Microsoft Updated MCSE and MCSD Requirements for 2017
On March 31, 2017, most of the MCSE and MCSD credentials retire, leaving only new items active and available.
Microsoft recently updated its MCSE and MCSE certification pages for 2017. Mostly, it means you will now find the language "For 2017, this MCSE certification can be earned as follows" on the new-regime items, which include Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, Mobility, Data Management and Analytics, and Productivity. On April 1, the total number of available MCSE certifications will drop from 12 to 4.
The old-regime certifications (what's left) still look and read just as they did in 2016, but they will all retire on March 31, 2017. Anybody working on old regime stuff had better get cracking and make sure they finish up before those credentials disappear.
For MCSD the situation is similar, but the numbers come in somewhat starker contrast. Before April 1, 2017, there will be six MCSD certifications available. Starting on that date, however, the number drops to one: MCSD: App Builder will be the sole developer credential left standing. It too shows the "For 2017, this MCSE [sic] certification can be earned as follows" nomenclature that we see for the new-regime MCSEs, but we hope to see that type change to MCSD shortly.
Senior Business Strategy Manager for MS Learning, Larry Kaye, recently told me about the changes. I was expecting something a little more dramatic when those changes showed up, but it is what it is. The only substantive change to the new regime certs come because the Lync Server exams will also be retiring on March 31, 2017, after which they won't count toward the MCSE: Productivity credential any longer.
There are no other changes at all, as far as I can tell. But you should note that the new regime certifications no longer expire in three years. But they have limited shelf life, and Microsoft has already indicated they would like certified professionals to get in the habit of taking yearly cert exams to keep their credentials current. You've been warned.