Certification FAQ – PMP, PMI-ACP, ITIL v3 Foundation

PMP Certification Exam

No.

Application for PMP® Certification is honor-based, meaning that PMI trusts project management professional (PMP®) candidates to submit only truthful information about education and working experiences.

However, in order to ensure the quality of the PMP® Certification, PMI does include a random audit process, this is when PMP® applicants need to submit the supporting documents for:

Therefore, when you submit your PMP® application, you will not be asked to attach any supporting documents. Once you receive an audit email / message, you will need to submit copies of the certificate, experience verification forms, etc. through postage to PMI in order to complete your application.

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Language aids are a translation service offered by PMI for PMP® candidates whose mother tongue is not English. This service is offered for FREE.

The translated question and answers will be displayed below the original English question and answers on the same page for computer based testing (CBT).

Language aids must be requested during:

  • online payment for the PMP® application; OR
  • in the printed PMP® application form

Currently, PMI provides language aids for the PMP® Exam in the following languages:

  • Arabic
  • Hebrew
  • Brazilian Portuguese
  • Italian
  • Chinese (Simplified)
  • Chinese (Traditional)
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • French
  • Russian
  • German
  • Spanish
  • Turkish

PMI treats candidates equally whether they have made use of language aids or not. There is no indications in the PMP® Certificate or on the online registry about when language aids are used.

Therefore, it is advisable to make use of a language aid for your PMP® Exam if your mother tongue is not English.

Further reading: Using PMP® Exam Language Aids for the PMP® Certification

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No.

Whether your PMI audit result is successful or not, PMI will not return the audit package to the PMP® / PMI-ACP® applicant. Therefore, only photocopies of the certificates are required by PMI instead of the original ones.

PMI will need to retain the audit package according to its internal auditing procedures.

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By becoming a member of PMI, you will gain access to a downloadable PDF file of the PMBOK® Guide (6th edition) for FREE. You are also allowed to print out a copy of the PMBOK® Guide for your personal use / exam prep.

PMI takes copyright infringement very seriously (as willful copyright infringement is a violation of the PMI Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct which may result in suspending of the PMI Certificate credentials). The downloaded PMBOK® Guide PDF is password protected and watermarked with the PMI membership number of the one who downloads it. And therefore it is unlikely to find FREELY available PMBOK® Guide PDF files on the internet.

Alternatively, you can also purchase a printed copy of the PMBOK® Guide from Amazon.

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First and foremost, the PMP® or PMI-ACP® candidate is not able to proceed with the certification application and examination. The certification fee paid will be refunded (with the subtraction of the processing fee).

There may be some follow-up actions by the PMI depending on the cause of failure of the PMI audit:

  • if the audit fail is due to incomplete information (including the documents are sent to PMI in more than 1 package), no action may be taken by PMI, but the candidate will only be able to reapply to the certification 1 year later;
  • if the fail is due to fraudulent information, PMI may take disciplinary actions (including banning from application to PMI certification for life) to the candidate in question as PMI takes integrity very seriously.

Therefore, when submitting the PMP® application / PMI-ACP® application, always make sure you are entering truthful information. Honest is the best policy.

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If you decide NOT to proceed with the PMI Audit for whatever reasons, e.g. time clashes, supervisor disagreed with your claimed time, personal issues, etc., you need not do anything. PMI considers it an automatic audit fail if it does not receive your audit package within 90 days of the notice of PMI Audit.

You will be able to apply again for the PMP® Certification / PMI-ACP® Certification one year after your original PMP® application / PMI-ACP® application submission date. But you should note that your application will be subject to a PMI Audit again.

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According to the update history of PMBOK® Guide, PMI would release a new version of the PMBOK® Guide every 4 to 5 years in order to catch up with the changes in project management practices and trend (e.g. Agile project management is becoming much more important).

Currently the most current PMBOK® Guide update was on December 2012 which is several years ago. Thought there are “updates” to the PMBOK® Guide these few years, the majority of them are just correcting typos and logical errors. The PMBOK® Guide is in need of an update.

And PMI has made a lot of groundworks from 2012 in collecting feedback on the PMBOK® Guide 5th edition as well as noting the latest trends of project management.

