The Certified Agile Tester exam

ExamI received some questions about the Certified Agile Tester exam and decided to answer them in a blog post, so that more people could benefit from this. The course will prepare you for all the parts of the exam, but if you will pass will depend on a lot of factors. At the moment of writing, the exam is available in English and in German. You must be able to answer the questions in these languages too. For the normal courses it is no problem to have some spelling or grammar errors as long as the correctors can understand what you mean, but the demands are higher for the train-the-trainer courses.


i have some questions about the nature of the examination for CAT as the description is pretty vague . What does an open questions exam mean exactly? Can you detail it a bit ? Like how many questions in the 3h, what s the general scope of the questions ? How your knowledge of written English language affects your mark(and your ability to express yourself in English for non native English speakers) ? Maybe an example of similar question to one at the exam?

The theoretical part of the exam consists of 10 open questions, directly related to the contents of the course and 3 scenarios that also have a couple of questions (this number varies). During the course you will get example questions that can be discussed with the class. Giving an example of a scenario is quite hard, but the open questions could look like:

“Name 1 statement from the agile manifesto and describe how it affects the testers in an agile team”

You will then be awarded four points for an answer containing one of the statements of the manifesto and at least three explanations of the effect on testers.


Second part of the examination aka a practical section where the examinee’s testing skills are put to the test, how exactly is that done ? There are 100 ways to test practical knowledge in my mind , how exactly it is done here ? Again maybe you can give a theoretical example in the style of the exam.

The practical part consists of testing a website which is described by several user stories. You act as if you are the tester in a team and start working on planning your time, deciding what and how to test followed by actually testing the website. The increments to the website can be deployed, so you will see some bug fixes and some new bugs throughout the exam. Note that you have to write down a lot, to give the corrector a good impression on what you planned to do, what you actually did and why you did or did not do certain things. During the course we will work on a website too, this will prepare you for the exam.


The certification is focus on the Scrum “flavor” of agile development or it s general including Extreme Programming ,Crystal etc? I m asking mostly because from what i ve read already some of the “flavors” (in this case Extreme Programming) diminish the role of the professional tester to the point that it s just a hat the developers wear at some points in a iteration.

The main focus of the course is on the Scrum flavor. We do talk a bit about some other flavors and some of the questions in the theoretical part can deal with another flavor than Scrum. By the way, I do not agree that with Extreme Programming the professional testing is just a hat the developers wear. Never completely rely on the books you read, in practice you will see more use for testers!


3 comments on “The Certified Agile Tester exam

  1. Ty Jeroen again for answering my questions ! Have a much better idea now of what the examination should look like. I do have one last question.
    My trainer advised me (someone new to agile) to read among other books Agile Testing: A Practical Guide for Testers and Agile Teams by Lisa Crispin and Janet Gregory as a kind of preparation for the course . Apart from this book that deals directly with agile testing what book(or other material) would you recommend what specifically looks at agile testing and not agile in general ? Tbh i did not like this book too much(as someone said seemed bit of a emotional,repetitive, sentiment report from the agile testing and i feel something else might give me a better perspective or reinforce some of the things that ware not very clear to me from this book.

  2. ive just done the CATs course and at the end i felt emontionaly drained and my hand hurt with all that writing, 4 hours split in 2 hours in the morning and 2 and half hours in the afternoon. I felt in the practical that i was doing alot of writing concerning the setting up of the iteration plan, task plan as well as session sheets and restrospretives. with only a small window for testing the software and highlighting defects. I didnt even manage to move onto to either drop 2 or 3 and entered into the retrosprective of these issues.

    Apart from the exam i did find the course work very informative and the tutor was very knowledgeable about agile and why it works within the technology sphere. So i will be going back to work with alot of ideas and hope to introduce them into the team. As for the exam i dont think ive passed it as there was alot to try and remember. I Would reconmend it to other testers alot of practical work over theroy which make the course that much more interesting.

What do you think of this post?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s