Browse our Frequently
Asked Questions

Why Shiftup

What is Shiftup?

Shiftup is the new qualification program, created by Jurgen Appelo, which focuses on continuous innovation and business agility. It is a remote-friendly, community-driven, experience-based program to self-develop and self-improve. It is not limited to a single topic (such as management), nor a single role (such as product ownership). Instead, it takes continuous innovation as the prerequisite for business agility and brings applicable cross-functional and cross-methodological tools to prevent failed agile transformations and create the new generation of startups and scaleups.

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What is the difference between Management 3.0 and Shiftup?

Management 3.0 focuses on leadership and management. Shiftup focuses on continuous innovation and it’s not a certification program but a qualification path.

Why should I become a Shiftup Qualification member? I already have multiple facilitation badges under my belt.

The Shiftup program provides you with a new self-development path to connect the dots between Agility and Innovation. This is not another certification in the market:  it’s better, newer, and harder. We want to help you build your own career and to improve your skills and knowledge about  the dots that connect Lean, Agile, Design Thinking, Lean Startup and Complexity Thinking.

Do Shiftup qualify for PMP PDUs or other type of credits?

No, Shiftup does not have any other credit-based partnerships at this time, apart from ICAgile.

Self-paced Learning Programs

Which certificates are available?

We offer courses for ICAgile Business Agility Foundations (ICP-BAF), ICAgile Leading with Agility (ICP-LEA) (from January 2021) and ICAgile Product Management (ICP-PDM) (from January 2021)

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What is self-paced learning?

In a self-paced learning program, you have total control over your calendar. You decide which sessions you attend and when. You pick activities from the menu whenever you choose. You learn at your own pace. And you can do it all in just a few weeks, between or after office hours, or you spread it out over several months. It’s your work-life. Your choice.

What does the program look like?

We offer three self-paced courses with an official ICAgile certificate: Business Agility Foundation (ICP-BAF), Leading with Agility (ICP-LEA) and Product Management (ICP-PDM). Each course consists of a mix of videos, discussions, exercises, and assignments. Participation in each of these activities earns you points toward learning objectives. You earn your certificate when you have the minimum number of required points per course.

What kind of content do you offer?

We offer different types of content: articles, videos, assignments, discussions, and exercises. You can read the articles and watch the videos at your own leisure. You can do the assignments whenever you want but you will often need colleagues or friends to complete them together. The discussions and exercises are organized online and you can sign up for them online. For each learning objective in the program, you will have a choice of activities. For example, you may have a choice between attending an online discussion versus completing an assignment. However, there will be a mandatory mix of activities where at least two-thirds must be interactive, in collaboration with others.

Where can I find the content of all activities?

We make videos and assignments available for all participants from Monday, 4 January 2021. All Shiftup Explorer members will have access to this content (even those who are not aiming for an official ICAgile certificate).

Where can I find the calendar of all activities?

We make a calendar of meetups (for discussions and exercises) available for all participants from Monday, 21 December 2020. The first meetups will happen in January 2021. All Shiftup Explorer members will have access to these meetups (even those who are not aiming for an official ICAgile certificate). However, we reserve the right to prioritize those who have paid for the certification program.

Who organizes/facilitates the meetups?

All meetups (discussions and exercises) will be organized by ICAgile-accredited facilitators. For the first meetups, this will be Jurgen Appelo exclusively. Soon after, other ICAgile-accredited Shiftup facilitators will start offering meetups too.

As a participant, you can decide which meetups to attend with which facilitators. There is no need to stick to the same person! Depending on your personal schedule and the available options, you can sign up for different meetup topics with different organizers. This makes self-paced learning a different experience compared to in-person and online classes, where the entire course is facilitated by the same person. Obviously, there are benefits and drawbacks to both approaches. We believe it is important that you can choose what you prefer.

In which languages do you offer the courses?

We offer the main program and systems in English only at this time. However, we allow (and encourage) our accredited facilitators to organize meetups in their own language whenever possible.

How do you keep track of progress?

We offer an online form where participants must evaluate each activity. An evaluation includes a description of your learning/reflection, an activity rating, and (in some cases) evidence that must be uploaded. All evaluations are processed and either rejected (with an explanation) or accepted (and rewarded with points). We offer participants online reports that they can use to track their progress across multiple learning programs and objectives.

We are working on a real-time dashboard and online reports that will be available to all our members. Plenty of visualization and motivational features will become available in 2021.

Do I have to finish the self-paced program in a particular order?

We will not check if you completed all activities in a certain, specified order. We do offer a recommended order of completion for all activities but it’s OK for you to deviate from the schedule. However, this might make it a bit harder for you when you attend certain meetups or discussions without being up-to-date on certain terminology.

Can I complete all learning programs remotely?

Yes, the entire curriculum is 100% remote-friendly.

Is there overlap between the learning programs?

Yes, it is possible that some activities result in points for multiple programs. In other words, when you have completed one learning program and earned a certificate, as a side-effect, you may also have scored the first points for another program. For example, completion of Business Agility Foundations (ICP-BAF) may automatically also earn you 5% for Leading with Agility (ICP-LEA). However, we are not sure of the precise overlap in activities at this time.

How do Shiftup learning programs differ from courses by other vendors?

With a self-paced learning program, you don’t have to set aside specific days for a course. In our program, you learn at your own pace. Even when you only have half an hour available one day, you can choose to just watch and evaluate a video and score points for a quick win. Also, our Shiftup materials are designed by Jurgen Appelo and they offer models and messages that are consistent across all learning programs. You have the option to engage with different facilitators across different meetups which adds to the richness of your learning experience. You can also interact with others from a wider background than what you might find with an in-person/online workshop. And, last but not least, we offer a Slack community where you will be able to discuss all activities.

