1. CAN YOU EXPLAIN THE REVISED CERTIFICATIONS THE SCRUM ALLIANCE® PLACED INTO EFFECT ON JANUARY 1, 2018?
On January 1, 2018, the Scrum Alliance revised its certification programs by creating two pathways of continuing education in Scrum and Agile. The original Certified Scrum Professional (CSP) program based on educational credits was retired and replaced with two role-specific educational journeys based on work experience as a ScrumMaster or Product Owner.
For Certified ScrumMasters®, the next step is to obtain an Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM) certification. After that, the next step would be to obtain the Certified Scrum Professional – ScrumMaster® (CSP-SM) certification. Visually, you can think about it like this:
For Certified Scrum Product Owners®, the next step is to obtain an Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner® (A-CSPO) certification. After that, the next step would be to obtain the Certified Scrum Professional – Product Owner® (CSP-PO) certification. Visually, you can think about it like this:
2. WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS FOR ADVANCED CERTIFIED SCRUMMASTER OR ADVANCED CERTIFIED SCRUM PRODUCT OWNER CERTIFICATIONS?
In order to receive the Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM) certification, you need to have a current Certified ScrumMaster certification with the Scrum Alliance, have 1 year of work experience as a ScrumMaster in the last 5 years, and satisfactorily complete an accredited A-CSM program like ours.
To receive the Advanced Certified Product Owner (A-CSPO) certification, you need to have a current Certified Scrum Product Owner certification with the Scrum Alliance, have 1 year of work experience as a Product Owner in the last 5 years, and satisfactorily complete an accredited A-CSPO program like ours.
3. I DO NOT HAVE THE REQUIRED WORK EXPERIENCE YET, AS A SCRUMMASTER OR PRODUCT OWNER, CAN I STILL START THE PROGRAM?
Absolutely! The main idea behind our programs is to give you new skills, abilities and a peer network to accelerate your professional growth. So, you can start either our A-CSM or A-CSPO programs even if you do not have the required work experience yet, but you cannot have your certification issued until you obtain the required length of work experience and have updated your work experience on your Scrum Alliance profile. Why wait to level up on your talents?
4. WHEN CAN I START THE PROGRAM? HOW LONG DO I HAVE TO FINISH?
Once you register, you can start your program immediately. (If you saw a program “start” date on the Scrum Alliance website, those were only marker dates because of the way their website is currently set up.) You have one year to complete the program. You go at your own pace.
5. CAN YOU GIVE ME A BRIEF EXPLANATION OF EACH PROGRAM?
In each of our programs, you will move through 12 to 15 modules, each of which consist of an on-line pre-recorded video, usually 10 to 15 minutes in length, followed by a quiz or exercise. The quizzes and exercises have practical, real-world application, and your responses will be reviewed, and feedback given, by one of our instructors. All of our instructors are Scrum Alliance Certified Scrum Trainers® (CSTs.)
In addition to the modules, you will participate in at least 4 Coaching Circles, which is how you can stay connected your instructors and fellow students and peers. The Coaching Circles are on-line virtual meetings; you can participate via video or telephone. They are one hour each. There are at least 4 scheduled per month with a limit of 10 students per session. Under the Scrum Alliance requirements to obtain the certification, you must participate in at least 4 to receive your certification, but you are welcome to participate in as many as you would like.
6. HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE TO COMPLETE A PROGRAM?
Your pace of progress likely will be governed by your availability to complete all the work. In our opinion, to get the most value out of the program you will need at least six to eight weeks to complete all the modules. They are deep, challenging programs by design. We recommend taking your time to find the right opportunities to put into practice what you learn on-line, reflect on that experience and look for ways to improve. It is not recommended that you rush through our program. If you are looking for a 2 day class, or a course that can be completed in week, our program is not for you. On average, because of the depth of the program and because most of our students are working full time, it takes our students 3 to 4 months to complete a program, averaging one module a week.
7. CAN I TAKE A BREAK FROM THE PROGRAM IF SOMETHING COMES UP?
Sure! When you join a CSP Fast Pass program, you have access to all the on-line videos, lessons, quizzes, resources and Coaching Circles for one year. Because are programs are on-demand, you set pace and order of your Agile journey. If you want (or have) to take a break, take a break. We’ll be here when you come back.
8. WHAT’S A COACHING CIRCLE? HOW OFTEN ARE THEY? ARE THEY MANDATORY?
A coaching circle its an hour session with your CSP Fast Pass instructor to explore workplace challenges, answer questions, share your experiences with others and learn the latest techniques from the experts.
