AWS Certified Database Specialty Practice Exam

About AWS Certified Database Specialty Practice Exam (DBS-C01)


About AWS Certified Database Specialty Exam

AWS Database Specialty certification exam assesses the candidate’s knowledge and understanding of databases, including the concepts of designing, migration, deployment, access, maintenance, automation, monitoring, security, and troubleshooting.  Further, this exam validates the candidate’s ability in planning and maintain the optimal AWS database solution for improving performance, lowering costs, and enabling innovation.


Who should take the exam?

The AWS Database Specialty exam is best suited for individuals in the database-focused role. Also, the exam will benefit professionals with experience and expertise working with on-premises and AWS Cloud-based relational and non-relational databases.


Skills Acquired

  • Candidates develop an understanding and abilities in differentiating the key features of AWS database services.
  • Candidates should have the knowledge of the analyzing requirements to recommend and design suitable database solutions using AWS services


Prerequisites for the Exam

  • Candidates applying for this exam must have at least 5 years of experience with database technologies. 
  • And, at least 2 years of applied experience in working on AWS including experience and skills in working with on-premises and AWS-Cloud-based relational and non-relational databases.


AWS Database Specialty Course Outline 

The AWS Certified Database Specialty exam covers the latest and updated course outline - 

Module 1:  Explain Workload-Specific Database Design (26%)

1.1 Learn to select suitable database services for specific types of data and workloads.

  • Understand the differences between ACID vs. BASE workloads
  • Understand suitable uses of types of databases including relational, key-value, document, in-memory, graph, time series, ledger
  • Understand and identify use cases for persisted data vs. ephemeral data

1.2 Learn about the strategies for disaster recovery and high availability.

  • Understanding and selecting Region and Availability Zone placement to optimize database performance
  • Understanding and determining implications of Regions and Availability Zones on disaster recovery/high availability strategies
  • Understanding and differentiating use cases for reading replicas and Multi-AZ deployments

1.3 Learn to design database solutions for performance, compliance, and scalability.

  • Understanding and recommending serverless vs. instance-based database architecture
  • Understanding and evaluating requirements for scaling read replicas
  • Understanding and defining database caching solutions
  • Understanding and evaluating the implications of partitioning, sharding, and indexing
  • Understanding and determining appropriate instance types and storage options
  • Understanding and determining auto-scaling capabilities for relational and NoSQL databases
  • Understanding and determining the implications of Amazon DynamoDB adaptive capacity
  • Understanding and determining data locality based on compliance requirements

1.4 Learn to compare the costs of database solutions

  • Understanding and determining cost implications of Amazon DynamoDB capacity units, including on-demand vs. provisioned capacity
  • Understanding and determining costs associated with instance types and automatic scaling
  • Understanding and designing for costs including high availability, backups, multi-Region, Multi-AZ, and storage type options
  • Understanding and comparing data access costs


Module 2: Explain Deployment and Migration (20%)

2.1 Learn to automate database solution deployments.

  • Understanding and evaluating application requirements to determine components to deploy
  • Understanding and choosing suitable deployment tools and services (e.g., AWS CloudFormation, AWS CLI)

2.2 Learn to determine data preparation and migration strategies.

  • Understanding and determining the data migration method (e.g., snapshots, replication, restore)
  • Understanding and evaluating database migration tools and services (e.g., AWS DMS, native database tools)
  • Understanding and preparing data sources and targets
  • Understanding and determining schema conversion methods (e.g., AWS Schema Conversion Tool)
  • Understanding and determining heterogeneous vs. homogeneous migration strategies

2.3 Learn to execute and validate data migration.

  • Understanding and designing and script data migration
  • Understand and run data extraction and migration scripts
  • Understanding and verifying the successful load of data


Module 3: Explain Management and Operations (18%)