Do you still offer courses and workshops the traditional way?

Yes, we do! Collocated/in-person workshops and online workshops are still available through our licensed facilitators for those who prefer to set aside a few dedicated time slots and earn their ICAgile certificate faster. There are benefits and drawbacks to the different delivery methods. You can choose what fits you best.

Will you offer different courses in the future?

Yes, that is our intention. But first we want to see how things work out with the first three self-paced courses that we selected. If all goes well, we will expand the curriculum in 2021.

What is the pricing of the learning programs?

The fees for our learning programs are based on the average GDP-level per country. This means, for example, that participants in India pay a different fee than those in Sweden. It is important to pick the correct country at the time of your payment because the selected country will be permanently associated with your name in our communications among all participants and on your certification.

The fee includes three months of complimentary Explorer-level membership. After that, the regular Explorer membership fee applies.

Is there a discount for doing all three programs?

At this time, we offer no discount for participation in multiple learning programs. However, we will have a discount for early signups. This discount will expire on 31 December 2020.

Can my company buy a number of learning programs for its employees?

Sure! We are very interested in offering our self-paced learning programs to clients who want to sign up a larger number of employees. Please contact us to discuss the details.

How does this compare to the Shiftup Qualification Program?

The Shiftup Qualification Program is a bigger program that covers a wider range of topics. It consists of multiple levels and is accessible to anyone. Completion of activities in the ICAgile learning programs will automatically also result in points for the Shiftup Qualification Program. However, this usually does not work the other way around because the Qualification Program covers a wider range of topics and levels.

Can I switch between different learning formats?

We foresee that some people may join part of an in-person/online workshop and then, for some reason, want to finish their certification in the self-paced program. Vice versa, some may start in a self-paced manner and then may want to finish with an in-person/online workshop. We don’t have the tools in place to support such use cases at this moment but we do see a great opportunity here both for us and for participants. We would like to support this in the future.

Can I stay active after earning a certificate?

Definitely! We see certification as a first step toward qualification. When the self-paced learning programs (with official ICAgile certifications) are successful, we want to extend people’s learning journeys with additional levels and more exercises, discussions, and assignments. These follow-up programs (in collaboration with ICAgile) may then become full qualification programs with their own awards and diplomas.


How long does it take an active participant to achieve the lowest level of qualification?

In our program, we indicate two days of net effort. It depends on how much time a person can set aside per day to work on his/her qualification. If it’s one hour per day, the entire Beginner level should take about two weeks.

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Do I have to complete one level before starting with the next one?

The Qualification Program is a progressive journey. You can get points for each level simultaneously, but you will have to complete a level before finishing the next one.

Why should I become an Explorer member?

You should become an Explorer in order to access to exclusive content like videos, meetups and webinars with members like Jurgen Appelo, to get extra reports and guidance, to access the official Shiftup courseware, and to promote personal content on Shiftup channels. You can have a complete overview of the benefits here.

Why should I become a Facilitator member?

Becoming a Facilitator can grant you all the Explorer benefits plus the following: 

  • Host exclusive meetups and webinars
  • Become a moderator of content in the program
  • Access to official Shiftup courseware source materials
  • Promotion of workshops on Shiftup channels if you complete the QAIP qualification within 6 months of membership purchase
  • Promotion of meetups on Shiftup channels
  • 10% discount on Shiftup webshop products
  • ICAgile authorization for ICP-BAF certification (one session)

You can have a complete overview of the benefits here.

How can I see my progress in the program?

You can get a historical overview of your points with the History Report form. You can see the total scores you earned per objective with the Totals Report form.


Becoming a Shiftup member

What are the criteria for becoming a Shiftup Explorer or Facilitator?

You just need to start progressing in the Shiftup Qualification Program (you can find all the information in the “How to start” section) and pay your membership (Explorer or Facilitator).

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There is no event in my city/area, do you offer online training?

Shiftup is a remote-friendly qualification program so you can start the self-development path wherever you are. You can find all the information in the “How to start” section

Can I teach a Shiftup class if I only bought a membership but have not completed my qualification?

Yes, but you must clearly and explicitly indicate on your course registration page that you are not an officially authorized facilitator and that you cannot issue an official certification.

What are the fees associated with Shiftup facilitation?

Please refer to our website for more details on the fees Fees/charges

Please note, the facilitator fee includes an instructor authorization session with ICAgile (a value of $250-$1000 per person)

In addition to our yearly License Fees we charge Event Fees per official event/workshop per participant and they depend on the purchasing power level per country (where the participant is based), which is determined by the average GDP per capita*.

What are country categories, and how do I find mine?

You can find the country categories here. Shiftup fees are determined based on the country where you are based in your work, ie. where you pay taxes for your work. For instance, if you are a facilitator from Greece but you invoice customers from a company based in Spain primarily, then your country category would follow Spain. 


What is IC Agile?

The International Consortium for Agile (ICAgile) is a certification and accreditation body. They work with course providers to accredit new or existing courses against proven learning objectives. In turn, these courses can be offered to agile individuals and organizations for professional-level certifications.

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How do I claim my ICAgile authorization? Do you pay for my ICAgile authorization fee?

Our team will be in touch with you regarding the days and times of when you can claim your ICAgile authorization. That authorization meeting is handled by ICAgile itself, and we arrange the meeting for you. Shiftup membership fees include ICAgile authorization. There is a maximum of one authorization session per year.

Can I run a Shiftup workshop without having the ICAgile authorization?

Yes, you can run a Shiftup workshop without the ICAgile authorization. You need to need to get qualified as a Agility & Innovation Professional in the first 6 months of your path as a Shiftup facilitator. Otherwise, you will be removed from the Shiftup website.