[consulting] Fwd: Drupal Certification and Requirements

Kieran Lal kieran at civicspacelabs.org
Mon Dec 24 17:52:06 UTC 2007

Hi Evan, just to clarify that email was from Paola who's email was
bouncing.  I forwarded it to the list as requested.


On Dec 24, 2007 9:16 AM, Evan Leibovitch <evan at telly.org> wrote:

> Hello Kieran,
> > But my problem is that there are loadsa good who have some level of
> > Drupal knowledge and claim to have years of Drupal experience but too
> > many that do no deliver, and in fact, that mess things up at my
> > expense.
> I agree that this is an issue. I also agree that delivery of code to the
> Drupal codebase, while one very useful measure, is only a partial answer
> to the challenge of matching competent workers with those who would
> employ them.
> > Admittedly, I am taking a bet each time I hire someone,
> Arguably there is no substitute for a good interview. Looking for
> certifications (or other keywords in resumes) is often a necessary first
> step when supply of people exceeds demand. But in the interview you are
> able to:
> -- verify the skills claimed in the resume (and by the certifications)
> -- determine if the person's personality if a good fit for your
> organization
> -- ensure that your expectations of the role match the candidate's
> expectations
> Getting a book on conducting a personnel interview could be a very
> worthwhile effort. Alternately, there is a good reason why "headhunters"
> exist -- good ones possess talent for choosing good workers, that
> employers themselves may not have.
> > I think a basic drupal certification can be' version independent' as
> > the basic principles are not likely to change with each version, and
> > can be set up (I am an IT trainer) - One could also have a 'modular'
> > certification, to show that one has familiarity and understanding of
> > some modules, not  necessarilty with everything
> IMO it would be very difficult to do a Drupal certification that is
> _not_ modular :-)
> > That does not mean that someone who does not take the certification is
> > no good, maybe rther the contrary, and hopefully can demostrate so
> A certification of reasonable quality is a useful tool in the hiring
> process; however, it is only one tool and it is no substitute for
> interviews, references and even (as appropriate) code samples. It is
> important to understand certification use and limitations -- anyone who
> hires someone _only_ based on being certified (as used to happen in the
> Novell and Microsoft worlds) deserves what they get.
> My earlier warning regarded the cost of doing a high quality cert.  In
> IT, vendors create certifications in order to sell training services
> targeted at those certifications. Reputation, and exam quality is even
> more important if the certifying or is a nonprofit and/or there is no
> revenue from "official" training or courseware.
> It certainly can be done if the will (and many, many volunteer hours)
> exist. I would caution, that the skills necessary to make quality tests
> -- the psychometric component of the certification -- are vastly
> different than those of "subject matter experts" (to use certification
> lingo). And finding volunteer psychometric help is not an easy task.
> (Why psychometrics? The goal of an exam -- and its grading -- is to
> create a measurment that "passes"  those who "know the material"
> (whatever that means) and fails those who do not. This means that
> questions on the exam must be crafted specifically to perform this
> discrimination, and doing _that_ requires more than Drupal skills.)
> For more info, Google "psychometrics" or "job task analysis" for an idea
> of the complexity of doing a high quality exam (or even defining what
> "knowing the material" means).
> Cheers,
> - Evan
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