Agile Project Management (UST-CAP)
Ag-ile: the ability to move quickly and easily (Webster)
“Organizations that are highly agile and responsive to market dynamics complete more of their projects successfully than their slower-moving counterparts — 75 percent versus 56 percent.” 2015 PMI Pulse of the Profession® report.
- Looking to move into a project management role?
- A current project management professional who wants to round out your skills with a new approach?
- A business professional who works with project teams and needs to understand agile principles to better collaborate?
- A professional preparing for the Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) exam through the Project Management Institute?
If you answered yes to any of the questions above, this program may be for you. Learn the ins and outs of the agile process to help your projects and your organization move forward quickly and easily.
Add this in-demand approach to your project management toolkit
Information and exercises in this program will help you to more easily apply agile concepts at work and also give you the background if you choose to work towards the PMI-ACP® certification. This program has been designed to be in alignment with the seven domains PMI® has identified for the PMI-ACP® exam.
Module 1: Agile Principles and Mindset
Understand the key concepts foundational to the agile approach to project management. This module will set the stage for understanding agile and the PMI-ACP® exam, and provide a high-level overview of the broad agile framework, including:
- The agile mindset
- Values and principles of agile
- Primary agile methodologies including Scrum, Lean, Kanban and XP
- The difference between agile leadership and traditional management
Module 2: Value-Driven Delivery
Delivering business value is a core component of agile methods, and is emphasized in both the Agile Manifesto values and Agile Manifesto principles. In this module, we’ll discuss agile practices involved in delivering value, including the following topics:
- Recognize methods to assess value on agile projects
- Understand how to prioritize features and backlog items based on customer value
- Recognize how incremental delivery generates customer value
- Distinguish methods of validating value including integration, testing and verification.
Module 3: Stakeholder Engagement
Getting stakeholders (customers, sponsors, business representatives, etc) involved and engaged in the project is critical for project success. This module covers a variety of practices that agile teams use to successfully work with these stakeholders, including:
- Creating a shared vision for the project
- Identifying effective methods of communication on agile projects
- Working collaboratively on agile projects (workshops, collaboration games)
- Identifying interpersonal skills which can promote stakeholder engagement
Module 4: Team Performance
For the PMI-ACP® exam – and real-world agile projects – you will need to recognize how to develop and support a self-organizing and self-empowered team. This module will focus on several topics that are relevant to teams leaders, ScrumMasters, and agile coaches – and will help you build and maintain a high-performing team, including:
- The roles, responsibilities and characteristics of participants commonly found in agile environments (Product Owner, ScumMaster, Coach, Development Team)
- Models of agile team development (Cockburn, Dreyfus, Tuckman) and their perspectives
- The importance of collaborative team environments and work spaces
- Methods of tracking and measuring agile team performance, such as burndown charts, burnup charts, velocity and cumulative flow diagrams.
Module 5: Adaptive Planning
Agile projects are appropriate for complex, fast-moving environments which in-turn requires adaptive planning. Adaptive planning recognizes that planning is an ongoing, flexible process and is vastly different from predictive, static approaches used in traditional project management. We’ll discuss methods that agile teams use to offer increased adaptability and you’ll come away with an understanding of how to:
- Apply agile planning concepts such as timeboxing and ranges
- Recognize several tools for sizing and estimation including user stories, relative sizing, story points, ideal time, affinity estimating, wideband Delphi and planning poker
- Identify and use the primary elements of release and iteration planning including the use of velocity to plan a release and architectural and risk-based spikes
Module 6: Problem Detection and Resolution
All project teams need to be proficient at managing problems and threats. Effectively preventing, detecting and resolving problems can play a significant role in whether your project is deemed a success or a failure. Agile teams have some preferred methods of managing problems which reflect the values and principles laid out in the Manifesto. During this module, we will discuss:
- Categories of problems such as technical debt and failure modes
- Detecting problems by monitoring performance diagnostics such as lead/cycle time, throughput, WIP and defect counts
- Managing threats and risks through EMV, the risk adjusted backlog and risk burndown charts
- Problem solving approaches
Module 7: Continuous Improvement
Build on the discussion of problem-solving by exploring the work that takes place during the iteration retrospectives. In an agile environment, we need to apply the benefits of learning as we go – and apply them as soon as possible. Different than traditional project management, the immediate application of “lessons learned” is especially critical for projects in a complex, rapidly-changing environment. The agile approach to “lessons learned’ is deliberate and frequent so that adaptation and improvement become part of the standard work process. In this module, we’ll discuss:
- Continuous improvement on processes including process tailoring, hybrid models, methodology anti-patterns and pre-mortems
- Continuous improvement on the product including reviews, verification and validation (feedback loops) and feedback methods
- Continuous improvement on the people involved including retrospectives (and associated tools and facilitation techniques)
- The PMI® code of ethics and conduct expected throughout all projects
Module 8: Demonstrate your Knowledge
Our goal for this program is to give you tools that can be applied to your work immediately. We also want to help in your current and future career trajectory by awarding a certification that demonstrates your ability in this area. To do that, the program will close with:
- A group exam. Successful completion of this exam will allow you to gain the UST-CAP credential through the University of St. Thomas.
- Tips and tricks for those considering moving toward the PMI-ACP® designation and testing process through the Project Management Institute (PMI)®.
