How to pass the PSM I

Exam Success

The Professional Scrum Master I (PSM I) assessment is a 60 minute time boxed assessment where you’ll answer 80 questions (in English) of multiple choice type, very similar in style to the Scrum Open assessment.

You get one attempt and you decide when and where to take it. There’s no expiration date. You are not required to attend an assessment centre and can take it from the comfort of your own home.

Further details on what to expect from the assessment can be found on the PSM I assessment page.

Here are some tips on taking (and passing) the Professional Scrum Master I (PSM I) assessment and gaining certification:

  • Ideally, attend a Professional Scrum Master course
  • Read the Scrum Guide and get really familiar with it. This is the primary source of all answers for the assessment
  • Review the Scrum glossary for quick definitions of key terms
  • Ensure you understand Burndown Charts. Although not a mandatory part of Scrum, there are a few questions on them in the assessment pool. They are a tool for the Development Team to track work remaining. Commonly this is at Sprint level but could be for a release or the whole Product.
  • Do the Scrum Open assessment until you can do it fast and score close to 100% 3 times in a row. You do not need to do the Developer Open, the Product Owner Open or the Nexus Open as these are intended for preparation for other assessments,
  • Take my Scrum Master I™ Exam Prep. This offers different questions to the Open assessment so is an additional opportunity to test your knowledge in advance of sitting the real assessment.
  • Review some relevant posts on the forums
  • If time permits and you want to give yourself the best chance of passing, read Scrum – A Pocket Guide by Gunther Verheyen

When you are ready to take the assessment for real:

  • Use the link in the email you will have received from
  • Have the Scrum guide and the Scrum glossary to hand and use it to look up what you need
  • Don’t spend too long on each question. If unsure of an answer, note down the question number and move on. Completing all the questions in the time box can be challenging.
  • Answer all the questions even if you have to make an educated guess. The assessment is not negatively marked.
  • Come back to the hard questions at the end and use your time to think them over.
  • Google the question if really unsure, but be careful as this takes time and there are lots of unreliable sources out there.
  • If time permits, check all your answers before the end.
  • Remember the Scrum Master is a coach and servant leader. He/she does not tell the team what to do or how to do it, except in matters relating to the Scrum framework.

You can retake the assessment if you need to, but you will need to purchase another attempt from The only exception to this is if you attend a Professional Scrum Master Owner course, and then fail the PSM I assessment within 14 days of completing the course. In this case will provide you with a 2nd free attempt (as of 12th September 2017).

I hope this information will help you to pass. Let me know how you get on via the comments below and good luck!


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