Information for: DEVELOPERS   PARTNERS

Acquia Certified Drupal 8 Site Builder

This is the study guide for Acquia Certified Drupal 8 Site Builder Examination.

In this guide, we’ll explain the exam blueprint, break down the knowledge domains, and help you get familiar with the nature of questions asked in the exam.

You’ll find helpful steps to prepare for the exam as well as links to further resources for study and preparation.

About the exam

The following is the key information about the exam:

  • Exam Name: Acquia Certified Drupal 8 Site Builder
  • Exam Duration: 75 minutes
  • Exam length: 50 questions
  • Pass/Fail mark: 68%

The purpose of this exam is to validate the skills and knowledge of a Drupal Site Builder in the areas of using Drupal features, Content and User Management, Content Modeling, Site Display, Community and Contributed Projects, Module and Theme Management, Security, and Performance.

This exam can be taken in a testing center or in your office, provided certain environmental details can be guaranteed (such as a webcam on the testing computer). Do not be discouraged if you do not pass the exam the first time. Many do not.

This exam validates a candidate’s ability to:

  • Plan, build, and manage Drupal 8-based solutions
  • Understand the core Drupal practices for site building
  • Develop and maintain applications using Drupal site building tools
  • Install and configure new Drupal modules and themes

The basic knowledge and skills required at this level should include all of the following areas and objective components:

Drupal

  • Demonstrate professional experience using Drupal
  • Setup and configure Drupal sites
  • Model content architectures
  • Manage Drupal content and users
  • Install and configure contributed Drupal modules and themes

Web and IT Knowledge

  • Experience in developing Drupal websites and web applications
  • HTML
  • Basic CSS, JavaScript/jQuery knowledge
  • Basic PHP knowledge

Steps to Site Builder Certification

Steps to D8 Site Builder Certification

Newcomer: You are absolutely new to Drupal.

D7 Site Builder: You have Drupal 7 Site Building experience, but new to Drupal 8.

D8 Site Builder: You have Drupal 8 Site Building experience, wish to get certified.

Take Acquia Academy 100 Level Courses

As a newcomer to Drupal 8, take introductory courses in Acquia Academy. We have three courses to get you started on your Drupal 8 journey.

  • Introduction to Drupal 8
  • Building a Basic Site Using Drupal 8
  • Extending and Managing a Drupal 8 Site

After taking the courses, build a small website on your own to reinforce the concepts learned in the courses.

Take Acquia Academy 200 Level Courses

For the Site Builder path, the next step is to take a comprehensive 200 Level course in Acquia Academy.

  • Building Websites with Drupal 8

If you have previous experience in Drupal 7 Site Building, you should start here. The course covers advanced site building concepts and also contains hands-on exercises to help you build a Drupal 8 based website.

You can access Drupal 8 preparatory courses on Acquia Academy at https://acquiacademy.com.

You can access these courses for free and review them as many times as you like. Many of Acquia Academy courses are available, and if you are in an Acquia enablement or training program, you have been assigned the courses you most require to obtain an initial certification.

Courses follow a model of 100-level for introductory material, 200-level for application of the concepts, 300-level for advanced concepts, and 400-level for solution architecture. Those with more exposure to Drupal 8 concepts, or with demonstrated development experience with Drupal 7, may skip the D8 100-level courses.

Developer Learning Path

Gain Practical Experience

Completing the courses may not make you ready for taking the certification exam. You need to have some real-life practical experience to attempt the exam. For this purpose, we recommend that you gain the practical experience by working on at least 2-3 real life projects.

Perform Self Assessment

Once you decide to take up the exam, we recommend that you study the domains and topics covered by the exam and their relative weightings. You should also perform a Self Assessment of your own areas of strengths and weaknesses vis-a-vis the domains/topics covered by the exam blueprint. This is a recommended starting point for experienced Drupal 8 Site Builders.

Use Labs and Study Guide

Based on your Self Assessment, you may need to gain knowledge and experience in some domains or topics. The best way to learn Drupal is by working or experimenting on it. Follow the suggestions given for preparation in the Preparation section and refer the external resources given in the Study Guide section.

