Take unscheduled breaks during online Microsoft exams

Starting on May 16th 2022, you will now be allowed to take unscheduled breaks during your online, proctored Microsoft exam.

Previously, prior to May 16th, candidates were not allowed to have any interruption during your online proctored exam. If anything occurred during the exam that the proctor did not like, it would result in an immediate fail and your exam fee would be forfeited. This is still true.. but there is some flexibility to it now. So if you have an unplanned disturbance or need, you have some allotted time to attend to it.

How do I take a break during an online Microsoft exam?

When you start your exam, you will find a new button at the bottom of the screen that will say “Take a break“. See below…

Once you click “Take a break” you be reminded of the number of questions you have not answered or marked for review. You need to answer these questions or review them there and then, otherwise, you will not be able to return to them and risk failing the exam.

You will then be presented with a timer and the option to resume once you have finished your break.

If you would like to know more about the exam experience, check out our post; Use the Microsoft Exam Sandbox to Prepare for Microsoft Exams.

Does the break affect the total exam time?

The exam will have 5 minutes built into it to accommodate for the break. The total time has not changed, but the number of questions will be slightly reduced to allow for this.

How many breaks can I take during my Microsoft exam?

You are allowed to take as many breaks as you need, within reason. However, only 5 minutes have been accommodated for the break, so if you go over that allotted time, you will be using up the time to answer questions. If you overuse your break and the exam finishes, you will be scored on the questions you have answered, the remaining question would be treated as if answered wrongly.

Can I return to question answered before the break?

No. You will not be able to return to any questions you have answered before taking the break. For obvious reasons, this is to prevent cheating.

Can I take a break at any point during the exam?

There are 2 times when you cannot take a break during the online exam. You cannot take a break during a lab and you cannot take a break during a yes/no answer set.


Thank you for taking the time to read my post. You can see the official announcement blog by Liberty Munson, here.

If you are currently preparing to take a Microsoft or Azure exam, be sure to check out some of my latest posts:

Daniel Bradley

My name is Daniel Bradley and I work with Microsoft 365 and Azure as an Engineer and Consultant. I enjoy writing technical content for you and engaging with the community. All opinions are my own.

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