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iSAQB CPSA Certification at a Glance: Why Is It Useful?

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Are you a software architect or would you like to become one and learn more about the iSAQB CPSA certification program and most importantly how it can benefit your career? In this article, you will learn everything about iSAQB, CPSA certificates, and software architecture training.

Here we give you, among other things, an overview of the area of software architecture and the two-stage CPSA certification scheme with Foundation and Advanced Levels. So it's worth reading!

What is iSAQB®?

The "International Software Architecture Qualification Board", iSAQB® for short, is a non-profit organization for the promotion of software architects. The aim is to ensure the professional quality of the training and examination for software architects. The iSAQB defines the training and examination rules, assigns these to certified training organizations, and monitors the corresponding processes.

As a software architect, iSAQB's CPSA certification helps you demonstrate your skills and expertise. The CPSA certificate is an internationally recognized certification that gives you a competitive advantage in the field of software architecture.

The CPSA certification is divided into three levels:

  1. Level: Foundation Level (CPSA-F) - conveys the basics of software architecture.
  2. Level: Advanced Level (CPSA-A) - is proof that you are familiar with advanced software architecture.
  3. Level: Expert Level - is currently being planned.

Why iSAQB certification?

The iSAQB certification is a must for anyone working in the software development industry. It requires basic knowledge of software development principles. In addition, it is also recommended to complete the Advanced Level certification for additional education and training. If you want to become a software architect, you should get certified with iSAQB. Because this is an important certification for software architects and is internationally recognized by organizations in the software development and quality assurance industry.

How the iSAQB certification advances your career

A CPSA from iSAQB is a highly regarded certification and qualification that demonstrates that an IT professional such as a software architect or software developer has acquired a specialized skill in the field. Such training offers professional tools for implementing modern systems and designing them optimally. In addition, iSAQB is a valuable resource for all IT staff working in this area. The CPSA helps IT professionals increase their career opportunities by developing better social and communication skills. This certification is a seal of quality and is increasingly in demand and demanded by industry and universities. Many universities have already adapted their curricula accordingly. With more collaboration and more knowledge, IT pros can get the right opportunities. So, iSAQB is the best way to learn and grow as an IT professional.

The iSAQB certification offers you the following advantages:

  • You will receive a certificate that is international and valid for life.
  • You will learn about the conception and importance of software architecture.
  • So you know the tasks and responsibilities of software architects and their important role in projects.
  • You will learn modern methods and techniques for developing software architectures.
  • You will get to know requirements and project management as well as testing and development related to software architecture.
  • You will learn the methods of documenting and communicating software architectures

iSAQB: This is the learning content

As already mentioned, the iSAQB certification is a comprehensive certification for software architects and developers. The syllabus is published in English, German, Spanish, Italian, French, and other languages. After completing the Foundation Level, you can switch to the Advanced Level if you wish.

iSAQB® CPSA-F – Foundation Level

The iSAQB Foundation Level is a compact basic training for software architects, developers, and all IT employees involved in software projects. This software architecture training offers, among other things, software architects, a globally recognized standard program for training and further education. The basic level contains general terms for software architecture. In addition, in the first stage, the latest methods are used and the role of the software architect is thoroughly examined to make well-trained software architects out of them.

Those interested in the licensed CPSA-F training course will learn:

  • Concept and meaning of software architecture
  • Duties and responsibilities of software architects
  • The importance of software architects in projects
  • Modern techniques and methods for developing software architecture 

You will acquire the following skills with the certification:

  • Discussions and consultation with representatives from requirements management as well as project management, development, and testing
  • Documentation and communication of software architectures based on architectural patterns, views, and technical concepts
  • Understand the basic steps for developing software architectures and apply them independently in small and medium-sized systems.

What are the requirements for the CPSA Foundation Level certification?

Those interested should have the following knowledge and/or experience:

  • Practical experience (at least 18 months) in software development, gained by programming different projects or systems outside of the apprenticeship.
  • Knowledge and practical experience in at least one higher programming language.
  • Basic knowledge of modeling and abstraction.
  • Basic knowledge of UML (classes, packages, components, and sequence diagrams) and their connection to source code.
  • Practical experience in technical documentation, especially in the documentation of source code, system designs, or technical concepts is crucial.

In addition, these aspects help us understand some concepts:

  • High to medium knowledge of object orientation.
  • Hands-on experience in an object-oriented programming language, at least.
  • Practical experience in the conception and implementation of distributed applications, such as client/server systems or web applications.

It is advisable and useful to prepare for the CPSA-F exam through accredited training. This is where we come in. We are happy to assist you with all questions and concerns regarding the iSAQB certification.


iSAQB® CPSA-A – advanced training

The CPSA - Advanced Level offers practical knowledge in areas of competence and is the next certification level after the CPSA-F. So, in this course, the qualifications of software architecture are resolutely continued. iSAQB offers a specifically structured training program for this purpose, which above all conveys and tests far-reaching skills and knowledge. Obtaining CPSA-A certification takes a lot of time. In addition, high demands are placed on you in terms of expertise and experience.

