Adobe Certified Professional: What is on the Animate exam?

Adobe Certified Professional: What is on the Animate exam?

Adobe’s official exam guide for Animate lists the exam objectives, including key terms, concepts, tools, and settings that you need to know to pass the Adobe Certified Professional in Multiplatform Animation Using Adobe Animate exam. In this article, we provide definitions of the terms and explanations of the concepts, tools, and settings in an effort to help you prepare for and pass the Adobe Animate certification exam.

Whether or not your goal is certification, if you’re interested in a Animate class for yourself or for your team, check out our Adobe Animate Creative Cloud (CC) Training class.

Read on to learn what you need to know to pass the Adobe Certified Professional in Multiplatform Animation Using Adobe Animate exam.

Working in the Animation Industry

This objective covers critical concepts related to working with colleagues and clients as well as legal, technical, and design related crucial knowledge.

  1. Identify the purpose, audience, and audience needs for preparing content.
    1. Determine whether content is relevant to the purpose, the audience, audience needs, user experience and has an appropriate design for target devices.
      1. Key Terms
      2. client goals – What are the goals of your client? Why are they having you create this animation?
      3. target audience – The group or groups of people that you hope to have see your animation.
      4. demographics – The target audience can be defined in demographic terms (e.g., by age, gender, religion, geographic location, political affiliation, etc.).
      5. accessibility – You should understand that you and your client may be legally obligated to make your content accessible to people with various disabilities.
    2. Identify requirements for projects/publications when creating animations and interactive content.
  2. Communicate with colleagues and clients about design plans.
    1. Demonstrate knowledge of techniques for communicating ideas about design plans with peers and clients.
      1. Key Terms
        1. thumbnail sketches
        2. storyboards
        3. specifications
        4. design process
        5. wireframes
        6. mockups
        7. prototypes
        8. iterations
        9. drafts
        10. feedback loop
    2. Demonstrate knowledge of basic project management concepts.
      1. Key Terms
        1. project scope
        2. scope creep
        3. cloud utilization and file management
  3. Determine the type of copyright, permissions, and licensing required to use specific content.
    1. Identify legal and ethical considerations for using third-party content such as copyright, permissions, and licensing.
      1. Key Terms
        1. Creative Commons
        2. public domain
        3. intellectual property
        4. derivative work
        5. commercial use
        6. attribution
        7. work for hire
        8. fair use/fair dealing
        9. stock images
    2. Identify when and how to obtain permissions to use images of people and locations.
      1. Key Terms
        1. model release
        2. location release
      2. Key Concepts
        1. permission to use a photo is separate from permission to use a person’s face or restricted location
  4. Demonstrate knowledge of key terminology related to animation and interactive media.
    1. Demonstrate knowledge of animation terminology.
      1. Key Terms
        1. frame rate
        2. image and video resolution
        3. aspect ratio
        4. file formats
        5. audio sampling rates
        6. image size
        7. file types
        8. vector graphics
        9. bitmap images
        10. frames
        11. keyframes
        12. tweens
        13. frame-by-frame animation
        14. easing
        15. guides
        16. masks
        17. symbols
    2. Demonstrate knowledge of interactive media.
      1. Key Terms
        1. events
        2. listeners
        3. variables
        4. dynamic text
        5. JavaScript
        6. ActionScript
        7. methods
        8. functions
        9. classes
    3. Understand and use key terms related to multiplatform animation.
      1. Key Terms
        1. Apple iOS
        2. Google Android
        3. Microsoft Windows
        4. Apple macOS
        5. HTML5 Canvas
        6. Adobe AIR
        7. Virtual Reality (VR)
        8. WebGL
        9. Animated GIF
        10. video
        11. sprite sheets
  5. Demonstrate knowledge of basic design principles and best practices employed in industry.
    1. Communicate visually using the elements and principles of design, and common design techniques.
      1. Key Terms
        1. space
        2. line
        3. shape
        4. form
        5. color
        6. texture
        7. emphasis/focal point
        8. unity/harmony
        9. variety
        10. balance
        11. alignment
        12. proximity
        13. repetition
        14. rhythm
        15. scale
        16. movement
        17. negative space
        18. gestalt
        19. contrast
    2. Identify and use common typographic adjustments to create contrast, hierarchy, and enhanced readability/legibility.
      1. Key Terms
        1. font
        2. size
        3. style
        4. color
        5. alignment
        6. kerning
        7. tracking and leading
        8. horizontal and vertical scale
        9. line length
  6. Demonstrate knowledge of animation and interactive media principles.
    1. Demonstrate knowledge of common animation principles.
      1. Key Terms
        1. 12 basic principles of animation (squash and stretch, anticipation, staging, straight ahead action and pose to pose, follow through and overlapping action, slow in and slow out, arc, secondary action, timing, exaggeration, solid drawing, and appeal)
    2. Demonstrate knowledge of interactive media principles.
      1. Key Terms
        1. user experience (UX)
        2. user interface (UI)
        3. user interaction
        4. aesthetics
        5. functionality
        6. hierarchy
        7. consistency
        8. user accessibility
        9. discoverability in UI

