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Re: [scrumdevelopment] Like to do Scrum certification, please guide me

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  • gbonalde@yahoo.com
    Hi Mythili, Here you can see the roadmap of ScrumAlliance and Scrum.org certifications http://gbonalde.blogspot.com/2012/05/scrumalliance-vs-scrumorg.html and
    Message 1 of 18 , Jul 2, 2012
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      Hi Mythili,
      Here you can see the roadmap of ScrumAlliance and Scrum.org certifications
      http://gbonalde.blogspot.com/2012/05/scrumalliance-vs-scrumorg.html
      and here recommended reading.
      http://gbonalde.blogspot.com/2012/05/lecturas-para-comenzar-con-scrum.html
      Good luck!
       
      ###########################################
      Gustavo Bonalde, PMP
      IBM Certified Solution Designer Rational Unified Process v7
      http://gbonalde.blogspot.com
      http://www.linkedin.com/in/gbonalde
      ###########################################

      De: Steve Crago <cragos@...>
      Para: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
      Enviado: Sábado, 23 de junio, 2012 11:20 A.M.
      Asunto: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Like to do Scrum certification, please guide me

       
      +1 on Charles' recommendations.
       
      Study the Scrum Guide.
       
      Get all the books that Mike Cohn has on Agile and study them, notice I did not say read them, there is a difference.
       
      Read "Exploring Scrum:  The Fundamentals" by Dan Rawsthorne and Doug Shimp.
       
      Attend a couple of courses, especially by Mike Cohn.  I've attended 3 of Mike's courses and they are well worth the time and money.
       
      After all of this, the fun really begins.  Keep studying books and attending classes, if you're not careful you'll end up learning something new everyday.
       
      Good luck. .... And no, I do not work for the Scrum Alliance or any of the authors/teachers that I have mentioned.... nor am I a book publisher ...
       
      Ciao,
       
      Steve
      CSM, PSM I
       
       
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Saturday, June 23, 2012 9:20 AM
      Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Like to do Scrum certification, please guide me

       

      I don't agree with Mark on this, but it's probably just semantics.  I think you can learn about Scrum just fine from the Scrum Guide and other books.  Learning to do Scrum *well*, now that's a different story.

      Looking back, I really enjoyed my Scrum class from a Scrum Alliance trainer, but where I have spent the vast majority of my time learning about Scrum and how to do it well is by reading books and articles, and then practicing what I learned on real life Scrum teams.  So, in my view, *for individuals who will actually spend a lot of time on self study*, self study and practice can help you "truly learn" to do Scrum *well*.

      For those individuals who won't diligently self study(which is about 90%+ of the general population, IMO), training is probably a better route to certification.

      <self serving comment> Mark mentioned training, but it is my current view that training is not enough and the best overall situation for transforming a team to Scrum is to send them to one of the 2 day courses (provided by Scrum Alliance or Scrum.org), AND have an on-site coach at least 50% of the time, for about 6-12 months(with a few 2 week follow up visits every 6 months or so for a year or two).  You could also have the coach spend 100% of their time on site and transform 2-3 teams. </self serving comment>

      BUT, returning back to the OP's question, the easiest and cheapest self study route to certification that I know of is the Scrum.org PSM I certification.  In short, read the Scrum Guide over and over again, take the Scrum Open assessment over and over again, and then take the real cert test.  Total cost:  $100.

      Here's where to get started:  http://www.scrum.org/scrummaster/

      Once you get that cert, read these books in the following order:  Cohn's _Agile Estimating and Planning_, Cohn's _User Stories Applied_, and then Cohn's _Succeeding With Agile_.   As you learn new things by reading these books, try to convince your team to practice the new things you've learned.

      By the time you do all that, you won't need more advice on what to do next -- you'll probably know what your next step is.
       
      -------
      Charles Bradley
      http://www.ScrumCrazy.com




      From: Mark Levison <mark@...>
      To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Friday, June 22, 2012 11:14 PM
      Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Like to do Scrum certification, please guide me



      Mythili - Scrum isn't something you can truly learn by reading a book. Nor can it be learned well by lecture. Scrum is something you learn by doing. The ScrumAlliance certification requires you participate in class so you can experience Scrum through the exercises. In addition working in person with a trainer helps them see if you're ready for certification.

      Caveat Emptor I'm a Certified Scrum Trainer and so run such courses. For that reason I will also not comment on the Scrum.org certifications.

      Certification or not, what really matters is getting practical experience.

      Cheers
      Mark Levison

      On Fri, Jun 15, 2012 at 1:50 AM, mythili_may11 <mythili_may11@...> wrote:
       
      Hi Group,

      Currently I'm working on a project which uses Scrum methodology. I'm very much impressed and would like to do a certification. I found couple of sites, where they train for 2 days and after an exam will provide a certification.

