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Why PMI ACP Certification after CSM Certification

by Avaneesh

July 31, 2019
Category PMI ACP


Background PMI ACP?

Number of certifications are being offered in the field of project management by Project Management Institute (PMI) from several decades. With the growing demand of Agile based model for project management, PMI has introduced a very specific certification called “PMI-ACP” in the field of Agile methodology. Thus PMI ACP stands for “Project Management institute – Agile Certified Practitioner” certification. It was first rolled out in February 2012.

What is PMI ACP certification?

PMI ACP certification is for the aspirants looking to gain Agile knowledge & apply to project management work. It is designed to get expertise in Agile process by following various methodologies like Scrum, Lean Agile, Kanban, TDD, Extreme Programming (XP). It gives depth understanding of the Agile principles & practices from all angles of Project management. The various areas of study under this certification are –

  1. Agile Principles and Mindset
  2. Value-Driven Delivery
  3. Stakeholder Engagement
  4. Team Performance
  5. Adaptive Planning
  6. Problem Detection and Resolution
  7. Continuous Improvement (Product, Process, People).

The above said fields make the syllabus of this course. It is clear that the certification enhances skills of an aspirant in the area like team performance, release management, stake holder handling, problem management & constant improvement. Tools & techniques with different methodologies are studied as part of this certification. Below is bar chart of exam question weightages for the above study areas –

PMI-ACP Certification after CSM

PMI ACP Certification after CSM

Who should opt for the certification?

A person willing to embark on the journey of project management with advanced Agile principles and practices should pursue this certification.

There are few pre requisites for the course such as –

1. Around 1 year of Project Management expertise,

2. Agile principle & practice know how and experience of 8 months,

3. ACP training of around 21 hours or equivalent learning measured in PDUs.

An Agile practitioner becomes Agile project manager, Product Owner, Agile Coach, Agile Trainer by pursuing the certification and of course lots of practices after ward in the interested area are needed.

PMI ACP after CSM –

Certified Scrum Master (CSM) certification is widely known for gaining introduction of Agile principles & practices. It gives basic understanding of Scrum methodology and its tools & techniques. With a 2 day of course, it is limited till preliminary level of teaching of Scrum. It is for new comers willing to work in the adaptive word of Agile. With CSM and professional practice afterward, a person becomes experienced in Agile but his skills are limited to Scrum practices only.

If a CSM person wants to gain more expertise, PMI ACP opens door for him. PMI ACP takes learning and experience of CSM further by adding knowledge of more methodology like Lean Agile, Kanban, Test Driven Development (TDD), and Extreme Programming (XP). Thus, ACP certification connects different methodologies for following same Agile principles.

Post CSM, there are certifications available to sharpen skill on specific roles like Product Owner (CSPO) , Team Developer (CSD) & Scrum Professionals (CSP). Thus, CSM and post CSM courses are role specific.

ACP is in comparison holistic or comprehensive type of course that explores and demonstrates all roles, practices related to a project. It is specific to Agile practices for project management. CSM is specific to Scrum in Agile world. Hence, getting CSM and practicing and then exploring more in Agile with ACP certification becomes correct way to become agile expert. CSM is first step in the world of Agile certification and should be taken forward till ACP to make it more enriched.

Industry consideration for CSM is also in line as per its contents and expertise. ACP certified candidate is more weighted and is always in demand. Number of ACP certified are far less than CSM due to ACP’s wider course coverage, training time and effort involved.

With all this analysis, it is firmly concluded to go ahead with ACP certification after CSM to become an expert in Agile field for project management.

(Proposed Agile certification & practice steps)

Why PMI-ACP after CSM

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PMP Training                                                        PMI – ACP Training