.
  • Renew your certification for free, without having to pass any exam(s).

Certification renewal requirements

  • If you hold a valid Microsoft role-based or specialty certification that expires within approximately six months, you may renew it.
  • To renew your certification, pass the associated assessment on Microsoft Learn before your certification expires.
  • Passing the renewal assessment on Microsoft Learn is the only way to renew a certification. You cannot renew your certification by passing an exam, even if it’s a new or updated version of the exam you initially passed to earn the certification. For example, if you took AZ-103 to earn your Microsoft Azure Administrator certification, you cannot take and pass the new exam AZ-104 to renew your certification. You must pass the renewal assessment on Microsoft Learn to renew your certification. There will be no exceptions to this policy.

How to get started

  • To identify which certifications are available for you to renew, visit your Certification Dashboard.
  • As soon as you’re eligible to renew, you will receive an email notification directing you to the assessment that will be available on Microsoft Learn.
  • When you pass the online assessment, your certification will be extended for one additional year from the current expiration date.
  • To help prepare for the assessment, advance your skills with a collection of free, self-paced learning modules. Explore available modules associated on the certification renewal page.

Frequently Asked Questions

For more information, check out frequently asked questions about renewing a Microsoft Certification.

1. Are there different ways to renew my certification?

No, the only way to renew a Microsoft Certification is by passing the online renewal assessment on Microsoft Learn.


2. Can I renew my certification before I receive notifications that I’m eligible to do so?

No, the renewal assessment on Microsoft Learn is only available once you're eligible – approximately six months before your certification expires. You will receive a notification email from Microsoft, alerting you when the renewal assessment is available.


3. Is it mandatory for me to connect my certification profile to my Docs profile on Microsoft Learn?

Yes, connecting your certification profile enables you to take the renewal assessment on Microsoft Learn when you’re within the eligibility window. You’ll also have a more personalized experience.

As part of the renewal process, you will be required to use the same personal Microsoft account credentials for both your certification profile and Doc profile on Microsoft Learn. Please note that only one certification profile can be connected to one Docs profile. If you have multiple certification profiles, please contact our certification support team to merge your Microsoft Certification profiles before connecting to your Docs profile.


4. What’s the difference between my Microsoft Certification profile and Docs profile on Microsoft Learn?

Your Microsoft Certification profile holds the record of your certification history with Microsoft, and you access it with a personal Microsoft account. If you have registered for a Microsoft Certification exam or accessed the Certification Dashboard, you have a Microsoft Certification profile. Your Docs profile on Microsoft Learn includes activity history across Microsoft Learn, Docs, Q&A, and code samples. You access it using either a personal Microsoft account or a work or school account.


5. I have a Microsoft Certification profile and a Docs profile on Learn, each associated with different personal accounts. How do I connect these two profiles?

Before you can connect a Microsoft Certification profile and Docs on Learn profile that each use different personal accounts, you will need to choose a single personal account to use for both. To review your options for connecting these accounts, please see the document “Aligning accounts between Certification Profile and Learn Profile”.


6. My certification expired. What happens now?

If your certification expires, you must earn the certification again by passing the required exam(s). For more information, visit: Certification expiration policy.


7. Can I renew my certification by passing a beta exam or by retaking an exam before my certification expires?

No. To renew your certification, you need to pass the renewal assessment before your certification expires. There will be no exceptions to this policy.


8. Do all Microsoft Certifications have the option to renew?

Microsoft role-based and specialty certifications that have been available for more than six months will have the renewal option.


9. Do I need to renew my Microsoft fundamentals certification?

No. The certification renewal process does not apply to fundamentals certifications since they do not expire.


10. Are the renewal assessments aligned to the regular exam update cadence?

Yes, updates to the assessments are aligned with certification exam updates.


11. Which languages are assessments available in?

Renewal assessments on Microsoft Learn will be available in the same language(s) as their corresponding certification exams.


12. How do I prepare for the renewal assessment?

You can prepare for the renewal assessment by using the learning collection that is provided for the specific certification that you are trying to renew. Visit the individual renewal pages on Microsoft Learn to access the learning collection.


13. How many times can I retake the assessment?

You may retake the assessment as many times as you need to take it to pass, and you must pass before your certification expires. If you do not pass the first time, you may immediately attempt the assessment again. However, after the second try, you must wait at least 24 hours before any additional attempts.


14. My expert-level certification requires achieving an associate-level certification as a pre-requisite. If the associate-level certification expires, will my expert level automatically expire too?

No, your expert-level certification will not automatically expire if your associate-level pre-requisite certification expires. Each certification must be renewed separately by passing the associated assessment.


For more info:

Renew your Microsoft Certification | Microsoft Docs
Stay current with in-demand skills through free certification renewals - Microsoft Tech Community

Is your certification expiring soon? Renew it for free today! - Microsoft Tech Community


Microsoft Learn | Microsoft Docs
Microsoft Certifications | Microsoft Docs

Browse Certifications and Exams | Microsoft Docs


Octalita Stankovic

Partner Communications

Visitor 1

Thank you Octalita for the great article