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Top 11 Tester Certifications

This article provides an overview of the best tester certifications available to help professionals advance their testing career.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 16 min read

Certifications are important for a tester in the job market because they demonstrate a level of competency and proficiency in their field. They also show potential employers that the tester is up-to-date on the latest testing technologies and techniques, which can be a great asset when it comes to hiring decisions. Certifications also provide tangible evidence of an individual’s dedication to their career and can help them stand out from other applicants. Finally, certifications can open up opportunities to pursue higher-level positions or increase earning potential.

This article reviews some of the best certifications for Testers and examines how they can help to advance a tester's career.

What are Tester Certifications?

Tester certification is a type of professional certification that provides recognition to software testers who have achieved specific levels of knowledge and experience in their field. It is designed to show employers that the person has attained a certain level of competency in testing software applications. Certifications can help testers demonstrate their commitment to the profession and their ability to perform quality work. They also provide proof of qualifications, which may be required by employers or clients when hiring testers for projects. Additionally, certifications can help testers stand out from other applicants and increase their chances of finding employment or being chosen for a project. In some cases, certifications can even lead to higher salaries for those with the necessary credentials. Ultimately, tester certification is an important way for software testers to demonstrate their knowledge and experience in the field, which may help them secure better job opportunities and higher wages.

Pro Tip: When considering tester certification, make sure to research the various certifications available and assess which one best meets your professional goals. Certification can be an excellent way to stay current on industry standards, increase your knowledge of testing processes, and demonstrate to employers that you have the necessary skills for success.

Related: What does a Tester do?

Top 11 Tester Certifications

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

1. ISTQB Certified Tester

ISTQB Certified Tester is an internationally recognized certification program for software testers. It is designed to provide a standard of excellence for the software testing profession, and to help employers identify qualified testers.

The ISTQB Certified Tester program consists of three levels: Foundation Level, Advanced Level, and Expert Level. The Foundation Level is intended for entry-level testers, while the Advanced and Expert Levels are intended for experienced testers.

It typically takes between 6 months and 1 year to obtain each level of certification. To get certified, you must pass an exam at each level. The exams are administered by accredited training providers or national boards.

The cost of certification varies depending on your location and the provider you use to take the exam. Generally speaking, it costs around $200-$400 per exam.

2. Certified Software Tester (CSTE)

Certified Software Tester (CSTE) is a certification offered by the Quality Assurance Institute (QAI). It is designed to recognize individuals who demonstrate excellence in software testing and quality assurance. The CSTE certification requires knowledge of software development life cycles, test planning and execution, defect tracking, and software quality assurance processes.

To become a Certified Software Tester (CSTE), an individual must have at least two years of professional experience in software testing and quality assurance. They must also pass the CSTE exam, which consists of multiple-choice questions covering topics such as testing principles, techniques, and tools.

The exam takes approximately three hours to complete and is available online or at various QAI training centers around the world. To register for the exam, applicants must pay a fee of $399 USD. Once they have passed the exam, they will receive their CSTE certification from QAI.

3. Certified Test Manager (CTM)

Certified Test Manager (CTM) is a certification offered by the International Software Testing Qualifications Board (ISTQB). It is designed to recognize individuals who have demonstrated the knowledge and skills necessary to manage the testing process in software development projects.

The CTM certification requires that applicants have at least five years of experience in software testing, including two years of test management experience. Applicants must also pass an exam that covers topics such as test planning, test design, test execution, defect management, and risk management.

In order to become certified as a CTM, applicants must first complete an ISTQB-approved training course. The duration of the training course varies depending on the provider, but typically lasts between three and five days. After completing the training course, applicants must then register for and pass the ISTQB Certified Tester Foundation Level (CTFL) exam before they can take the CTM exam.

The cost of becoming a CTM varies depending on the provider and country in which you take your exams. Generally speaking, it will cost around $1,000 USD to become certified as a CTM. This includes registration fees for both exams as well as any additional training courses or materials required for preparation.

4. ASTQB Mobile Application Testing Certification

ASTQB Mobile Application Testing Certification is an internationally recognized certification that verifies the knowledge and skills of mobile application testers. This certification is offered by the American Software Testing Qualifications Board (ASTQB).

The ASTQB Mobile Application Testing Certification exam consists of multiple-choice questions covering topics such as mobile application testing process, test strategies, test design, debugging and troubleshooting, automation, security, and performance testing. The exam takes approximately two hours to complete and can be taken online or in a proctored environment.

To get ASTQB Mobile Application Testing Certification, you must first pass the exam with a score of 70% or higher. Once you have passed the exam, you will receive your certification from ASTQB.

