Product Management Certification FAQ
What is a Product Management Certificate Program and how is it different than a Product Management Certification Program?
Unfortunately, these two terms are often confused; and at least some of that confusion may be coming from the organizations that provide these programs! Luckily, there is a standard that defines these terms quite clearly. The following is an excerpt from ANSI E2659-17 Standard Practice for Certificate Programs:
Certification is a process through which a nongovernmental entity grants a time-limited recognition to an individual after verifying that he or she has met established criteria for proficiency or competency, usually through an eligibility application and assessment. While certification eligibility criteria may specify a certain type or amount of education or training, the learning event(s) are not typically provided by the certifying body. Instead, the certifying body verifies education or training and experience obtained elsewhere through an application process and administers a standardized assessment of current proficiency or competency.
In contrast, in a certificate program, the learning event(s) and the assessment(s) are both developed and administered by the certificate issuer, and there is an essential link between them. That is, the learning event(s) are designed to help participants achieve learning outcomes and the assessment is designed to evaluate the learners’ attainment of those intended learning outcomes.
Also, certifications have ongoing requirements for maintaining proficiency/competency and can be revoked for not meeting these ongoing requirements. In contrast, certificates do not have ongoing maintenance
In summary, for a program to be qualified as a true product management certification in accordance with established industry standards, the resulting certification must be issued by an entity other than the organization that provided the training, and must also be time-limited in that ongoing requirements must be satisfied in order for the certification to remain valid. This also makes true certification more applicable to professions that need to be monitored by some independent testing body. Examples may include doctors, lawyers, public accountants, professional engineers, etc.
A certificate program, on the other hand, is issued by the company that provides the training and typically has no expiration associated with it. This is more applicable for university programs, training programs, or any endeavor where you wish to demonstrate proficiency in a certain body of knowledge or skill set.
When choosing between different types of programs, the most important consideration is to select one that:
- is tied to a curriculum that addresses your specific learning needs;
- most closely validates the type of skills you are trying to develop; and
- is administered by a company that you trust.
What are the benefits of completing a Product Management certificate program?
It may, on the surface, appear as though a product management certificate program is equivalent to a course completion certificate and, depending on how the program is administered, that can very well be the case. Some programs are designed with a simple test that is given just after a class is completed. These types of programs are designed to ensure that people stay engaged in the class, but they may not represent a true test of skills or long-term knowledge transfer.
The Product Management Certificate Program, on the other hand, is designed to allow for application and study of the material that has been taught. This is why we require an 8-week waiting period between the class and the exam; thereby allowing the program to demonstrate both applications of skills and longer-term retention of the material that has been taught. When administered in this way, your product management certificate becomes a true demonstration of your knowledge and skills, rather than just a piece of paper to hang on your wall.
What is PMEB and how does it relate to your certificate program?
PMEB stands for the Product Management Executive Board. This is a customer advisory board and community of practice that has been established by Sequent Learning Networks to help guide our curriculum and programs. We established PMEB because we wanted to ensure that our programs are developed to meet the needs of our customers. Our certificate program carries the PMEB name because our certificate exam is fully approved and ratified by this advisory board.
How long does it take to complete our Product Management Certificate Program?
You will receive a link to take your certificate exam approximately 8 weeks after completing our Product Management Essentials workshop. We highly recommend that you spend that time applying the material that you have learned and studying the Product Manager’s Desk Reference in preparation for your exam. The exam itself should take approximately 45 minutes to an hour to complete.
Is there a time limit for completing our Product Management Certificate exam?
You will be required to complete your exam within 3 months of receiving your exam notification.
What score do I need to pass the Product Management Certificate exam?
A passing score is 70% or higher.
What happens if I do not pass the Product Management Certificate exam on the first attempt?
You will have 2 chances to pass the exam within the 3-month testing window.
What do I receive if I pass the Product Management Certificate exam?
Upon passing your certificate exam, you will receive a framed certificate in the mail, indicating that you have successfully completed the Product Management Certificate Program. Your certificate should arrive within 3-4 weeks after successfully passing the exam.
What tools and resources will I receive to help me prepare for the Product Management Certificate exam?
Sequent Learning Networks offers an all-inclusive Product Management Training Program to ensure that you will be fully prepared for your certificate exam. Along with the Product Management Certificate Program, upon registering for our Product Management Essentials Workshop, you will receive:
- A comprehensive course workbook and accompanying laminated copy of our Product Management Framework
- An electronic copy of our Complete Product Management Template Pack
- One Year of Free Access To Over 100 Of Our Whiteboard Videos and Product Management Leadership Summit Videos
- A copy of The Product Manager’s Survival Guide by Steven Haines (for public workshop participants) OR a copy of The Product Manager’s Desk Reference (for corporate workshop participants)