Starting with FileMaker Pro 7, FileMaker Inc. has offered certification programs for FileMaker Pro. Since then, it has offered certification for each successive version that it has released. The latest version of the software, FileMaker 14, debuted in May 2015, with the certification exam announced several months later. If you are interested in becoming certified and haven’t had a chance yet, it’s a good idea to start preparing now - even if you’ve been developing with FileMaker for years, the exam can be somewhat daunting. Luckily, there are plenty of resources available online for you to review.
The best place to start is FileMaker’s own website. You can find information on the certification process at www.filemaker.com/learning/developer-careers/certification/, which provides an overview of FileMaker certification, offers links to next steps, and includes a link to the exam registration page. The Next Steps link (http://www.filemaker.com/learning/developer-careers/certification/steps.html) is a particularly good place to begin, as it provides links to a number resources that will help you get started - I’ll discuss a couple of these resources below.
First off is FileMaker’s own training series, which can be found at www.filemaker.com/learning/training/fts.html#fts-overview and is available in two levels – basic and advanced. The Basic training Manual is a free download and is geared towards those individuals with little or no experience with FileMaker or other databases. It offers an introduction to topics such as creating fields and tables, creating relationships, creating layouts, importing data, running calculations, basic scripting and reporting, etc. The Advanced training manual is currently available for sale as a PDF or an iBook on the iTunes store. It covers a lot of the topics that are in the basic manual, but in a more in-depth manner. Even if you’ve worked with FileMaker for a long time, or taken previous certification exams, I highly recommend going through this manual - it is pretty thorough and does a good job pointing out the new features of FileMaker 14. Another consideration is to contact a certified FileMaker trainer - there are a number of authorized organizations using FileMaker training materials. You can find a list of FileMaker certified trainers via the following link - www.filemaker.com/learning/training/trainers.html.
Another good resource is the FileMaker Community, which is available at https://community.filemaker.com/ - it’s free to create an account and it has its own resources section that contains links to videos, tech briefs, white papers and product documentation that you can review. This is a solid resource to go through, as there are several questions on the FileMaker certification exam that pertain to product specifications as well as questions of technologies like WebDirect, which are topics that are covered in these documents.
There is also a FileMaker exam overview file, which you can access here - www.filemaker.com/learning/training/docs/fm14_exam_overview.pdf. This is a PDF file that gives some information on the development of the exam, as well as an overview of the types of things you should focus on studying.
The best way to learn is by doing, so while you’re reviewing the materials, take some time to actually develop your own solutions with FileMaker. The training materials are a good starting point and have a lot of exercises designed to help you familiarize yourself with the FileMaker platform.
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And as always, thanks for reading!