Open Certification update

Cem and I have announced that we are suspending activity on the Open Certification project to focus our efforts on the AST Black-Box Software Testing (BBST) courses and working to develop a skills-based certification based on that material.

The original Open Certification project was focused on providing an open alternative to question-based certification exams, focusing the following advantages over current industry certifications:
1. The large pool of questions will be public, with references. They will form a study guide.
2. The pool is not derived from a single (antiquated) view of software testing. Different people with different viewpoints can add their own questions to the pool. If they have well-documented questions/answers, the questions will be accepted and can be included in a customizable exam.
3. The exam can be run any time, anywhere. Instead of relying on a certificate, an employer can ask a candidate to retake the test and then discuss the candidate’s answers with her. The discussion will be more informative than any number of multiple-false answers.
4. The exam is free.

The open certification was intended to serve as a bridge between the current certifications and skill-based exams that might someday be available. AST’s current implementation of the BBST courses provide a balance between quizzes and exams along with interactive reviews of debate and work-products by peers and instructors. The current implementation of the course provides a skills-based evaluation.

We want to focus our efforts on the efforts that best support our original goals, and we feel that the skills-based evaluations that take place in the BBST courses are the best current alternative to existing certifications. In support of that focus, we are doing the following:
• Transitioning the existing Open Certification question server technology to support the BBST courses
• Transitioning the existing Open Certification vision for creating a pool of open and available content for study material to the AST Basic Concepts SIG. The Basic Concepts SIG is an effort to create a reference for testing terminology structured in the format of the Oxford English Dictionary or the Blacks Law Dictionary and ask, what are the many ways that this word is used and what are good examples of each usage? We want to mirror the field in its diversity, rather than impose a false uniformity.
• Transition existing energy for question development to developing questions and course materials in support of the AST implementation of the BBST courses.

If you have any questions about the Open Certification project, please contact Cem or I at and