Expert Level provides in-depth, practically-oriented certification courses in a range of different testing subjects. Courses provided at Expert Level build on the knowledge and experience obtained at the Advanced Level.
An [Expert Level overview] is available for download. Please note that this overview is currently under further development.
An expert is a person with the special skills and knowledge representing mastery of a particular testing subject. Being a testing expert means possessing and displaying special skills and knowledge derived from training and experience and being able to apply that knowledge in real-life situations.
A testing expert is one that combines a broad understanding of testing in general with an in-depth understanding in a special test area. An in-depth understanding means sufficient knowledge of testing theory and practice to be able to influence the direction that an organization and/or project takes when creating, implementing and executing testing activities related to the special area.
Each syllabus defines the expectations of an expert in that specific subject area. The content is supported by explicit Learning Objectives which emphasise the high expectations of a testing expert.
At least 50% of the course time will be spent on practical exercise and discussions.
Further syllabi will be developed according to market needs.
A participant to the expert level examination needs to have an ISTQB® Advanced level certificate (or equivalences, e.g. ISEB Practitioner). Whether full Advanced is needed, or having passed "just" one module is sufficient will be determined defined in the specific Expert Level syllabus.
Although other formal entry requirements are not mandatory, it is recommended for participants to have at least seven years of practical testing experience.
Recommended course durations vary, but are a minimum of 5 days. Each syllabus defines the specific times required to teach and provide practical exercises.
A course does not need to be provided in one continuous block; it may be split up to allow practical application in the work place.
Class sizes are limited to 10 persons to enable personal focus from the lecturer.
As an expert must not only be able to show knowledge, but also in depth practical skills, an exam only using multiple choice questions is not preferred. The exam will therefore consist of essay type questions, partly mixed with some multiple choice questions. The type of essay type questions will be questions that ask the 'expert' to look at a given topic from different perspectives, compare and draw conclusions. The specific rules for examination will be defined in the detailed expert level module syllabus. It will in principle also be possible to take the exam, without having followed the training.
The Expert Level exam is expected to last at least 3 hours. A minority of that time consists of multiple-choice questions, but the principal part of the exam consists of written "essay-type" questions.
Once certification at Expert Level has been achieved it is valid for 5 years. At the end of this period the certification must be renewed. This may be achieved either by re-taking the exam or by demonstrating that particular activities have been performed during that period (e.g. peforming relevant professional testing tasks, attending conferences, writing articles etc. ). The rules and criteria which govern this process are defines in the Expert Level Certification Extension Program (CEP) which is overseen by the ISTQB® and may be tailored by National Boards.