Agile methodology is all about project management and software development. It has a huge demand in the IT field with its various sections, such as Kanban, Lean, Scrum, and Scaled Agile Framework. However, to join any company as a Scrum Master, a Scrum Master certification is valued widely for benchmarking competency and knowledge. Moreover, the certification is proof for the company that you are equipped with essential skills and training to manage and guide Agile teams successfully. To be a good Scrum Master of your company who can implement Scrum and Agile strategies, you must achieve Scrum Master certification through a Certified ScrumMaster program. This course helps you get a detailed understanding of Scrum and its methods while guiding your Agile team and enterprise. Now let us jump into different levels of Scrum Master certification so that you will have a complete picture of the certification, starting with the first level Scrum Master certification and gradually building up the levels.

What are the Different Levels of Scrum Master Certification?

 The most popular Scrum Master certification levels are CSM, A-CSM, and CSP-SM, which people usually prefer to have. Now let us know about each certification in detail, along with its eligibility criteria, exam fee range, exam process, the validity of the certification, and renewal process.

Know About CSM, A-CSM, and CSP-SM Certification:

CSM Certification:

 The first level of Scrum Master certification is CSM which stands for and this is a must-attend certification course for those who want to join the company as a beginner for Scrum projects and even for those who want to become a Scrum Master. However, one should follow the guidelines adopted by Scrum Alliance while doing this course. This course covers all the Scrum framework portions and helps you learn how to use it effectively to conduct Sprint Planning, Meetings, and Sprint Retrospectives. By attending this certified Scrum Master program, one can develop an Agile mindset apart from just getting certification. Moreover, one can become professional in adopting Scrum values and principles in their development projects. After completing the course, you can feel proud of yourselves that you have gained Agile and Scrum knowledge enough to adapt to any Agile project coming in the future.

A-CSM Certification:

It is the advanced version of CSM that teaches you about advanced concepts of CSM and boosts your Scrum adoption skills. This course will help you learn how to effectively communicate with the team members, Product Owners, customers, all stakeholders, and executives. Moreover, this course gives you the confidence to face conflicts that arise in organizations and solve them in a proper way. This certified course makes you professional and effective enough to manage the team members when low motivation and engagement are found. With this course, you can become a renowned Scrum Master who can handle the situation even when there is no presence of the key people. Furthermore, it lets you efficiently scale Agile and implement the Scrum concepts in more than one team. 

CSP-SM Certification:

CSP-SM certification stands for Certified Scrum Professional – Scrum Master certification, and this certified course will help you to enhance Scrum adoption in the workspace by mastering practical solutions. This program allows you to come across Scrum leaders and gain knowledge of practical solutions to distinct issues. 

Eligibility, Exam Process, Fees, Validity, and Renewal Process for Three Certifications 

Eligibility Criteria

  • CSM: There is no specific requirement for the However, having a basic knowledge of the Scrum framework is recommended for this CSM certification. So anyone can feel free to do the Scrum Master certification course. 
  • A-CSM: To join the A-CSM training course, you should have a CSM certification from Scrum Alliance. This is the clear In addition, an individual trying to obtain A-CSM certification must have one year of experience as a Scrum Master to the minimum in the last five years. However, it is not essential to possess A-CSM certification after a CSM course, but those who want to gain in-depth knowledge about Scrum concepts can go for it. 
  • CSP-SM: An individual should possess an active A-CSM certification from Scrum Alliance to apply for a CSP-SM-certified course. Also, one should have at least two years of work experience as a Scrum Master in the last five years.

Exam Process

  • CSM: The exams for CSM certifications are conducted online with 50 questions, and you will be provided 60 minutes to complete the full examination. Out of 50 questions, you have to correct 37 answers to get the certification. On the other hand, you can even attend the exam by visiting the training center. If you have a laptop or PC, you can attend the exam online from home itself. 
  •  A-CSM: For the completion of this course, there is no specific exam to attend; however, you have to accomplish the training and get the login credentials from Scrum Alliance to apply for it. Within five business days, you will receive the link from Scrum Alliance to complete the form, and then you can download the certification, which is valid for two years.
  • CSP-SM: Once you are done with the successful training, you will get login credentials from the training institute provided by the Scrum Alliance, and then you can download the certificate by submitting the correct details. 

Certification Fee

  • CSM: The CSM certification fee, along with examination and training, varies as per the institute. Under this fee range, you can get Scrum Certification material for exams. You can appear for online exams in three months after the 2-day training. You will get two attempts to appear for exams, and you have to pay additional fees for the third attempt. 
  • A-CSM: For this course, the Scrum Alliance makes it mandatory for individuals to attend a 2-day classroom training program, and costs vary per institution. This fee range comprises the study material, certification price, training fee, and membership with the community of Scrum Alliance.
  • CSP-SM: The CSP-SM certification fee includes the course fee, exam fee, materials, and so on. For this course, one has to attend a 2-day classroom training where you will be provided with the necessary materials. This program also covers emotional intelligence, lean thinking, coaching, and facilitation. 

Certification Validity

  • CSM: The Scrum Master certification is valid for two years after the exams.
  • A-CSM: The validity of A-CSM certification is for two years.
  • CSP-SM: When it comes to CSP-SM, its certification offers two years of validity. 

Renewal Process

  • CSM: You must collect 20 SEUs by doing various activities like writing blogs, attending global or regional gatherings, watching a video, reading books, and more. After collecting 20 SEUs, you must use the old login credential to land on the dashboard and click on renew certification. For the Scrum Master renewal process for two years, you need to submit your SEU credits and pay $100. 
  • A-CSM: After two years, you can use the same credential to renew the A-CSM credential online. However, you should receive 30 SEU and the payment of $175 for the certification renewal process for another two years.
  • CSP-SM: You need to use the same old credential to log in and then apply for certification renewal from the dashboard. But you must have 40 SEU credits to do this price, plus pay $250 to renew the CSP-SM certification for the next two years.

Final Words:

While applying for Scrum Master certifications, one should start with first-level Scrum Master certification, namely CSM, and then move step by step. The next level is A-CSM, an advanced version of CSM, and then you can go with CSP-SM. This way, you can become an expert in scaling Agile and Scrum concepts for more than one team at a time and boost the adoption techniques. However, there is a procedure, eligibility, and validity for doing these programs, which you can see above in detail. The above-mentioned courses will help you to become Scrum professional, and they will allow you to show your pro skills when you join an organization as a Scrum Master. Once you complete the courses, you can do any task associated with the Agile methodology. You will also master the skills of professional communication to act as a leader within your Agile team. For getting Scrum Master certifications, you have to look out for many institutions, as only a few provide certification. This article is presented to inform you about the different levels of Scrum Master certification and its importance in the Agile framework. Moreover, you can find other details for applying for the Scrum Master courses, like fees, eligibility criteria, validity, exam procedures, renewal process, etc.

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