About The ACE Exam & My Photoshop World ACE Prep Class

Yesterday Scott Kelby, Matt Kloskowski, Pete Collins, Corey Barker, and I held a Photoshop World preview, where we talked about the things that we will be teaching at the upcoming Photoshop World conference.  In addition to the conference, we are all teaching pre-conference workshops.  These classes are 4-5 hours of a specific topic, and go into a lot more detail than the 100 classes that you’ll see during the regular event.

This time around, I will be teaching a prep-course to get you ready for the Adobe Certified Expert exam in Photoshop. As we were talking about the certification pre-con class, there were a couple of people that had asked some questions on the ACE so I figured i’d share it on here?


What is the ACE Exam?

The Adobe Certified Expert exam is an exam that you can take to be able to officially say “Yes, I know this program at a professional level.”  The best analogy I give people is this.  Imagine you run into a person that tells you “I have been using Photoshop for 10 years.”  What does that really mean?  They could have spent the last 10 years doing “File>Open, File>Save, File>Close”  What does that really prove?  10 years of doing something doesnt really show a level of skill.   If you want to learn more about it from Adobe, click on this link here :   Adobe Certification – From the website.

By passing a certification exam from Adobe, you can show employers, clients, and colleagues that you have taken your skill level to a certrain degree and that Adobe can vouch that yes, you are an expert on this.

Who Benefits from the ACE Exam?

Everyone from business that are offering their Photoshop services to clients, to candidates that are looking to apply to positions that require Photoshop skill.  It really makes the conversation a lot simpler.  They ask, “How well do you know Photoshop?”  you say “Im a Adobe Certified Expert in it” the conversation pretty much stops.  Who would you want to fly a plane.. a person who has spent ten years around planes, or a Pilot.  The exams just lend an official designation to your skill.

How Long Is The Test?

It is a multiple choice test of 50 questions.  You take it at a learning center like Pearson Vue.  Click on this link to see where you can take it

Can You Use Photoshop To Take The Test?

No.  This computer will just have the questions, and a multiple choice set of answers.  No copy of Photoshop will be around

Do You Have To Recertify for Every Version of Photoshop?

Every time a new version of Photoshop is released, you will have to take a recertification exam.  These exams are taken online and dont require you to go to a location to take it. If you skip a version of certification and a new version of Photoshop comes out, then you do have to go back and take the test at a center.

 Is the Test Hard?

Yes.  Yes it is.  It measures whether you can be considered an expert at Photoshop based on a set of criteria that they do – but the word expert is in there.  You’re going to really need to make sure you are at a very knowledgable level of Photoshop to take this test.

What Kinds of Things Are Covered?

Thankfully Adobe always releases an exam bulletin that gives you an overview of the things that they are considering in the exam.  It gives you at least a springboard from which to start your exam prep.  you can get to that by clicking on this link here.

How Do I know I am Ready?

Adobe’s test bulletin states that you should have about 3 years of experience in using Adobe Photoshop to be prepared to take the exam.  While time isnt really something that can guarantee your preparedness, ultimately you will be the best person to say whether you are ready.

Why are you teaching a Pre-Con on the exam?

I wholeheartedly believe that if you are as passionate about Photoshop as I am, its the best way to solidify what you know.  I believe that there are soo many of your guys out there that have the skills and the talent to pass this exam, we just need to sit down and refresh our skills in Photoshop, in a crash course kind of way, and knock this test out once and for all?

Why Should I Come Take a Pre-Con with you on this?

I’ve had the pleasure of working with Adobe in designing both the Adobe Certified Expert exams for both Photoshop CS6, as well as Lightroom CS6.

So, I would Be Taking a Test Pre-Con with the guy who wrote the test?!

Yes.  Yes you would be.

Will you give me the answers to the test?

No.  No I will not.  I dont even think I have them anymore.


Tomorrow i’m posting a quick quiz… get you guys thinking on the ACE exam, hoping you go and get yourself certified once and for all.  If you are going to Photoshop World – make sure you consider my pre-con.  See you guys there!

One comment

  1. RC, it is so cool that you are doing this. I currently do not feel I am even close to being ready, but will be pushing myself toward this. Even though I do not work in a field that wants or requires photoshop, having that on my resume or portfolio really give me the edge when getting photography gigs. You guys at Kelby just keep getting better, I love it.


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