Acquia Grand Master: The Drupal Certification That Should Be On Your Radar

December 20, 2018
Associate Director, Partner Marketing

Acquia Certified Grand Masters

Looking for a way to distinguish yourself among the many Drupal developers out there? Look no further than the Grand Masters Acquia Certification.

Friendly tip – Remember that it’s Acquia Grand Master, not Acquia Grandmaster, though we'd say that's a bit of a Rook-ie error.

What is Drupal?

Drupal is one of the leading open-source Content Management Systems (CMS) and one of the largest open source communities in the world. Founded back in 2000 by Dries Buytaert as a chat platform for college students, today it stands alone as the most flexible, adaptable system on the market, enabling anyone to create advanced websites and applications. Based on Drupal’s latest stats, 1.5 million sites use Drupal, 38 percent of Fortune 50 companies use Drupal, and more than 23,000 developers use Drupal every day to power the sites we interact with regularly. Bounteous has been using Drupal to build websites for customers since 2009.

Why Establish a Grand Masters Certification?

Just as mentorship is ingrained into the DNA of the Drupal community, it was a driving factor in establishing the Acquia Certified Grand Master certification program. Buytaert saw the need to provide a valuable distinction among the community and thus launched the Acquia certification program in 2014. While extremely resource-intensive to create a global certification program, Buytaert says, “We believe that effort is worth it, given the overall positive effect on our community.” Our very own Bounteous Grand Master, Brian Perry, echoes that sentiment and is honored to be one of the members of Drupal community who have received this designation. Regularly relied upon for guidance and expertise, Grand Masters relish the honor to further the Drupal community. As of this posting, Bounteous has 12 Grand Master certifications and 60 developer certifications, the most of any organization outside of Acquia.

Where does Acquia fit in?

Acquia delivers a cloud-based digital experience platform built on Drupal that enables organizations to build experiences that scale and is also led by Buytaert. A preferred partner of Bounteous, Acquia empowers brands to embrace innovation and create customer moments that truly matter. Recently named a leader by both Gartner and Forrester, Acquia is committed to facilitating certification programs allowing developers to validate and promote their Drupal skills year after year.

acquia certification image

Acquia Certifications

Acquia certification exams are administered at Kryterion Testing Centers in more than 750 locations across the globe. Exams are also available as online-proctored tests and are often offered at DrupalCons across the world. To help you prepare, Acquia Learning Services offers several different types of Drupal instruction.

Each of the following certifications offered for Drupal 7 or Drupal 8 is 75-90 minutes in length. For more in-depth information on the following certifications, check out Acquia’s Academy.

Acquia Certified Site Builder

The Acquia Certified Drupal Site Builder is a credential intended for professionals who build Drupal sites using core and contributed modules. This exam is designed to validate skills and knowledge of a Drupal Site Builder. 

Acquia Certified Developer

The purpose of Acquia Certified Developer exam is to validate skills and knowledge of a Drupal developer in the areas of fundamental web concepts, site building, front-end development (theming), and back-end development (coding).

Acquia Certified Front End Specialist

The purpose of Acquia Certified Front End Specialist exam is to validate skills and knowledge of a Drupal developer in the area of front-end development (theming).

Acquia Certified Back End Specialist

The Acquia Certified Back End Specialist exam validates skills and knowledge of a developer in the areas of building and implementing Drupal solutions using code (module development).

The Ultimate Grand Master Achievement

To achieve the prestigious Grand Master accreditation, a candidate must pass the developer, Front End, and Back End Acquia certification exams within a year. Each exam validates skills and knowledge in different areas from fundamental web development to Drupal Core API. This is no easy feat! It is the highest-ranking Drupal certification available, the triathlon of development and requires expertise in multiple areas of focus.

Why Does This Matter to Me?

Whether you're a developer, a Drupal agency, or an Acquia customer, the Grand Master certifications are a trusted benchmark in the industry. The real-world scenarios included in the exam ensure a breadth of prior experience that helps enhance development. Many companies even require Acquia Certification which speaks volumes to the respect this program has established. And while there are many experts who haven’t taken the tests, Buytaert believes, “that if you have a Grand Master working on a project, you have a tremendous asset working in your favor.”

We recommend all Grand Masters add this credential to their LinkedIn profile under certifications.

example of Grand Master certification displayed on social networking site

Ultimately, Grand Master designation allows developers an edge in the development world and provides an enormous amount of credibility in the Drupal community. While no doubt a significant undertaking, the achievement is well worth the investment. With more knowledgeable and engaged developers bettering the community, Drupal’s power increases and in turn supports the companies that leverage Drupal for their digital experiences.