PMI has announced that the PMBOK® Guide 6 will be released at around the following schedule:

  • 1st quarter of 2017 for draft release
  • 3rd quarter of 2017 for the final release — that’s around June 2017 (hopefully)

(Click here for a detailed discussion of what have been changed in PMBOK® Guide 6th edition — the changes are not many, unlike the major structural changes from PMBOK® Guide 4 to PMBOK® Guide 5.)

For Aspirants, the most pressing question should be when will the PMP® Exam be changed to be based on PMBOK® Guide 6th edition.

Fortunately, PMI will allow current Aspirants to continue taking the PMP® Exam based on the current version of the PMBOK® Guide for up to half a year.

That means the new PMP® Exam update to be based on PMBOK® Guide 6th edition is in the first quarter of 2018.

Therefore it is safe and recommended to begin your PMP® Exam preparation based on PMBOK® Guide 5th Edition as of now. Read here for the reasons.

Aspirants will only have to study for the exam based on PMBOK® Guide 6 if they begin their studies after Nov 2017 (an average PMP® Aspirant will need around 2 months’ time to be well prepared for the exam).

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Don’t be late for the PMP® Exam. Arrive at the PMP® Exam center at least 15 minutes earlier than the scheduled time. If you are late, the worst case is that you may be denied entry to the PMP® Exam room. In such case, a ‘no-show’ status is implied, resulting in a fail for the PMP® Exam. You will need to pay for the re-examination fee and re-schedule another timeslot for the exam.

However, some PMP® Exam centers will exercise discretionary power to allow you to sit for the PMP® Exam even though you are late (maybe probably for several minutes). But don’t count on that as this is different for different PMP® Exam centers. It is therefore advisable to mark down the telephone number of your PMP® Exam centre and ask for their policies once you have the feeling that you will be late for the exam.

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For each set of 200 PMP® Exam questions, only 175 will be counted towards your final score. The rest 25 questions are termed as “pretest questions” according to PMI.

Pretest questions can be considered as “trial” questions which are used to gather statistical information on the “validity” of the question. If the performance of the candidates on a pretest question is in accordance with normal distribution, PMI will consider adding the question to the question bank for the real PMP® exam.

Otherwise, should too many or too few candidates are able to answer the pretest question correctly, the quality of the pretest question is in doubt and would probably not to be included in the real exam.

What has “pretest questions” to do with PMP® candidates?

PMP® candidates are affected by the pretest questions in the following way:

  • Since pretest questions are distributed randomly in the set of PMP® questions, PMP® candidates will have no way to determine whether a question is “real” or “pre-test”.
  • If many of the “pre-test” questions are too difficult to answer, this may adversely affect the psychological state and confidence of the candidate. This may directly affect the performance of the candidate in the real exam.
  • PMP® candidates may be tempted to spend too much time on the pre-test questions since some pre-test questions are not constructed clearly.

In my PMP® Exam, the first 10 questions were very difficult that I spent more than expected time on that, I couldn’t but think that “will I fail the exam?”. Luckily, the rest questions were similar to what are on the sample question papers that I had tried before. I managed to get a pass in the first try.

My recommendation is to prepare well for the PMP® Exam and ignore those “out-of-syllabus” questions by guessing the answer and move forward. Don’t be discouraged if many “out-of-syllabus” questions appear in a row or at the beginning of the exam. Remember to keep your cool and move on!

I have also shared other psychological preparation for you to ace the exam:

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The ITTO (inputs, tools and techniques, outputs) of the PMBOK® Guide is by far one of the most “dreaded” question types of the PMP® Exam. It really takes a great memory to remember all the 600+ ITTOs from the PMBOK® Guide in the PMP® Exam preparation.

Many PMP® aspirants would surely ask themselves: should I remember all the ITTOs?

In my PMP® Exam, there are less than 4 questions about ITTOs (though as the PMP® Exam questions sets are different for different PMP® candidates, you may get more or fewer questions on ITTOs) – which is only 2% of all the PMP® Exam questions. Among those 4 ITTO questions I encountered, only one was asking directly about which is the ITTO for the process. The other three were just kind of related to ITTO, e.g. what would you use for a process at hand. The other questions on my PMP® Exam were mainly situational questions.

