How To Pass Professional Scrum Master

Many software engineering, IT professionals and IT business analyst, who aspire to be a “SCRUM Master”, look around to get an answer for “How to Pass Professional Scrum Master” or “Effective Preparation strategy for PSM I Certification”. I am a PSM I certified professional and would NOT say that everybody can attempt this exam and get through just by spending 3-4 weeks of time other than your office work.  Before I go and explain why people fail, lets review how PSM I certification exam look like

  1. Number of Questions : 80
  2. Duration : 60 min
  3. Type of questions : MCQ (Multiple Choice Question) one or more option might be correct & True/False
  4. Passing Score : 85%
  5. Open Book : Yes (you can refer anything during the exam)
  6. Prerequisite : None
  7. Validity : Lifetime

Where People Fail to Achieve 85% in PSM I Certification

  1.  The number of questions in PSM I Certification is 80 and time given to you is 60 min, it means that you have to read, understand and conclude the answer in roughly around  45 seconds.
  2. When you really appear for the online exam, the PSM I certification exam website runs much slower than the open assessment mock practice. Each question takes around 3-7 seconds to load on your browser as it has to record your previous answer or any other option clicked to tag the question for review.
  3. Now if you lose ~7 second to load the question, you are effectively left out with 38 second in your hand for all the questions. (I have validated this with many certified PSM I professional and they say “Yes, online site behave slower than expected, and unfortunately you can not simulate unless you pay $150)
  4. 25% are would be confusing and you need to read them twice and evaluate your decision twice after reading all the option and that certainly takes more than 38 seconds.
  5. While answering the questions, you tag them as “Review Later”  to revisit again for following reason
    1. You don’t know the answer at all but would like to attempt it since there is no negative marking.
    2. You know the answer partially but there is more than one choice and you are not sure about other choices
    3. It is a one answer only but you are doubtful about it
  6. When you start your timer, you would be tempted to add every other question for review which falls under above category.
  7. Now if you have added more than 12-15 questions in your review bucket, you need load the review section to read them again and in this entire cycle you may lose around 4-5 min without any output.

 Professional Scrum Master (PSM I) Certification Online Exam Look Like

Find these screen shots which will help you to familiarised with online exam

Figure 1: Before starting your PSM 1 assessment instruction page
Figure 2: Professional Scrum Master (PSM I) Question Page
Fig 3: Open Assessment Feedback Section

I can not claim that scrum.org will not change the PSM I online exam look and feel but you can refer these screen shots to understand what all option would be available during the exam and how to define your strategy to record review items and avoid losing time to decode the layout and possible action.

Strategy to Pass Professional Scrum Master

  1. Make sure you score 100% while appearing for  open assessment as well as Mikhail Lapshin online test.
  2. 10-15% question in PSM I would come directly from open assessment and you should be able to answer them without giving second thought and save time, so practice them as much as possible.
  3. When reviewing the answers from open assessment, read

If you know what all challenges you may have during the 60-min of online exam and how to avoid those small mistakes and understanding your preparation & awareness level, you would get higher chances of success.