What is PSM Certification? - Advantages, Qualifications & Fees

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Mar 19, 2024

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Securing relevant certifications has become paramount for professionals aiming to stay competitive and advance their careers. Among the plethora of certifications available, the Professional Scrum Master (PSM) Certification stands out as a highly sought-after credential. In this article, we'll thoroughly explore the nuances of PSM certification, elucidate its benefits, the eligibility criteria, the exam details, and provide invaluable insights on effective preparation strategies. By the end of this discourse, you'll have a comprehensive understanding of PSM certification and be well-equipped to embark on your journey toward attaining this esteemed credential.

What Is PSM Certification?

Professional Scrum Master Certification, formally known as Professional Scrum Master Certification, plays a crucial role in enhancing individuals' abilities to thrive as Scrum Masters in Agile environments. Delivered by Scrum.org, this certification program focuses on empowering participants with essential skills and insights vital for effective Scrum Master roles. By validating comprehension of the Scrum framework, principles, and methodologies, this certification establishes a strong foundation for professionals seeking proficiency in Agile project management. Through rigorous training and examination processes, participants gain in-depth knowledge and practical expertise necessary for steering Agile teams towards success.

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Why Should you go for PSM?

Obtaining a PSM certification can significantly enhance your career prospects in the IT industry. Here are some compelling reasons to pursue it

1. Resume Enhancement: Including this certification in your resume showcases your commitment to staying updated with industry standards and trends in product development methodologies. Employers value professionals who invest in their ongoing learning and development and certifications like PSM demonstrates your dedication to mastering Agile  methodologies and practices.

2. Skill Development: It provides a solid foundation in Scrum principles and practices, enabling you to lead teams more effectively and efficiently. Through comprehensive training and examination processes, you'll gain in-depth knowledge of Agile frameworks, facilitating smoother project execution and delivery.

Increased Employability: Many organizations prefer hiring PSM-certified professionals for Scrum Master roles, offering better job opportunities and career advancement. With PSM certification, you become a more attractive candidate to employers seeking individuals with proven expertise in Agile project management.

Higher Compensation: PSM-certified professionals often command higher salaries compared to their non-certified counterparts, as validated by industry salary surveys. Employers recognize the value of this certification and are willing to offer competitive compensation packages to certified professionals, reflecting their advanced skills and capabilities in Agile methodologies.

Becoming certified scrum master not only enhances your skills and knowledge in Agile project management but also opens doors to better career opportunities and higher earning potential in the IT industry.


Cost of PSM

Before delving into the certification process, it's essential how much PSM costs. The PSM certification is available at three levels: PSM I, PSM II, and PSM III. Here's a breakdown of the costs:

PSM I: Exam Fee - $150, Exam Retake Fee - $150

PSM II: Exam Fee - $250, Exam Retake Fee - $250

PSM III: Exam Fee - $500, Exam Retake Fee - $500

Please note that the prices may vary by country. For instance, in India, the cost of PSM I certification ranges from ₹23,500 to ₹26,000, while in the USA, it ranges from USD 999 to USD 1,450.


What is the Eligibility Criteria for PSM?

To be eligible for PSM certification, candidates must meet certain criteria depending on the certification level they're aiming for:

PSM I: No mandatory training is required, but understanding of the Scrum Guide is essential. Candidates should have a grasp of the fundamental principles and practices outlined in the Scrum Guide to succeed in the PSM I exam.

PSM II: Advanced knowledge of Scrum and completion of the Professional Scrum Master course. For PSM II certification, candidates are expected to demonstrate a deeper understanding of Scrum principles and practices, typically acquired through advanced training and practical experience.

PSM III: Extensive Scrum experience and/or completion of advanced Scrum Master training. PSM III certification is reserved for seasoned professionals with significant experience in Scrum implementation and leadership roles within Agile teams.


PSM Exam Format and Syllabus

The PSM exam is conducted online, providing candidates with the convenience of taking the test from anywhere with internet access. It consists of 80 multiple-choice and true/false questions, designed to assess candidates' comprehension of the Scrum framework and its application in real-world scenarios.

With a time limit of 60 minutes, candidates must efficiently manage their time to answer all questions within the allotted duration. The exam covers various aspects of the Scrum framework, including Scrum theory, principles, self-organizing teams, and coaching techniques. By testing candidates on these fundamental concepts, the PSM exam ensures that certified Scrum Masters possess a comprehensive understanding of Agile methodologies and are well-equipped to lead teams towards project success.


