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Best Python Professional
Certifications: 2021 List

Python is one of the most popular programming languages used today. Programmers who are fluent in Python are in high demand. The job market for programmers and coders can be highly competitive. That’s why certification is important: it validates your knowledge of Python and can help you stand out among your peers.

Prospective employers want proof that you can handle the tasks you would be assigned, and certification is an excellent way to do just that. Recruiters use professional certifications to screen out candidates and narrow their options to the very best. In this article, we’ll help you choose the best Python certifications to boost your career.

What’s Demand for Python Skills Like in 2021?

The Python programming language is one of the most popular programming languages today and is in high demand. The language is capable of meeting the needs of top tech companies that rely on machine learning and artificial intelligence to run critical operations.

Python uses high-level frameworks and libraries. Some examples of these frameworks and libraries include Pandas, NumPy, and Matplotlib. Web apps and websites are becoming more complex than ever. Frameworks like Flask and Django have been proven to help streamline web app and website production.

Why Should I Invest In a Python Certification?

A Python certification is an excellent investment. It shows you understand the workings of this programming language. It proves to employers that you’ve put in the extra work to stay up-to-date in the industry.

A Python certification can increase your bargaining power during salary negotiations and even land you a promotion. Here are some more reasons to invest in Python certification.

Proof of Python Expertise

Most candidates that apply for a particular job tend to have similar qualifications and degrees. A Python certification can make your resume stand out and get you to the next round of the interview process.

Proof of Commitment to Your Craft

Certification shows potential employers that you are willing to expand your knowledge and perfect your trade. This is a quality greatly valued by employers.

A Sense of Achievement

Getting a Python certification is no small achievement. Once you secure the credential, you will feel accomplished and ready to keep working hard to improve your skills.

Better Jobs

Certified candidates earn more than candidates who only hold a degree. A Python certification increases your earning potential and gives you access to higher positions.

Increases Your Value

Certification increases your value as a professional. When you get certified, your employer will entrust you with more responsibility and consider you a more efficient and productive worker.

Overview: The Best Python Certifications

Certification Cost Validity
Certified Entry-Level Python Programmer (PCEP) $59 For life
Certified Associate in Python Programmer (PCAP) $295 For life
Certified Professional in Python Programming 1 (PCPP1) $195 For life
Certified Professional in Python Programming 2 (PCPP2) $195 For life
Microsoft’s Exam 98-381: Introduction to Programming Using Python $127 For life

Top 5 Python Certifications

Several organizations and institutions offer certification for Python programmers, but only two have wide recognition: Microsoft and Python Institute.

Microsoft has one major Python certification while Python Institute offers several. Python Institute collaborates with Pearson VUE to issue these credentials. Below we dig deeper into the best Python certifications available.

Certified Entry-Level Python Programmer (PCEP)

This entry-level certification is ideal for beginners with few years of experience. However, you may need some knowledge of algorithms and flowchart creation. To enroll, you need to understand procedural programming and how it works.

The PCEP certification proves you fully understand the language. It is ideal for computer science graduates or programmers who want to get an entry-level job or an internship.

Certified Associate in Python Programmer (PCAP)

This is the next certification after PCEP. It represents the second stage in Python Institute’s certification path. It is ideal for computer science students, programmers, or anyone who wants to secure a job at the associate level or start a career in Python programming.

You will be tested on general computer programming concepts, loops, syntax, and semantics. To pass the PCAP exam, you will also need a good understanding of the runtime environment, general coding techniques, and object-oriented programming.

Certified Professional in Python Programming 1 (PCPP1)

This is the next level of certification from the Python Institute. It gauges the candidate’s ability to work with modules and Python libraries, apply advanced OOP techniques and notions, and create frameworks, tools, and complete systems. To take this exam, you need to have secured the PCAP certification.

The PCPP1 exam measures your understanding of network and GUI programming. This credential is ideal for experienced Python developers, programmers, and those who seek senior roles.

Certified Professional in Python Programming 2 (PCPP2)

This is the last rung in the Python Institute certification path. PCPP 2 will test you on design patterns, creating and distributing patterns, network programming, interprocess communications, and Python-MySQL database access.