Appear for Exam

At this stage, you should be ready to take the exam! Follow the ‘Schedule A Test’ link on http://acquia.com/certification and register for the exam. You may choose from an online proctored or an onsite proctored exam delivery option. You may find it helpful to read some sample questions and tips for the exam by downloading a ready guide from Acquia.com!

Exam Domains

Domain Number of Questions
1.0 Understanding Drupal 3
2.0 Working with a Drupal Site 10
3.0 Content Modeling 12
4.0 Site Display 6
5.0 Site Configuration 7
6.0 Community and Contributed Projects 4
7.0 Module and Theme Management 4
8.0 Security and Performance 4
TOTAL 50

D9 Site Builder Exam Breakup

Note

This exam blueprint includes topics, domains, and test objectives to help guide the test taker. It should not be construed as a comprehensive listing of all of the content of this examination.

Self Assessment

Experienced Drupalers will likely be more aware of their weaknesses than their strengths. You might have judged your own skill levels while reading through the eight domains listed above. It is quite natural for you to be more experienced and proficient in one domain than another. Also, within a domain, it is likely that you have hands-on experience on some topics but have never touched other areas within the same domain.

How to Use Self Assessment

We suggest you perform a skills and expertise self-analysis with respect to the domains and topics listed in the blueprint. The blueprint lists test objectives (topics) for each domain. Rank your skills on a scale of 0 to 10 against each test objective (0 for absolutely zero knowledge or exposure and 10 for complete mastery).

  • Topics with 8+ score are your strengths.
  • Topics with a score of 5 to 7 will need some preparation.
  • The ones below 5 may require a lot of preparation, or guided instruction.

Acquia Certified Drupal 8 Site Builder Self-Assessment Table

You may use the following table to carry out your self-evaluation:

Domain Topic Your Score (1-10)
1 Understanding Drupal

1.1 Demonstrate the ability to explain the distinct and differentiating features of Drupal.

1.2 Demonstrate the understanding of Drupal jargon and terminology.

2 Working with a Drupal site

2.1 Given a scenario, determine how administration tools are used for site management.

2.2 Given a scenario, demonstrate ability to configure user accounts.

2.3 Given a scenario of a completed content item, identify which elements are taxonomy terms, image fields or text fields.

2.4 Given an example of a page layout, determine what is content versus a block.

2.5 Demonstrate an ability to troubleshoot problems related to content, configuration and maintenance.

3 Content modeling

3.1 Demonstrate ability to model content using content types and vocabularies.

3.2 Demonstrate ability to configure and manage comment types and comments.

3.3 Demonstrate ability to configure and manage block types and blocks.

3.4 Demonstrate ability to configure and manage contact forms.

3.5 Demonstrate ability to configure and use multilingual content and interface.

3.6 Demonstrate ability to configure and manage menus, menu items and menu blocks.

4 Site Display

4.1 Demonstrate the ability to control the display of content across various regions of the site using the block system.

4.2 Demonstrate the ability to provide different presentations of content entities (like nodes, comments, user profiles, terms, etc.) for editing or viewing.

4.3 Demonstrate the ability to to create, manage and display lists of content using Drupal views.

5 Site configuration

5.1 Demonstrate the ability to use the various options related to site configuration like account settings, content authoring, development, search, site and system settings, media.

5.2 Demonstrate the ability to use the configuration and synchronization options to import, export, compare configuration across environments.

6 Community and contributed projects

6.1 Given a scenario, identify when a contributed module would be needed.

6.2 Given example project data, evaluate the health of projects.

6.3 Identify ways of community participation.

6.4 Demonstrate knowledge of how to report issues against either core or contributed modules.

7 Module and theme management

7.1 Demonstrate the ability to add, update, and remove contributed modules.

7.2 Demonstrate the ability to add, update, and remove contributed themes.

8 Security and performance

8.1 Identify security issues resulting from site configuration.

8.2 Identify performance issues resulting from site configuration.

Preparation

Once you have a list of topics for which you need preparation, you may face two challenges:

  1. Find and study documentation and knowledge resources for the topics.
  2. Find enough practical case studies covering the topics.

Knowledge Resources

Finding documentation and online resources is easier. You may register for Acquia Academy Courses and take a course in the relevant domain to refresh your knowledge.

