What is the CSDA? How to Pass the CSDA Exam?

The IEEE Computer Society Certified Software Development Associate (CSDA) certification is a software development (engineering) certification that has all of the components of an introductory professional certification. To qualify, applicants must meet one of the requirements listed below plus passing the 150 question CSDA exam:

  • A recent software or computer engineering university graduate
  • An undergraduate in the final year of your software or computer engineering program
  • A computer professional with more than two years of programming experience

Either the three-volume Software Engineering Essential books or the CSDA CD can be used as a study guide for either of the exams. Note that the CSDP/CSDA exam instructors are not permitted to see the actual questions on either the CSDP or the CADA exam.

Note that KAs for Volume III have a greater impact the score for the CSDA exam than on the score for the CSDP exam

Table 1: The differences between the CSDP and the CSDA exams
  Volume I Volume II Volume III
Software Engineering Essentials Knowledge areas (KAs) SW requirements, SW design, SW construction, SW testing, & SW maintenance SWE [project] management, SCM, SWE process, SWE methods, & SW quality Engineering economics, computing, mathematics, engineering, measurements
% coverage for the CSDP exam 47% 35% 18%
% coverage for the CSDA exam 39% 24% 37%

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