Certifiable Scrum!


Hi All,

Related to my previous article “Denounce your CSM?!” , one of our staff writers is pondering the following:

As Agile becomes adopted in a wider variety of settings, there is a need to ensure that the resources you’ve selected really know what they’re doing in Agile, especially Scrum Masters.  But does a certified scrum master (CSM) really bring value to the table?

In his article, “I’m a Certified Scrum Master. BFD.*,” Ian Kelling explores what it takes to get a certification, why it’s a problem, and how he would fix the process.

He explained that he attended a two-day course and walked away certified. The problem he acknowledges is that two-thirds of the group never had any experience in Agile and scrum and this was their first experience. The follow-on problem was in Ian’s words: “Aside from making CSMs who actually have a clue look like crap, and devaluing the certification in general, it threatens the positive, healthy adoption of scrum and agile methods. Read More>>

So what is his fix for this issue? In his words:

Make it a certification with some real substance:

  • Have some real pre-reqs: relevant experience and an assessed level of knowledge about scrum and agile methods
  • Incorporate a practicum of sorts
  • Actually evaluate knowledge and practical experience, preferably via interview versus written

So what are your thoughts on the CSM situation? Is the current certification process acceptable, or should it be beefed up.  Share your opinions here.  What would you recommend in establishing the CSM as a true measure of Agile expertise?


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