Project Setup and Interface

This objective covers the interface setup and program settings that assist in an efficient and effective workflow, as well as knowledge about incorporating digital assets for a project.

  1. Create a document with the appropriate settings for multimedia projects.
    1. Create a new document with appropriate settings for a new project.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. document type
        2. presets
        3. width
        4. height
        5. frame rate
    2. Manage document settings for specific project needs.
      1. Key Properties
        1. width and height
        2. units
        3. stage color
        4. frame rate
        5. accessibility (ActionScript 3.0 only)
      2. Key Concepts
        1. understanding how frame rate impacts timing and pacing
        2. preparing documents at the proper size for intended use
  2. Customize the application workspace and use visual aids for layout.
    1. Identify elements and customize the Animate workspace.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. menus and tools
        2. Stage and Pasteboard
        3. using/switching default workspaces
        4. showing, hiding, grouping, and docking panels
        5. using the workspace switcher and the Window menu
        6. customizing, saving, and resetting workspaces
    2. Configure application preferences.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. General
        2. Sync Settings
        3. Drawing
    3. Navigate a document.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. pan
        2. zoom
        3. play
        4. pause
        5. keyboard/mouse shortcuts
        6. spacebar
        7. Rotation tool
        8. Time Scrub tool
    4. Customize toolbar and timeline tools.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. Drag and drop tools
        2. create miniature toolbars
        3. customize Timeline
        4. Properties
        5. Library
    5. Use rulers, guides, and grids.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. add, remove, and lock/unlock guides
        2. set color
        3. show and hide guides, grids, and rulers
        4. use snap or align options, etc.
  3. Import into and manage assets in a project.
    1. Import media from various sources.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. importing layers from .psd or .ai files
        2. image files
        3. audio files
        4. video files
        5. CC libraries
        6. importing using menus or drag and drop
    2. Manage assets in an Animate project.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. using the Library panel (rename, delete, move, duplicate, search and preview assets)
        2. updating and importing files
        3. selecting unused items
        4. creating new symbols and folders
        5. working with multiple libraries
        6. differentiating between Graphic symbols, Button symbols, Movie Clip symbols, and other library assets (fonts, bitmaps, sounds, etc.), etc.
    3. Load external media.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. audio
        2. video
        3. images
  4. Manage colors, swatches, gradients, and brushes.
    1. Set the active fill and stroke color.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. color picker
        2. Color panel
        3. eyedropper
        4. hexadecimal value
        5. alpha
        6. Bitmap fill
    2. Create and customize a gradient.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. Color panel
        2. editing color and transparency stops
        3. radial and linear gradients
        4. Gradient Transform tool
    3. Create, manage, and edit swatches.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. Swatches panel
        2. swatch types (tagged, solid, bitmap, and gradient), color sets
    4. Create and edit brushes.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. brushes (stroke, fill, types, width tool)
        2. existing and custom brushes and presets

Organizing Documents

This objective covers document structure such as layers and managing document structure for efficient workflow.

