What is the difference between the 70-778 and DA-100 certification exams?

Exam 70-778: Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Microsoft Power BI

Confusion Exam 70-778

This exam retires on January 31, 2021, at 11:59 PM Central Time. You will no longer be able to take the exam after this date.

The Exam DA100 will be replacing the 70-778 Exam as of June 30, 2020. They are focusing more on role based certifications moving forward. Welcome to the How to Get an Analytics Job channel. Discover how you fit into the analytics marketplace, what skills you should build, and how to land your analytics dream job.

Candidates for this exam should have a good understanding of how to use Power BI to perform data analysis. Candidates should be proficient in connecting to data sources and performing data transformations, modeling, and visualizing data by using Microsoft Power BI Desktop and configuring dashboards by using the Power BI service. Candidates should also be proficient in implementing direct connectivity to Microsoft SQL Azure and SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) and implementing data analysis in Microsoft Excel. Candidates may include BI professionals, data analysts, and other roles responsible for creating reports by using Power BI.

Skills measured

  • Consuming and Transforming Data By Using Power BI Desktop (20-25%)
  • Modeling and Visualizing Data (45-50%)
  • Configure Dashboards, Reports, and Apps in the Power BI Service (25-35%)

There may be certifications and prerequisites related to “Exam 70-778: Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Microsoft Power BI”

  • MCSA: BI Reporting Related certification this certification demonstrates your expertise in analyzing data with both Power BI and Excel.

Exam DA-100: Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Microsoft Power BI

DA-100 Exam

Beginning this year (or maybe even at the end of the previous one), Microsoft announced that they will be changing certification strategy. Instead of being certified for specific tools (like, for example, SQL Server, Power BI, etc.), certifications are now based on specific ROLES (like Data Analyst, Data Engineer, Data Scientist, Developer, and so forth).

This means that old certifications and exams will be retired (first it was planned for mid-year 2020, now at the time of writing it is until January 31st, 2021), so if you plan to take “old” exams — hurry up:)

DA-100 is a “legitimate” successor of the existing 70–778 Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Power BI. If you take a brief look at the curriculum of both exams, I would say that they overlap in about 80%, which implies that if you already prepared for 70–778, you can probably make an easy switch to DA-100.

But, because Power BI is changing so rapidly, there are many fancy new features included in DA-100, especially related to AI stuff. However, don’t be scared if you are not familiar with those topics yet — they make just the small portion of the exam.


General Aspects of Exam

I know that most of you are interested in this part, so no hard feelings about the long story before:)… I needed to lay the ground for the most entertaining part.

The exam itself lasts 180 minutes, which is more than enough to complete everything without any rush. So, the first takeaway from this blog post is:

Don’t panic, don’t hurry — there is really quite enough time to thoroughly think about questions, answers and to review everything later

The exam consists of a combination of multi-choice questions and case studies. My advice here:

Keep your focus high when doing case studies, since there are some specific requests that need to be carefully examined

Finally, my feeling is that topics are distributed more or less even, but if I need to choose ones which looked maybe a little more represented than others, this would be my list:

Power Query (especially Power Query transformations)

Usage of specific visualization types

Data modeling

A lot of questions arise that people asking for about how much DAX and M are in the exam. Honestly, not much and only some really basic stuff, which should, in any case, be part of a default skillset for any aspiring data analyst (and Power BI-er).

What you’ll learn

  • Download for free and install and run the full version of Power BI Desktop, the BI and analytics software.
  • Be able to create analyses, such as line charts, stacked bar charts, or geographic analyses using maps.
  • You will be able to format numbers and dates and add labels, tooltips, and animation.
  • You will be able to Get and Transform multiple sources of data, including merging multiple files from a folder, pivoting, and un-pivoting.
  • Building and refine models, including adding calculated columns and measures.
  • You will learn the important M and DAX functions, to enable you to build your own formulas.

Who this certificate is for:

  • This reporting certificate is meant for anyone who has no prior experience with Power BI. It’s also for you if you have used it, but never designed a report.
  • It’s great if you have created analyses in other reporting tools, such as Microsoft Access, WebI, SSRS, Tableau, or Yellowfin, but it not essential. If you have, then it will be another string to your bow.
  • It would also be good if you had prior experience in using Excel formulas, but again, that is not essential.
  • No prior experience in reporting tools or creating formulas is required.
  • This certificate is probably not for you if you always know how to use Power BI and know how to create reports, although we will be looking at some more advanced topics, including the M and DAX languages.

Difference between the 70-778 and DA-100 certification exams

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