Which ISTQB® Certified Tester Foundation Level exam to take?

Which ISTQB® Certified Tester Foundation Level exam to take?

Which ISTQB® Certified Tester Foundation Level exam to take?

The newest CTFL syllabus, v4.0, released

On April 21, 2023, the ISTQB General Assembly in Wroclaw, Poland, announced the release of CTFL v4.0, the new syllabus version of the Certified Tester Foundation Level.

The new version is a significant update and is very important for anyone planning to take or re-take an exam.

Although the old CTFL v3.1 is retiring, it remains valid until May 9, 2024, for English and November 9, 2024, for non-English languages.

General changes

The entire syllabus has undergone a complete revision and rework. To mention a few items, CTFL v4.0:

  • has newly rewritten Business Outcomes and Learning Objectives
  • aligns with approaches and practices, such as Agile, DevOps, and CI/CD (Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery)
  • incorporates topics related to Agile practices, such as BDD, TDD, and ATDD
  • strengthens the test activities management with risk-based testing

You can find further details regarding the changes in the release notes and official communication. There is also a CTFL 4.0 Webinar that you can watch.

Which ISTQB foundation level exam to take?

It is always beneficial to refresh your knowledge with the latest syllabus, so A Software Tester’s recommendation would be to take an exam for v4.0.

But, there are also several considerations:

  • CTFL v4.0 has fewer official question sample examples. As of today, there are 66 sample exam questions with answers. In comparison, CTFL v3.1 has 120 exam sample questions with answers.
  • current software testing books that comply with CTFL v3.1 don’t comply with CTFL 4.0, and we must wait for updated books.
  • training providers have to update updated their training materials. It means fewer training providers can teach according to the newest syllabus, CTFL 4.0 version. A Software Tester has accreditation for both CTFL v3.1 and v4.0.
  • online course authors must also update their content according to CTFL v4.0.


I hope you found this information helpful. Best of luck with your preparations for the ISTQB Foundation level exam. If you are wondering how to prepare for your first ISTQB exam, check out the blog post for further insights.

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