As a reference, I passed the PMP® Exam with ‘Proficient’ in Initiation, Planning, Executing, Monitoring & Controlling and ‘Moderately Proficient’ in Closing domain.

As you can see, the PMP® Exam is more about than asking you to apply the project management concepts than to memorize all the facts from the PMP® Exam.

Further reading: PMP® ITTO mindmap (not yet updated) – it is far more efficient to make use of mindmap to remember discrete facts such as ITTOs, this PMP® ITTO mindmap can be downloaded free!

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In additional to the ITTO questions, PMP® Maths formulas questions are generally considered to be the more difficult questions.

In my PMP® Exam question set, I got around 10 PMP® calculation questions in total (that is around 5% of all the questions). 5% is definitely not a significant number of questions for the PMP® Exam which has 200 questions.

If you are not comfortable with the PMP® Maths questions, it is advisable to just guess the answer, flag it for review and move on to the next question. Don’t spend more than the allocated time (around 2 minutes for each question) to the PMP® calculation questions as the Maths questions carry equal marks with other PMP® questions. When you still have time at the end of the PMP® Exam, you may spend more time with the Maths questions.

Plus, it is highly advisable to write down all the PMP® formulas at the beginning of the PMP® Exam as your PMP® Exam brain dump in order to offload your brain.

Further reading: PMP® Maths / Formulas Guide

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If your PMP® certification is in good standing (i.e. you have passed the PMP® exam and follow the PDU requirements for the re-certification), your name will be included in the online certification registry of PMI certification holders at the following URL:

http://www.pmi.org/Certification/Credential-Registry.aspx

You can then click the “Search the PMI Online Certification Registry” and type in your last name (or plus full name, country and credential) to search for your certification status.

This Registry will be updated to include your name in one day after you have successfully passed the PMP® Exam. I am sure most Aspirants will search for their name on the Registry after the exam. Yes, passing the exam will immediately make you a PMP® (you can immediately add the credential to your namecard after receiving your exam report card), but PMI will take time to get and verify your exam results and update your status on the Registry. Note that if you take the exam on Friday evening, it may take two days to have your name appeared in the search results. Don’t worry.

Likewise, you will be able to search for the certification information of other PMI certification holders by knowing their last name. This is the way to validate to authenticity of their certification status.

Another useful way to utilize the Registry is to know how many PMI Certification holders are in your current city / country (the figure is just approximate, please note the point below).

However, since the disclosure of information on the online registry is on a permission base (certification holders are asked whether they would like to have their information published on the Registry). If the certification holders indicate unwillingness to share the information, you will not be able to find the information by searching for the names of the PMI certification holders.

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ITIL® v3 Foundation and PMP® are two of the most popular project management certifications in the world. Every year, thousands of exam aspirants would prepare and sit for the ITIL® and PMP® exams. Some holders of PMP® would study for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam while some ITIL® holders would aspire for the PMP® credential. Below we will outline the similarities and differences between ITIL® and PMP®.

Similarities of ITIL® v3 Foundation  and PMP®

  • You will need to pass an exam consisting of multiple choice questions in order to be certified.
  • ITIL® and PMP® provide best practices to implement projects (though ITIL® focuses on projects in the Information Technology field).

Differences between ITIL® v3 Foundation and PMP®

  • PMP® exam is about general project management knowledge while ITIL® is about information technology service management (i.e. for people working in the field of information technology).
  • There are no pre-requisites for sitting the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam while PMP® exam will require the aspirants to have 35 Contact Hours and at least 4500 hours of working experience in project management over a period of at least 3 years.
  • The PMP® Exam is much longer and consists of more questions, it is generally considered that the PMP® Exam is much more difficult than the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam.
  • ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification will never expire while PMP® certification holders will need to re-certify every three years by accumulating enough PDUs.
  • PMP® Certification holders will need to earn at least 60 PDU during every 3-year re-certification cycle in order to be able to renew their PMP® Certification status. Holders of ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification will not need any mandatory continuous education.

