Top 10 Lead Developer Certifications

This article provides an overview of the top certifications for lead developers, including information on costs, course content, and expected outcomes.

Photo of Brenna Goyette
Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 15 min read

Certifications are important for lead developers in the job market because they demonstrate a certain level of knowledge and expertise. Certifications serve as proof that a lead developer has the necessary skills to perform well in their role, and can help make them stand out from other applicants. Additionally, certifications provide employers with an easy way to verify that a lead developer has the experience and qualifications needed to succeed in their job. Finally, certifications show potential employers that a lead developer is dedicated to staying up-to-date on industry best practices.

The purpose of this article is to review some of the top certifications for Lead Developers and explain how they can help advance a lead developer's career.

What are Lead Developer Certifications?

Lead developer certification is a professional qualification that demonstrates a person’s knowledge and experience in leading software development projects. It can help demonstrate a person's ability to lead software development teams and be responsible for the overall success of a project. The certification is awarded by professional organizations, such as the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

Lead developer certification provides credentials that attest to an individual's understanding of the software development process, from planning and design to coding and deployment. It also covers topics such as software engineering principles, project management methodology, risk management, quality assurance, debugging techniques, and version control systems. The certification also validates an individual's understanding of technology trends, industry best practices for developing secure software products, and the impact of technology on business operations.

Having lead developer certification can help individuals stand out in their job search by validating their skillsets to potential employers. It can also give individuals more credibility when presenting their ideas or working on important projects with other developers or stakeholders. Furthermore, lead developer certification can provide access to higher-paying jobs within the software development industry and help individuals advance in their careers more quickly.

Pro tip: When considering lead developer certification, make sure to look for certifications that are industry-recognized and have been approved by professional organizations. This will ensure that you are receiving the highest level of training and that your certification will be seen as a valuable asset in the workplace.

Related: What does a Lead Developer do?

Top 10 Lead Developer Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Lead Developers today.

1. Certified Scrum Developer (CSD)

Certified Scrum Developer (CSD) is a professional certification for software developers who are interested in learning and applying Agile development techniques using the Scrum framework. It is designed to help developers understand and use Scrum effectively in their projects, enabling them to become more productive and successful.

The CSD certification requires a two-day course that covers the fundamentals of Scrum, including roles, events, artifacts, and processes. After completing the course, participants must pass an online assessment to earn their certification.

To get the CSD certification, you must first complete an approved two-day course on Scrum fundamentals. The cost of the course varies depending on the provider but typically ranges from $1,000-$2,000 USD. Once you have completed the course, you can register for the online assessment at The cost of the assessment is $150 USD per attempt.

Once you have passed the assessment, your name will be added to a list of Certified Scrum Developers on and you will receive a digital badge that can be used to demonstrate your knowledge of Scrum principles and practices.

2. Certified Software Development Professional (CSDP)

Certified Software Development Professional (CSDP) is a certification program designed to recognize professionals who have demonstrated expertise in software development. It is administered by the International Association of Software Architects (IASA).

The CSDP certification requires applicants to demonstrate their knowledge and experience in software development processes, methodologies, tools, and technologies. Applicants must also demonstrate proficiency in the areas of software design, coding, testing, debugging, maintenance, and project management.

To become certified as a CSDP, applicants must first meet certain eligibility requirements. These include having at least two years of professional experience in software development or related fields; holding a bachelor's degree or higher from an accredited institution; and passing an online assessment that covers topics such as software engineering principles and practices.

Once these eligibility requirements are met, applicants can register for the CSDP exam. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions covering topics such as system analysis and design principles; object-oriented programming concepts; database design; web application development; software testing techniques; project management principles; and more. The exam takes approximately four hours to complete and costs $295 USD.

Upon successful completion of the exam, applicants will receive their CSDP certification credential from IASA. This credential is valid for three years before recertification is required.

3. Certified Agile Software Development Professional (CASDP)

Certified Agile Software Development Professional (CASDP) is a certification that recognizes an individual’s knowledge and experience in agile software development. It is offered by the International Consortium for Agile (ICAgile).

The CASDP certification requires individuals to demonstrate their understanding of agile principles, practices, and values as well as their ability to apply them in real-world scenarios. To become certified, individuals must pass two exams: the ICAgile Certified Professional – Agile Software Development (ICP-ASD) exam and the ICAgile Certified Professional – Agile Team Facilitation (ICP-ATF) exam.

