Boost Your Process Improvement Credentials with a Professional Certification in Agile and Scrum
Last Updated August 31, 2023
Agile methodology provides a way to improve product development processes without sacrificing quality. Scrum provides a framework for managing an Agile project. Used together, they have proven successful across many industries in creating long-term operational improvements.
The concepts of Agile and Scrum apply to almost any field. As noted by Jeff Sutherland in a TED talk, which is discussed in Villanova’s Foundations of Agile Methodology course, the ideas of Agile and Scrum apply to everything from developing software to building fighter jets to teaching children to designing cars.
As Sutherland notes, using Agile and Scrum creates a new approach in leadership. “Management needs to let go and step back,” he said. “They need to get out of the way so that teams can figure out what to do.”
Earning certification in Agile and Scrum – a professional certification offered 100% online by Villanova University – can guide professionals in marrying these two models into the most effective tools for process improvement and change management.
Agile and Scrum Certification
Villanova awards its Professional Certification in Agile and Scrum (PCAS) to participants who successfully complete the online Certificate in Agile program and pass the optional certification exam. The Agile program focuses on implementing Agile, which revolves around the creation of self-organizing, self-motivated teams.
Scrum provides the framework for running an Agile project. It includes the formation of teams that work on short “sprints” to complete project phases. Another typical practice is short daily meetings – often called standups – in which teams discuss the current state of a project and identify any anticipated obstacles or impediments to the Scrum Team in the near future. Overall, Scrum helps improve team productivity and efficiency.
Developing expertise in both areas can help prepare participants for leadership roles in process improvement.
Certificate in Agile
Participants must successfully complete three required courses in the Certificate in Agile program to qualify for the Professional Certification in Agile and Scrum (PCAS) exam.
Foundations of Agile Methodology – This course introduces participants to the key principles and terminology of Agile methodology, defines Scrum events and framework and describes Scrum team member roles and responsibilities. The course also uncovers the reasons and objectives behind each Scrum meeting, planning for successful sprints and defining the structure needed to execute a successful Agile project.
Applications of Agile Principles – This course builds upon the foundation of the Essentials course, delving deeper into topics such as incorporating Lean and Kanban into Agile, project assessment tools and tactics, avoiding issues that derail project teams and how to assemble a successful Scrum team.
Leading Agile Teams – Through live class sessions and course curriculum, this eight-week course takes on even more complex issues in Agile, including coaching skills, value management, scaling teams and managing change late in a project schedule. Participants will receive four weeks of instructional content, four weeks of exam prep and an additional 12 weeks of access to a dedicated test preparation classroom. The supplemental classroom material includes practice tests and exam prep tips that can help you prepare for the PCAS certification exam.
Agile Certification Prep
After successfully completing all three required courses, participants will earn the Certificate in Agile credential, and will be eligible to take the PCAS exam that is administered 100% online by Villanova.
The exam has 50 questions. There is a one-hour time limit and participants have two attempts to pass (two more attempts are available for $150). A minimum score of 70 is required.
In addition to the PCAS credential, the Certificate in Agile program content may also help participants prepare for industry certification exams such as the PMI-Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)® from the Project Management Institute and Professional Scrum Master™ (PSM) from Scrum.org.
“To continually improve a company, we must continually improve ourselves,” said Steve Cutlip, who completed Villanova’s Agile program. “If you’re considering enrolling, don’t wait…no matter what the job is, the goal of all organizations is to make money, and in order to make more money the organization has to be the example of continuous improvement.”