ITIL® v3 Foundation and PMP®: Recommendation

If you have not begun your journey on getting ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification and PMP® Certification, it is highly recommended you study for and pass the PMP® Exam first. Afterwards, you will be able to claim the time spent on studying and preparing for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam as PDU for your PMP® re-certification in either Category A or Category B PDU (by taking courses provided by accredited training institutes) or Category C PDU (by self-study). In this way, one can kill two birds with a stone!

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Perhaps, this is the question every PMP® aspirants would probably have during their course of PMP® Exam preparation, especially while they are reading the PMBOK® Guide. Most PMP® candidates would agree that the PMBOK® Guide is way too boring for reading or studying. But since the PMBOK® Guide is published by the Project Management Institute (PMI) which is the authority behind the PMP® Exam, it is logical to consider the PMBOK® Guide as one of the most important reference book for the PMP® Exam.

It would be a great help if some authoritative voices would assure that they can pass the PMP® Exam in first try without having to even read the PMBOK® Guide once. Unfortunately, there is no definite answer to this question.

A survey of 100 PMP® Exam candidates (who successfully pass the PMP® Exam) has found out that only 5% of them did not read the PMBOK® Guide during their study. That means 95% of the PMP® candidates did read the PMBOK® Guide at least once during their PMP® exam prep. Though it can be safely said that all of the most popular PMP® Exam reference books (like Andy Crowe, Headfirst and Rita) do cover most of the materials in the PMBOK® Guide, the emphases and organisation of the material would be quite different. In particular, since the PMP® Exam tests not about your project management knowledge, experience nor skills but how deep you understand project management from PMI’s perspectives, the PMBOK® Guide is the only place where you can fully understand PMI’s viewpoint in an organised and systematic way. All other PMP® Exam prep books would include the personal viewpoints of the authors.

In order to fully prepare for the PMP® Exam, it can be said that the PMBOK® Guide is indispensable. If you have the time, do read through the PMBOK® Guide at least once. There is no need to read it from cover to cover in one attempt. You can read the PMBOK® Guide together with your PMP® Exam prep book chapter by chapter. Most PMP® Exam prep book would organise the materials according to the sequence as used in the PMBOK® Guide. By reading the PMBOK® Guide and your PMP® Exam prep book in parallel, you can compare the two literatures to understand what are the differences between them in order to have a more comprehensive coverage of the materials required for the PMP® Exam.

Though the PMBOK® Guide is boring (according to most PMP® aspirants), it is a worthwhile read for the PMP® Exam!

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The Project Management Institute provides an online registry to verify one’s certification status: PMI Online Credential Registry at https://certification.pmi.org/registry.aspx

You can fill in the name and other information and check to see if the person is among the list of PMP®s or other PMI Certification holders. There maybe several people with the same name holding PMP® Certification, you will have to also look for the country, etc.

But any PMI Certification holders will have the option of opting out their certification status on the PMI Online Credential Registry. Therefore, if the name does not yield a result in the registry search, it is not an absolute proof that the person is not a PMP®. You will have to check directly with PMI in case of suspecting misuse of the PMP® title.

However, it is generally recommended that PMP® holders should allow showing their profile at the PMI Online Credential Registry which gives stakeholders the certainty that your claim that you are a PMP® credential holder is true to increase the trustworthiness of your skills, etc.

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What is the most realistic mock PMP® Exam one can take? It is to take the mock PMP® Exam at the same centre as one would take the real PMP® Exam.

Prometric, the organisation that runs the PMP® Exam for the computer based test around the world, has launched a new service for test driving the PMP® Exam for PMP® aspirants. The “Test drive” all PMP® aspirants to take a mock PMP® Exam at the Prometric center for 30 minutes for the cost of US$30.

As long as there is a free place in the test centre and you are willing to pay the mock exam fee, you will be able to take the mock exam in real conditions as part of your PMP® Exam prep.

More details on PMP® Exam Test Drive can be found on the Prometric website.

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No. This is one of the popular misconception about contact hour requirements for the PMP® Certification. The PMP® Handbook states that to be eligible for the PMP® Exam, one has to fulfil the 35 educational hours requirement. However, it does not require that you earn all the 35 contact hours from one course only.

