How To Pass The Professional Scrum Master I (PSM I) Certification

How To Pass The Professional Scrum Master I (PSM I) Certification

Professional Scrum Master or PSM is a certification that proves your knowledge and understanding of Scrum and recognizes your ability to be a Scrum Master. This certification is extremely useful for any professional who wants to work with Agile and Scrum. It will help any small or large business that wants to adopt Agile quickly.

Professional Scrum Master Training

The Professional Scrum Master Certification or Professional Scrum Master PSM 1 Certification is a timeboxed test of 60 minutes with 80 questions. This includes multiple-choice questions, true/false questions, and multiple answers. The exam is organized by Scrum.org and there are no prerequisites for applying for this certification. As long as you can score 85% or above on the assessment, you can pass the exam.

The certificate will then make you an industry-recognized Scrum Master.

 Also Read: How to become a Scrum Alliance Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO)

Preparing for PSM I

It is a difficult exam and you need to prepare well in order to get a passing score. Typically, it is not enough to just read the Scrum Guide or take Open Assessments. Review some of the following content before sitting for the exam:
– Professional Scrum Competencies defined Focus Areas
– Content from the Scrum Guide and application of Scrum in a Scrum Team
– Focus areas from the PSM I suggested reading list
– Resources from the Scrum Master Learning Path
Going through this content will help immensely while preparing for the assessment.

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Here are some tips for preparing for the PSM I assessment:

– Attend a PSM1 Certification course before appearing for the assessment.
– Beginners should study a few different Agile books and attend online courses covering Agile methodologies.
– Thoroughly read the Scrum Guide since it is the primary source of the questions that come on the test. Get familiar with the Scrum Master Training Manual and the Scrum Narrative and PSM Exam Guide.
– Review the Scrum Master Learning Path given on Scrum.org. It has a lot of valuable learning resources that are free.
– Join discussions on Scrum and Agile at Scrum.org.
– Take the Scrum Open assessment as many times as you want till you get a 100% score a few times consecutively. Work on improving your timing in completing the test as well.
– Use the Scrum glossary for learning definitions of all key terms.
– The assessment includes a few questions from the Burndown Charts so you need to understand them.
– Scrum of Scrums is another area to cover since a few questions on this will appear in the assessment pool as well.
– Take some practice assessments like the Mikhail Laphsin free quiz, PSM I Preparation Practice Exams, and Professional Scrum Master I Practice Assessment.
– Don’t use too many different resources and instead focus on a few reliable ones.
– On the day before the exam, go through a summary of all the topics.

Guide to successfully passing the PSM I assessment

Once you have prepared well for the exam and done well on the practice assessments, you can sit for the main exam. The following tips will guide you through doing well on the assessment so you can score above 85%.
1. Ensure that your internet connection is stable since it is an online exam.
2. Read through every question carefully before answering.
3. Select the right time slot for yourself so you can be mentally prepared and do better on the exam.
4. Use a timer during practice tests and also during the exam so you can ensure that you cover all the questions within the time slot.
5. Attempt any confusing or time-consuming questions towards the end.
6. Answer the simplest questions first.
7. Avoid spending too much time on a single question.
8. Pay attention to the words in the question since word tricks can make it confusing.
9. If you are not comfortable with English, install a Google Translate Plugin on your browser to translate the exam.
10. Don’t leave any question blank and make an educated guess on the ones where you aren’t sure of the answer. There is no negative marking so it will not affect your score.
11. Keep the Scrum Glossary and Scrum Guide handy.
12. Check all the answers before finishing the test.


If you don’t pass the exam on the first attempt, you can purchase another attempt from Scrum.org. If you attend the Professional Scrum Master Owner course from Scrum.org they give you a second free attempt in case you fail the first time.

It is not compulsory to undergo PSM 1 certification before taking the exam but it is advised. If you have a high level of understanding and knowledge of Scrum, you can take the test directly. However, the available courses will definitely help you gain a thorough understanding of Scrum. It will help you study and pass the exam with much more ease in the first attempt itself. The guidance of expert coaches will also help in understanding and implementing Scrum and Agile for any professional.

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