header image

Scrum Master Certification : Which scrum master certification is the best – Certified Scrum Master (CSM) vs Professional Scrum Master (PSM 1) vs others ?


Scrum Master Certification is one of the most sought after qualifications in the agile product development, agile project management and agile business world.  Do you want to obtain a Scrum Master Certification but are unsure on what exactly to go for and where to  look? Well, you have come to the right place!

In this blog post you will learn:


  • Brief Recap of Scrum
  • Why should I get a Scrum Certification?
  • Which is the best Scrum Master Certification authority ?
  • What is the difference between the Professional Scrum Master ( PSM 1 ) and the Certified Scrum Master ( CSM ) certification?
  • Which is the most credible certification – Certified Scrum Master ( CSM ) vs Professional Scrum Master ( PSM 1 )
  • How to get Scrum Master Certification within 24 hours from a credible source?


What is Scrum?



Agile Scrum is a simple framework you can use to create any complex product or run any complex project.
It helps you to deliver on time, get early return on investment and explode your productivity through the roof! Scrum teams do this by delivering pieces of a working product called increments in iterations of a month or less.  They continuously build these increments and improve on their practices until there is nothing more to build. They also inspect their progress and adapt time and time again, before, during and after the release of each product increment.


The Scrum Team is comprised of three roles:

  • the Development Team (responsible for creating the increment of the product)
  • the Product Owner (responsible for working with the team to obtain the best value out of the them in line with business and user requirements)
  • the Scrum Master (responsible for facilitating and coaching the team and everyone involved with the project or product).


So what is Scrum Master and what does the Scrum Master need to know? The Scrum Master needs to be well versed in all the scrum rules and a Scrum Master Certification is an industry recognised method of ensuring that an agile Scrum Master is qualified to coach and facilitate a Scrum team.




Why should I get Scrum Master Certification?



So the obvious reason is because you want to either obtain a Scrum Master role or use the Scrum rules in your team or business.  However other good reasons for getting certified are:

  • Credibility – you will be recognised by employers and customers as someone with a seal of approval.  In short, they are more likely to believe that you know what you are talking about and employ your services.
  • Confidence – you will feel more certainty in your ability to carry out scrum “the right way” and add value to any product or project.
  • Salary / Revenue increase – if you already have a Scrum Master role, you can mention your certification as a reason for pay increase.  If you don’t yet have the role, you can use it as a valid reason to be given a better offer for your scrum master salary
  • Certificate – you will be able to place the certificate on your linked in profile, website and any other digital or physical profile as a record of achievement, making it more likely to close deals, get jobs and boost your own self esteem (with good reason)


Which is the best Scrum Master Certification Authority?



You will find more than one company offering you a Scrum Master certification on the internet.  However, the key thing to ask your self is :


“Will this certification give me the credibility, confidence, pay increase opportunity and certificate I deserve for spending the time studying for it?”


If a company decides that they know enough to teach Scrum they can create their own certifications and teach others based on their own standards.  This certification may not be credible enough to give you the opportunities you deserve for spending the time studying for it.  Thankfully, there is a way to make sure that your time and money is well spent!


I recommend that you ONLY get your certification from a company that is run by the founders of scrum! There are 2 bodies I recommend. Scrum.org and the Scrum Alliance.  The reason being is that the founders of Scrum, Ken Schwaber and Jeff Sutherland (and their partners) built those companies.  Since these are the people that built those companies, you can guarantee that if you pass the certification with those bodies, you really, truly know scrum as the founders intended it.  All of their certifications will be based on The Scrum Guide, which is the rule book of scrum (according to both companies).

For a first time Scrum Master certificate, Scrum.org offer the PSM 1 exam and Scrum Alliance offer the CSM exam.

So, to be clear I ONLY recommend going for certifications that come from Scrum.org or the Scrum Alliance.


What is the difference between the Professional Scrum Master ( PSM 1 ) and the Certified Scrum Master ( CSM ) certification?