 

There is also no requirement that the course material should be about the PMBOK® Guide or other PMI approved project management knowledge. You can earn the 35 contact hours from courses not related to the PMP® Exam syllabus or materials, e.g. Agile project management, etc.

In fact, you can earn 4 contact hours here and 5 contact hours there as long as the total number of hours spent on project management is 35 hours or more. There is not an upper limit for the number of courses you used to accumulate the contact hours as long as you have the proof for each individual course (e.g. attendance certificate, etc.).

But of course it is much more structured to learn all the project management knowledge from a course that focuses on the PMBOK® Guide framework. And such course will help you tremendously in your PMP® Certification exam prep study. If you have the budget and the time to spend on a quality PMP® Exam prep course, do take the PMP® Exam prep course which will help you to pass the PMP® Exam more easily!

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PM PrepCast™ Executive has a price tag of US$1199.99, which is way much expensive than the PM PrepCast™ Standard and the PM PrepCast™ Elite. Though there is a 28% discount applied to the sum of all products included in the PM PrepCast™ Executive, many would wonder is it worth to invested almost 3 times more than the PM PrepCast™ Elite which is already a great PMP® Exam Prep course and question bank.

What are included in PM PrepCast™ Executive

The PM PrepCast™ Executive is the package of the PM PrepCast™ Elite plus a few more:

  • PM PrepCast™ – the highly acclaimed online PMP® Exam Prep course providing 35 contact hours to qualify for the PMP® Exam (US$199.99)
  • PM Exam Simulator – access to 1800 PMP® mock exam questions to be written in an environment that resembles the real PMP® Exam interface
  • 12 hours of live personal (one-to-one) coaching (US$89.99 per hour * 12 = US$1079.88)
  • 5 hours of live group coaching sessions (US$49.99 per hour * 5 = US$249.95)
  • PMP® Formula Study Guide –  which includes the Formula study guide, Formula brain dump / cheat sheet and 105 formula sample questions (US$29.99 value)
  • Premium eBook Bundle – which includes the PMP® Essentials Study Guide, ITTO Memory Jogger and PMI Exam Audit Kit) (US$29.97)

What are the PMP® Live Coaching?

PMP® live coaching will offer you the chance to work with a PMP® coach during  your PMP® Exam preparation through an internet connection in order to maximize your opportunity to pass the PMP® Exam in first try. PMP® live coaching is also the most time-efficient way to prepare for your PMP® Exam as you can get immediate advices from an experience PMP® Exam Coach who will help you to formulate a tailor-made study plan that suit your schedule and style of learning. I still remember I have to “google” hundreds of blogs and webpages in order to understand how to plan for my PMP® Exam and carry out the study.

You will work with the PMP® Exam Coach during your PMP® Exam Prep journey, usually once a week or at a schedule that suits you, all the way from the very beginning of planning the study plan, answer your queries, assess your knowledge gaps and help you to determine whether you are ready for the real PMP® Exam.

Since the PMP® Exam Coach has profound experience in helping PMP® aspirants to study and pass the PMP® Exam, he can offer you valuable tips and tricks to help you attain the PMP® Certification in the shortest time possible.

As the name implies, “Personal Coaching” will allow you to meet one on one with the Coach, all the time is dedicated for you. You can present your case and the Coach will give you personalized advices. You can book the timeslots that are most convenient to you.

On the other hand, in “Group Coaching”, you will join other PMP® aspirants every week at the same time to discuss the common PMP® Exam topics such as:

  • Project management framework
  • Earned Value calculation / PMP® Formulas
  • PMP® practice questions / sample questions review

You will gain the benefits of peer discussion.

Other than the fact that the Coach will meet you through an internet connection instead of meeting you face to face, the PMP® Live Coaching service will offer you all the benefits of PMP® Exam bootcamps.

Who is the PMP® Coach?

The coach is Dan Ryan, MBA, PMP®, who has over 20 years experience in the IT and project management industry. Dan has been delivering face-to-face and virtual PMP® Exam prep courses since 2011. He has pioneered a unique, blended learning solution to tailor to the needs of every individual PMP® aspirant. Dan currently lives in the United States.

Is the PM PrepCast™ Executive Worth the High Price Tag?