3.1 Learn to determine maintenance tasks and processes.

  • Understanding and accounting for the AWS shared responsibility model for database services
  • Understanding and determining appropriate maintenance window strategies
  • Understanding and differentiating between major and minor engine upgrades

3.2 Learn to determine backup and restore strategies.

  • Understanding and identifying the need for automatic and manual backups/snapshots
  • Understanding and differentiating backup and restore strategies (e.g., full backup, point-in-time, encrypting backups cross-Region)
  • Understanding and defining retention policies
  • Understanding and correlating the backup and restore to recovery point objective (RPO) and recovery time objective (RTO) requirements

3.3 Learn to manage the operational environment of a database solution.

  • Orchestrate the refresh of lower environments
  • Implement configuration changes (e.g., in Amazon RDS option/parameter groups or Amazon
  • DynamoDB indexing changes)
  • Automate operational tasks
  • Take action based on AWS Trusted Advisor reports


Module 4: Explain Monitoring and Troubleshooting (18%)

4.1 Learn to monitor and alert strategies.

  • Understanding and evaluating monitoring tools including  Amazon CloudWatch, Amazon RDS Performance Insights, database native
  • Understanding and determining appropriate parameters and thresholds for alert conditions
  • Understanding to use tools to notify users when thresholds are breached including, Amazon SNS, Amazon SQS, Amazon CloudWatch dashboards)

4.2 Learn to troubleshoot and resolve common database issues.

  • Understand and identify, evaluate, and respond to categories of failures including troubleshooting connectivity; instance, storage, and partitioning issues)
  • Understanding and automating responses when possible

4.3 Learn to optimize database performance.

  • Understanding and troubleshooting database performance issues
  • Understanding and identifying suitable AWS tools and services for database optimization
  • Understanding and evaluating the configuration, schema design, queries, and infrastructure to improve performance


Module 5: Explain Database Security (18%)

5.1 Learn to Encrypt data at rest and in transit.

  • Understand to encrypt data in relational and NoSQL databases
  • Understand to apply SSL connectivity to databases
  • Understand to implement key management (e.g., AWS KMS, AWS CloudHSM)

5.2 Learn to evaluate auditing solutions.

  • Understand to determine auditing strategies for structural/schema changes (e.g., DDL)
  • Understand to determine auditing strategies for data changes (e.g., DML)
  • Understand to determine auditing strategies for data access (e.g., queries)
  • Understand to determine auditing strategies for infrastructure changes (e.g., AWS CloudTrail)
  • Understand and enable the export of database logs to Amazon CloudWatch Logs

5.3 Learn to determine access control and authentication mechanisms.

  • Recommend authentication controls for users and roles including IAM, native credentials, Active Directory
  • Recommend authorization controls for users including  policies

5.4 Learn to identify potential security vulnerabilities within database solutions.

  • Understand to determine security group rules and NACLs for database access
  • Understand to identify relevant VPC configurations (e.g., VPC endpoints, public vs. private subnets, demilitarized zone)
  • Understand to determine appropriate storage methods for sensitive data


Exam Pattern 

  • Exam Name: AWS Certified Database Specialty
  • Exam Code: DBS-C01
  • Number of Questions: 65 Questions
  • Length of Time:  180 Minutes
  • Registration Fee: $300
  • Passing Score: Scoring from 100-1000, with a minimum passing score of 750
  • Exam Language English, Japanese, Chinese (Simplified), Korean


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  • Full-Length Mock Test with unique questions in each test set
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  • In-depth and exhaustive explanation for every question
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What are our Practice Exams?

  • Practice exams have been designed by professionals and domain experts that simulate real time exam scenario.
  • Practice exam questions have been created on the basis of content outlined in the official documentation.
  • Each set in the practice exam contains unique questions built with the intent to provide real-time experience to the candidates as well as gain more confidence during exam preparation.
  • Practice exams help to self-evaluate against the exam content and work towards building strength to clear the exam.
  • You can also create your own practice exam based on your choice and preference 


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