In short, both qualifications are based on the same scrum guide, both are from companies founded by the creators of scrum and both require an online exam.  So what’s the difference?  There are the following main differences:

  • The exams will be different (as they are run by different bodies)
  • One requires face to face scrum master training, the other does not
  • One certification needs to be renewed, the other does not

Let me elaborate…








… The CSM is the foundational Scrum Master Certification from the Scrum Alliance.  In order to pass this exam you must take a 2 day training course from a Scrum Alliance approved trainer. Following the course you can take the online exam to obtain the certificate.  You can find a course here. They usually cost around $1200


The CSM requires renewal of certification. https://www.scrumalliance.org/certifications/renewing-certifications






The PSM 1 is the foundational Scrum Master Certification from Scrum.org. There is no requirement to take face to face training.  You can study for the exam however you wish (eg. using books, audio, video and obviously the Scrum Guide).  When you are ready, you can go for the certification.  All the info is here and it costs $150 at the time of this post:


The PSM 1 requires no renewal of certification.



Which is the most credible – Certified Scrum Master ( CSM ) vs Professional Scrum Master ( PSM 1 )



Both the PSM and CSM are just as credible since scrum.org and Scrum Alliance were both created by the founders of scrum. The CSM course has been around longer.  One of the reasons they both exist is because Ken Schwaber wanted to create a more cost effective way for people to get certified (among other reasons), so Scrum.org and the PSM 1 are a way to get your certification without paying for training. I cannot speak for all as there are so many different people out there with different views, but I would say that since the CSM has been around longer, more people are likely to have heard of it.  However Scrum.org is steady increasing in popularity and the traffic to their site is set to overtake Scrum Alliance if the trend continues see these alexa rankings:



Therefore my advise is to ask yourself:

  • do I need face to face training ?
  • does my potential employer or client have a preference on which certification I need?
  • what can I afford?

Apart from that my personal view is that unless the company you are going for specifies a qualification then just pick the one that appeals to you the most because they are both valid and teach you what you need.




How to get Scrum Master Certification within 24 hours from a Credible Source



So as previously mentioned, the Scrum Alliance require that all students do a 2 day course before they can sit certification as (CSM) .  They cost around $1200 at the time of this post.

If you opt for the PSM 1 exam, you can prepare yourself and sit the exam whenever you want.  I have put together a preparation course on Udemy called the Agile Scrum Training and Certification Prep course and it is on a LIMITED TIME special offer now.

It allows you to sit the exam in 3 easy steps.

  1. take my Udemy Agile Scrum Training and Certification Prep course and follow the instructions including mock tests.
  2. sit the scrum open assessment till you are confident enough. This will help boost your confidence.
  3. sit the PSM 1 online exam for your official credible Scrum Master Certification and certificate.

You can sit the Agile Scrum Training and Certification Prep course then go to the scrum.org site and sit the PSM I exam for around $150 at the time of this post.



Summary – Scrum Master Certification





So in this blog post you have learned:

  • A Brief Recap of Scrum as a simple method for creating complex products or managing complex projects
  • How a Scrum Master Certification can help you obtain credibility, confidence, pay increase and of course a certificate.
  • Why I recommended the Scrum Master Certification authorities  Scrum.org and Scrum alliance
  • The difference between the Professional Scrum Master ( PSM 1 ) and the Certified Scrum Master ( CSM ) certification in terms of training requirements among other things.
  • The equal credibility (in my opinion) of the scrum.org and scrum alliance bodies – Certified Scrum Master ( CSM ) vs Professional Scrum Master ( PSM 1 )
  • All about the Agile Scrum Training and Certification Prep course on Udemy to prepare you to obtain Scrum Master Certification from a credible source as soon as possible.  To obtain the course at a LIMITED TIME DISCOUNT….

CLICK the image.

Thank you for reading this blog post, I hope it gave you value!

You can read more at http://pashunconsulting.co.uk/blog/scrum-master-certification-how-to-get-scrum-certification-and-scrum-master-certification-online.html


Got an opinion?