VMware have now announced the new VCAP4-DCA certification for vSphere 4, designed to follow-on from the VCP4 and give those in high-level technical roles the opportunity to demonstrate their advanced-level technical skills in key areas of vSphere and vCenter technologies. The VCAP4-DCA also leads on to the full VCDX4 certification.
For the official VMware page on VCAP4-DCA, follow this link.
To achieve VCAP4-DCA, there are two exams that must be passed:
The blueprint for the new VCAP4-DCA exam will be made available soon, and there will be an invitation-only beta process for the exam too. The VCAP4-DCA exam will be the first VMware exam to be based entirely on live labs, and will cost $400 - registration for the exam opens on July 12th. Those who have passed the Enterprise Administration exam for VI3 will be entitled to a discount on the VCAP4-DCA exam.
The exam will be centred around three key areas of expertise in vSphere 4 - performance, troubleshooting, and security, and there will also be some exam content around automation. It will not be compulsory to attend any official vSphere courses to qualify for the VCAP4-DCA exam, but given the content of the exam VMware recommend that the advanced-level vSphere courses are considered to assist with preparation for the exam.
Here's an outline of the recommended course and exam sequence for those who are new to VMware training/certification who wish to pursue the VCAP4-DCA: