This course will help you to prepare for the Adobe Certified Expert in Photoshop CC Exam. This exam is the highest official certification you can get, proving your skills in Photoshop and it can help further in your career in the creative industry.
Adobe suggests to have at least 2 years solid experience of working with Photoshop before taking the exam. Using this course you will be able to prepare and pass the exam with much less previous knowledge. Every topic and feature is explained in this course with all levels of users in mind.
The exam is made up of 10 big topics, which are all covered in great detail with video tutorials in this course. At the end of each topic you will find a test, which will help you to prepare for the real exam and summarise what you have learnt in each topic. At the end of the course there are 5 main test exams. Each of them has 40 random questions from all 10 topics. Taking these will be very similar to the real exam situation and it will help you to gain confidence.
It is recommended to spend time practicing what you have learnt in Photoshop, so if you wish to prepare thoroughly it will probably take 1-2 weeks to finish this course depending on your Photoshop skills.
Currently this is the only online course available offering a complete preparation guide for the Photoshop CC Expert exam. Watch the videos in the first section to find out more about the exam and you can also cover the whole first exam topic for free. This course will get you up to speed to pass the exam with flying colors.
The aim of this course is to guide you through the topics of the Photoshop CC Certified Expert exam with video tutorials explaining each of the areas and tools covered in great detail. At the end of each section I also provide a test for practicing what you have learnt. You can go through the topics in any given order you prefer as the questions in the exam will be also randomised. Once you completed all the topics and done all the tests for each section you can also rehearse and exercise what you have learnt by completing the test exams in Section 12. These are the closest that you can get to experience a real exam situation with questions randomly coming up from all the topics. You can retake these exams and also the tests for each topic as many times as you want and you will be able to monitor how your results improve.
Finishing this course won’t give you a 100% guarantee that you will be able to pass the exam, but it will definitely save you a lot of time for preparing for the exam. It is a very difficult test and you have to know a lot about working with Photoshop, so don’t expect to pass without hard work. Adobe recommends to take at least 3 weeks for the preparation for this exam and I completely agree with them. Your advantage by taking this course is that you have a personal trainer providing you clear explanations and insights to each of the topics in the form of easy-to-follow video tutorials. I compressed years of experience teaching Photoshop in classrooms and online into my examples to make them the most efficient way to prepare you for this exam.
You can learn a lot about Photoshop from this course even if you are a beginner, but I won’t explain basic concepts here as I want to focus on the topics of the exam. If you are new to Photoshop I recommend you to first watch my other courses and free tutorials online and come back to this course when you are familiar with the basics.
It can be difficult to stand out and be noticed in today’s job market. Becoming an Adobe Certified Expert gives you a clear and focused way to tell the world about your expertise and communicate your proficiency in leading products like Photoshop.
Being a designer myself I can assure you that this certification is useful to have. I managed to get jobs where I was told that my Adobe Certified Expert title helped a lot in deciding to pick me from all the other applicants.
Being certified also gives you confidence in your software knowledge, which can be limited even if you are a graduate with a design related degree. Let me get one thing clear though. An Adobe Expert Certification won’t give you the same knowledge as a design degree. It won’t prove your understanding of art history design principles like composition, typography, colours and so forth. You can pass this exam without being creative at all as you won’t need to do any practical examples. The ACE exam is only a proof for your mastery of Photoshop’s tools, features and workflows.
So to summarize, the main reason to take this exam is to show your proficiency in working with Photoshop, but not to prove your creative skills. The best way to present those is to have a great portfolio. Being a Photoshop Certified Expert won’t guarantee a job for you in the creative industry, but it will be a big plus in your CV and it will give you and your employers or clients the confidence in your Photoshop knowledge.
You can already guess from the name of this exam that it is not for beginner users of Photoshop. Let me quote what Adobe’s statement is about the necessary level of knowledge:
“A typical candidate would have a minimum of 2 years’ experience using Adobe Photoshop in a digital imaging/design environment. You may be responsible for digital asset management, production, and execution of projects in the fields of (but not limited to): photographic art, advertising design, photojournalism, news and media production, new media (Internet, Social, Mobile), and video. Candidates should also be familiar with Camera Raw, Adobe Bridge and Mini Bridge.”
The reason why Adobe recommends to have 2 years experience using Photoshop is because in the exam you will have to reply to complex multiple choice questions without seeing anything from Photoshop. You have to remember where you find things and how to solve problems. The best way to be prepared to answer these correctly is to have a background working in the creative industry and years of experience using the application daily.
But don’t worry if you have none of these. I managed to get lots of people to pass this exam and many of them never worked in any creative field and they only knew the basics of Photoshop. With dedication and hard work anyone can pass this exam, but being an experienced Photoshop user will definitely make the preparation much easier.
- You have to book your exam and take it in person at a Pearson VUE exam center.
