Red Hat Certification FAQs

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This page answers some frequently asked questions about Red Hat's certification programs.

General Questions

What is the purpose of Red Hat's certification programs?

Red Hat certification programs validate people's technical skills and knowledge. Organizations hiring employees, contractors, and consultants can look to Red Hat certifications as an input into hiring, assignment, promotion, and other management decisions. Similarly, individuals who earn these certifications benefit by having official, impartial validation of their skills and knowledge.

What is meant by "performance-based" testing?

Performance-based testing is testing by doing--that is, by having examinees perform real-world tasks similar to those they must perform in a job role. Performance-based testing is also called hands-on or practical testing. All Red Hat certification exams are performance-based tests, and Red Hat is the industry leader in IT performance-based testing.

What sort of identification is required in order to take the test?

A government-issued photo identification is required in most areas. Candidates in regions for which government-issued photo IDs are not available should contact their local Red Hat office or their authorized Red Hat training partner for guidance on acceptable forms of identification.

What are the Individual Exam Sessions?

Individual Exam Sessions are a convenient alternative to Red Hat's open enrollment exams that are delivered in classrooms. A professional proctor observes an examinee remotely as an exam is taken on a secured system in a testing center. Learn more by visiting the

When do I receive my official results after taking an exam?

Exam results are emailed to candidates within three US business days, assuming they have provided accurate contact information. Red Hat Certificate of Expertise Exam results are emailed within three US business days. Unfortunately, some mail servers mistakenly treat results emails as spam and filter them, which can cause delays. Candidates who do not receive their results within three US business days should contact Red Hat Certification at

When do I get my certificate upon passing an exam?

You will be issued an electronic certificate that will be attached to your results email.

Where can I find general information regarding certification requirements or test information?

A description of each certification, and its requirements, is provided at

What is the difference between an RHCSA and an RHCE?

RHCSA is intended as the "core" system administration certification offered by Red Hat. From the release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6, everyone who wishes to earn a system administration certification from Red Hat will begin by earning this credential. Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE) is intended as a senior system administration certification. In order to earn RHCE under Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 and later, one must earn RHCSA and pass a separate RHCE exam on the same RHEL version.

Having a current RHCE certification remains an eligibility requirement for taking any Red Hat Certificate of Expertise Exam, and thus it remains a requirement for upper-level credentials such as Red Hat Certified Architect, Red Hat Certified Security Specialist, and Red Hat Certified Datacenter Specialist.

How do I manage my certification profile?

Log into the Red Hat Certification Central portal at

How do I verify that a certification is active?

Verify a Red Hat certificate is current by entering the certificate number at

What is Red Hat's re-certification policy?

View the re-certification policy page for detailed information on these policies.


I tried clicking on the link in the section: "What is Red Hat's re-certification policy?

View the re-certification policy page for detailed information on these policies."

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This article should be actualized for RHEL 8. It's the same for example you need the RHCSA to earn the RHCE.

A Red Hat® Certified Engineer (RHCE®) is an RHCSA who is ready to automate Red Hat Enterprise Linux tasks, integrate Red Hat emerging technologies, and apply automation for efficiency and innovation. To learn more about how the credential is changing to match new needs and fill skills gaps, check out our frequently asked questions about the RHCE program.