      My question, is it possible to take the certification exam after self-preparation. For a self-preparation, what are the materials I need to go through. From where I have to start.

      Can some one please guide me, thanks in advance!

      Thanks,
      Mythili








    • Steve Crago
      Kurt: Looking at my copy of Agile Estimating and Planning and my copy of the course material by the same name, I don t see where he treats story points as
      Message 2 of 18 , Jul 3, 2012
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        Kurt:
        Looking at my copy of "Agile Estimating and Planning" and my copy of the course material by the same name, I don't see where he treats story points as ideal days, in fact it is just the opposite.  On page 69, the title says it all "Chapter 8 Choosing between Story Points and Ideal Days".  He starts out talking about story points, afterwards he discusses ideal days.  He then goes over the pros and cons of both processes and provides his recommendation, which is to use Story Points.  He also states on page 71, "Story points are a pure measure of size.  Ideal days are not."  In his summary of the chapter he states "A team can choose to estimate in either story points or ideal days.  Each is a viable choice with advantages to recommend it."
         
        Hopefully I haven't misinterpreted your response "Treating story points as ideal man days was one example, but I remember coming across a few more."  I'm not sure where or how you got this idea and would be interested to know where it came from so that I might expand my own level of knowledge.
         
        While there may be some information that needs updating, you shouldn't throw the baby out with the bath water, so to speak.  I'm not so sure about your statement regarding a lot of issues that teams have issues with are from "these old books".  I've been using many of them on small and large mobile projects with minimal difficulty, most of my problems have not been with the process outlined in the books as much as it has been with dissenting personalities and rigid management requirements.
         
        Mike's books still have alot of relevant and helpful information, even in 2012.
         
        I also attended 3 of his courses in 2011, including the Agile Estimating and Planning course, and the material he presented was extremely valuable and current at that time.
         
        Good luck on your PMI-ACP test.
         
        Cheers,
         
        Steve
         
        ----- Original Message -----
        Sent: Monday, July 02, 2012 9:44 PM
        Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Like to do Scrum certification, please guide me

         

        Are Mike Cohn's books really that great in 2012?


        I have just been reading them recently (slowing preparing for the PMI-ACP) and a lot of the issues that teams have trouble with seem to come directly from suggestions from these old books.

        Treating story points as ideal man days was one example, but I remember coming across a few more.

        On Jun 23, 2012, at 5:50 PM, Steve Crago wrote:

         

        +1 on Charles' recommendations.
         
        Study the Scrum Guide.
         
        Get all the books that Mike Cohn has on Agile and study them, notice I did not say read them, there is a difference.
         
        Read "Exploring Scrum:  The Fundamentals" by Dan Rawsthorne and Doug Shimp.
         
        Attend a couple of courses, especially by Mike Cohn.  I've attended 3 of Mike's courses and they are well worth the time and money.
         
        After all of this, the fun really begins.  Keep studying books and attending classes, if you're not careful you'll end up learning something new everyday.
         
        Good luck. .... And no, I do not work for the Scrum Alliance or any of the authors/teachers that I have mentioned.... nor am I a book publisher ...
         
        Ciao,
         
        Steve
        CSM, PSM I
         
         
        ----- Original Message -----
        Sent: Saturday, June 23, 2012 9:20 AM
        Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Like to do Scrum certification, please guide me

         


        I don't agree with Mark on this, but it's probably just semantics.  I think you can learn about Scrum just fine from the Scrum Guide and other books.  Learning to do Scrum *well*, now that's a different story.

        Looking back, I really enjoyed my Scrum class from a Scrum Alliance trainer, but where I have spent the vast majority of my time learning about Scrum and how to do it well is by reading books and articles, and then practicing what I learned on real life Scrum teams.  So, in my view, *for individuals who will actually spend a lot of time on self study*, self study and practice can help you "truly learn" to do Scrum *well*.

        For those individuals who won't diligently self study(which is about 90%+ of the general population, IMO), training is probably a better route to certification.

        <self serving comment> Mark mentioned training, but it is my current view that training is not enough and the best overall situation for transforming a team to Scrum is to send them to one of the 2 day courses (provided by Scrum Alliance or Scrum.org), AND have an on-site coach at least 50% of the time, for about 6-12 months(with a few 2 week follow up visits every 6 months or so for a year or two).  You could also have the coach spend 100% of their time on site and transform 2-3 teams. </self serving comment>

        BUT, returning back to the OP's question, the easiest and cheapest self study route to certification that I know of is the Scrum.org PSM I certification.  In short, read the Scrum Guide over and over again, take the Scrum Open assessment over and over again, and then take the real cert test.  Total cost:  $100.

        Here's where to get started:  http://www.scrum.org/scrummaster/

        Once you get that cert, read these books in the following order:  Cohn's _Agile Estimating and Planning_, Cohn's _User Stories Applied_, and then Cohn's _Succeeding With Agile_.   As you learn new things by reading these books, try to convince your team to practice the new things you've learned.