Ideal for current or future project managers
Whether you are new to project management or are an experienced project manager looking to incorporate the agile methodology into your project management toolbox, this program will help you to:
- Understand when agile is the right framework for your project
- Successfully manage a project using the agile approach
- Add credibility to your work with a certification in agile project management through the University of St. Thomas
Common program participant titles and job functions may include, but are not limited to:
- Project & Program Managers
- Product Owners
- Scrum Masters
- Business, and IT Managers
- Software Developers (all levels)
- New product developers and managers
- Process improvement analysts
- IT Analyst
- Account Manager
- Business Consultant
- Technology Manager
- Website Developer
- Marketing Specialist
- Strategic Planners
- …and others interested in learning more about the agile methodologies.
Who Completes the Agile Project Management program?
Hello, I'm Erin Mason and I work for Hennepin County as a Senior Project Manager. I've been in the project management field for 7 years, but most of my learning has been hand-on experience. One of my co-workers is a St. Thomas alumnus who took a few Executive Education programs, so she recommended I look into the project management educational offerings.
A new position opened up at work and being a PMP® was a requirement. I decided I should apply my experience and sit for the PMP® exam. My Prep program was small enough that it felt more like a cohort of peers since we were all working towards the same goal. The instructor, Wayne Kaul, was approachable and his insight into the test was extremely helpful in kick starting my study plan. His materials were my main resource for the PMP® exam, and ultimately led me to pass on my first try.
My organization has been moving towards the Agile mindset, so after my successful experience with the Project Management Prep program, I decided to return with two of my co-workers for the Agile Project Management program. It was beneficial for our team to bounce ideas off of Wayne and use concepts taught in the Agile program to think about implementing this mindset at our organization. The exercises we did during the program were helpful in applying the information. The examples were broad enough to understand how to apply the concepts to any industry and/or project.
Having had training in both Agile and Waterfall methodologies has given me the ability to communicate projects to our internal teams as well as external vendors. Being able to blend the two methodologies together has allowed me to work with all generations, and understand different points of view to better manage a project. Our organization has benefited greatly from these programs, and I am hoping to send more of our team to Executive Education soon.
Gain insights into agile principles from an experienced and PMI certified instructor
Our instructors are known for their real-world experience as well as their expertise in developing educational opportunities for adult learners.
Wayne Kaul, MBA, PMP, PMI-ACP
Wayne Kaul is an adjunct faculty member within the Executive Education Department of the Opus College of Business at the University of St. Thomas. He draws on more than 35 years of experience in corporate leadership, systems development, project management, education, and consulting.
Kaul's professional experience includes positions in engineering, research & development, and information technology. He has expertise in planning, managing and directing global IT projects, as well as IT financial management and vendor management practices. He holds two United States patent awards as a result of his work in engineering and product development.
His experience as an instructor/lecturer includes courses in project management, operations management, Lean Six Sigma, strategic management and business policy. He is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and an Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) through the internationally-recognized Project Management Institute.
Invest in your career - Gain a strong ROI
Why Choose Agile Project Management (UST-CAP)?
- Add In-Demand Skills. Research shows that advertised agile jobs outnumber candidates 4.59 to 1. The demand for these jobs is particularly high in several states including Minnesota, Washington, California, Oregon, New York and Massachusetts.
- Choose the Right Approach. Not all projects are alike. You need to be able to choose the right approach based on project needs. With an understanding of agile practices you will have the ability to manage projects in a fast-changing environment.
- Drive Project Success. You’ll return to work with the skills needed to improve project success and drive innovation. These skills are discussed and practiced in the classroom environment and can be applied to your projects immediately.
- Earn a Certification. By successfully completing this program you will earn the UST-CAP (University of St. Thomas Certified Agile Practitioner) certification through the University of St. Thomas. This certification will add credibility to your experience and demonstrate ability in agile methodologies to current and future employers.
- Take Steps Toward PMI-ACP® Designation. Earn 21 contact hours of REP (Registered Education Provider) training required for Agile Certified Practitioner designation through the Project Management Institute (PMI-ACP)®. (hours pending approval by PMI® for this new program)
- Earn PDU credits to maintain PMI certifications. Already hold the PMP® or PgMP®? Earn 21 PDUs through this program. If you hold the PMI-RMP®, PMI-SP®, PMI-ACP®, PfMP® or PMI-PBA℠ you can earn 14 PDUs through this program.
Additional Program Details:
- Cost includes tuition, learning materials and refreshments.
- Continuing Education Units (CEUs) are non-credit educational experiences; one CEU is equivalent to 10 contact hours of study and will be noted on your completion certificate.
- Program sessions are held on the downtown Minneapolis campus. Parking is available within one block.
- There are no prerequisites for this program.
PMI® Certification Holders or Seekers:
- This program has been approved by the Project Management Institute (PMI®) for the 21 contact hours required to sit for the PMI-ACP® exam. 21 Hours of training is required to sit for the PMI-ACP® exam. (hours pending approval by PMI® for this new program)
- If you currently hold the PMP® or PgMP®, this program counts as 21 PDUs for maintaining your credentials. If you hold the PMI-RMP®, PMI-SP®, PMI-ACP®, PfMP® or PMI-PBA℠ you can earn 14 PDUs through this program.
PMI® and PMI-ACP® are registered marks of Project Management Institute, Inc.
At St. Thomas Executive Education you will:
- Gain practical tools from experienced faculty
- Learn current, real-world skills you can apply on Monday (and every day)
- Network with other professionals working in business
- Have a personalized experience from program exploration to successful completion
All of this leads to a smart, practical and personalized experience to gain confidence and excel in your career. With over 30 open enrollment programs, we can help you dive into a specific topic area, understand business terminology and further develop your leadership and management skills.