The cost for the ASTQB Mobile Application Testing Certification exam varies depending on where you take it. The cost for taking the exam online is $150 USD while taking it in a proctored environment costs $200 USD.

5. ASQ Automation Testing Certification

ASQ Automation Testing Certification is an industry-recognized certification program designed to help professionals demonstrate their knowledge and skills in automation testing. The certification focuses on the use of automation tools, techniques, and processes for software testing. It covers topics such as test planning, test design, test execution, defect management, and reporting.

The certification requires a minimum of two years of experience in software testing or related fields. To get the certification, candidates must pass an exam consisting of multiple-choice questions. The exam covers topics such as software development life cycle (SDLC), system integration testing (SIT), user acceptance testing (UAT), and automation frameworks.

The cost of the ASQ Automation Testing Certification exam varies depending on the country you are taking it in. Generally speaking, it will cost between $200-$400 USD.

It typically takes around 3 months to get certified once all requirements have been met and the exam has been taken successfully.

6. ISEB Foundation Certificate in Software Testing

The ISEB Foundation Certificate in Software Testing is a certification program designed to help individuals gain an understanding of the processes, techniques and tools used in software testing. It is part of the BCS Professional Certification scheme and is accredited by the British Computer Society (BCS). The certificate is suitable for those who are new to software testing, or those who wish to gain a better understanding of the principles and concepts behind software testing.

The Foundation Certificate in Software Testing takes approximately 30 hours to complete. It consists of two parts: a written examination and a practical assessment. The written exam covers topics such as test planning, design, execution and evaluation. The practical assessment requires the candidate to demonstrate their ability to apply test techniques in a simulated environment.

To get the ISEB Foundation Certificate in Software Testing, you must successfully pass both parts of the assessment. You can register for the exam online through the BCS website or contact your local BCS office for more information on how to register.

The cost of taking the ISEB Foundation Certificate in Software Testing varies depending on where you take it and which provider you use. Generally speaking, it costs around £300-£400 GBP (approx $400-$500 USD) including registration fees, exam fees and any other associated costs.

7. ISTQB Advanced Level Test Analyst

ISTQB Advanced Level Test Analyst is an internationally recognized qualification for software testers. It is the second level of the International Software Testing Qualifications Board (ISTQB) certification scheme and requires a deep understanding of testing techniques and processes. The certification covers topics such as test planning, test design, test implementation, test execution, defect management and reporting.

To obtain the ISTQB Advanced Level Test Analyst certification, you must first pass the Foundation Level exam. After passing the Foundation Level exam, you can then move on to the Advanced Level Test Analyst exam. This exam consists of 40 multiple-choice questions that must be completed within 90 minutes.

The cost of taking the ISTQB Advanced Level Test Analyst exam varies depending on your location and other factors such as whether or not you are part of an ISTQB accredited training provider. Generally speaking, it usually costs around $200-$300 USD to take the exam.

8. International Software Testing Qualifications Board Agile Tester Extension

The International Software Testing Qualifications Board (ISTQB) Agile Tester Extension is a certification program designed to recognize the knowledge and skills of software testers who work in agile development projects. This certification is intended for professionals who have already achieved the ISTQB Foundation Level Certification and want to demonstrate their expertise in agile testing.

This certification covers topics such as test planning, test design, test execution, and automation in an agile context. It also includes concepts related to agile values, principles, and practices. To get this certification, individuals must pass an exam that consists of 40 multiple-choice questions. The exam takes 90 minutes to complete and requires a score of 65% or higher to pass.

The cost of the ISTQB Agile Tester Extension exam varies depending on the country where it is taken; however, it typically costs around $150 USD. Additionally, some countries may require additional fees for registration or administration purposes.

9. Professional Tester Foundation Level

Professional Tester Foundation Level is an internationally recognized certification program for software testers. It is designed to give testers the skills and knowledge to become proficient in the field of software testing. The program focuses on the fundamentals of software testing, such as test planning, design, execution, and reporting. It also covers topics such as test automation and defect management.

The Professional Tester Foundation Level takes approximately 40 hours to complete, depending on the individual's learning style and experience level. To get certified at this level, individuals must pass a series of exams that cover topics such as software testing principles, test techniques, and test management. The exams are administered by accredited organizations such as ISTQB (International Software Testing Qualifications Board).

The cost of getting certified at the Professional Tester Foundation Level varies depending on the organization administering the exams. Generally speaking, it costs around $200-$400 USD for all four exams required for certification. Additionally, some organizations may require additional fees for exam preparation materials or practice tests.

Overall, obtaining a Professional Tester Foundation Level certification can be a great way to demonstrate your knowledge and expertise in software testing and open up new career opportunities in the field.

