Review of Product School’s Product Manager Certification

Alex Radu
4 min readDec 17, 2021

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Hello, before we dig into the review, I wanted to give you an overview of what we’ll cover:

  • what is PMC
  • my review of the course
  • what it costs
  • which topics were covered
  • FAQs.
Conference room filled with people sitting down for a session with the Product School visible on a grey wall in the distance.
Photo by Product School on Unsplash

What is the Product Manager Certification: Product School describe it as a perfect certification for Aspiring Product Managers from any professional background where you learn how to build digital products from end to end, lead cross-functional teams, bulletproof your resume and practice mock interviews. Open to anyone looking to get their first job in Product Management and taught by their instructors that are product leaders at companies such as Google, Facebook, Netflix, Airbnb, PayPal, Uber, and Amazon, that know what it takes to get hired as a PM and succeed in the role.

They provide an overall expectation of duration for the course as 32.5 Hours of Live Online Instructor-Led Classes + 36 Hours of Self-Paced Learning = 68.5 Hours of Expert Instruction.

My experience score and review: 3.8 out of 5 stars, for a few reasons, no exam/assessment, quite pricey for the average person, the topics weren’t linked together as seamlessly as I would have expected and was quite lacking in the strategy/vision/framework development side. Overall, a great introduction course to Product Management, but maybe not suitable for professionals that have already been working in product or that have 5–10 years experience in technology companies. We also did the 1-week online training with an instructor, so having to spend 7–8 hours a day on video-calls wasn’t the best experience, but it was probably the only way in our case.

The topics I found most valuable and useful in my current product role on data, roadmapping, prioritization and influencing. The templates they provide are also super handy, as you have them all in one place and can apply to most processes you might already have in place or thinking of implementing. Our group found that our conversations and experience sharing between our products and area added immense value so in terms of networking, sharing internal resources and feedback it was really useful, however, if you are taking this independently this might not be the case for you!

What does it cost? At the time of writing, 1 certificate is $4.199 and if you go for all 3 they discount it from $14.999 to $9.999. They also offer instalment plans and have corporate training offers if you reach out to them.

My opinion on the cost is that it is significant, especially for someone looking to pay for it themselves. In my case, I was in the happy situation of being a pilot participant at my company, so it was covered by our learning budget and didn’t require me or my team to pay for it. I would encourage you to discuss with your employer, if you can, about them subsidising it.

Disclaimer: I did the course through my employer so some of the topics/sessions might have been slightly changed to better serve our requirements and gaps in knowledge, so it might be structured slightly differently in the individual ones. The current article is my personal view and not that of my employer.

Some of the content we definitely did not cover is related to job searching for a role or job as a Product Manager, since we are all in product roles internally, but I did see them listed on their certification brochure, adding them below:

  • Landing a Product Management Job
  • Job Search Strategies
  • Resume Review & Mock Interviews

Below, you will find the structure of the week-long course I took and the sub-topics for each day and module that we covered.

Day 1

Defining a Product Strategy

  • Product Development Lifecycle
  • Success Metrics
  • User Personas
  • Use Cases

Day 2

Innovate Opportunities & Achieve Product-Market Fit

  • Setting & Approaching Goals
  • Quantitative & Qualitative Methods
  • Internal Validation
  • Validating with Experiments (A/B Testing)
  • Customer Development & Customer Journey Mapping
  • Minimum Viable Product (MVP)
  • Product Roadmapping

Day 3

User Experience Design Process

  • The design process
  • User Flows/Wireframes/Prototypes
  • Working with design
  • Design Sprint

Working with Engineering

  • Product/Engineering Relationships
  • Engineering Development Methodologies
  • Sprint Planning
  • Writing & Using Product Requirement Documents (PRD)
  • Cross-functional Communications with Engineering, Design & Business.

Day 4

Product Marketing & Launch

  • Imagine the future
  • Go-to-Market Strategy
  • Product Iteration

Data Analytics & Prioritization

  • Data Analytics for Discovery
  • Frameworks for Prioritization

Day 5

Product Strategy

  • Create a Winning Product Strategy
  • Data Driven Leadership

Art of Influence

  • Product Leadership Fundamentals
  • Leading Without Formal Authority
  • Stakeholder Management

Leading High Performance Teams

  • Building the Team
  • Team Culture
  • Continuous Transformation
  • Scaling Products
  • Nurturing Culture

FAQs*

from Product School’s website

  • What does a Certificate from Product School mean? Since 2014, Product School has been on the cutting edge of Product Management education. Having certified thousands of Product Managers from around the world, we know exactly what it takes to succeed in this highly competitive and ever changing industry. Hiring managers are very familiar with Product School and recognize that our alumni have been trained by the very best.
  • Are the courses in person or online? All Product School courses are delivered live, online. You’ll be able to live-steam lectures, interact with your instructor and collaborate with your peers in real time from the comfort of your home. We offer cohorts optimized for all time zones to cater to students from all over the world.
  • What’s the schedule and duration of each course? Our courses are designed to ensure that both instructors and students can maintain their full-time jobs. You can select a 2 month part-time course on weeknights or weekends, or fast-track your education with an intensive, 5 day full-time course for a total of 40 hours of training.

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Alex Radu

Best known as lover of unicorns and all things magical, including data, design and code.