- 51 multiple-choice questions, covering a range of topics including Getting Images into Photoshop, Creating and Working with Layers, Creating Selections, etc.
- The exam has a time limit of 65 minutes, and includes a timer to mark the remaining time.
- Currently you can only take the exam in English.
- You can get an extra 30 minutes, extending your exam time, if you can prove that you are not a native English speaker.
- The certification consists of achieving the minimum passing score, which is 66%, on a multiple choice test. After completing the test, candidates will be immediately provided with the official score for the exam. They will also receive an email with the official exam result.
- You can’t use any help during the exam. You won’t be allowed the take anything with you to the exam area. Your phone, your wallet, your books and any other personal items will have to stay in a safe outside the exam room and you can only access them once you finished the exam.
- Click on Schedule at Pearson VUE: http://goo.gl/HMVIC1
- create an account on Pearson VUE (make sure your name is written correctly)
Please be prepared to show two (2) forms of personal ID. The name on your photo ID must match exactly as the name on this letter. If it does not, contact Adobe immediately. You will not be accepted into the exam center if the names do not appear the same.
- find an exam center close to you
- book a time for your exam
If you wish to reschedule or cancel your exam, you must contact Pearson VUE 24 hours prior to your scheduled appointment.
- get to the exam center 30 minutes before your exam
- take photo identification with you
- take the exam
Adobe recommends to spend at least 2-3 weeks preparing for the Photoshop Expert exam, but what is the best way to use this time and make sure you will be able to pass?
There are 10 topics in the exam, so if you decide to spend 3 weeks on them that means you have around 2 days for each topic. But you should also leave a couple of days for revising everything you learnt plus it is good to have some break before you take the exam to let it all sink in.
The best way to prepare in my opinion is to go through one topic a day from my course and take the test at the end of the topic a couple of times until your score is around 90%. Doing this should take only a couple of hours, but then you should spend the rest of the day practicing what you learnt in Photoshop. It is very important to practice over and over the tools and features mentioned in the topic until you know where to find them by heart, even without seeing Photoshop.
If you finish one topic a day, that means you will get to the end in 10 days. Of course you can have some days in between to rest and then you will still have at least a week to revise all the topics by taking the test exams at the end of the course. Again I would recommend to retake them as many times as you need until you reach a minimum 90% score. When you are taking the test exams you shouldn’t have Photoshop open, because you won’t be able to do that in the real exam either.
If you want to try preparing for the exam you can go through the first topic for free.
It is also useful to take notes while you are going through the topics as writing things down with your own words can help to memorize them.
Try not to rush the preparation or leave it at the last minute. It is a really difficult exam and you have to be very confident with all the topics to pass.
Once you get certified as a Photoshop Expert you can present your credentials everywhere, on your business card, website, CV, etc. but you should keep in mind that you have to stay up-to-date with your knowledge of Photoshop.
Since the introduction of the Creative Cloud or CC version of Photoshop, Adobe made some changes to the recertification system. There won’t be any new version titles like CC2 and CC3 and instead of holding back on new features Adobe will continuously release updates to Photoshop. To make sure you keep up-to-date with these changes you will have to recertify every year. Once your certification is expired you will have 90 days to recertify. After the recertification window you will have to go back to a testing center and take the full exam.
Fortunately the recertification process is easier and cheaper than the first exam. These exams only consist of the new features and you can take them online, so you don’t have to book a time or place for them. You can do them from the comfort of your home and at any time you wish. The price of the Recertification exam is currently $60, which is the third of the normal exam.
Now that you know everything about the Photoshop Expert exam it is time to test your knowledge and see how close are you to pass. Take the test at the end of this section and check whether your score is above 66%, which is the official passing rate. These question are not exactly the same question you will find in the real exam, but they are very similar and their difficulty level is the same.
If your score is above 90% that means you have a sound knowledge of Photoshop, but that still doesn’t mean that you don’t need to prepare for the exam. You will probably be able to go through this course much faster and prepare in less than 2 weeks. If you are below 50% that means you definitely need to go through all the topics in this course in great detail.
Make sure you don’t use any help and don’t have Photoshop open while taking the test. You won’t be able to use any help while taking the exam either.
Remember that you can cover the first exam topic for free in this course, so make sure you check that out too.
I wish you the best luck for preparing for the Photoshop CC Expert exam!
Martin Perhiniak is a Certified Adobe Design Master and Instructor, and an incredibly talented teacher and one of the most popular author on Tuts+ Network. He has been teaching Adobe applications for several years in classrooms, online courses, seminars and shows around the World. Martin has worked as a designer with companies like Disney, Warner Brothers, Cartoon Network, Sony Pictures, Mattel, and DC Comics. He feels it his mission to share his insights of the design industry and its latest trends with beginners and creative professionals around the World.
Visit Martin's website and watch his Design Tip of the Week tutorials and you can follow him on Facebook and Twitter to be updated about his latest projects.