It typically takes between 3 to 6 months to prepare for the exams. In order to prepare for the exams, individuals should take an ICAgile approved course such as “Agile Foundations” or “Agile Team Facilitation”. Additionally, they should read relevant books and articles on agile software development and practice with sample questions related to the topics covered on the exams.

The cost of becoming certified varies depending on which courses you choose to take, but it typically ranges from $600-$1000 USD.

4. Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD)

Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) is a professional certification program designed to validate the skills of experienced software developers. It certifies that individuals have the expertise to develop, build, and maintain applications on the Microsoft platform.

To become an MCSD, you must pass four exams: two core exams and two elective exams. The two core exams focus on developing Windows applications using Visual Studio and .NET Framework 4.5, while the two elective exams cover topics such as web development, Windows Store apps, SharePoint apps, or Azure solutions.

It typically takes approximately three months of study to prepare for the MCSD certification exam. To get started, you need to purchase a voucher from Microsoft for each exam you plan to take. Each voucher costs around $150 USD. Once you have purchased your vouchers, you can register for an exam at a Pearson VUE testing center near you.

The cost of becoming an MCSD varies depending on which exams you take and how many times you take them. Generally speaking, it can cost anywhere from $600-$1,200 USD in total to become certified.

5. Oracle Certified Professional, Java SE 8 Programmer (OCPJP8)

Oracle Certified Professional, Java SE 8 Programmer (OCPJP8) is an industry-recognized certification for software developers who demonstrate proficiency in Java Standard Edition 8. It is a professional-level credential that validates a programmer’s ability to write, compile, debug, and execute code written in the Java programming language.

The OCPJP8 exam typically takes around two hours to complete and consists of multiple-choice questions. To get the certification, candidates must pass the Oracle Certified Professional, Java SE 8 Programmer I (1Z0-808) and Oracle Certified Professional, Java SE 8 Programmer II (1Z0-809) exams.

The cost of taking the OCPJP8 exams varies depending on where you take them. Generally speaking, each exam costs around $300 USD.

6. AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate

AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate is an industry-recognized certification that validates a candidate’s technical skills and knowledge of Amazon Web Services (AWS). The certification demonstrates a candidate’s ability to design, deploy, and manage applications on the AWS platform.

It typically takes around 6 months to prepare for the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam. To get certified, candidates must first register for the exam with Pearson VUE. The cost of the exam is $150 USD.

Candidates should also be familiar with the AWS platform and its services before attempting the exam. It is recommended that candidates have at least one year of experience working with AWS before taking the exam. In addition to studying for the exam, it is important to practice using AWS in order to gain hands-on experience and become comfortable with using its services.

Finally, there are numerous online resources available to help candidates prepare for the exam such as practice tests, study guides, and tutorials.

7. CIW Web Application Developer Certification

The CIW Web Application Developer certification is an industry-recognized credential that validates a candidate’s skills and knowledge in developing web applications. The certification covers topics such as HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AJAX, XML, server-side programming languages like PHP and ASP.NET, database technologies like MySQL and SQL Server, and more.

It typically takes about three months to get the CIW Web Application Developer certification. To get certified, candidates must pass the CIW Web Application Development exam (1D0-520). This exam consists of 60 multiple choice questions and requires a minimum score of 70% to pass. The exam fee is $150 USD.

In addition to the exam fee, there may be additional costs associated with becoming certified such as study materials or training courses. It is recommended that candidates have at least six months of experience developing web applications prior to attempting the exam.

8. CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner Certification

CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP) certification is an internationally-recognized credential designed to validate advanced-level security skills and knowledge. It is designed for IT professionals who have at least 10 years of experience in IT administration, including at least 5 years of hands-on technical security experience. The CASP certification covers a wide range of topics, including risk management, enterprise security, research and analysis, integration of computing, communications and business disciplines, as well as technical integration of enterprise components.

The CASP exam typically takes about 2 hours to complete and consists of 90 multiple choice questions. To obtain the certification, you must pass the exam with a score of 750 or higher on a scale from 100-900.

In order to get your CASP certification, you must first register for the exam through CompTIA’s website. You can then purchase the exam voucher from CompTIA or from one of their authorized resellers. Once you have purchased the voucher, you can schedule your exam appointment online or by calling Prometric directly.