10. EXIN Agile Scrum Foundation

EXIN Agile Scrum Foundation is a certification program designed to help professionals gain the knowledge and skills needed to become an effective member of an agile scrum team. It is based on the international standard for Agile Scrum, which is an iterative and incremental framework used to manage complex projects.

The EXIN Agile Scrum Foundation certification consists of two parts: a written exam and a practical assessment. The written exam covers topics such as agile principles, scrum roles, processes, artifacts, ceremonies, and tools. The practical assessment requires candidates to demonstrate their understanding of the concepts by completing tasks related to the agile scrum process.

The certification takes approximately 4-6 hours to complete and can be done in one sitting or over multiple days. Candidates must pass both parts of the exam in order to receive their certification.

The cost of the EXIN Agile Scrum Foundation certification varies depending on where you take it but typically ranges from $200-$400 USD.

11. HP Quality Center Certification

HP Quality Center Certification is a professional certification program offered by Hewlett Packard (HP) for individuals who want to demonstrate their knowledge and expertise in using HP Quality Center software. This certification is designed to validate an individual’s ability to use the HP Quality Center product suite, including its various modules such as requirements management, test planning and execution, defect tracking, and reporting.

The certification consists of two exams: HP0-M18 (HP Quality Center 10.0 Software) and HP2-T20 (HP Quality Center 11.0 Software). To become certified, an individual must pass both exams with a score of 70% or higher. The exams can be taken at any authorized Pearson VUE testing center.

The cost of the certification varies depending on the country in which you are taking the exam. In the United States, each exam costs $150 USD; however, other countries may charge different fees. It typically takes around 4-6 weeks to complete the entire process from registration to receiving your certificate.

To get started with the HP Quality Center Certification program, you will need to register for an account on the Pearson VUE website and then select which exams you wish to take. Once registered, you will receive instructions on how to schedule your exam date and time at a nearby testing center. After passing both exams with a score of 70% or higher, you will receive an email notification that your certificate has been issued and can be accessed through your Pearson VUE account.

Do You Really Need a Tester Certificate?

The answer to this question depends on the specific needs of the individual. In some cases, a tester certificate may be required for certain job positions or educational programs. In other cases, it may not be necessary at all.

For those who are looking to enter a job in software testing or quality assurance, having a tester certificate can be beneficial. This type of certification provides employers with evidence that an individual has the knowledge and skills necessary for testing software applications and systems. It also demonstrates that the individual is familiar with industry standards and best practices when it comes to testing and quality assurance.

For those who are pursuing an education in software engineering or computer science, having a tester certificate can also be beneficial. It shows potential employers that the individual has taken courses related to software testing and quality assurance, which can demonstrate their knowledge in this area. Additionally, it can give them an edge over applicants who do not have such certifications when applying for jobs or internships in the field.

In short, whether or not someone needs a tester certificate will depend on their career goals and what type of position they are seeking. If they are looking for a job in software testing or quality assurance, having one can help increase their chances of being hired as well as demonstrate their knowledge and expertise in this area. On the other hand, if they are pursuing an education related to software engineering or computer science, having one could help them stand out from other applicants when applying for jobs or internships in this field.

Related: Tester Resume Examples

FAQs About Tester Certifications

1. What are the benefits of getting a tester certification?

Answer: Getting a tester certification can demonstrate your knowledge and proficiency in software testing, and help you to stand out from other candidates when applying for jobs. It can also open up opportunities to work as a consultant or independent contractor, and increase your earning potential.

2. What types of tester certifications are available?

Answer: There are several different types of tester certifications available, including ISTQB Certified Tester (Foundation Level & Advanced Level), Certified Software Tester (CSTE), Certified Manager of Software Testing (CMST), and the Agile Certified Professional (ACP).

3. How do I know which certification is right for me?

Answer: It depends on your current level of experience and expertise in software testing. Generally speaking, the Foundation Level certification is good for those just starting out in software testing, while more experienced testers may want to pursue an Advanced Level or specialty certification. Talk to colleagues or mentors who have taken certifications to get advice on which would be best for you.

4. How long does it take to get certified?

Answer: The amount of time needed to prepare for and take a tester certification exam will vary depending on the type of certification being pursued and the amount of study required. However, most exams can be completed within one day if you are adequately prepared beforehand.

5. Are there any prerequisites for taking a tester certification exam?

Answer: Yes, depending on the type of exam being taken there may be some prerequisites such as experience working in software development or basic knowledge about software testing processes that must be met before taking the exam. Check with the organization offering the certification to see if there are any specific requirements before registering for an exam.