Passed PSM 1 - My Advice

Last post 11:50 am October 30, 2014
by tim muttitt
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04:57 am October 16, 2014

Hi All,

Yesterday (Wednesday) I passed PSM 1 after doing the scrum.org PSM training on Monday & Tuesday. I feel obliged to post my thoughts here for your consideration. I’m a developer.

The revision
Most of this was done on Wednesday, i essentially studied:

• scrum guide - I went over this a few times, I like to take a marker/highlighter and identify key words and sentences concerning relationships betweens roles and events/artefacts. Paying careful attention to words like ‘must’ & ‘should’.

• Scrum open - This is fairly well covered by other on this forum, do it many times, and get 100%, also look at the incorrect answers and make sure you can identify why they are wrong

• Developer open - I didn’t notice many people mention this as being used to study for PSM - I think it’s worth it, a few of these showed up in the PSM 1 assessment (like sprint zero)

• This forum - A mixed bag, some people talk sense, but there is quite a bit of misinformation and when you are ‘cramming’ reading this can cause you to forget the correct answers

• Other websites - Didn’t really bother, seems a lot of incorrect, or adapted versions of scrum about, it’s essential to focus on the scrum.org understanding of scrum

• scrum.org PSM training - See below

The Assessment
Firstly the assessment software is a damn disgrace, and they should be ashamed of it. It threw me quite a lot when I realised that the software is totally different to the Open assessment software. The layout is terrible, the navigation is terrible, the post backs are terrible and time consuming, the countdown is obvious and distracting (the cynic in me wonders if this is on purpose)

• About 20% of the questions come from scrum and developer open

• It took me about 40 minutes to get through 80, and the rest of the time to check the question i had noted down as “not sure”, navigation takes a long time and is very frustrating

• You can generally use logic to identify the answers to the others so long as you understand from the scrum guide which roles should be at what events and when they interact with the artefacts
⁃ For example if the “development team” are the only ones who MUST be at the “daily scrum” then it stands to reason they should be the ones updating the sprint burn down chart.

• There were about 3 questions which were real bolts from the blue, and I hadn’t really seen any information about them

The PSM training
I have mixed feelings about this, i’m not sure I personally got too much from the course, but i’m not sure if the reason for this is because other people on the course had limited experience with scrum.

• I found many people had very specific questions around how things would apply to their situation, ‘my CTO would never do that’, or basically wanted to showboat about their company

• Hours of wasted time explaining scrum essentials, when it’s clearly explained in the prerequisites what you should know, and who the course is aimed at

The Results
I got a score of 95%, which I think I was probably lucky to get. On my notepad i jotted down about 20 I was uncertain on, and 3 which were an educated stab in the dark.

Other advice
• Don’t do all this with the flu, it really wipes you out
• Bravo to anyone who does this when english is not their mother tongue

I hope this is of some help to others…

Regards

Rob

11:50 am October 30, 2014

Congratulations on passing! Some good advice there Robert. Especially forums and other websites - these are mostly peoples opinions on different topics. Some of which are valid and some are not.

Maybe they have the timer there to remind you of the timebox - can you imagine not having the timer there and then all of a sudden it says 'Time is up'? That would be way less fun!

I agree on the navigation - they could have a question index or something on the side with something to show if you answered the question or not, so you can then click on it and jump back to it.

Are you going to talk the PSD, considering you're a scrum developer?
What were your main reasons for getting the PSM I certification?