A list of courses on Acquia Academy can be found at: https://training.acquia.com/free-training. Depending on your areas of weakness, you may wish to take one or more of the following courses:

  1. Introduction to Drupal 8 (Introductory Level)
  2. Building a Basic Site Using Drupal 8 (Introductory Level)
  3. Extending and Managing a Drupal 8 Site (Introductory Level)
  4. Building Websites with Drupal 8 (Intermediate Level)

You can access these courses for free, and review them as many times as you like. Many Acquia Academy courses are available, and if you are in an Acquia enablement or training program, you have been assigned the courses required to obtain an initial certification.

Courses follow a model of 100-level for introductory material, 200-level for application of the concepts, 300-level for advanced concepts, and 400-level for solution architecture. Those with more exposure to Drupal 8 concepts, or with demonstrated site building experience with Drupal 7, may skip the D8 100-level courses.

We also include a list of online resources and documentation for each learning domain in the We also list of online resources and documentation for each learning domain in the Study Guide section of this document.

Developer Learning Path

Labs and Case Studies

The second challenge of finding sufficient practical case studies covering the topics is likely to be more daunting. Here are a few ideas and suggestions for finding case studies for your preparation:

Review several (3 to 5) Drupal 8 projects that you or your team has worked on in the past year. Review the content types, field settings, display settings, vocabularies, blocks, menus, and views used on the sites.

For each project, study the following:

  • What are the Content Types for the site?
  • What are the fields and field settings for each Content Type?
  • What are the Displays configured for each Content Type? Are there any Custom displays? If so, how and where are they used?
  • What Vocabularies are defined? Are they controlled or uncontrolled? How is the Taxonomy system used?
  • How many Custom blocks are used on the site? Are there any Custom Block Types defined? Are there any custom fields in the blocks? How are they used on the site?
  • How many Menus are defined? Are there any Custom Menus? How are the Menu items managed? Where are the Menus used on the site?
  • List all the Views used on the site. For each View, check the Displays, Format, Fields, Sort Criteria, Filter Criteria, Contextual Filters and Relationships. Check how views are used on the site.
  • List all the Custom Modules enabled on the site. Check the functionality added by each module.
  • Go to the Configuration Settings page of the site. Check the settings made under all the available options. Check the settings made under People, Content Authoring, Development, Search and Metadata, RSS Publishing, System, Media, Regional and Language Settings.
  • Go to Extend. Enable modules under Multilingual section. Check the different configuration options newly available under Language settings and Content type configurations. Play around with the settings to build a bi-lingual or a multilingual website.

Once you study the projects as above, for each project, ask questions:

  • Why are the configurations the way they are?
  • What can be changed or improved?
  • What are the issues or support requests raised by the client?
  • What changes were made to initial configuration and why?

Study Guide

Check out the new Drupal 8 User Guide for understanding key concepts.

Tools to Know for Drupal Development

Drupal Coding Standards

This is an overview of coding best practices and standards as they are applied in the Drupal community.

https://www.drupal.org/docs/develop/standards

These coding standards, detailed for every area in which code might be produced during Drupal development, represent the broadly established best practices of the community. Adhering to these best practices will make development go more smoothly, and your contributions to Drupal core or modules more readily and easily accepted. If you are working on a project with Acquia technical support, these are the coding standards to which pull requests must adhere.

Drush

While not required to pass the Site Builder exam, drush is considered a basic skill for Drupal site development.

https://github.com/drush-ops/drush

Practice Skills Application

The application of Drupal 8 concepts is the hands-on practice of site building. The courses provide some opportunity to practice doing the tasks of site building alongside the videos, but you will need a little more practice than that to pass the exam. Some suggested resources are below, to give you a better understanding of the role of site builder.

