Adobe Photoshop Certificate
In the world of digital images, Adobe Photoshop is the accepted expert in the industry. The term “it was Photoshopped” has now taken on an everyday usage only before shown by Google. People don’t search, they “Google it” and any photo of questionable authenticity is now assumed to have been “Photoshopped”.
Just having a working knowledge of Adobe Photoshop, however, may not be sufficient in today’s competitive employment environment. Becoming certified in Photoshop is the perfect way to highlight expertise in the digital imaging field. A Photoshop certification on a resume helps to differentiate the truly proficient from the everyday average user.
While Adobe offers several levels of certification, becoming an Adobe Certified Expert or ACE will demonstrate expert level proficiency. Within the ACE program, there are three options available:
- Single product certifications to demonstrate expert level proficiency in one application such as Photoshop
- Specialist certifications that recognize proficiency in a specific medium: print, web, or video
- Master certifications which recognize skills with an entire product suite. To become certified as an Adobe Certified Expert (ACE) Master, all current exams for each of the products in the suite must be passed.
The certification program for Adobe is administered by an independent third party testing company, Pearson VUE, and is available online and at thousands of testing centers in hundreds of countries.
Certification courses are also available online, as well as traditional brick and mortar, colleges and technical institutions. When selecting a course, make sure that an ACE certification through Adobe will be awarded upon completion of the course. There are many Photoshop courses offered those offer certifications of some type, but a true ACE certification must be through an approved Adobe testing center.
The certification exam takes approximately one to two hours and consists of 60 to 90 multiple choice questions. It is a computer-delivered closed book exam. A score of 70% or higher is needed to pass the exam. Certifications are valid until 90 days after the exam version of your certification is retired.
An ACE certification costs about $150, therefore preparation and study for the exam will increase the chances of successfully passing it the first time. There are a number of user guides, online training and study materials to facilitate preparation for the exam.
Once an ACE in Photoshop is achieved, the certification can always be used for the version of Photoshop for which it was obtained. As upgraded versions of Photoshop are released, recertification exams are available to those who have already passed and ACE for a previous Photoshop version. Recertification exams cost around $50 and can be done online.
There are approximately 12 topics covered the ACE exam for Photoshop.
Below is a sample list of the types of topics covered in the exam and a typical percent of questions in each area:
General knowledge 9%
Correcting, painting, and retouching images 12%
Working with selections 9%
Creating and using layers 9%
Working with masks and channels 8%
Working with vector tools 5%
Using Camera Raw and Bridge 9%
Automating tasks 8%
Managing color 8%
Advanced knowledge 8%
Creating output for print 7%
Creating output for Web and mobile devices 5%
One of the best ways to study for the exam is through practical use of the Photoshop application. There are many exam bulletins, tutorial guides and courses available that will provide projects and exercises designed to prepare for the exam. There are practice exams available and many of the Adobe certified testing centers also offer courses to prepare for the exams
However, while studying for the exam, keep in mind that it is a multiple choice exam not a practical exam. Creating or manipulating actual images is not part of the test. The exams are designed to measure the knowledge and proficiency of the application. While preparing for the exam it is critical to pay attention to the process that is being used in the application. Additionally, knowledge of the menus and commands is essential.
Once a certified ACE exam is taken the results will be available immediately and are automatically sent to Adobe as well. For those who pass the exam, a welcome kit is sent out in two to four weeks which also includes instructions on how to download and use the Adobe logo for resumes, websites or other business applications.
The question might remain why? Why take the time and go through the course and the exam? For most, it’s the job market and what a prospective employee brings to a job and to a career. There are a lot of people looking for not a lot of jobs and each specialized skill that is added to a resume increases the potential for more doors of employment to open.
The addition of this type of specialization, particularly as more businesses go online and work to increase their web offerings, can mean the difference between finding a job and finding a career.