Exam 70-483: Programming in C# 5.0

I took and passed this exam this morning and am feeling quite happy with myself. It is the first of the three exams which are building blocks towards the Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (Windows Store Apps) certification, but on it’s own it does confer Microsoft Specialist (C# 5.0 Programming) status. For more information on the MCSD see here as you have the option of pursuing this through C# and Xaml or Javascript and Html 5.


My route to certification

So I have worked in C# quite a bit over the years, but have been wary of the certification exams and the specificity of their questioning. This was due to my belief that modern resources like IntelliSense and MSDN have meant that we don’t tend to memorise the specifics of the languages and frameworks with which we work anymore. There was a time when one always required books on the desk and it was natural to save that kind of slow research time by remembering API method signatures etc... whereas now I think I tend to more naturally remember concepts and then quickly look up implementation specifics when required. But earlier this year I finally got my first certification and so my fear of specific questioning was reduced and ultimately the experience made me want to get more certs. I purchased “Pro C# and the .Net 4.5 Framework” a couple of months ago and as I worked my way through it I thought now might be a good time to think about some of the programming certifications.

So although I was at that stage only half way through the big book (it’s 1400 pages) I checked out the certification paths and discovered that as an employee I could get the recommended training course (Course 20483B) documentation soft copy for free. Over the last few weeks in the evenings I worked through the modules and was pleasantly suprised to find no surprises; what I mean by this is that is I had pretty much covered everything in the course before (the fact that I’ve written a few Windows Phone and Windows 8 apps over the last year certainly  helped with the newer stuff).

After I finished the course I went ahead and booked the exam, and then revised by following the links from the blog pages of a couple of folk who had already passed it (Thank you Andreas Hammar, Claudio Bernasconi and of course MSDN and Technet). I also speed read the course modules again, but paid extra attention to the areas to areas to which I have had less exposure (Performance counters, Reflection, using unmanaged code and encryption/decryption).


On the day I actually found this exam a little easier than the previous CRM one - I think in programming subjects it might be easier to spot definitively correct answers. It was also shorter (at only 40 questions) and I found that sometimes when I'd marked a question for review a later question which included a code sample might help clear up the ambiguity (in my mind) and let me go back an finish the "marked for review" question (only happened for a couple of questions). Anyway, I am now a certified Microsoft Specialist in C# 5.0 programming and have already acquired the course materials for the the next one (Essentials of Developing Windows Store Apps using C#). I’m on vacation next week, so I may get to make a start on it...

Comments (24)
  1. Wouter de Kort says:


    I'm the author for the Programming in C# exam reference (will be released in July). I think the subjects you mention are the hardest for everyone.

    I know that the books for Windows app certification are being authored as we speak so it should become easier to pass these exams in the future.when they are released.

    Good luck with your other exams. MCSD is a nice title to get!

  2. DermotB says:

    Thanks Wouter – if you want a proofreader/reviewer, just let me know!

  3. SK says:

    Could you please let me know that from where did you get the free soft copy of Course 20483B?

  4. DermotB says:

    Hi SK, So when I say free, I'm a MS employee – so it was basically sponsored by my employer

  5. FP says:

    Hi ! if I send you my email, can you send me back a copy of the course ? Do you know if there is a book or a guide to prepare this exam by myself ? Thank you in advance !

  6. DermotB says:

    @FP Definitely cannot send you a copy as that would be illegal. There is a prep guide book in the pipeline and it is available for pre-order on amazon (http://www.amazon.com/…/ref=sr_1_1)

  7. Wouter de Kort says:

    The official Microsoft Exam Reference for 70-483 is now available!

    You can order it at http://www.amazon.com/…/0735676828.

    Looking forward to your comments and reviews!


  8. timfi says:

    Wouter – the Kindle version is unavailable -> error message =

    "Item Under Review

    This book is currently unavailable because there is an issue with its description, content, or formatting.

    We are working with the publisher to fix the issue. As always, we value customer feedback"

  9. Alex says:

    Does anybody know when the Kindle version is going to be available?

  10. Dave Jones says:

    Wouter would  only studying your book help a person pass the exam 70-483? or would you need other study materials?

  11. Shane says:

    The Kindle version is not available because it does not include the coupon for the 15% off an Exam as advertised in the description. The paper version does. Not sure when it will be fixed.

  12. Clara says:

    Thank you for posting # of questions.  I was looking for this info for a while 🙂

  13. Dog says:

    test free online in the http://www.iheadgo.com


  14. ibra says:

    I passed the exam today:) I don't have any experience just read the book in one month and it is done.

  15. DermotB says:

    Congratulations ibra!

  16. AD says:

    Ibra, may I ask how many questions you were asked?

  17. Alex says:

    I have not pass thrue this exam yesterday. 🙁 Strange, cause I have thinking that I was ready. I think there is too short time period for me as for foreigner. Just 2 minutes for a question or even shorter time. I need a minute for just reading question. And in one question have also seeing absolutely strange dropdown with code selection after semicolon where such code could not be. And now think that that was just such a type of question where nothing should be selected. Have mark this question. Will try later second shot. May be at second time will get a luck.

  18. aaliya says:

    hi, is there any online free resource from where we can do preparation for this exam (70-483) ??? i mean e-book aor videos???? plz help

  19. Steve says:

    I have never seen a more dis-jointed certification process than Microsoft has, and I have quite a few certifications but no Microsoft. For example, 1) It is not easy to figure out what MS certifications are still available (i.e. not retired). 2) I can't find any FREE prior tests to assess where I'm at and if my  experience is relative and then if I want to pursue the certification. 3) I can't find a study guide that says it covers all (not even most) of the content tested. MS web sources are also often out of date or not updated. Sure a guy that works at MS can get the complete outline, but what about the rest of us?

    Sorry and I don't want to be overly harsh, but is this a joke?

  20. shweta says:

    hi , i need to know is this test still available with Microsoft . I also want to be the certified in this course . Find it very interesting . as well if its available ,please help me in knowing is there any practice test online

    I have heard sometime coupons are available of some discounts in certification , is that so.

    Please help me in answering my queries .Thank ya

  21. Raman says:

    How long is the exam? and how many questions,i think you said it was around 40 questions.

  22. Arbaaz Mahmood says:

    i am arbaaz mahmood from pakistan i am 9 years old i bought the exam ref book and studied but i unfortunately not passed the exam and got 443 marks / 1000 passing was 700 and the questions were 50

  23. Elgun Mirza says:


    How many questions are in the exam 70-483 do anybody know?

  24. Mo says:

    Hi Ibra,

    May I ask you which book you had for exam 70-483?

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