Two New SAS® Viya® Programming Certifications


SAS Global Certification is pleased to announce two (yes two!) new SAS Viya programming certifications. Traditional SAS programmers need to migrate their code and data to SAS Viya environments, and there are important skills required to make a successful transition. SAS Viya includes Cloud Analytic Services (CAS), where data is stored in-memory and programs execute in parallel on distributed nodes. To leverage CAS, you may need to update your DATA step and SAS SQL code. Also, there are new techniques to manage data stored in CAS. Once you have mastered these skills, you can take an exam and add the credential to your resumes, cv, and LinkedIn profiles!

Behind the Scenes

A cross functional team here at SAS worked since the beginning of 2021 to design, write, and validate these new credentials. Drawing from their experience working with SAS customers, this diverse team from Professional Services, Technical Support, Documentation, and Education overcame the challenges of distance and time-zones (and virtual meetings!) to create these credentials. We appreciate the work that this team accomplished and we had a great time working with you!

This video outlines the key differences between each SAS Viya certification, along with steps to help you prepare for them.

SAS Viya Programming Associate

The first credential, the SAS Certified Associate: Fundamentals of Programming Using SAS Viya is designed for SAS programmers who simply need to migrate their code and data to SAS Viya. They plan to work with CAS tables while still using traditional SAS programming techniques. One helpful tool is the CASUTIL procedure, which provides a familiar SAS procedure framework to help SAS programmers manage data in CAS. Also, we cover important skills to update DATA step code and convert PROC SQL code to PROC FEDSQL to execute in CAS. To learn these skills and prepare for the exam, the recommended training is the one-day Programming for SAS Viya course.

SAS Viya Programming Specialist

The second credential, the SAS Certified Specialist: Intermediate Programming Using SAS Viya builds on the skills introduced in the Associate credential, adding assessment of CAS Language (CASL) programming and CAS actions. With CASL programming skills, you can more precisely control accessing and processing of CAS data. There is also extensive coverage of CAS actions which is the smallest unit of work for the CAS server. CAS actions can load data, transform data, compute statistics, perform analytics, and create output. In addition to the Programming for SAS Viya course, the second recommended training class is the new three-day High-Performance Data Processing with CASL in SAS Viya.

Next Steps

You can learn more about these new credentials at the links above. There you will find detailed exam content guides, free sample questions, and free practice exams (yes - free full length practice exams!). If you have questions, please ask in the comments below. I'll start with a few easy ones:

  • Are there pre-requisites for these credentials? No. While they assume good understanding of traditional programming in a SAS 9 environment, these credentials do not require a prior SAS certification. You also can take the SAS Viya Programming Specialist without taking the SAS Viya Programming Associate.
  • Are these exams performance-based? No, these exams are not performance-based but are rather traditional format exams with multiple choice and short-answer fill-in-the-blank questions.
  • What exactly is on the exam? For detailed exam topics, hit the "Exam Content Guide" links on each credential's web page. The content guides contain exam sections, objectives, and expanded detail about the important topics.
  • What are the exam numbers? The Associate exam is A00-415 and the Specialist exam is A00-420.

We hope you tackle the recommended training, develop your skills, and register soon to be the first candidates to earn these credentials. Good luck with your preparations!


About Author

Mark Stevens

SR Certification Specialist

Mark Stevens is a Certification Specialist for SAS Global Certification and has been working in training and certification since 2004. A SAS Certified Base Programmer since 2010, Mark enjoys every opportunity to dive into new SAS products and features. When he isn’t working on the next SAS certification, he can be found digging in the gardens in his back yard.

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