Tim Ottinger & Jeff Langr present the blog behind the versatile Pragmatic Programmers reference cards.
Sure, we're having a bit of fun. But these one-liners are based on some predictions that I think are real:1) Agile certs are certain.2) People will pursue them to get interviewed more3) Someone will have to police agile claims4) Certifiers will claim "one true agile"5) Rules will ossify the practices6) It won't really help software practice at large7) People will quit coding to teach agile cert.8) Selling "fast path to certification" is new short-term business model.I suspect it will be an expensive mess that does little good.
I agree with DeMarco--certification is mostly just good for the certifiers (http://www.systemsguild.com/GuildSite/TDM/certification.html). Not that that's an entirely bad thing...
I think a most of the evil in certifications comes not from certificate, but in the power of having a monopoly in granting them. I don't know of any way to stop people from granting them, or to stop people from wanting that quick tangible evidence that they might be ahead of someone with whom they're competing. The answer is not to decry certificates. (I went that route for many years.) It's to make certifiers more commonplace. Then the certificate becomes relatively meaningless and the work that the certificate represents receives it's due attention.I wrote more on this at http://blog.gdinwiddie.com/2010/04/01/of-course-its-a-misnomer/ which, despite its date, is not intended as an April Fools posting.
The only way out, I think, is to promote a community-maintained system of skills, and to keep raising the bar. Check out www.agileskillsproject.org
I have offered a class in TDD certification for almost a couple years now (no takers yet). It's an intensive 15-week-course--not cheap, but I think there are clever ways to make similar efforts low-cost--and intended to have the relevance of a university course (which IMO still isn't that great, but better than a 2 or 3 day class).A university degree is a certificate, albeit a much stronger one and one backed by a large industry.
Nice blog, good job you are doing. Keep it up..
I too love Agile Certification. Nice blog
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