  1. Use the Timeline panel to organize content in space and time.
    1. Manage and organize layers.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. creating, deleting, locking/unlocking, duplicating, selecting, naming/renaming layers
        2. visibility, outline mode, layer height, rearranging layer folders, Advanced Layers Mode, etc.
    2. Recognize the different types of layers in the Layers panel.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. Normal
        2. Mask
        3. Masked
        4. Folder
        5. Guide
        6. the Camera layer
    3. Manage content over time.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. frames
        2. frame span
        3. keyframes
  2. Modify layer visibility using transparency and masks.
    1. Adjust a layer's visibility and transparency.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. hide/show individual layers or groups and adjust transparency
    2. Create, apply, and manipulate masks.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. Mask layer
        2. nesting masked layers
        3. animate mask layer

Create and Modify Multimedia Elements

This objective covers core tools and functionality of the application, as well as tools that affect the presentation of document elements.

  1. Use core tools and features to create and modify vector elements.
    1. Create vector graphics using a variety of tools.
      1. Key Tools
        1. Pen tool
        2. Pencil tool
        3. Paint Brush tool
        4. Brush tool
        5. Fluid Brush
        6. primitive tools
        7. shape tools
      2. Key Concepts
        1. Fill and stroke
        2. object drawing mode
      3. Note
        1. Tool help can be found at
    2. Modify and edit vector graphics using a variety of vector tools.
      1. Key Tools
        1. Free Transform tool
        2. Gradient Transform tool
        3. Width tool
        4. Anchor Point tools
        5. Pen tool
        6. eraser tool
        7. Paint Bucket tool
        8. Ink Bottle tool
        9. selection tools
  2. Add and manipulate text using appropriate settings.
    1. Use type tools to add typography to a project.
      1. Key Tools
        1. Text Tool
        2. point vs. area type
        3. Static Text vs Dynamic Text vs Input Text
      2. Key Concepts
        1. Difference between area type, point type, and static vs dynamic vs input text must be understood.
    2. Adjust character settings.
      1. Key Settings
        1. font
        2. size
        3. style
        4. alignment
        5. line spacing and indentation
        6. horizontal and vertical type
        7. anti-aliasing settings
    3. Adjust paragraph settings.
      1. Key Settings
        1. Indention
        2. alignment
        3. paragraph spacing
    4. Convert text to graphics.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. Convert text to vector using break apart
        2. convert to bitmaps
        3. benefits/disadvantages
    5. Configure Dynamic Text and Input Text areas.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. instance name
        2. font selection
        3. embedding type characters
  3. Make, manage, and manipulate selections.
    1. Make selections using a variety of tools.
      1. Key Tools
        1. Selection tool
        2. Subselection tool
        3. Lasso tool
        4. Magic Wand tool
        5. Polygon tool
    2. Modify and refine selections using various methods.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. selecting multiple objects with selection tools or timeline
        2. moving and grouping objects
        3. Regular Selection tool vs Subselection tool
    3. Group or ungroup selections.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. grouping/ungrouping selections
        2. modifying grouped objects
        3. entering a group
  4. Use basic techniques to manipulate digital graphics and media within an animation.
    1. Rotate, flip, and transform objects, selections, groups, symbols, or graphical elements.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. transform
        2. align
        3. distribute and spacing
        4. skew and rotate
        5. 3D Translation and 3D Rotation (ActionScript 3.0 only)
    2. Use the camera to modify the view of the document.
      1. Key concepts
        1. add/remove camera
        2. rotate
        3. pan
        4. zoom
        5. tint/color adjustments (ActionScript 3.0 only)
    3. Apply basic auto-correction methods and tools.
      1. Key Tools
        1. optimizing
        2. smoothing
        3. straightening
    4. Modify and edit vector graphics using a variety of techniques.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. converting lines to fill
        2. expanding fill
        3. combining objects with union
        4. intersect
        5. punch
        6. crop
