4 SQL Certifications for Your Data Career in 2024

Written by Coursera Staff • Updated on

A database or SQL certification may help you reach your goals in the data science field. Here are five to consider.

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SQL (pronounced either s-q-l or sequel) stands for Structured Query Language—a programming language often used by professionals who work with large amounts of data. 

SQL helps data professionals communicate with relational database systems to clean, sort, extract, and process large data sets. SQL remains highly relevant to the IT world—SQL was the most-requested skill among tech employers, according to February 2020 data from Burning Glass Technologies [1].

Several certifications show your competency in SQL, most of which are vendor- or platform-specific. Knowing what database technology your field of interest will require you to work with can help you decide which certification to get, if any.

4 SQL certifications

SQL is the language used to communicate with relational database management systems. Many certifications that show a deep understanding of SQL also test your knowledge of these database systems at large. The following certifications show a fundamental understanding of SQL in five commonly used relational database management systems.

1. Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Fundamentals

Earning this entry-level certification from Microsoft validates your knowledge of data concepts using Microsoft Azure data services, including how the databases work with PostgreSQL and MySQL.

This certification goes beyond SQL to show your knowledge of relational and non-relational data and data workloads.

  • Cost: ₹3696

  • What’s being tested: Core data concepts, working with relational and non-relational data on Azure, analytics workload

2. Oracle Database SQL Certified Associate Certification

The Oracle Database SQL Certified Associate Certification demonstrates your knowledge of basic SQL concepts, especially using it to work with the Oracle Database server. The certification will prove your competency in the SQL language, data modelling, and using tables, among other tasks. It requires passing one certification exam.

  • Cost: $245 USD

  • What’s being tested: Essential database concepts; retrieving, restricting, and sorting data; using conversion functions and conditional expressions; managing multiple tables; controlling access, and other topics

3. Oracle Certified Professional, MySQL 5.7 Database Administrator Certification

The MySQL 5.7 Database Administrator Certification requires one exam to test your understanding of MySQL, a relational database management system developed by Oracle. The certification will display essential knowledge of working with MySQL, such as installing, configuring, and monitoring the database management system.

  • Cost: $245 USD

  • What’s being tested: Installing, starting, and stopping MySQL; understanding MySQL architecture; managing users; identifying security risks and other security aspects of MySQL

4. EDB PostgreSQL 12 Associate Certification

EDB’s PostgreSQL 12 Associate Certification shows your fundamental understanding of working with PostgreSQL servers. PostgreSQL is a relational database that is scalable across large organisations. The current version is PostgreSQL 12.

  • Cost: $200 USD

  • What’s being tested: Maintaining and managing a PostgreSQL server and related applications

Are SQL certifications worth it?

Many jobs that ask for knowledge of SQL don’t require certification, and employers can often prioritise experience over certifications. But some hiring managers may look for applicants who have related certifications. 

SQL or database certification requirements may be more common for positions requiring extensive time with technology from particular vendors or platforms. For example, if a job requires experience with Oracle databases, employers may request that applicants have a certification from Oracle.

A data-related certification may position you to compete in what is projected to be a heavily in-demand industry. Expectations are that the field of data science will be one of the fastest growing in the coming years. 

SQL-related certifications can prepare you for several database professional roles like database administrator, database engineer, SQL developer, and data analyst.

Getting started with SQL

If you’re interested in learning SQL for a career in data analytics, consider earning the Google Data Analytics Professional Certificate through Coursera. In addition to developing proficiency in SQL, you can learn job-ready skills like Tableau, R programming, spreadsheets, and data visualisation.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Article sources

  1. Burning Glass Technologies. "G2: In-Demand IT Skills + 6 Tips for Hiring the Best Tech Talent, https://learn.g2.com/it-skills." Accessed July 31, 2023.

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