CSM vs PSM : Difference You Should Know

Last updated on 28th Oct 2022, Artciles, Blog

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Sangeetha Ramu (Agile Scrum Master )

Sangeetha Ramu has over four years of experience as a project estimator. She provides extensive expertise in story splitting, estimation, velocity, retrospection, and other Scrum techniques, Web apps development, scrum master, Agile, waterfall, Azure, and AWS.

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    • In this article you will learn:
    • 1. Main Differences Between CSM & PSM Certification.
    • 2. Difficulty Level of the Exam.
    • 3. How Much Does It Cost?
    • 4. The Benefits of PSM vs. CSM.
    • 5. Conclusion.

Scrum is an Agile framework that helps to teams collaborate and succeed in the development environment where requirements are rapidly evolving. Teams following Scrum methods are be encouraged to work in the transparent manner, self-organize while working on a problem, and continually improve themselves through a self-reflection.

Main Differences Between the CSM & PSM Certification:

Learning Outcomes :

  • As a CSM, and will be well equipped to help Scrum team perform at their maximum capability, overcoming an obstacles and guiding them on the Scrum framework.
  • A CSM is considered the ‘servant leader’ who leads through example and essentially facilitates a team members to achieve project success.

PSM vs CSM: Head-to-head Comparison:

    Accreditated By A Scrum Alliance Scrum.org.
    Prerequisites Attending the CSM®️ course taught by Scrum Alliance’s Certified Scrum Trainer (CST)®️ None.
    Training Mandatory training by a Certified Scrum Trainers before test. Training is not a mandatory. But certification training by a Professional Scrum Trainers is helpful in an acing the test.
    Exam Pattern and Question Formats Questions – 50 MCQs Time – 1 hour Questions – 80 MCQs and true/false questions. Time – 1 hour.
    Passing Score 37 out of 50 68 out of 80
    Renewal Renews an every two years.Renewal a Fee – $100 SEUs (Scrum Educational Units) – 20 Valid for lifetime;Renewal not be required

Difficulty Level of ExamsL:

  • It is generally understood that Certified ScrumMaster test is relatively simpler than a PSM 1 and PSM 2.
  • To appear for CSM, attending a 2 day training is mandatory and will get adequately prepared to sit exam and achieve a passing score.
  • However, PSM does not have mandatory requirement of an attending training classes, and more students who have not attended training workshop therefore find that their preparation is inadequate.

How much does it cost?

  • There is no standard fee for a CSM exam, as typically exam attempt is clubbed with course. However, fee range for the course is typically from a 1000 USD to 1400 USD.
  • The PSM costs $150 USD per exam be attempt. If join a training course, first exam attempt is free.

What is a Renewal Duration?

  • Have to renew a CSM credential every two years, by collecting the 20 SEUs and paying a renewal fee of $100.
  • On other hand, there is no need to renew a PSM credentials. Once get the PSM credential, it has a lifetime validity.

How consistent is training content?

  • The CSM program content varies from a trainer to trainer, as Scrum Alliance only offers a broad guidelines for Curriculum, and trainers are free to an interpret it in their own ways.
  • PSM comes with the standard agenda that must be followed across all the training institutes.

The Benefits of PSM vs. CSM:


  • You gain opportunities to work as Scrum Master in different industries adopting Agile practices.
  • The course becomes steppingstone for advanced CSM courses like a A-CSM, CSP-SM, or CST.
  • Get knowledge and proficiency in a core Scrum practices, values, and principles, and learn more about Scrum’s foundation and role of the Scrum Master.


  • Gain an in-depth understanding of a Scrum concepts, including its framework.
  • Have access to better job opportunities since recruiters from a top companies always look for enthusiastic professionals who enjoy learning; taking the PSM course are demonstrates that passion.
  • As certified Scrum expert, become a recognized professional in an organization.


Knowledge of Scrum is one of most sought-after skills in recent times, and both CSM and PSM are highly respected credentials in a Scrum world. While CSM is preferred by many as it is considered an simpler exam to pass, it needs a renewal of credential every two years. The PSM, though it comes with the slightly more complex assessment, is valid for lifetime.

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