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Agile and Scrum Certification

Updated August 2017

At Growing Agile we don’t offer certified courses anymore. You can read about why here. Instead we focus on training whole teams, and coaching Scrum Masters and Product Owners over a few months. Using this approach we can train up to 25 people internally for the price of sending 5 people on a certified course. If you want a certification, you can take the PSM I assessment after our internal training. We also have a FREE Scrum basics online course that you can watch at any point to refresh your Scrum knowledge, or if you are completely new to agile.

If you need to get a certificate, there are four options for Agile/Scrum Certification that we are aware of, each are listed below.

Scrum Alliance

The Scrum Alliance was the first Scrum Certification body, founded in 2002. They offer a range of Scrum Certifications, the most popular being the Certified Scrum Master (CSM). There are currently over 410,560 CSMs in the world. The CSM is an entry level certification. To obtain a CSM you need to attend a 2 day class taught by a Certified Scrum Trainer (CST), and then take an online open book test and pass. To find a class near you take a look at the Scrum Alliance site. Costs of courses vary by region and training provider. If you are considering this, the best way forward is to have a few months experience before you attend. This way you know what questions to ask and which parts you are struggling with.

Agile42 and ThinkAgile are the only local providers in South Africa.

The Scrum Alliance also offers an entry level certification for Product Owners called Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO). Again to attend this you need to attend a 2 day course taught by a CST. Currently there is no test for the CSPO.

The Scrum Alliance offer an ongoing certification path with Certified Scrum Professional (CSP), Certified Scrum Coach (CSC), Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC), Certified Agile Leader (CAL) and Certified Scrum Trainer (CST) credentials for those with more experience. You can find out more about these programs on the Scrum Alliance site.

 

Scrum.org

Ken Schwaber left the Scrum Alliance and formed Scrum.org in 2009. They now offer competing Scrum certifications. You can take the Scrum.org certification online without attending a class. The Scrum.org certification is called Professional instead of Certified. So PSM instead of CSM. There are multiple levels to each of the certifications at Scrum.org, i.e. PSM I, PSM II and PSM III. There are currently 74,913 PSM I’s, 609 PSM II and 363 PSM III in the world. The PSM I is considered the equivalent of the CSM.

You can take the PSM I, II and III assessment without doing any courses, but there is a cost for taking the exam. Scrum.org also offer a Professional Scrum Product Owner (PSPO). Costs of courses vary by region and training provider.

We don’t know of anyone regularly offering public Scrum.org courses in South Africa.

Scrum-Institute

Realising that Scrum Certification sells, someone had a bright idea. What if we offered Certification online at an all time low cost of only $29? Even better we will make sure it never expires!  If you want some letters to put on your CV and don’t have any budget, then you can get a Scrum Master Accredited Certification, Scrum Product Owner Accredited Certification or Scrum Team Member Accredited Certification. Just fill in their online form, get an access code and write the online test. We know of people who use this to get around recruitment prerequisites. If you are paying for yourself and just need a certificate as a job requirement, we’d suggest starting here.

Currently there are over 438,000 Scrum Master Accredited Certification peeps – more than the Scrum Alliance!

Project Management Institute (PMI-ACP)

Listed last because it is not a Scrum specific certification, is the PMI’s offering: The Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP). Currently there are 13,712 holders of the PMP-ACP certification. This is an agile offering similar to the PMP for traditional project management. It requires submitting proof of both traditional project management experience, and agile experience, and completing an assessment in a registered testing center. Although there is no specific required course, 21 hours of training is required. As with the PMP there are prep courses available to provide both the training hours, and cover the material you are required to know.

In South Africa the only provider we know of is Agilocity.

Summary

Certification Body Scrum Alliance Scrum Alliance Scrum.org Scrum.org Scrum Institute PMI
Certification Name CSM CSPO PSM I PSM II SMAC, SPOAC, STMAC PMI-ACP
Mandatory Course Yes Yes No No No No
Course Cost from ZAR11 500 ZAR11 500 about USD1200 about USD1495 None ZAR8500
Assessment cost included No assessment USD150 USD250 USD29 USD495

(pricing details updated in August 2017)

16 thoughts on “Agile and Scrum Certification”

    1. Hi sir
      may i kindly ask what qualifications you need to be a scrum master in south africa and which university i can go to. I am very interested in this field and i think i have qualifications for it. Please respond

      thank you

      1. Hi Zanele
        You can’t study to be a Scrum Master at university (yet). Some Scrum Master job ads ask for a degree, but not all. Some ask for a degree in Computer Science, but we don’t believe a technical background is necessary to be a great Scrum Master. Something like Industrial Psychology would be a good background for a Scrum Master to have. You need a deep understanding of agile frameworks and techniques, as well as coaching and facilitation skills. Most of these skills need to be practiced through experience.
        Regards
        Karen

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  2. Hi Karen & Sam,

    I am interested in doing the AGILE Training, specifically Certified Scrum Master. i would appreciate costs and dates please. I am based in JHB, so not sure how this will work?

    Thanks!

    1. Hi Sheila, as explained in the post we don’t offer certified training. You need to contact Agile42 for CSM training in South Africa. Costs and dates are available on their website.

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  4. Hi all
    I would love to send my team on the Certified Scrum Developer® (CSD) training do we have any trainers in Cape Town who offers this course? just checking.

    1. Hi Nasiefa,
      It is not offered anywhere in South Africa. Although it is basically the CSM plus 3 days of good engineering practices training, and there are companies in South Africa that do courses on engineering practices.
      Regards
      Karen

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