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CSM or SSM: What Scrum Master Course Do I Choose?

  • Scrum
  • CSM
  • Certified Scrum Master
  • SAFe
Created on :
May 9, 2022
Updated on :
October 27, 2022

Today, many companies are adopting the Agile Methodology in their organizations, and as a result, the demand for Agile professionals is increasing day by day. In such an era, the CSM and SSM courses are turning out to be excellent courses that are improving the candidates’ professional prospects.

Are you one of them who is confused after seeing Scrum certification options from Scrum Alliance and Scaled Agile? And also wondering which one should I go for? If yes, then you are in the right place. This blog is for you.

Let’s look at the official definitions of these two courses

Certified Scrum Master® (CSM®)

If you’re ready to grow more agile with Scrum, our Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM®) course is designed for you. You’ll learn the Scrum framework and gain an understanding of team accountabilities, events, and artefacts as well as how to guide your team to apply Scrum.


SAFe® Scrum Master (SSM)

If you want to become a certified scrum master with the skills to help leading companies succeed with Agile and scrum, the SAFe Scrum Master course is for you. Learn how scrum masters empower and lead Agile teams. Understand how to facilitate Agile events like iteration planning, standups, and retrospectives. And discover how to help teams plan and complete their work. You’ll also learn the principles of servant leadership, so you can help develop high-performing, engaged, continuously improving teams in your own organization.


Who should ‌do CSM®?

If you want to serve as a Scrum Master in a Scrum team by gaining an understanding of the Scrum framework, principles and values, then this Certified Scrum Master® certification course is for you. You’ll develop a basic understanding of Scrum and discover how to put it into practice on your team and in your organization. Being a Certified Scrum Master®, you will guide your team through Scrum’s accountabilities, events, and artifacts. This CSM® certification course will be beneficial for Scrum Masters, Software Engineers, Business Analysts Project managers, New Scrum team members or anyone new to the agile way of work. Marketers, data scientists, HR representatives, and other professionals who are searching for a better way to handle complicated challenges are also encouraged to attend this course. You will gain the confidence to apply the Scrum framework in workplaces by which you can steer any project in the right direction.

In our observations, the following are the professionals who are more seen doing the Certified Scrum Master (CSM®) program frequently.

  • Individuals who want to start their Agile and Scrum Journey.
  • Professionals who want to get started with Scrum Master Role.
  • Experienced Scrum Master wanted to validate their Scrum Learning.
  • Project Manager who wishes to understand agile ways of working.

Who should do SSM?

If you want to gain an understanding of the role of a Scrum Master at a SAFe enterprise level, then this course is for you. SSM certification course will help you understand how software development is done using SAFe frameworks. You will know how to plan and execute the Program Increment (PI). You will learn the key components of Agile at scale development, execute the Iteration Planning and also coach Agile teams to deliver the maximum business value on the scale. The SSM program will also be good for professionals who are working as Scrum Masters in the organizations where SAFe is in use or about to get started. The Scrum Masters who are expected to perform roles in SAFe should go SAFe Scrum Master Certification and Training.

In our observations, the following are the professionals who are more seen doing the SAFe Scrum Master (SSM) program frequently.

  • Individuals who want to gain an understanding of the role of a Scrum Master at a SAFe enterprise level.
  • An experienced Scrum Master who wants to know what SAFe® Scrum Master is.

How SAFe® Scrum Master is different from CSM®?


Course NameCertified Scrum Master®SAFe® Scrum Master
Governing BodyScrum AllianceScaled Agile
Exam TypeMultiple Choice Question (MCQ)Multiple Choice Question (MCQ)
Exam Duration60 Minutes (1 Hour)90 Minutes (1.5 Hours)
No. of questions50 Questions45 Questions
Passing Score74% You need to score 74% out of 100%. Scrum and Agile (6%) Scrum Theory (6%) Scrum Values (6%) Scrum Team (20%) Scrum Master (22%) Scrum Events (20%) Scrum Artifacts (20%)73 % You need to score 73% out of 100%. Introducing Scrum in SAFe (13%) Characterizing the role of the Scrum Master (38%) Experiencing PI Planning (18%) Facilitating Iteration execution (22%) Finishing the PI (9%)
Difficulty LevelEasyDifficult
Learning OpportunitiesHow will the Scrum Master and Product Owner work in the collaboration? How could a Scrum Team inspect and adapt to increase transparency? How to perform a Sprint Planning, Sprint Review, Sprint Retrospective, and the effects of skipping the Sprint Retrospective? How does the Scrum Master conduct a Daily Scrum? How does Daily Scrum differ from a status meeting? How does Scrum Master act as a true leader for the Scrum Team? How does the Scrum Master assist the Scrum Team with impediments?How Lean-Agile leadership help the team to embrace SAFe core values? How does Scrum work in the SAFe enterprise? How do problem-solving techniques help teams in relentless improvement? How do you facilitate meetings and team learning events? How does Scrum Master support the product owner to manage the backlog? How does the SAFe® Scrum Master support SAFe adoption? What are the SAFe Scrum Master’s responsibilities on the Agile Release train?
Free AttemptsTwoOne
Retake Cost$25$50
Membership2 years of membership with Scrum Alliance.1 year of membership to the SAFe Community Platform.
Eligible ProfessionalsAgile Coach & Scrum Master Product Owner Release or Portfolio Manager Business Analyst Software Developers Project or Delivery managers Product or program managers New Scrum Team Members Anybody who wants to learn ScrumNew or existing Scrum Masters Team Leads Release Train Engineers Managers Agile Coach Developers Anyone who is new to the role of Scrum Master Professionals who want to understand the Scrum Master’s role and apply it to the SAFe organization

Which one is better (SAFe) Scrum Master or CSM?

Get The Upcoming Sessions Details

Both (CSM and SSM) certifications can be beneficial for professionals depending on their personal requirements and career goals. Just keep in mind that the desired certification course should help you gain in-depth knowledge related to the scrum role which you can apply in your job. So choose your certification course wisely. Also, select an expert trainer who can help you ease your journey.

iZenBridge is a Global Registered Education Provider (REP) of Scrum Alliance that offers the best training for the Certified Scrum Master® course. Also, we are a Silver Partner of Scaled Agile, which provides the highly interactive SAFe® Scrum Master’s certification and training.

Why you should do SAFe Scrum Master (SSM)

Check out our calendar of upcoming sessions

Certified Scrum Master® (CSM®)View Schedule
SAFe® Scrum Master (SSM)View Schedule

Still having questions in mind? Write to us in the comments section below.

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