Avatar (Fabio Alessandro Locati|Fale)'s blog


March 31, 2022

On Friday, I had the opportunity to take scrum.org’s Professional Scrum Master I (PSM I) and Professional Scrum Product Owner I (PSPO I) exams.

I’ve started to prepare myself with a training course mainly focused on PSM I. Even though the training title was around PSM I, the course has been on the ideas and reasons behind scrum more than specifically on the certification.

I’ve then proceeded with a full read of the scrum guide.

Following the instructor’s advice, I’ve also bought the book “Quick Reference Guide For PSM and PSPO: Pass PSM I and PSPO I in your first try” by Sidharth Bathia. The book’s first part is a re-paginated version of the scrum guide. This first part is beneficial because it allows you to quickly read and find what you need. The second part of the book is composed of 160 questions and answers. This second part is probably the most critical since every answer is explained in depth. Overall, the book is very well done and maintains the promise made in the title, or - at least - it did so for me.

In addition to this, and as suggested by both the trainer and the book, I’ve done the simulations on the scrum.org website until I was able to get three perfect scores in a row. It took me four attempts, so I felt confident.

I started with the idea of doing only the PSM I exam. Still, having completed it in less time than I expected and with a good result, I decided to do the PSPO I exam a half-hour after finishing the previous exam.

The scrum.org’s exams are an open book and not proctored exams, as is clearly stated on the scrum.org website. The complexity of these exams is around the limited amount of time compared to the number of questions and the minimum passing score. As for the time available, for both PSM I and PSPO I, there are 80 questions to be answered in 60 minutes, which is an average of 45 seconds per question. As for the minimum passing score, both exams have 85%, so you need to do at least 68 questions correct to pass.

Having done a good amount of test questions, I managed to reply to all questions of the PSM I in about 35 minutes, so in reality, the available time was not limiting in my case. The PSPO I exam requested a little more time (about 45 minutes) due to some questions that were structured differently from what I was used to. It could also be that part of the slowness of the PSPO I exam has been due to a little bit of tiredness from doing two exams one after the other. In the same way, the test questions also helped with accuracy.

Overall, I enjoyed diving deeper into the scrum methodology and the exam process. If you are looking to perform those exams yourself, I would suggest doing enough test questions because they really help in making you fast and accurate during the exam.