Other topics include sharing, installing, and storing packages, and testing units. It also includes threading, multiprocessing, subprocesses, sockets, synchronization, MySQL, relational databases, and CRUD apps.

Microsoft’s Exam 98-381: Introduction to Programming Using Python

This certification from Microsoft is also an entry-level credential. It covers data types, syntax, and basic knowledge of Python. Candidates should have some prior Python instruction or around 100 hours of hands-on experience with this language.

To pass the test, you must be able to solve problems logically with Python constructs, write syntactically correct code, and identify data types

Choosing the Right Certification

There are some criteria to consider before choosing a certification. For example, the certification should be awarded by a reputable organization. Not all certification providers enjoy the same reputation and choosing one that’s not held in high esteem by employers could hamper your job prospects. These are other things to consider:

Exam Preparation

Certification exams are tough, but with the right preparation, you should be able to pass with flying colors. Ideally, the certification provider also offers the training you need to pass the exam. Sometimes, the organization that offers the certification does not offer training directly but suggests a list of third-party courses you can take to prepare for the examination.

Brand and Reputation

Earning a certification from recognizable brands like Microsoft makes you a more attractive candidate. Take this into consideration when choosing your certification provider and make sure you go with one that has a wide appeal.

Consider Validity

It is important to remember that some certifications have an expiration date. You may need to renew them after a few years. If you want to pursue a credential that involves recertification, plan ahead of time to make sure you maintain your skills and are able to pass the exam again.

Preparing for Your Certification Exam

Preparing for Your Certification Exam

Certification exams require a lot of preparation. Fortunately, you’ll find plenty of resources online to help you study. You can choose to study on your own or enroll in an online course. Below is a list of courses that will help you get ready for some of the Python certifications listed in this article.

Type of Resource: Online Course
Cost: Free

Offered by the Python Institute, this course will help you prepare for the PCEP and PCAP examinations. It is self-paced so you can study on your own schedule. There are no prerequisites: you can start learning Python from scratch immediately.

Great for:

  • Learning the basics of Python.
  • Preparing for PCEP and PCAP.

Python Essentials 2 by Python Institute

Type of Resource: Online Course
Cost: Free

This course covers more advanced Python such as semantics, syntax, general coding techniques, and object-oriented programming. It is used to prepare for the PCAP examination.

Great for:

  • Learning Python syntax and semantics.
  • Preparing for PCAP.
  • Building a foundation to pursue a career in software development, security, networking, and the Internet of Things (IoT).

Type of Resource: Online Course
Cost: $12.99

This course offered by Udemy helps you pass the Python certification examination of your choosing. It contains several practice tests with questions on variable names, numeric types, formatting, Python strings, argument passing, recursion, Python lists, and Python mapping functions. This gives you a chance to practice some of the questions you could encounter during the exam.

Great for:

  • People taking a Python certification exam.
  • People looking for practice tests to prepare for a Python examination.

Type of Resource: Online Course
Cost: Accessible with membership ($39/month)

This online course offered by Google will also help you prepare for Python certification. It is a beginner-level program composed of six courses. This program teaches you to automate system administration tasks with Python. It also covers how to use GitHub and Git and how to troubleshoot complex issues.

Great for:

  • Aspiring Python programmers.
  • IT professionals who want to learn in-demand skills.

Type of Resource: Online Course
Cost: $339/month

This nano degree can also come in handy while preparing for your certification exam. It covers programming fundamentals for a data science career as well as how to use SQL, Python, command line, and Git

Great for:

  • Beginners who want to pursue a career in data science.
  • Working professionals who want to take the Python certification exam.
  • Students looking to learn a new skill.
Should I Pursue a Python Certification in 2021?

Should I Pursue a Python Certification in 2021?

Pursuing a Python certification in 2021 is a good move if you want to have access to a higher salary and better jobs. The demand for Python programmers is high because this programming language is ideal for data visualization, machine learning, and data analysis.

A Python certification can increase your leverage when it comes to negotiating a higher salary. Likewise, with a Python certification, your employer will see you as a more valuable asset and entrust you with greater responsibilities.

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