The program’s Coaching Circles occur in on-line, virtual meetings, hosted by one of our instructors. You can participate by video or telephone. There are at least 4 scheduled per month with a limit of 10 students per session. They last one hour. Under the Scrum Alliance® requirements to obtain the A-CSM certification, you must participate in at least 4 to receive your certification, but you are welcome to participate in as many as you would like. You can see the scheduled circles here: https://cspfastpass.com/events/
9. CAN I PARTICIPATE IN MORE THAN 4 COACHING CIRCLES? CAN I PARTICIPATE IN COACHING CIRCLES AFTER I GET MY CERTIFICATION?
Yes! In fact, we think you will get more value out of the program the more you interact with your instructors and the other participants in the program. Currently, we have four Coaching Circle scheduled month. That means you have the opportunity to attend up to 48 Coaching Circles in a year! And if you are the only one to attend, that becomes a private coaching session between you and an experienced Scrum and Agile professional.
Also, if you have already received your certification, you can keep coming to the Coaching Circles to run questions and issues you encounter by your CST and peers.
10. IS THERE A TEST AT THE END OF A PROGRAM? WILL MY WORK BE GRADED?
There are NO tests to obtain any of the certifications that you can achieve with our programs. However, the Scrum Alliance places a strong emphasis on validated work experience in order receive the more advanced certifications. Since our CSTs are the ones charged by the Scrum Alliance to make sure that students who they certify meet a level of competency, as you go along, your assignments and exercises will be evaluated by a CST and will have to be satisfactorily performed in order for them to request your certification be issued. They will be looking for evidence that you can put into practice what you have learned in the program with a Scrum\Agile team. In addition, you can agree to mentoring if you would like deeper responses to questions and topics.
11. IS THERE A CERTIFICATION FEE DUE AFTER I COMPLETE THE PROGRAM?
There is a Scrum Alliance fee for applying for the A-CSM, A-CSPO. CSP-SM and CSP-PO certifications. The Scrum Alliance fee is included in our course price.
12. MY EMPLOYER WILL BE PAYING FOR THE PROGRAM. HOW DO THEY PAY?
There are two ways to do this:
If your are using your employer or company credit or debit card, on our website use the name and information from the card in the section under Billing Information, but check the box that says “Yes” next to the question that asks “Are you registering for someone else?” In the section that follows, fill in the information using your own (the student’s) information.
Alternatively, we can prepare an invoice for submission to your employer. Your employer can then make payment by wire transfer/ACH transfer (electronic check) or physical check by mail. All we will need to prepare the invoice is the name and address of the employer, and the students first and last name, and e-mail address. You can e-mail such a request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
13. HOW DO I DEMONSTRATE MY WORK EXPERIENCE AS A SCRUMMASTER OR PRODUCT OWNER?
If you already have the work experience, you should go to your Scrum Alliance “Profile” and list that work experience under the section for “Work Experience.” We suggest including a 2 to 3 line description of what you did as a ScrumMaster, e.g., major accomplishments, high level description of your duties, things that you learned, etc. If you don’t have the experience yet, make a note to update your Profile when you do.
14. ON THE SCRUM ALLIANCE WEBSITE, YOUR ADVANCED PROGRAMS ARE LISTED TO START ON A SPECIFIC DATE, DO I HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL THAT DATE TO START?
You can start our programs at any time, immediately after registering. The dates on the Scrum Alliance site are simply marker dates to have our programs appear on the site, because of the way the site is currently set up.
15. I AM NOT THAT INTO SCRUM AND CERTIFICATIONS, BUT YOU HAVE SOME REALLY INTERESTING COURSES THAT WOULD HELP ME AND MY AGILE TEAM, CAN I SIGN-UP FOR ONE OR MORE OF THESE COURSES?
Yep! CSP Fast Pass is designed to help you stay current with the latest trends in Scrum, Agile, Kanban and Lean Thinking. If you are just interested in taking part in just one, or more, of these on-line courses we have an a la carte option just for you.
16. WHAT IS YOUR REFUND POLICY?
Our refund policy can be found here.
17. I DO NOT HAVE ANY EXPERIENCE IN SCRUM AND AGILE. DOES CSP FAST PASS MAKE SENSE FOR ME?
Probably not 🙁 CSP Fast Pass is specifically engineered to support active practitioners who have a minimum of three months of experience working with Scrum and Agile teams. We recommend that you take a Certified ScrumMaster or Certified Product Owner course before beginning this program. If you are looking to start your Agile journey, but either of our CSTs, Jason or Carlton can get you started.