The Project Management Professional (PMP) is a vital certification offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI) for project managers andis recognized in the IT industry. It is globally accepted that IT professionals with this credential can work around the world. This certification targets at the individuals who are experienced project managers and are responsible for all aspects of project delivery such as directing and leading cross-functional teams.
The PMP exam contains 200 multiple-choice questions and lasts 4 hours. You also need to attain 60 professional development units in order to maintain your certification every 3 years.
6 Tips for Passing the PMP Exam
This PMI certification has become one of the fastest growing credentials worldwide and this means more people are taking the exam and there is more competition hence you need to prepare well for you to pass. Here are the tips for passing this certification test:
- Cover your basis on the PMBOK Guidebook
This exam is based on this book to a large extent and you need to study every inch of this guide for you to have a chance of passing it. You can come up with a plan to study different sections of the book a week so that you have enough time to understand all the concepts. You can also come up with a daily study plan that will help you understand certain areas each day. This test does not check your mastery of content but how well you apply the concepts you learn so you need to avoid memorizing information but understanding it altogether. When reading this book, you should practice taking a break every time you read a certain concept before trying to read it twice or three times. You will notice that after every read, you begin to understand it better. When you reach the third read, the concepts will be registered in your mind and you will be able to understand anything that was difficult for you to grasp in the first read. Choose the latest book that has been released by PMI when preparing for the exam. Stay updated on any management changes and concepts that have changed. For example, the PMBOK Guide version 5 has a list of changes made from PMBOK Guide version 4 such as increased knowledge areas and processes.
- Work your way up when practicing
Most preparation materials for the exam recommend that you begin applying basic concepts before moving to complex concepts. A challenge that you may experience when preparing for this exam is dealing with inputs, tools and techniques, and outputs (ITTOs) of every process. You need to understand why a certain process is used when it is used and what it is all about before you begin preparing on the ITTOs. This will help you understand how the processes are connected and give you a better chance to prepare for the ITTOs.
- Attend exam prep workshops
If you love the classroom setup which gives you one on one interaction, you should attend exam prep workshops. You will get the PMI membership from this as well as the opportunity to connect with other PMP aspirants in your area. This is a great chance you can use to share your ideas and get tips for preparing for the exam as well as the moral support that you need when you feel like you are part of a movement. There are also online workshops that offer training courses and are less expensive than the workshops with personal interactions. You need to do your research before settling for one or the other.
- Use practice exams
You can find exam simulators online that are PMP practice exams. The questions offered are similar to what you would be asked in an actual PMP exam and have the same standards. You can use these practice questions to test your level of preparedness for the actual exam. These exams are offered in an exam atmosphere which helps you get ready for what lies ahead. You become comfortable with the pressure and the timing. PrepAway is the leading practice test provider for PMP Certification.
- Use flashcards
Electronic or paper flashcards are a great way for you to prepare for the exam. They are cost effective and portable and they have been tried and tested to be a proper way for preparing for the PMP exam. There are flashcards that you can download to your phone or computer and flip through them wherever you are and they can also be printed. When you are studying for the exam, it serves you well to develop flashcards on your own.
- Take advantage of discussion forums and study groups
This is a good way of preparing for the exam as you get to participate in discussions about the test. When you are an active participant in such groups, you will be able to help others pass the exam and also get your concerns if any addressed. You will also learn about more study resources that are available and reduce the time you would have used research on the same.
Passing the PMI PMP exam is not easy but with the right study approach, you will be able to complete it and pass it with ease. You should make a habit of bringing your study materials with you wherever you go so you can review them every chance you get. All the best.