Online learning, just like the PM PrepCast™ Standard, offers a cost-effective way to prepare for studying and preparing for the PMP® Exam. However, online courses require you to have excellent disciplines and probably more time as you will need to do researches into the difficult topics yourself. You may also have to waste some time to search for accurate information on the internet. If that describes you, then you are an ideal candidate for the PM PrepCast™ Standard/Elite.

But, if you flourish with the help of an instructor or if you are too busy to do researches on your own, the PM PrepCast™ Executive is the most suitable PMP® Exam prep for your among the different PM PrepCast™ products. The PMP® Coach will assist you all the way from your planning to tackling PMP® practice questions to confirming your readiness to attempt the real PMP® Exam. Try to think of the time saved and the possibility of not having to re-take the PMP® Exam owing to failed attempt, the high price tag is not really that expensive.

In addition, normal PMP® bootcamps will have dozens of PMP® aspirants studying together with you. This means that the course instructor will have to divide his/her attention among all the students in the class. For the Live Personal Coach, you will have the FULL attention of the PMP® Exam Coach for 12 hours! The time should be enough to answer your every questions about the PMP® Exam!

Summary

Below is a simple chart to help you understand the various PM PrepCast™ products on sale in the market:

  • PM PrepCast™ Standard = PM PrepCast™
  • PM PrepCast™ Elite = PM PrepCast™ Standard + PM Exam Simulator
  • PM PrepCast™ Executive = PM PrepCast™ Elite + Coaching + Formula Study Guide + Premium eBook Bundle

The PM PrepCast™ Elite is the most popular PMP® Exam Prep package providing both the required 35 contact hours certificate and lots of good PMP® Exam practice questions.

If you have the time to navigation through the planning processes for your PMP® study through trial and error and discipline to stick to your study plan, I would highly recommend the PM PrepCast™ Elite which is both cost effective and high in quality.

I would like the interactive nature of PMP® Exam Study bootcamps (where you can talk directly to the instructor on any queries you have and have the instructor assist you to plan your study) but there is none around you or  you are too busy to take 5 days off to attend the bootcamp, the PM PrepCast™ Executive would be perfect for you as you can prepare for the PMP® Exam at the comfort of your room or office without the need to travel a lot.

Wish you PMP® success!

 

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Following the announcement of updating the syllabus of the PMP® Exam in Nov 2015, every publisher of PMP® Exam Prep book are working extremely hard to get the updated version of the book out to help fellow PMP® aspirants to begin preparing for the new PMP® Exam.

Rita's PMP Exam Prep book 8th Edition updated

Rita’s PMP® Exam Prep book 8th Edition updated

The publisher of Rita’s PMP® Exam Prep book, RMC Learning Solutions, has just announced the updated eighth edition of Rita’s PMP® book will be published by end of July 2015 has been published, has been published: take a look at the preview of the Rita’s PMP® Exam prep book here. The new edition of the PMP® Book includes new tasks and modified knowledge and skills as mentioned in the PMI Role Delineation Study 2015 as well as the new PMP® Exam Content Outline.

This latest version (8th edition) of the Rita’s PMP® Exam preparation book is updated to align with the PMBOK® Guide 5th edition as well as the PMP® Exam Content Outline released in June 2015. PMP® aspirants aiming to take the PMP® Exam on or after 2nd Nov, 2015 are advised to purchase the Rita’s PMP® Book updated 8th edition instead of the original 8th edition.

But as the changes are not considered drastic, PMP® aspirants preparing for the PMP® Exam based on the original 8th edition will still get a pretty good coverage of the new PMP® Exam syllabus as the PMBOK® Guide is still the 5th edition.

Note: If you own the original 8th edition of the Rita’s PMP® Exam Prep and would like to sit for the PMP® Exam after 1st Nov 2015, you are advised to download an update document issued by RMC which covers a few changes to the Rita’s book so that you are good for the new PMP® Exam!

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RMC Learning Solutions is now shipping the updated eighth edition of Rita’s PMP® book (note: if you are buying a new exam prep book, you should look for the “updated 8th edition” not the “8th edition”). 

The new edition of the PMP® Book includes the updated tasks and modified knowledge and skills outlined in the new PMP® Exam Content Outline (for PMP® Exam in 2017) so that the book will have full coverage of the exam syllabus.