What skills do you acquire with the certification?

  • The design of medium to large IT systems independently and methodically
  • Assume technical and content-related responsibility for business-critical IT systems
  • Conceive, design and document measures to achieve non-functional requirements
  • Professionally accompany the development team during the implementation of these measures.
  • As well as the implementation and control of architecture-related communication in medium to large development teams

What are the requirements CSA-A exam?

The prerequisite for taking the CPSA-A exam is successful Foundation Level certification and at least three years of full-time professional experience in the IT industry. Collaboration in, for example, medium-sized or large open-source projects is also recognized by the iSAQB as professional experience. In addition, at least 70 credit points are required, which are obtained by participating in accredited advanced-level training courses. You need at least 10 credit points in each of the three competency areas to participate.

The iSAQB has defined the following areas of competence:

  • Methodological competence: Teaches systematic procedures, completely independent of specific technologies
  • Technical competence: Knowledge and application of specific technologies for solving design and architectural tasks are strongly promoted here.
  • Communicative competence: Here, cooperation with various stakeholders such as communication, presentation, conflict resolution, argumentation, or moderation is trained.

Modules of the CPSA-A certification

The Advanced Level program is modular in structure, consisting of 17 modules, each focusing on a specific area of software architecture professionals' competency.

1- Module architecture documentation (ADOC):

This course deals with the question of how to document and communicate software architectures. The module includes content, procedures, and tools, especially for the target group-specific recording of solution approaches at different times in the life cycle of a software system.


2- Module Agile Software Architecture (AGILA):

This course is specifically about how best to do effective architecture work in agile teams and projects.


3- Module architecture evaluation (ARCEVAL):

This course teaches whether architecture also meets high expectations.


4-Module Infrastructure, Container, and Cloud Native (CLOUDINFRA):

In this course, you will learn how to design and implement adaptable infrastructure for the cloud.


5-Domain Driven Design (DDD) module:

In this course, you will learn how to design a technical architecture in cooperation with technical experts and developers.


6-Enterprise Architecture Management (EAM) module:

This course shows how to keep a large landscape of IT systems and applications consistent.


7-Module Flexible Architecture Models (FLEX):

To design particularly flexible architectures, the curriculum in this course includes modern architectural approaches such as microservices, continuous delivery, and self-contained systems and also current principles for the operation of such solutions.


8-Module evolution and improvement of software architectures (IMPROVE):

In this course, the participant learns how to improve software systems systematically, based on ecological and technical goals.


9-Module requirements for software architects (RWQ4ARC):

This course teaches how to equip software architects and development teams with sufficient requirements for engineering know-how. This allows them to make well-informed architectural decisions based on the actual needs of the stakeholders.


10-Module Soft Skills for Software Architects (SOFT):

In this course, we will answer the big challenge and the question of how to conduct discussions with software architects about finding an architecture, how to moderate them and how to present their architecture so that you can understand each other.


11-Consensus building module in less trustworthy decentralized applications (BLOCKCHAIN):

This course teaches how to use blockchain technology to achieve consensus in distributed and untrusted systems.

12-Embedded Systems module (EMBEDDED):

In this course, you will be shown how to design safety-relevant embedded systems. In addition, the hard real-time and functional safety syllabus covers central topics for the development of embedded systems in the regulated environment. In addition, he addresses interactions between software and system architecture.

13-Module Functional Software Architecture (FUNAR):

This course explains how software architecture works with features, immutable data, and combinations.


14-Module Service-Oriented Architectures (SOA-T):

This course aims to train the systematic development of service-oriented architectures (SAOn), with introductory SOA terminology, technical concepts, and example technologies as well as procedures for the design, test, and operation of SOAn. This is mainly conveyed with case studies and an insight into current developments in service-based systems.

15-Module Mobile Architectures Mobile Architectures (SWAM):

This course is about the development of architectures for mobile devices.

16-Module web architectures (WEB):

This course teaches the design of powerful and secure web-based systems.


17-Web Security Module (WEBSEC):

This course explains what "security" means in general and how it is integrated into your own analysis and development processes.

Who can offer and conduct an iSAQB® training course?

To be able to offer and conduct an iSAQB CPSA training course, accreditation by the iSAQB is urgently required. We are an iSAQB-recognized accredited training facility with a record success rate of 98.8% both in their cures and with their qualified and expert trainers.

Is training necessary before the exams?

To prepare for and complete the Foundation Level exam, iSAQB strongly recommends attending classroom or online training with an accredited training provider. As a member of iSAQB, we are an accredited training provider. We offer iSAQB CPSA-F and CPSA-A licensed training courses, among others. You can find all of the training courses we offer with a detailed descriptions on our Academy page.

As a Swiss company, we have set ourselves the goal of creating knowledge and quality for the digital world. We have been offering further training and seminars for many years. With the help of our competent trainers, we teach both individuals and teams through the iSAQB organization and offer our training courses online, on-site, and even as hybrid courses. Through the training we conduct, you will be able to assert yourself in the future job market and a duel with your fellow combatants.

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