INFOGRAPHIC: CSM, PSM and PSD: Certification Features and Benefits

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Last updated on
07th Jun, 2022
16th Nov, 2017
INFOGRAPHIC: CSM, PSM and PSD: Certification Features and Benefits


Scrum adoption is growing very fast and companies are looking for well qualified Scrum Masters. This is one of the main reasons to consider Scrum certification. One simple way to present your excellence is the Scrum Master certification that is perfectly tailored to the industry requirements, and of course, to your career trajectory. Currently, there are 4 primary Scrum Master Certifications available. You might be in a confusion regarding the best course to take up for a superior career growth.  To know more about psm vs csm certification, click here.  

Let’s move a little back to understand the meaning of the certification. Certification is all about the trust and proficiency. Before proceeding, it is very important to get the true reason for the certification, in order to attain proper options. 

“Top-down doesn’t cut it anymore. As our world continues to change, Agile business structure will not only become invaluable but non negotiable. Agile and Scrum present a significant opportunity across industries and roles for companies to work better and create joyful, efficient, and productive workplaces. The 2016 State of Scrum report shows that successful businesses of all types use Scrum.”  -Scrum Alliance interim CEO Lisa W. Hershman


Points of Differentiation:

How does any organization figure out the competency level of an employee in a particular domain? The best way is to arrange an assessment program, where an employee can exhibit his knowledge and this is equivalent to many certification programs. Let us compare and contrast  the various Scrum certifications like Certified Scrum Master (CSM), Professional Scrum Master (PSM) and Professional Scrum Developer (PSD). This will help you choose the right certification that fits your requirements. 
1) What are CSM, PSM, and PSD?

Certified Scrum Master (CSM) is a foundation-level certification that guides the team members on how to use the Scrum principles to achieve a project goal. 
Professional Scrum Master (PSM) demonstrates the teams on the Scrum principles to apply it in real-world situations. 
Professional Scrum Developer (PSD) details the Scrum principles to build a software successfully.

2) How to get certified?

CSM is a degree program where you have to enrol your name with the institute and attend the classes for two-days (16 hours) and the assignments. In the end, you have to clear the CSM test with a passing score of 24 out of 35 questions in two attempts. 

PSM and PSD are entirely different from CSM. These certifications do not require you to attend the classes. You just need to pass the exam with the passing marks of 68 out of 80 questions in 1 hour. It requires additionally paid attempts on failure. 

3)What are the different levels of certification?

CSM requires only one level of certification, known as CSM level 1.
PSM consists of the 3 levels of assessment- PSM I, PSM II and PSM III.
PSD entails only one level of certification- PSD I.

4) What is the Exam Format?

The exam format of CSM is quite easy. The test consists of 35 MCQs followed by 2 attempts and the time limit is 90 days.
On the other hand, PSM and PSD certification programs consist of 80 MCQs in a 60-minutes time limit.
If you are looking to build your career as a Professional Scrum Master, you need to learn a few quick hacks to clear the PSM certification exam. 

5) How much does it cost?

The Certified Scrum Master Certification costs around $1,000 - $1,300, whereas Professional Scrum Master training costs around $1,000 - $1,300 and the training cost for Professional Scrum Developer is $200 per attempt.

6) What is the certificate renewal duration?
You need to renew your CSM certificate after every two years. For each renewal, you have to pay $250.  
On the other hand, talking about the PSM and PSD credential renewal, they have come up with a lifetime validity. Once achieved, these will stay throughout your life.

7) How much is the salary after certification?

8) Who are eligible for the certification?

The CSM training and certification is ideal for: 

  • Project Managers
  • Software Developers
  • Product Owners
  • Software Testers
  • Team Lead

The PSM training course is beneficial for:

  • People with the knowledge of Scrum practices
  • Scrum Masters
  • Managers
  • Scrum team members

The PSD certification course can be taken by the:

  • Developers working on JAVA platforms
  • Scrum Professionals
  • IT Professionals

9) What are benefits of the certification?

10) Are there any prerequisites for the certification?
To achieve CSM certification, people simply need to have knowledge of Scrum. PSM certification requires 4-5 years of experience as a Scrum Master and for Professional Scrum Developer (PSD) you need to have knowledge of programming.

Concluding Thoughts

All the 3 certifications are highly compatible, with their own unique benefits. The PSM course can be more appealing than CSM. But as far as the originality and the history of the CSM program are concerned, it can compete with PSM. However, the features like no renewal, content reliability and the average salary of PSM and PSD, make both of them stand out from the crowd.



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