The iSTQB foundation certificate guarantee

When I scrolled through my timeline this morning I saw this ad.


ISTQB Certified Tester Trainings 2016: with exclusive guarantee to pass [the exam] and guaranteed appointments!

This makes my toenails roll up. As some might have noticed I don’t hold the highest opinion about the ISTQB certificate, please note, the certificate. It’s not about the training. If they guarantee you that you will pass the exam, what value does taking the exam have?

The ad sounds like: “Take the exam with us and you will get the certificate!” So why waste the time? Book the course, get the certificate.

It’s unfair for those who try to get the overrated certificate by trying on their own. If they could afford to buy the training at imbus, they would get it guaranteed.

But the ad is just a wrong promise! (@Rex: not helping with making ISTQB more credible in my opinion. And imbus is not even ISTQB.)

When you read the long text behind the tweet ad you get some details in the small print:
You will get prepared optimal for the exam questions, and in case you fail, imbus will pay you another try within 2016.

First of all, in my personal view, the questions of the ISTQB exam are not the best. Type of question, how they are asked, and often the strange answers, don’t value learning about testing. You can find some interesting insights here (there are 6 parts!!!) and here (near the end of the podcast).
So if your training focuses on the exam questions, you loose time spending on really learning about testing. And I will say at this point, that the syllabus itself of the ISTQB foundation holds some good basics for people who want learn about formal ways of testing. Sadly often the job reality, but not the topic here.

The worst thing in my eyes is, that, at least in Germany, at the time I got my certificates, you don’t get a chance to see what questions you answered wrong. So you cannot learn from a failed certificate, and in case of a not 100% result, but good enough, you don’t know where your knowledge failed you and you don’t care any more. At the advanced level I got only the results per category showing me that I didn’t get everything right, but not what! NOT HELPFUL! Not in case of ISTQB haters, and most of all not helpful for those who like ISTQB and want to continue with the next level.

In case of imbus, when you have failed the first exam, you don’t know why you failed, but you get a second chance. First of all, not helpful (see above); and all you get is a second lucky shot in the ISTQB lottery. There might be a certain number of people who get it right in the second attempt. But what about those who still did not get it? No third chance, no lessons learned, where is your guarantee now? Sorry imbus, but that ad is a wrong promise.


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