5 Things to Know Before Taking the Professional Adobe Certification Exam

By Elise O'Brien on October 28, 2021

The Adobe Certified Professional exams are a way to prove your proficiency in all types of editing software to employers and clients alike. The certification is a great addition to your portfolio as a way to exemplify your skillset against industry standards and stand out as a creative with proven technical abilities.


The exam is designed with working editors in mind, with questions to test the skills and knowledge that are necessary for professionals in the digital media field. The exam is straightforward for those that are proficient in the software, but there are a few things that everyone should know when considering taking the Adobe certification exam.

1. Adobe Exam Objectives

Adobe certification exam

Caption: Adobe Certified Professional badges


The most important thing to know is the general information you will be tested on. Each exam has slightly different objectives, but overall covers similar topics. 


The exams test on all aspects of the software. Specifically, questions test appropriate use of the project interface, including interface setup and program settings, as well as project organization with the timeline and layer features.


Examinees will also be tested on creating and modifying visual elements. You will be expected to use tools and features to add and modify clips, shapes, text, effects, and keyframes.


Questions may also ask about settings and processes for publishing digital media, including saving and exporting your projects.

Besides the software, the Adobe exams measure the familiarity with the overall digital media industry and may consist of questions regarding: 

  • Target Audience
  • Project Management Concepts
  • Copyright and Licensing Key Terminology
  • Basic Graphic, Visual Effects, and Design Principles.

See here for a complete outline of each exam and its objectives.


2. Adobe Certification Exam Structure

adobe certified associate exam test questions

Caption: The structure of the certification exam with indications when the timer is running.


The exam is a series of questions split into two parts, a multiple-choice segment, and a practical hands-on task segment. You have a total of 50 minutes to complete both sections.


You will go through a tutorial for each segment and, once completed, you will move on to the timed and graded questions. At the end of the exam, you will have time to leave feedback on individual questions and the exam overall.


Adobe Certification Exam Prep Course Instructor Rich Harrington suggests spending ⅓ of the exam time in the first segment and to reserve the remaining ⅔ of time for the task portion.


3. General Test-Taking Tips

adobe photoshop certification test

Caption: How to reload the exam panel in the certification exam


In Harrington’s prep course for the Premiere Pro Certification Exam, he discusses lots of tips and tricks to help you as you take the exam. Examinees are provided a manageable time frame to complete the exam if they are proficient in the software, but some mistakes may fail an otherwise successful candidate. Harrington suggests time-saving tips to finish the exam successfully and fight off test anxiety.


If you come across a question you don’t know, mark it for review and move on to complete the other questions. The exam is graded based on how many questions you answer correctly, so it is in your best interest to complete as many as possible.


Harrington also suggests not wasting time with keyboard shortcuts. The exam software will not be connected to your iCloud, computer, or Adobe account, so be prepared to use the default settings in the software.


The task section of the exam will ask you to complete very clear instructions. Harrington warns to not waste time and to avoid any unnecessary edits, even if your creative eye notices some things you would change on your own project. Stick to the tasks as described.


Lastly, know the software and don’t rely on outside material. The exam software denies access to certain functions like Open and Help, so don’t plan on opening your own projects or using the help button to locate your tools. The live remote proctor also monitors your screen in real-time as you test to ensure the integrity of all exams.


4. Common Traits of Successful Candidates

Examinees come with a range of experience and professional know-how, but successful candidates often share some commonalities. A successful candidate is someone who has had 150 hours of instruction and hands-on experience in editing software. 


Besides working in a hands-on career, successful examinees also study for the exam with courses and prep classes. See here for exam offerings and check out Adobe courses here.


5. What Can You Do With an Adobe Certification?

adobe exam

Caption: The exam score report presented after completion of the exam


Adobe Certified Professionals have shown their achievement in the Adobe applications and their ability to deliver creative and professional content.


Once you pass your exam, you will receive a certificate, digital badge, and static badge to showcase on your portfolio and profile. The certification gives working professionals credibility and visibility to employers and clients, making them stand out from other candidates. Certified Professionals have shown they have the talent and expertise to meet the demands of the digital media industry.


If you are ready to get started to becoming an Adobe Certified Professional, order the prep course recording to study at your own pace.


Learn More About Adobe Certification

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Topics: Adobe After Effects, Adobe, Premiere Pro, Adobe Certification

Author: Elise O'Brien

FMC provides quality, consistent and accessible training for content creators and IT professionals.

Our courses are designed to help individuals and institutions meet their goals by enabling them to be on the cutting edge of technology.

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