Tips for Passing the SAS Base Programmer Certification Exam – A00-211

SAS Base Programmer Certification Exam A00-211After having gone through the SAS Base Programmer certification training material, it is now time to take the exam. Before you begin, there are some key features of the Base Programmer Certification Exam (A00-211) that you should be aware of. Firstly, remember that the exam is computer based and the exam time is three hours, during which you need to answer eighty questions. Secondly, keep in mind that the SAS BASE programmer certification questions are mostly of the multiple choice type and there is deduction of marks for an incorrect answer. Some of the questions have more than one correct answer. To get awarded points for such questions, you must get all the answer options correct. Usually the official pass percentage is 70%. However, the pass percentage may vary, so you will be informed of the exact pass percentage before your begin the exam. Now that you have seen the type of questions and the passing score for the exam, let us look at some tips before you sit for the SAS Base programmer certification exam.

First of all, it is important to understand the concepts. Do not blindly memorize. If possible, you can practise the configuration part, although it is not mandatory. Prepare yourself basing your study on the syllabus, and not the text books, as you can be sure that 99% of the questions will be set from the syllabus. You need to cover all the chapters, as you are most likely to get questions chapter wise, such as import and export raw data files, manipulate and transform data, combine SAS data sets, create basic detail and summary reports using SAS procedures, identify and correct data, syntax and programming logic errors..

Most importantly, decide on the certification date only after you finish one round of study of all the topics covered in the syllabus. People who have passed the SAS Base programmer Certification test recommend concentrating on topics such as SAS Certification Prep Guide: Base Programming for SAS 9, Third Edition. This book is usually more than enough and you will not need any other supporting material, except this. Be sure that you cover the following topics from the text book.

Accessing Data

  • Use FORMATTED and LIST input to read raw data files.
  • Use INFILE statement options to control processing when reading raw data files.
  • Use various components of an INPUT statement to process raw data files including column and line pointer controls, and trailing @ controls.
  • Combine SAS data sets.
  • Access an Excel workbook.

Creating Data Structures

  • Create temporary and permanent SAS data sets.
  • Create and manipulate SAS date values.
  • Export data to create standard and comma-delimited raw data files.
  • Control which observations and variables in a SAS data set are processed and output.

Managing Data

  • Investigate SAS data libraries using base SAS utility procedures.
  • Sort observations in a SAS data set.
  • Conditionally execute SAS statements.
  • Use assignment statements in the DATA step.
  • Modify variable attributes using options and statements in the DATA step.
  • Accumulate sub-totals and totals using DATA step statements.
  • Use SAS functions to manipulate character data, numeric data, and SAS date values.
  • Use SAS functions to convert character data to numeric and vice versa.
  • Process data using DO LOOPS.
  • Process data using SAS arrays.
  • Validate and clean data.

Generating Reports

  • Generate list reports using the PRINT procedure.
  • Generate summary reports and frequency tables using base SAS procedures.
  • Enhance reports through the use of user-defined formats, titles, footnotes and SAS System reporting.
  • Generate reports using ODS statements.

Handling Errors

  • Identify and resolve programming logic errors.
  • Recognize and correct syntax errors.
  • Examine and resolve data errors.

The “SAS Certified Base Programmer for SAS 9 Credential ″ certification exam verifies the profound knowledge in the area of SAP Base Programming. This certificate proves that the candidate not only has the pre-requisite understanding of Base programming development but is also able to apply these skills in a practical manner under the supervision of a project lead. This is the ideal certification for those relatively new to SAS programming or new to SAS certification

The textbooks will usually also contain sample SAS Base  Programmer certification questions. Some of the questions which you can expect are as follows:


The following SAS program is submitted:


X = 0;

do Index = 1 to 5  by  2;

X = Index;



Upon completion of execution, what are the values of the variables X and Index in the SAS data set named WORK.LOOP?

X = 3, Index = 5

X = 5, Index = 5

X = 5, Index = 6

X = 5, Index = 7

Answer: D

Usually, the answers to these model questions are given at the back of the page or the book. It is a good idea to try and solve these sample SAS Base Programmer certification questions as much as possible, for not only will it help you practice the concepts you have learnt but it will also help improve your speed of answering questions.

To know more about Base programmer certification material and to gain some insightful knowledge on SAS then visit the website.


2 thoughts on “Tips for Passing the SAS Base Programmer Certification Exam – A00-211

  1. Hi Emily! THANK YOU for the information. I will be taking the test in two days. I am wondering whether you found the 50-question sample test to be similar to the actual exam? I worked through the official prep book and got almost 100% of the chapter quizzes correct. Then I barely scraped an 80% on the 50-question sample exam I purchased, (though admittedly I dove right into it without reviewing anything). Those sample test questions were significantly more difficult than the prep quizzes. Do you have a feeling for whether the actual exam is easier than, similar to, or more difficult than the sample exam? Thank you!


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