        By the time you do all that, you won't need more advice on what to do next -- you'll probably know what your next step is.
         
        -------
        Charles Bradley
        http://www.ScrumCrazy.com




        From: Mark Levison <mark@...>
        To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Friday, June 22, 2012 11:14 PM
        Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Like to do Scrum certification, please guide me



        Mythili - Scrum isn't something you can truly learn by reading a book. Nor can it be learned well by lecture. Scrum is something you learn by doing. The ScrumAlliance certification requires you participate in class so you can experience Scrum through the exercises. In addition working in person with a trainer helps them see if you're ready for certification.

        Caveat Emptor I'm a Certified Scrum Trainer and so run such courses. For that reason I will also not comment on the Scrum.org certifications.

        Certification or not, what really matters is getting practical experience.

        Cheers
        Mark Levison

        On Fri, Jun 15, 2012 at 1:50 AM, mythili_may11 <mythili_may11@...> wrote:
         
        Hi Group,

        Currently I'm working on a project which uses Scrum methodology. I'm very much impressed and would like to do a certification. I found couple of sites, where they train for 2 days and after an exam will provide a certification.

        My question, is it possible to take the certification exam after self-preparation. For a self-preparation, what are the materials I need to go through. From where I have to start.

        Can some one please guide me, thanks in advance!

        Thanks,
        Mythili









      • RonJeffries
        Hi Steve, ... People keep saying things like that. I do not understand them. What is size ? What is complexity ? And who cares? What people are trying to do
        Message 3 of 18 , Jul 3, 2012
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          Hi Steve,

          On Jul 3, 2012, at 12:51 PM, Steve Crago wrote:

          He also states on page 71, "Story points are a pure measure of size.  Ideal days are not."  

          People keep saying things like that. I do not understand them. What is "size"? What is "complexity"? And who cares? What people are trying to do is figure out how much work to take on. That comes down to how long the stuff takes, as I see it.

          Ron Jeffries
          www.XProgramming.com
          I try to Zen through it and keep my voice very mellow and low.
          Inside I am screaming and have a machine gun.
          Yin and Yang I figure.
            -- Tom Jeffries

        • David Starr
          +1 to Ron s comments. Sorta. Spending so much effort on estimation is a sure sign that the overall system is optimizing for certainty. If that s what s
          Message 4 of 18 , Jul 3, 2012
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            +1 to Ron's comments. Sorta.

            Spending so much effort on estimation is a sure sign that the overall system is optimizing for certainty. If that's what's happening, you are probably not getting from Scrum what you wish you were.

            If you really want to become more accurate, allow yourself to be less precise. For example, mature Scrum Teams sometimes enjoy just counting PBIs delivered per Sprint instead of summing estimate values for them. Makes sense to me: Measuring instead of estimating almost always makes sense.

            If you are in a world that focuses on estimates as being important, you are probably working on boring problems. That's what Kanban is for :)

            David Starr
            Scrum.org, Chief Craftsman - Improving the Profession of Software Development
            elegantcode.com | @elegantcoder  | scrum.org | @scrumdotorg




            On Tue, Jul 3, 2012 at 1:37 PM, RonJeffries <ronjeffries@...> wrote:
             

            Hi Steve,


            On Jul 3, 2012, at 12:51 PM, Steve Crago wrote:

            He also states on page 71, "Story points are a pure measure of size.  Ideal days are not."  

            People keep saying things like that. I do not understand them. What is "size"? What is "complexity"? And who cares? What people are trying to do is figure out how much work to take on. That comes down to how long the stuff takes, as I see it.

            Ron Jeffries
            www.XProgramming.com
            I try to Zen through it and keep my voice very mellow and low.
            Inside I am screaming and have a machine gun.
            Yin and Yang I figure.
              -- Tom Jeffries


          • Kurt Häusler
            Hi when I read it I was expecting him to warn against rather than sanction equating story points with ideal man days. Another example was calculating a teams
            Message 5 of 18 , Jul 3, 2012
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              Hi when I read it I was expecting him to warn against rather than sanction equating story points with ideal man days.

              Another example was calculating a teams initial velocity by estimating each individuals velocity and adding them up.

              I don't want to be too harsh or critical, there is a lot of good stuff there, but I think it might have looked better when it was written than it does now.

              I feel that the few sprinkles of questionable things in his books are exactly the sort of things people latch onto and use to justify strange practices, and they spoil the rest of the good stuff in the books.

              Anyway that was just my impression from reading them.

              Glad to hear his recent courses are worthwhile, I would like him to look at and update his books though.

