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Joomla Certification - We Keep On Moving!
In this and an upcoming article, I would like to provide all the available information about the evolution of the Joomla Certification program, the actions performed so far, and a firsthand look by one of the team leaders at the future of this interesting project.
For those who still don’t know, Joomla will have an official Certification program in a short time. To do this, and thanks to Sarah Watz’s management, four different working groups were created to distribute the work, in the most efficient way, to achieve the objectives. The details about the tasks and responsabilities of each of these groups are available in my January article.
This month we can see the progress made by both the Joomla Certification Program Team, and the Joomla Certification Training Team. Next month I will try to provide you also with Sarah Watz’s view as team leader of the Steering Group which manages certification, as well as Robert Wilson’s opinion as team leader of the Marketing and Communication Group.
Let’s begin with Sara Thornton, team leader of the Joomla Certification Program Team. This is the team to which the great responsibility of creating the test falls. This test will be for Administrator applicants who wish to obtain certification:
“The Joomla Certification Program team is currently working on the Administrator Certification as the first of several certifications. The Joomla administrator certification is designed for those responsible for the day-to-day operation and maintenance of a Joomla website. The Joomla Administrator's duties begin after the developer hands off the completed site, and some typical duties include: supporting users, supporting the web platform, managing upgrades and extensions, managing site security, maintaining overall site structure (menus, categories, articles), overseeing the development and upkeep of website content, training users in proper site usage, knowledge of collaboration with other Joomla professionals (Joomla Developers, Joomla Content Managers, etc), creation of, management of and restoration of back-ups.
We have finalised the Administrator Certification base structure (sections and subsections), and are currently working through fleshing out each of the different subsections. We have had some challenges along the way. The greatest of these so far is the sticky topic of how backups should be covered as part of the Administrator. Questions such as: "Do we assume that Administrators will have database access? If so, will this alienate part of our target audience? Or is this an essential part of being an Administrator?" and so on, have fuelled many hours of discussion. However, in the end it was felt best to put this particular topic on the back burner for the time being, so that it would not impact the team's progress with the rest of the certification.
We are now at a point in the certification creation process where we are creating the actual test questions (and answers) themselves, and so we are warmly accepting test questions (and answers) from the Joomla Community, which will all be individually read by the certification team and added to the certification test where possible. In order to embrace the true community spirit of Joomla, we wanted to open up this part of the process to all who wish to participate, and you can now submit your proposed Administrator Certification test question (or questions) here: http://goo.gl/jClQFT. A huge thank you in advance to all who participate in this part of the Certification process.”
Next I would like to share my vision with you of the evolution of this group as co-leader of the Joomla Certification Training Team. My colleague Victor York manages this team with me.
This group is tasked with the creation of all the documentation and procedures needed for the selection, support and evaluation of the companies that want to be part of the official Joomla training centers network. The starting point was the creation of four sub-working groups:
- Preselection Group: In charge of the creation of the documentation and the selection process of the companies who wish to be partners of the certification.
- Support Group: In charge of creating the documentation and the procedures necessary for the accompaniment and the support of the companies once they become partners.
- Quality Group: In charge of generating the documentation and defining the procedures which guarantee the quality and the monitoring of the training given by the partner.
- “Auxiliary” Group: Revise documents, translate documents, etc.
Following the first period of looking for contributors, we asked all the stakeholders to share their ideas about the things each group would need to start working, for a couple of weeks. This was aimed to bring together a creative group which didn’t just follow or fill in the preconceived ideas that the leaders could provide them. Well...they have done a great job!! We are now unifying these results in order to finish the baseline to continue working.
This group has members from: Bulgaria, Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, France, Germany, Ireland, Malaysia, Portugal, Spain and the USA. Because of that, I am sure that we will take advantage of this cultural blend and all together will find the best way to make companies, institutions, universities and other actors who commit to the Joomla Certification Program as “partners”, become the quality assurance that the community needs to undertake training.
If you're interested to know more, and if this article is not enough to satisfy your curiosity, you can still contribute your ideas, your time and effort to any of the groups. I invite you to read the weekly summaries on the Facebook page, since each of the groups updates the community there regularly.