The International Software Testing Qualifications Board, also known as ISTQB, was established in November 2002 in Edinburg, and, actually, it’s a software testing certification association that comprises 66 National Testing Boards as well as numerous globally recognized exam vendors. At the same time, ISTQB has an extensive industry partner network of nearly 240 members and 300 accredited training providers. Thanks to such a coordinated association, ISTQB has already issued more than 750,000 certifications and administered more than one million qualifying exams.
Today, this nonprofit association, based on the work of more than a hundred volunteer testing experts from around the globe, is registered in Belgium and offers a broad ISTQB® Certified Tester program in software testing.
All ISTQB qualification tracks are based on programs and standards developed by the ISTQB team to support testers on their career journey and to give employers peace of mind. In collaboration with professional organizations such as the International Requirements Development Board, the Glossary (ISTQB Terminology) has been agreed, which is in fact the language of software testing.
At this point, the ISTQB accreditation program can be viewed from several angles:
Levels that reflect progressively increasing levels of experience and competence:
- Foundation – the Foundation Level 2018 and Foundation Level Agile Tester accreditations.
- Advanced – for instance, the Advanced Level Test Manager, Advanced Level Technical Test Analyst, or Advanced Level Agile Technical Tester certifications.
- Expert – the Test Management and Improving the Testing Process qualifications.
Streams that represent specific modules of qualifications:
- Core – these designations correspond to the historically first ISTQB certificates, are focused on general understanding, are valid for any application, methodology, and technology, and cover the topic of software testing as broadly as possible. Therefore, certificates of this module are often required for more advanced level qualifications.
- Agile – these designations are focused on the testing practice concerning Agile SDLC practices, which have become the standard in many contexts. Given the success of the Agile Tester Foundation accreditation, the ISTQB is actively seeking to expand this stream to include both technical and organizational features of testing using Agile.
- Specialist – these designations focus on specific topics regarding different technologies and approaches to testing, specific testing activities, and the latest trends in the field. Thus, you can take advantage of various options such as Foundation Level Mobile Application Testing, Foundation Level Automotive Software Tester, Advanced Level Test Automation Engineer, or Certified Tester AI Testing.
Any qualification track you choose involves taking a specific multiple-choice certification exam from any of the ISTQB-authorized exam providers. Your Foundation or Advanced (including Specialist qualifications) certificate has no expiration date. At the same time, if you receive Expert-level accreditation you should realize that after 5 years you will have to renew it by taking the appropriate test or get 200 Certification Extension Credits.