              On Jul 3, 2012, at 6:51 PM, Steve Crago wrote:

              >
              > Kurt:
              > Looking at my copy of "Agile Estimating and Planning" and my copy of the course material by the same name, I don't see where he treats story points as ideal days, in fact it is just the opposite. On page 69, the title says it all "Chapter 8 Choosing between Story Points and Ideal Days". He starts out talking about story points, afterwards he discusses ideal days. He then goes over the pros and cons of both processes and provides his recommendation, which is to use Story Points. He also states on page 71, "Story points are a pure measure of size. Ideal days are not." In his summary of the chapter he states "A team can choose to estimate in either story points or ideal days. Each is a viable choice with advantages to recommend it."
              >
              > Hopefully I haven't misinterpreted your response "Treating story points as ideal man days was one example, but I remember coming across a few more." I'm not sure where or how you got this idea and would be interested to know where it came from so that I might expand my own level of knowledge.
            • Charles Bradley - Scrum Coach CSP CSM PSM
              Kurt, You mentioned a couple of examples of questionable things in Mike Cohn s books. Specifically,  === Treating story points as ideal man days was one
              Message 6 of 18 , Jul 14, 2012
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                Kurt,

                You mentioned a couple of examples of questionable things in Mike Cohn's books.

                Specifically, 

                ===> Treating story points as ideal man days was one example,

                I found this in _User Stories Applied_,  so here is the actual quote with more context:
                <quote>
                An approach that satisfies each of these goals is to estimate in story points. A nice feature of story points is that each team defines them as they see fit. One team may decide to define a story point as an ideal day of work (that is, a day without any interruptions whatsoever—no meetings, no email, no phone calls, and so on). Another team may define a story point as an ideal week of work. Yet another team may define a story point as a measure of the complexity of the story. Because of the wide variety of meanings for story points, Joshua Kerievsky has suggested that story points represent Nebulous Units of Time, or NUTs.[1]
                [1] Joshua Kerievsky on extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com, August 5, 2003.
                My preference is to treat a story point as an ideal day of work. We rarely have these ideal days, but thinking about stories in ideal time offers two advantages. First, it is easier than estimating in elapsed time. Estimating in elapsed time forces us to consider all other possible impacts on our time, such as the all-company meeting on Tuesday, my dentist appointment on Wednesday, a few hours a day for answering email, and so on. Second, estimating story points in ideal time gives our estimates a slightly better foundation than when they are estimated in entirely nebulous units. Since one of the main purposes of estimating is to be able to answer questions about the overall expected effort in a project, we will eventually need to convert estimates into time. Starting with ideal time makes that conversion a little simpler than starting with an entirely nebulous unit.
                </quote>

                I tend to agree that this information is outdated, though I don't think it is particular dangerous, either.  I also don't think it spoils the rest of the goodness in the book.  I think my view on this is that the book should mostly be consulted for its info on User Stories, and I would prefer Cohn's later book _Agile Estimating and Planning_ for topics on Scrum and Velocity implementation practices.  I mean, he clearly inspected and adapted his advice in the time between the books.

                ===> Another example was calculating a teams initial velocity by estimating each individuals velocity and adding them up.

                I was unable to find this one.  Can you point me to where you saw that?
                 
                -------
                Charles Bradley
                http://www.ScrumCrazy.com




                From: Kurt Häusler <kurt.haeusler@...>
                To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
                Sent: Tuesday, July 3, 2012 9:02 PM
                Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Like to do Scrum certification, please guide me

                Hi when I read it I was expecting him to warn against rather than sanction equating story points with ideal man days.

                Another example was calculating a teams initial velocity by estimating each individuals velocity and adding them up.

                I don't want to be too harsh or critical, there is a lot of good stuff there, but I think it might have looked better when it was written than it does now.

                I feel that the few sprinkles of questionable things in his books are exactly the sort of things people latch onto and use to justify strange practices, and they spoil the rest of the good stuff in the books.

                Anyway that was just my impression from reading them.

                Glad to hear his recent courses are worthwhile, I would like him to look at and update his books though.

                On Jul 3, 2012, at 6:51 PM, Steve Crago wrote:

                >
                > Kurt:
                > Looking at my copy of "Agile Estimating and Planning" and my copy of the course material by the same name, I don't see where he treats story points as ideal days, in fact it is just the opposite.  On page 69, the title says it all "Chapter 8 Choosing between Story Points and Ideal Days".  He starts out talking about story points, afterwards he discusses ideal days.  He then goes over the pros and cons of both processes and provides his recommendation, which is to use Story Points.  He also states on page 71, "Story points are a pure measure of size.  Ideal days are not."  In his summary of the chapter he states "A team can choose to estimate in either story points or ideal days.  Each is a viable choice with advantages to recommend it."

                > Hopefully I haven't misinterpreted your response "Treating story points as ideal man days was one example, but I remember coming across a few more."  I'm not sure where or how you got this idea and would be interested to know where it came from so that I might expand my own level of knowledge.


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