Advanced Certified ScrumMaster Course + Workshop
Dates: Aug 14 - 16
Location: Charlotte, NC
Course Location:
DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Hotel Charlotte - SouthPark
6300 Morrison Boulevard
Charlotte, NC 28211
Course Options

Advanced Certified ScrumMaster Course + Workshop

Charlotte, NC

Our Advanced Certified ScrumMaster (A-CSM) course + Agile Release Planning Workshop approach is unique. Unlike others, we offer a two-day interactive A-CSM course plus a one-day Agile Release Planning Workshop. We recommend that the two (A-CSM plus ARP) be taken together, but they can be taken individually.

The A-CSM course takes you to the next level. In the A-CSM we review what you have learned and practiced of Scrum, based on what you learned before, and then we add a lot of new content.

The intent is that you leave this course with renewed energy to help your team, your organization and your customers achieve more success. You will leave with new practical techniques to make that happen.

The Agile Release Planning Workshop

The ARP Workshop allows you to take real work and do Agile Release Planning with it. It is highly recommended by attendees. It can be your own real project (or the product you are about to start working on), or it could be a project or product of another person at your table. By using many of these new or old skills with real work, you progress to the next level with your colleagues.

Course Content

In the course, participants will help cover the basics of Scrum and how well we all are executing on the basics. We also discuss techniques and tools for getting your team to execute the basics more fully and more successfully. Most of the time will be spent on more advanced topics. We can send you the list.

The purpose of the more advanced topics is to enable you to help your team do Scrum better and more successfully. Many of the topics are “coaching” topics, in one sense or another. So, for those of you who wish to become coaches or develop as coaches, you will be well served.

The style of this course will be participatory. You must participate. We will ask you to lead sections, or to provide advice. We will set up scenarios, or ask you to identify a specific scenario and then advise how you would address the situation. One aim is that the course experience gives you will have the knowledge, the interest and the motivation to take your team to the next level.

Who Should Attend

We recommend that whole teams attend. This course is an excellent way to help the team rise to the next level.

Anyone with interest can attend with benefit — team members, ScrumMasters, coaches (or would-be coaches), managers, Product Owners, Business Stakeholders. They all need to understand Scrum and Agile better, and they each can do it better, or advise and manage people in doing it better, with this additional knowledge.

We suggest that the return on investment is huge.

Scenario: Let’s say total cost for the course is $2,000 per person and that you send seven people from one team — that’s $14,000. Your team each year produces about $3 million in value (that is, the NPV of what they produce is roughly $3 million or more — or it should be). Let’s say you need a 6:1 return — that’s $84,000. That would a 2.8 percent improvement on the $3 million. If we cannot get a 2.8 percent improvement by doing Scrum better… I’ll be greatly surprised. In fact, I would expect at minimum a 20 percent improvement in Scrum, and that is on a bad day.

Upon Completion

Upon completion of the Course and the Workshop, you will receive 24 SEUs (Scrum Educational Units) and PDUs toward PMI requirements. (Or 16 SEUs and 16 PDUs if you only take the A-CSM course.) In addition, once you complete the CSP-SM course successfully, you will become a CSP-SM.

In addition to the Course/Workshop, you will receive:

  • Recognition by the Scrum Alliance as an Advance-CSM
  • A two-year membership in Scrum Alliance
  • A printed copy of the course materials (and a softcopy)
  • Fibonacci estimating cards, for use in estimating with your team
  • Other Scrum-related materials
  • SEUs and PDUs as described above
  • A free copy of our book on Agile Release Planning

Note: There is no official ScrumAlliance test for the A-CSM. You will be tested (in public) during the course, but it will not be a formal test.