  1. Understanding Drupal

1.1. Demonstrate the ability to explain the distinct and differentiating features of Drupal

1.2. Demonstrate the understanding of Drupal jargon and terminology

Topic Link
Understanding Drupal https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/understanding-drupal
Drupal Version Numbers https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/understanding-drupal-version-numbers
Drupal System Requirements https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/system-requirements
Drupal General Concepts https://www.drupal.org/node/19828
  1. Working with a Drupal Site

2.1. Given a scenario, determine how administration tools are used for site management

2.2. Given a scenario, demonstrate ability to configure user accounts

2.3. Given a scenario of a completed content item, identify which elements are taxonomy terms, image fields or text fields

2.4. Given an example of a page layout, determine what is content versus a block

2.5. Demonstrate an ability to troubleshoot problems related to content, configuration and maintenance

Topic Link
Administering a Drupal Site https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/administering-drupal-8-site/getting-started-with-drupal-8-administration
Managing Content on a Drupal Site https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/administering-drupal-8-site/managing-content
  1. Content Modeling

3.1. Demonstrate ability to model content using Content Types and Vocabularies

3.2. Demonstrate ability to configure and manage comment types and comments

3.3. Demonstrate ability to configure and manage block types and blocks

3.4. Demonstrate ability to configure and manage Contact forms

3.5. Demonstrate ability to configure and use multilingual content and interface

3.6. Demonstrate ability to configure and manage menus, menu items and menu blocks

Topic Link
Nodes, Content types and Fields (Documentation for D7, still valid for D8) https://www.drupal.org/docs/7/nodes-content-types-and-fields
Content Types https://www.drupal.org/docs/user_guide/en/content-structure-chapter.html
Contact module documentation https://www.drupal.org/documentation/modules/contact
Drupal 8 Multilingual Guide https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/multilingual
Working with Menus https://www.drupal.org/docs/user_guide/en/menu-concept.html
New field types in Core https://www.ostraining.com/blog/drupal/new-fields/
  1. Site Display

4.1. Demonstrate the ability to control the display of content across various regions of the site using the block system

4.2. Demonstrate the ability to provide different presentations of Content Entities (like Nodes, Comments, User Profiles, Terms etc) for editing or viewing

4.3. Demonstrate the ability to to create, manage and display lists of content using Drupal Views

Topic Link
Views User Guide https://www.drupal.org/docs/user_guide/en/views-chapter.html
Working with Views https://www.drupal.org/documentation/modules/views
Working with blocks https://www.drupal.org/docs/user_guide/en/blocks-chapter.html
Comment Types https://www.ostraining.com/blog/drupal/d8-comemnts/
New Block system in D8 https://drupalize.me/blog/201403/block-system-finally-useful-drupal-8
  1. Site Configuration

5.1. Demonstrate the ability to use the various options related to site configuration like account settings, content authoring, development, search, site and system settings, media

5.2. Demonstrate the ability to use the Configuration and Synchronization options to import, export, compare configuration across environments

Topic Link
Managing your site configuration https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/configuration-management/managing-your-sites-configuration
  1. Community and Contributed Projects

6.1. Given a scenario, identify when a contributed module would be needed

6.2. Given example project data, evaluate the health of projects

6.3. Identify ways of community participation

6.4. Demonstrate knowledge of how to report issues against either core or contributed modules

Topic Link
Extending Drupal https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/extending-drupal-8
Finding and installing a contributed module https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/extending-drupal-8/installing-contributed-modules-find-import-enable-configure-drupal-8
Evaluating a contrib module https://dev.acquia.com/blog/how-select-drupal-modules-part-3-evaluation-tips
Ways of community contribution https://www.drupal.org/contribute
Reporting a problem https://www.drupal.org/node/314185
  1. Module and Theme management

7.1. Demonstrate the ability to add, update, and remove contributed modules

7.2. Demonstrate the ability to add, update, and remove contributed themes

Topic Link
Finding and installing a contributed module https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/extending-drupal-8/installing-contributed-modules-find-import-enable-configure-drupal-8
Installing themes https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/extending-drupal-8/installing-themes
  1. Security & Performance

8.1. Identify security issues resulting from site configuration

8.2. Identify performance issues resulting from site configuration

Topic Link
Secure configurations for Site Builders https://www.drupal.org/docs/8/security/secure-configuration-for-site-builders
Drupal Performance improvements https://docs.acquia.com/acquia-cloud/performance/

https://docs.acquia.com/acquia-cloud/performance/#cloud-perf-drupal-core

Drupalize.me Resources

Drupalize.me has published a concise list of the Drupalize.Me tutorials and other resources that will help you prepare for Acquia Certified Site Builder exam for both Drupal 7 and 8. The list is available at https://drupalize.me/acquia-certified-site-builder-exam.