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Hortonworks Associate Certification (HCA) Exam

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The HCA Exam

The Hortonworks Certified Associate (HCA) certification provides for individuals an entry point and validates the fundamental skills required to progress to the higher levels of the Hortonworks certification program. An HCA understands the technologies and can recognize business use cases for the many frameworks in the Hortonworks Data Platform (HDP). Passing the HCA exam opens the door to a career in open data platforms and modern data applications. A Hortonworks Certified Associate is immediately eligible to attempt any of the exams at the Hortonworks Certified Professional level.

The HCA certification is a multiple-choice exam that consists of 40 questions with a passing score of 75%. The exam is based on the Hortonworks Data Platform 2.4 and consists of questions from the following five categories:

- Data Access: which includes Pig, Hive, HCatalog, Tez, Storm, HBase, Spark and Solr.
- Data Management: which includes HDFS and YARN.
- Data Governance and Workflow: which includes Falcon, Atlas, Sqoop, Flume, Kafka and Hortonworks DataFlow.
- Operations: which includes Ambari, CloudBreak, ZooKeeper and Oozie.
- Security: which includes Ranger and Knox.

To be fully prepared for the HCA exam, candidates should be able to complete all of the exam objectives.


Candidates for the HCA exam should be able to perform each of the tasks in the list of exam objectives below. Although not required, our Hortonworks Essentials training course is recommended in preparing for the exam. Visit the training page for more details.

How to Register

Follow these steps to register for the HCA exam:


Create an account at


Once you are registered and logged in, select “Schedule an Exam”, and then enter “Hortonworks” in the “Search Here” field.


Locate and select the “Hortonworks : Certified Associate (HCA) – English” exam.


Choose the date and time that you want to attempt the exam, and that is it!


Verify that your computer and internet connection meet the minimum requirements as specified in the Frequently Asked Questions.

Upcoming Courses

In addition to your self-study, our convenient Virual Instructor-Led Courses can help you get prepared for the certification exam. Register for one of our upcoming courses below to get started. Check back often if you do not currently see a session that fits your schedule.

View Our Upcoming Schedule of Courses

Exam Objectives

Candidates should be able to perform all objectives.

Download as PDF

Data Sheet

You can download the following details of the HCA Exam in a PDF