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CMMI-Based Professional Certifications: The Competency Lifecycle Framework

Special Report
This report describes how a competency life-cycle framework can be used as the basis for the CMMI-based professional certifications.

Software Engineering Institute

CMU/SEI Report Number
DOI (Digital Object Identifier)


This report describes how a competency lifecycle framework can be used as the basis for the Software Engineering Institute's Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI)-based professional certifications, in such areas as leading appraisals and instructing CMMI courses. The competency lifecycle framework (CLF) provides a systematic approach to defining the abilities, skills, and knowledge an individual needs in order to successfully perform in a CMMI-based professional role. The overall CLF structure defines competency clusters appropriate for a wide variety of certifications. This report also outlines a supporting mechanism, the individual competency record (ICR), as a basis for tracking and administering certifications in terms of the demonstrated competency growth of candidates. 

The expected benefits of using the CLF and ICR are discussed. This report also addresses plans for next steps and opportunities for future work. 

This document is intended for anyone who would like to understand the concepts underlying CMMI-based professional certifications. This includes those responsible for developing the tools, documents, and training courses that lead to certifications. In addition, this document might also be of interest to anyone seeking or holding a CMMI-based certification, or anyone who would like to know how such certification programs are defined.

Please note that current and future CMMI research, training, and information has been transitioned to the CMMI Institute, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Carnegie Mellon University.