PSM Certification Process

Prepare: The first step in the certification process is to familiarize yourself with the Scrum Guide and relevant study materials. This involves understanding the core principles and practices of the Scrum framework, as well as familiarizing yourself with common terminology and methodologies used in Agile project management. By dedicating time to study and review these materials, candidates can build a solid foundation of knowledge that will help them succeed in the certification exam.

Training: Completing a Professional Scrum Master training course can be crucial for candidates preparing for the PSM exam. These courses are designed to provide comprehensive instruction on Scrum principles and practices, as well as practical guidance on how to apply them in real-world scenarios. Additionally, training courses often include practice exams and other resources to help candidates assess their readiness for the certification exam.

Take the Exam: Once you feel confident in your understanding of the Scrum framework, the next step is to register for the PSM exam on the Scrum.org website. The exam is typically administered online and consists of multiple-choice and true/false questions. Candidates have a set amount of time to complete the exam, usually around 60 minutes. During this time, candidates must demonstrate their knowledge of Scrum principles and practices by answering questions accurately and efficiently.

Passing Score: To obtain PSM certificate, candidates must achieve a minimum score of 85% on the exam. This passing score ensures that certified Scrum Masters have a thorough understanding of the Scrum framework and are capable of applying its principles effectively in a variety of settings. Candidates who successfully pass the exam will receive their PSM certificate, validating their expertise in Agile project management and enhancing their career prospects in the IT industry.

Preparation Approach to Crack PSM Exam

To increase your chances of success in the PSM exam, consider the following preparation tips:

1. Enroll in a Training Course: Consider joining a Professional Scrum Master training course to gain insights from industry experts. These courses are specifically designed to provide comprehensive coverage of the Scrum framework and its application in real-world scenarios. By participating in training led by experienced instructors, candidates can gain valuable insights and practical knowledge that will enhance their understanding of Agile methodologies and increase their chances of passing the certification exam.

2. Study the Scrum Guide: Thoroughly understanding the Scrum framework is essential for success in the PSM exam. One of the best ways to achieve this is by reading the official Scrum Guide, which provides a detailed overview of Scrum principles, roles, events, and artifacts. By familiarizing yourself with the Scrum Guide and its contents, you can ensure that you have a solid foundation of knowledge to draw upon during the exam.

3. Practice Exams: Taking practice tests or mock exams is an effective way to assess your readiness for the PSM exam. Practice exams allow you to simulate the exam environment and familiarize yourself with the types of questions you can expect to encounter. Additionally, they help you identify areas where you may need further study or preparation, allowing you to focus your efforts on areas of weakness and improve your overall performance on the exam.

4. Use Additional Resources: In addition to formal training and study materials, consider leveraging supplementary resources to reinforce your learning. Flashcards, cheat sheets, and online resources can provide additional support and help you review key concepts and information. By incorporating these resources into your study routine, you can further solidify your understanding of the Scrum framework and increase your confidence going into the certification exam.

Professional Scrum

Master Course

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This table highlights the key differences between Certified Scrum Master (CSM) and Professional Scrum Master (PSM) certifications in terms of accreditation, training requirements, and eligibility criteria.


AspectCertified Scrum Master (CSM)Professional Scrum Master (PSM)
AccreditationOffered by Scrum AllianceOffered by Scrum.org
Training RequirementMandatory training sessions with CSTsOptional training courses available
Eligibility CriteriaNo prerequisitesMay require advanced knowledge or experience


Also Read: PSM 1 Exam Sample Questions 


Obtaining a Professional Scrum Master (PSM) certification can significantly enhance your career prospects in the IT industry. With rigorous preparation, dedication, and the right resources, you can successfully pass the PSM exam and validate your expertise in Scrum principles and practices. Whether you're a seasoned Scrum practitioner or new to Agile methodologies, this certification can open doors to exciting career opportunities and professional growth.

Additionally, for those seeking comprehensive training and guidance in preparing for the PSM exam, StarAgile offers a highly acclaimed PSM Certification Course. With experienced instructors and interactive learning modules, StarAgile's course equips you with the knowledge and skills needed to excel in Agile project management and pass the PSM exam with confidence.

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