The cost for taking the CASP exam varies depending on where you take it; however, it typically ranges from $320-$400 USD per attempt.

9. Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE)

Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE) is a certification program offered by Red Hat, Inc. that tests and validates an individual's skills in administering Red Hat Enterprise Linux systems. The RHCE certification is one of the most respected certifications in the IT industry and is recognized worldwide. It is designed to ensure that an individual has the necessary skills to perform system administration tasks on Red Hat Enterprise Linux systems.

The RHCE exam consists of two parts: a hands-on lab exam and a written exam. The hands-on lab exam requires candidates to demonstrate their ability to configure, install, and troubleshoot various components of Red Hat Enterprise Linux systems. The written exam tests knowledge of system administration concepts such as user management, security, networking, storage, system services, and more.

It typically takes around 3-6 months for an individual to prepare for the RHCE certification exams depending on their background knowledge and experience with Linux systems. There are several resources available online that can help individuals prepare for the exams including books, videos, tutorials and practice exams.

The cost of taking the RHCE certification exams varies depending on where you take them. In general, it costs around $400 USD per exam plus any applicable taxes or fees.

10. Zend Certified PHP Engineer

Zend Certified PHP Engineer is a certification program designed to recognize the expertise of professionals in the field of PHP programming. It is an industry-recognized credential that demonstrates a professional’s knowledge and skills in developing web applications using the popular open source scripting language, PHP.

The certification process consists of two parts: an online exam and a practical exam. The online exam tests your knowledge of PHP programming concepts, while the practical exam requires you to demonstrate your ability to develop code that meets certain criteria.

It takes approximately 4-6 hours to complete both exams. You can take them at any time and from anywhere with an internet connection. The cost for the certification is $195 USD (as of 2021). To get certified, you must register for the exams on Zend's website and then purchase a voucher for each exam. Once you have purchased the vouchers, you will be able to schedule your exams at any time within a year from purchase date. After completing both exams successfully, you will receive your certificate via email within 7 days.

Do You Really Need a Lead Developer Certificate?

No, you do not need a Lead Developer Certificate in order to be successful in the software development field. While having a certification may give you an edge when it comes to job opportunities, it is not essential for success.

In today's world of technology, many employers are looking for people who have the skills and knowledge to develop software. Having a Lead Developer Certificate can certainly help demonstrate your qualifications, but there are other ways to show potential employers that you are qualified for the job. You can demonstrate your abilities through online portfolios or by creating sample projects that show off your skills. You can also join online communities like GitHub or Stack Overflow where you can showcase your work and get feedback from other developers.

It should also be noted that having a Lead Developer Certificate does not guarantee success in the software development field; it only gives you an advantage over those without one. It is still important to stay up-to-date with current technologies, hone your skills, and build relationships with industry professionals if you want to succeed in this competitive field. Having a Lead Developer Certificate may help make you more attractive to potential employers, but it will not guarantee success on its own.

Related: Lead Developer Resume Examples

FAQs About Lead Developer Certifications

1. What is a Lead Developer Certification?

Answer: A Lead Developer Certification is an industry-recognized credential that verifies a developer's ability to lead development teams and projects. It demonstrates their skills in areas such as project management, coding, software architecture, and team leadership.

2. How do I become Lead Developer Certified?

Answer: To become Lead Developer Certified, you must first complete the necessary training courses and pass the certification exam. Additionally, you may need to have relevant work experience or other qualifications to be eligible for certification.

3. What are the benefits of being Lead Developer Certified?

Answer: Being Lead Developer Certified offers several benefits including increased job opportunities, higher salaries, recognition from employers, and improved credibility among peers. It also provides a sense of accomplishment and can help further one’s career path in the IT industry.

4. Are there any prerequisites for becoming Lead Developer Certified?

Answer: Yes, there may be some prerequisites depending on which certification you are pursuing. Generally speaking, applicants should have experience in developing software applications and managing development teams or projects before applying for a Lead Developer Certification exam.

5. What type of jobs can I get with a Lead Developer Certification?

Answer: With a Lead Developer Certification, you can pursue various jobs such as software architect, software engineering manager, technical lead developer, product manager, IT project manager, and many more roles within the IT industry.