However, does this mean that the original 8th edition of Rita’s book is no longer useful?

The good news is that the original 8th edition of Rita’s PMP® book is still valid for the new PMP® Exam, in RMC’s words:

Comparing each line of the 2015 PMP® Examination Content Outline to the previous version published in 2011, RMC has determined the changes were mostly minor, and/or already consistent with our interpretation of the project manager’s role in the existing edition of the book.

Since the changes in the PMP® Exam syllabus nor the contents of Rita’s book are NOT dramatic, RMC has actually issued an additional “update” for owners of the Rita’s PMP® book 8th edition which can be downloaded here (as you will see, there are just several changes only).

In fact, a recent PMP® exam taker has read both the 8th Edition and the 8th Updated Edition from cover to cover and find that basically the Rita’s PMP® 8th Edition = Rita’s PMP® 8th Edition Updated. He passed the PMP® Exam in first try.

Therefore if you get hold of the original 8th edition of Rita’s book, you can still rely on it to ace  your PMP® Exam. There is no need to purchase the updated 8th edition.

 

Note: I passed the PMP® Exam with 4 Proficient and 1 Moderately Proficient, click here for my study notes, resources and tips (can be downloaded for free).

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Below is the step-by-step instruction on how to input the discount offer codes for GreyCampus online courses to get the discounted prices for the ITIL® Foundation, PMP® Certification, PMI-ACP® Certification and PRINCE2® Foundation Certification online courses. Many Certification Aspirants have asked me to show them how to apply the coupon codes as they cannot find the location to enter them. This step-by-step illustrated guide is made to help fellow Aspirants to enjoy the discounted course fee with ease.

Step 1: Go to go to GreyCampus online course website

Please go to the related GreyCampus pages through the webpage: the most updated GreyCampus discount offer codes  (remember to make use of the coupon codes there to get heavy discounts off the retail prices of the certification prep courses)

  • PMP® Certification Online Self Learning
  • ITIL® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official ITIL® Exam included)
  • PRINCE2® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official PRINCE2® Foundation Exam)

Step 2: Click the yellow “Enroll” button to go to the payment page

Just take the GreyCampus ITIL® Foundation Certification Training as an example. Below is the landing page of ITIL® online training courses for GreyCampus. Just click the blue “Enroll Now” button.

You will be presented with a choice of several different delivery modes for the ITIL® Foundation Courses (i.e. online, online live, classroom, etc.). Just chose the left one which is the online ITIL® course option.

Step 3: Check the “I have an offer code” box

After clicking the red “Enroll” button, you will be redirected to the course order page. Do not worry, the price given there is the original list price before discount.

On the right-hand side, under the payment details, you will find the “Have an offer code to redeem?” box- click on it. Enter the coupon code in the box that appears and click “Apply”.

 

Step 4: Apply the Coupon Code/Offer Code

After you input the coupon code in the box, make sure to click the “Apply” button beside it. The final price of the course will only change after you click on the “Apply” button. Make sure you do this before you pay for the course.

Step 5: Check the updated price on the left before submitting the payment details

Once the coupon is applied successfully, the green text will appear below the coupon code box; it will read- “Coupon applied successfully, you will get USD 41.00 discount”. Please also check for the discounted price details on the right side of the page.

After you have ensured that the correct discounted course fee is listed on the right-hand column of the order page, you can then enter your payment information including name, card number, expiry date and CVV. Then click the red button “Pay Now” to make the purchase.

Congratulations! You have just applied the GreyCampus offer code successfully. You should now be able to access the online training course (including the lecture videos, mock exams as well as many downloadable study resources) instantly.

Wish you Certification success!


