Which Software Testing Certification is the Best One?

There are two different types of software testing certifications:

  • Exam-Based Testing Certifications

  • Education-Based Testing Certifications

In Exam-Based Testing Certifications, you are required to pass a short exam that covers certain topics. The exam is either multiple choice or True/False type of questions. You are not required to attend any training or courses. The certification is awarded based on whether you can answer the questions or not. Many people say they can easily guess the answers to those questions. As a result, this type of certifications does not really help you learn any new methods or techniques that can improve your performance in your job. Some people feel they need to take what is called an "exam prep course" to help them answer questions in the exam. These prep courses are normally offered by training providers who focus on giving you what it takes to pass these certification exams. Some of these training providers even go as far as giving you sample exam questions and spend much of the class time trying to prepare you to answer those questions. The bottom line is that the focus of those prep course is always to maximize the percentage of people who pass the certification exam. In fact, some training providers t use that percentage of passing to market their courses. Those courses are also not that cheap in price but will always depend on the training provider and on the method of delivery of the course. Examples of certification bodies that offer this type of certifications are ISTQB and QAI.

In Education Based Certifications, you are required to attend a number of courses that cover certain Body of Knowledge that covers the topic that must be mastered for the specific certification to be granted. In some of these certifications, the Body of knowledge is flexible to allow you to choose courses that are more relevant to your job responsibilities. Very much like what is practiced in colleges and universities, you are also required to pass an exam in each of these courses. The exams are not multiple choice or True/False type of questions. The purpose of the exams is to emphasize what was learned in the courses. In this type of certifications, both the courses and the exams are used to help you learn methods and techniques that you can use in your projects. The only certification authority that offers this type of certifications is the International Institute for Software Testing (IIST).

So, your choice of what certification to pursue will always depend on your purpose of achieving the certification.