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ISTQB Certification: Reaching goals and sharing insights

When TMC Employeneur Rashmi Yadav moved to The Netherlands, she planned on learning Dutch as soon as possible - but it turned out she had to take up another type of course first. ‘When I started doing interviews, every company asked if I had an ISTQB-certification,’ Rashmi explains. ‘I did not: in India, where I’d been working as a Software Test Engineer for years, the certification was not required at all.’ To say that Rashmi passed the exams would be an understatement: she acquired three certifications and shared her experiences on her website, helping out a lot of other ambitious Software Test Engineers.

ISTQB - not just a formality

‘I soon discovered that the certification was more than just a formality - it’s not some dull requirement, something to spice up your CV with.’ Studying for the exams, Rashmi learned a lot about her field of work. ‘In my daily work, I was doing the same kind of software tests I’d always done, but I was surprised to hear quite some new information about different techniques, about the ideas behind every approach. I really gained some valuable theoretical knowledge to back up my practical skills.’

Although she is too modest to call herself an expert on the matter, Rashmi talks about the exams and the certifications with great eloquence and enthusiasm. ‘ISTQB stands for International Software Testing Qualification Board. The Board has created a very reliable - and very successful - method for certifying Software Testers. All over the world, in more than 120 countries, ISTQB’s exams and certifications are helping evolve our field. The exams and certifications are a great way for Software Testers to prove their skills and for companies to prove they hold their employees to the highest  possible standards.’

In ISTQB’s core product portfolio, there are three levels of Software Test Certifications: Foundation, Advanced and Expert. ‘At the moment, I have the Foundation Level,’ Rashmi says. ‘For the Advanced Level, there are three modules, of which I’ve completed two. For most companies, a certification at the Foundation Level would be more than enough proof of one’s competence - and rightly so. But I was so enthusiastic about the exams, and about the opportunity to know more about my field, that I signed up for a second exam right after I finished the first.’

Preparing herself for her second exam, Rashmi discovered there wasn’t as much studying material available online as there had been for the first one. ‘For the Foundational Level there are many websites with sample questions and solutions - for the Advanced Level, not so much, while the need for practice is even stronger.’ Rashmi managed to pass the exam anyhow, but she thought it wouldn’t hurt to share a few tips and tricks with other people. ‘I decided to write about my own experiences and ideas, in as much detail as I could.’

'I was surprised to hear quite some new information about different techniques, about the ideas behind every approach.'

Rashmi’s helpful blog can be found here.

Her own learning process is still in full swing. In October, she started as System Test Engineer at Bosch – a role she is enjoying very much. She also has her mind set on reaching ISQTB’s Expert level. ‘But I need a few more years of experience for that. Maybe I can start the exams at the end of next year.’ For now, she has another priority: after three years of living in The Netherlands, Rashmi finally has the time for a completely different type of course: ‘’Dutch lessons. I’m really looking forward to that!’

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