Samples of What You Will Learn or Improve your Skill With:

  • Practical, project-proven practices
  • The essentials of getting a project off on the right foot
  • How to write better user stories for the Product Backlog
  • How to get them to do Story Pointing and BV Pointing — how to explain it
  • How to help both new and experienced teams be more successful
  • The basics of scaling Scrum, perhaps to large, multi-continent project teams
  • Tips and tricks from the instructor’s ten years of using Scrum in a wide variety of environments

The Agile Release Planning Workshop:

  • Unlike others, we always offer a one-day Agile Release Planning workshop with this course.
  • The workshop takes the real work of the identified Product Owner at each table, and we do the Agile Release Planning for that work.
  • It is an excellent way to take the ideas of the course and make them practical. It builds the initial Product Backlog. It gets you and your team ready to start on Monday.
  • You may take the A-CSM course only, but be aware that attendees strongly recommend the ARP workshop.
  • You may also take the Agile Release Planning workshop by itself.

Why Select This Trainer:

  • Joe Little, who has 10+ years of experience as an Agile coach and Scrum Trainer (CST), will lead this Scrum course.
  • Joe has co-trained eight times with Jeff Sutherland (one of the co-creators of Scrum), and we believe you get more “real Scrum” because of this experience.
  • Joe has an MBA and 20+ years of senior level Big 6 and related consulting experience.
  • Joe has in-depth practical experience in helping teams become very productive with Scrum and Agile.
  • He often co-teaches these courses with other great Scrum trainers. Take a look at Joe’s blog, Agile & Business.
  • Joe is a Certified Scrum Trainer (CST) associated with Scrum Alliance.

Why Choose Us?

  • A better trainer
  • A fun, entertaining and memorable course
  • More success
  • …because more real Scrum

Other Information

You may want to learn about our Referral Program and about our Refresher Program. We are also starting to offer free and paid Webinars to go along with the in-person course. We always offer in-house courses.

The content of the course and workshop are described more fully here.


  • You must have a CSM.
  • Re-read the Scrum Guide by Sutherland and Schwaber (about 17 pages) and read Joe’s “Scrum Intro” (about 50 pages).
  • Read a new one of Ken Schwaber’s or Jeff Sutherland’s books. Tell us which one you choose. If you would prefer to read another Sctum-related book, please tell us which one you choose.
  • You must describe yourself, your situation and your experiences with Scrum.
  • You must write 1.5-2 pages of Scrum-Agile advice, to be read by the group. Make it relatively specific and actionable.

This website (and especially the blog) has lots of other information that may be helpful to you.

Registration and Fees

  • Early bird price for the two-day CSM Course is $1,200. The normal price is $1,500.
  • Early bird price for the two-day CSM Course and one-day ARP Workshop is $1,650.  The normal price is $1,850.
  • We may change from early bird pricing to normal pricing at any time. If you need us to hold a price for you for a couple of days, e.g., to get approval, please contact us and we probably can do that.
  • If you are a member of a local Agile or PMI group, you can get a $100 reduction in these fees (except for the Early Bird price for the two-day CSM Course).
  • Alternately, there is a 10% discount for any group of three or more. (Contact us.)  If you have 6 or more people, please contact us.
  • In addition, there is a 3% discount off the net due if you pay with cash (e.g., at the beginning of the course). To receive the cash discount, you must make a $100 non-refundable deposit (which normally is just a pre-payment) before the course starts. The deposit will be lost (due to hotel costs) if you do not come to the course for any reason.

The fee also covers food and beverage at the course (typically, a continental breakfast, AM break, lunch and a PM break). The course fee also covers the cost of the test.

Please register using the “Register Now” button (above right). If you register multiple people, please send us an email with their names and email addresses to

You may also contact Retta and we can discuss other payment methods, receipts, invoices, etc. Payment methods include USD check, money transfer, credit card, PayPal, over-the-phone (CC), cash, etc. All payments should be received before the course starts. Once we receive payment you will be registered.

The course date may be changed up until 16 days prior to the start date. Please do not book non-refundable travel expenses without discussing with us. We can advise you on the date is set.

Policy for Changes and Refunds

If for any reason you cannot make a course, you may send another person in your place for free (no additional fee). You must identify that person before the course starts.

There are other options and other situations. Some involve notable fees or deductions. These rules are discussed on this webpage.  You are responsible for reading these rules carefully. In general, fees or extra costs are more likely if you are within 16 days of the course start.

Please contact Retta if you have questions (