It depends on what you mean. Are you referring to the OCA for a specific release of Oracle or the very first time that the OCA credential was available?
Mind you, I'm not positive what the answer is for the latter, which I believe is what you want. The original OCP was for release 7.3 and became available in January of 1998. I don't actually know what release the OCA was introduced during. I believe it was 9i, which would mean the credential introduction (Exam 1Z0-030) was sometime in 2001.
OCA came in with 10.1. That was when the qualification was chopped down absurdly: just two exams. Do one, and you were OCA; do another, and you were OCP. Very annoying for those of us who qualified on 8.0, when you had to pass five exams. The curriculum was similarly abbreviated: from twenty days of classroom time down to ten. Rumour was that this was intended to match the SQL Server curriculum, and remove the impression that Oracle databases are complicated to administer. I've written the Oracle Press exam guides from 10g onwards and I can assure you that with each release, the material gets more extensive. If someone qualified on 10g and has not upgraded, you need to ask him "why not?"
The OCA was introduced in 9i. I believe that there were 2 exams for OCA (SQL and DBA-I) and another 2 (DBA-II and Performance Tuning) for the OCP.
Checking my Certification Exams History, I did these exams :
1Z0-007 Introduction to Oracle9i: SQL
1Z0-031 Oracle9i Database: Fundamentals I
1Z0-032 Oracle9i Database: Fundamentals II
1Z0-033 Oracle9i Database: Performance Tuning
The first two for the OCA, the next two (plus a Hands On Course Requirement, Instructor Led Training on 9i Performance Tuning) for the OCP.
Hemant K Chitale
Message was edited by: Hemant K Chitale Added 9i exam details
OK -- I thought it was 9i, but was not sure by any means. I assumed John was correct when he said it was introduced in release 10g. With competing
answers, I decided to dig deeper. Looking at Amazon for the 1Z0-031 study guides, both the Sybex and McGraw Hill books for 1Z0-031 specifically reference the OCA cert:
OCA/OCP: Oracle9i DBA Fundamentals I Study Guide by Biju Thomas and Bob Bryla
OCA Oracle9i Associate DBA Certification Exam Guide with CDROM (McGraw-Hill) by Jason S. Couchman, Sudheer Marisetti
Also, the certification is referenced on the MeasureUp and IT Toolbox sites:
With that, I can state definitively that the OCA was introduced in 9i.
Fair enough. I was the technical editor for this, http://www.amazon.com/OCP-Oracle9i-Database-Fundamentals-Guide/dp/0072195436 which was the exam guide for the third of the four 9i exams. It never mentions OCA, which means that neither I nor the author were aware of OCA at the time of writing. Perhaps Oracle Uni split the qualification quite late in the development cycle.
Thanks for the correction (though the whole topic seems if little value now).
...(though the whole topic seems if little value now).
Since the 9i cert is gone, I fully agree -- which is why I didn't search for sources before making my first response. I guessed 9i because that was where the training requirement was added to the OCP. I believe that the OCA was created to throw certification candidates a bone (i.e. you can get this 'first-step' cert without hands-on training).
I only did the research last night because I hate having a thread with two mutually exclusive answers.