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Comparing Scrum Certification Bodies

August 12, 2014

Scrum Master Certification program is conducted by several bodies like Scrum Alliance,, Scrum Institute, ScrumStudy, Exin, PMI etc. and also called by different names.

Each body claims its certification to be the best and most valued in the market. However as with any certification, the most important thing is knowledge and real experience which can only be achieved by doing a training from an experienced trainer followed up with real life work experience in Scrum over several years.

Here is a summary comparing the different options:

Summary of Training Cost:

There is difference in the price of certifications as well –

Certification body

Name of Certification

Certification Only

Training Only Cost

Certification Plus Training

Scrum Institute

Scrum Master Accredited Certification

USD 39

Rs. 8,000

USD 150


EXIN Agile Scrum Master

USD 200


INR 22,000 to 24000

Scrum Alliance

Certified ScrumMaster®

Not available

Not available

INR 26,000 to 29,000


Scrum Master Certified

USD 300

Rs. 8,000

INR 20,000 to 24000

Professional Scrum Master I

USD 150


USD 300


PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (It goes beyond just Scrum)

USD 435

INR 12,000



Which certification is legitimate?

If one were to browse the internet then one will come across several posts bad-mouthing the certification bodies. Read for yourself …

Against ScrumAlliance

Against ScrumStudy­‑


Fair Synopsis

ScrumAlliance is the oldest body offering Scrum Certification. It is an alliance of trainers known as ‘Certified Scrum Trainers’. Although ScrumAlliance is a not-for-profit body, their trainings are prohibitively costly.

They are now seeing themselves being challenged by ‘newbees’ like ScrumStudy and others which can potentially upset the ‘applecart’ and cutting into their pie. Hence, founders of SrumAlliance are furious at ScrumStudy and are going hammer and tongs against them.

Another comparison point is the amount of training materials made available on the net from ScrumStudy is much more than that available from ScrumAlliance. One can do the comparison by visiting their respective websites.

In all fairness, it is a free market and there are several bodies offering similar certification. So ScrumAlliance is as legitimate as ScrumStudy or any other body offering the certification. There are many corporate bodies who have got their employees certified through ScrumStudy to avoid the ‘Big Boy’s Club’.

Since there is no official regulating body for scrum certifications, like PMP, CPA, etc. It seems one is as good as the other! Unless you have actual experience managing scrum projects the only thing that certification represents is a base level of knowledge at best. Employers would be smart to require hands on experience over the CSM certification if their goal is to hire resources who will know what they are doing!