For anyone who has sought after a Microsoft certification, you've probably visited a Prometric test center location many times over the last decade. Prometric testing centers are conveniently located just about anywhere in the United States, offering Microsoft credential seekers the ability to take an exam usually over a lunch break.

For those continuing to seek certification, you'll need to start to look elsewhere.

On July 14, Microsoft announced that it is ending its partnership with Prometric. The partnership began in July of 2007 when Microsoft announced that Prometric would become its sole provider for exams, after both Prometric and Pearson VUE maintained authorized provider status simultaneously for some time.

The partnership officially ends on December 31, 2014, however on September 4, 2014, Pearson VUE will renew its authorization as an exam delivery provider. Microsoft certification exams will continue to be available through both exam delivery providers through December 31, 2014.

Interestingly, when Microsoft made the move in 2007 to eliminate Pearson VUE as an exam provider, the certification community was hot mad about the change, primarily because there were many more and closer Pearson VUE locations than there were Prometric locations.

Pearson VUE is a business of Pearson, an international media company. You might also remember that, in March, Pearson won exclusive distributorship away from O'Reilly for Microsoft Press books.

Pearson has made a FAQ document available to discuss the changes: Transition communications

The FAQ doc talks to exam vouchers, locations, exam scheduling, and other miscellaneous information about the transition.