    5. Adjust appearance of objects and selections using various tools.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. Fill and Stroke properties
        2. variable width strokes
        3. opacity
        4. Eyedropper tool
        5. vector and pattern brushes
    6. Convert between bitmaps and vectors
      1. Key Concepts
        1. Tracing bitmaps
        2. converting vectors to bitmaps
        3. setting color threshold
        4. minimum area
        5. corner threshold
        6. curve fit
  5. Modify appearance of design elements using effects and graphic styles.
    1. Use Effects to modify symbol instances.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. Apply/remove filters
        2. color effects
        3. blending modes
    2. Apply, edit, and manage filters.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. Add, remove, apply, delete, and edit filters
  6. Create and modify animations.
    1. Apply and adjust transformations using keyframes.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. types of keyframes
        2. adjusting properties using keyframes such as position
        3. scale
        4. rotation
        5. skew
        6. color
        7. filter
    2. Animate objects using frame-by-frame and tween techniques.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. keyframes
        2. shape, motion, and classic
        3. inverse kinematic (IK) tweens
        4. onion-skinning
        5. morphing
        6. easing
        7. armature
        8. pose
        9. motion editor
        10. motion path
        11. nesting
    3. Modify and manipulate symbols for animation.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. movie clips
        2. graphic
        3. looping options
        4. Frame Picker
        5. when to use different symbol types
        6. understanding that different symbol types have different internal timelines
        7. understanding the relationship between symbol timeline and parent timeline, both dependently and independently
  7. Add interactive or dynamic content to a document.
    1. Add and modify interactive elements to your document.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. buttons, using movie clips for interactivity, and dynamic text
        2. instance naming rules and conventions, etc.
    2. Manipulate interactive text elements using code.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. input text
        2. dynamic text
        3. web fonts (HTML 5 Canvas only)
    3. Add and modify code
      1. Key Concepts
        1. using the Actions panel
        2. using ActionScript or JavaScript depending on document type
        3. button states
        4. Actions Wizard
        5. Code Snippets panel
        6. referencing external content
        7. timeline navigation
  8. Control and configure audio and video in a project.
    1. Incorporate audio into a project.
      1. Key concepts
        1. Audio Sync Options (Start, Event, Stream)
        2. mono
        3. stereo
        4. Left/Right Channel
        5. Fade In/Out
        6. Fade Left to Right/Right to Left
        7. Compression
        8. MP3
        9. Speech
        10. ADPCM
        11. RAW
    2. Incorporate video into a project.
      1. Key concepts
        1. MPEG-4
        2. Adobe Media Encoder
        3. encoding video
        4. bitrate
        5. FLVPlayback component (ActionScript 3.0)
        6. Video component (HTML 5)
        7. Video Import wizard

Publishing Digital Media

This objective covers saving and exporting documents or assets within individual layers or selections.

  1. Prepare content for export to web, screen, and other platforms.
    1. Check document for errors and project specifications.
      1. Key concepts
        1. testing movies
        2. publish settings
        3. accessibility options
        4. hidden layers
        5. animation timing
        6. testing multiple devices
        7. project size in bytes
        8. proofreading text
        9. project dimensions
  2. Export assets from an Animate document.
    1. Save in native file formats for Animate (.fla or .xfl).
      1. Key concepts
        1. Save vs Save as…
        2. file name and location
        3. saving to CC library
        4. Animate template
    2. Export assets from an Animate document.
      1. Key concepts
        1. video
        2. animated GIF
        3. image sequence
        4. .svg
    3. Publish final documents.
      1. Key Concepts
        1. document publish settings appropriate for the platform
        2. including file location and other settings specific to the platform
        3. SWF
        4. APP
        5. EXE
        6. AIR
        7. HTML5
        8. JS
        9. APK
        10. WebGL
        11. publishing profiles

That’s it!

It’s a lot, of course, but it’s what you need to know to pass the Animate certification exam. Best of luck!

Written by Nat Dunn. Follow Nat on Twitter.