FAQ on GreyCampus Coupon Codes

  • After pasting the coupon code and clicking the “Apply Now” button, a red sentence reads “The coupon code is invalid” show up. Now what?
    • Please check carefully if you have entered the correct coupon code (note: without spaces at the beginning and end of the coupon code). The best way to ensure the correctness of your coupon code is to copy directly from the coupon code page and paste it there.
    • Please check the validity period of the coupon code, in most cases, an invalid coupon code means that it is expired. Usually the validity period between the first and last day of a month. And the coupon code and discount percentage may vary from month to month.
    • Under the rare case of the GreyCampus website having some technical errors, please let me know so that I can communicate with GreyCampus to resolve the problem.
  • What to do if I have purchased the training course at the original list price instead of the discounted price?
    • I am sorry to learn that you cannot enjoy the discount successfully. But there is hope. GreyCampus online courses offer money back guarantee for several days depending on the types of course.
    • You can just write to GreyCampus to cancel your order first. And your payment will be refunded to you as soon as possible.
    • Then you can come back to the enrolment page to enrol again. Remember to follow the steps outlined above as close as possible and verify that the discount has already been applied to your order before hitting the “Pay Now” button.
  • Where to find the latest GreyCampus Coupon Codes?
    • As I have a working relationship with GreyCampus team, every time when a new coupon code is published, they will let me know at once. I will have the most current GreyCampus coupon code published at this page.
    • If the code for the online course you are looking for is not there, don’t worry, you can still try the coupon codes listed there to see if they are valid.
  • Will I get a better discount later?
    • May or may not. That depends on GreyCampus. However, I would highly suggest you to strike the iron while it is hot. If you have already make up your mind to go for the certification and if your budget allows, why not go ahead and purchase the online course at the current discount and begin your certification right away? Time is the most precious element for all of us.
    • Also, the certification cost may go up year by year owing to inflation and rising costs etc. The training costs may actually become more expensive later on.

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For those who would like to get PMP® certified, one of the major roadblock should be worrying about the level of difficulties of the real PMP® Exam.

PMI has published a PDF file containing 3 official sample PMP® questions to help PMP® aspirants to get a taste of the level of difficulty as well as the wording of the real PMP® Exam questions:

As you will see, in order to correctly answer the PMP® Exam questions, you must get to know the exact meaning of the terms used by PMI. The good news is that all the terms can be found in the PMBOK® Guide. However, the questions also require you (as the project manager) to exercise expert judgement to understand what actions to take next (which is one of the most difficult type of PMP® Exam questions).

You would definitely like to attempt more PMP® Exam practice questions (best of all many quality sample PMP® Exam questions are FREE).

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Yes. This is very important.

At the time of pressing the submit button on the PMP® application form, you should have already finished the project management course providing you with the required 35 contact hours. You would need to enter the course details together with the date of completion on the PMP® application form before submitting.

This is often a commonly confused item for the PMP® application. Many Aspirants would plan to have their PMP® application approved before going through a PMP® Exam prep course either in person or online. Some PMP® bootcamps would even gather Aspirants to attend the course for 4 days and take the PMP® Exam at the 5th day. But aspirants need to understand that PMI would not approve your application before you have got the 35 Contact Hour certificate.

However, since you are able to store your partially filled online PMP® application form on PMI server, it makes no harms to fill the form while you are still studying the project management course. But you should make sure you have finished the course before eventually submitting the application form.

And in case of a PMI audit, you will need to submit a copy of your Contact Hour certificate. If your course is not delivered by a PMI R.E.P., you will also need to send the course outline and descriptions in order to allow PMI to judge whether your course satisfies the project management education requirement.

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Since the PMP® is one of the most recognized and rigorous industry certification, PMI takes every application very seriously. PMI will need to inspect every PMP® application individually for completeness by a dedicated staff member. Therefore the timeframe for processing the PMP® application differs for different channels of submission:

  • online submission through PMI website: 5 days (applicants will receive emails from PMI regarding their submission)
  • paper submission: 10 days for individuals; 20 days for corporate submission

If the application is not complete in PMI’s eyes, they will contact the applicants through email or mail to request them to re-submit the whole or parts of the application package (the part that mostly likely required to be rewritten is the descriptions for working experience). The re-submission may be through email or mail.

Tips: There are guidelines for Aspirants to follow on how to compose the experience descriptions that PMI would love to approve (from the experience of Aspirants who were requested to re-submit that part). Details can be found here.

Only after PMI has received and reviewed the supplementary info the PMP® application would be approved. This may take another several days. Then you will receive an email from PMI asking you to settle the exam fee.

However, the confirmation from PMI for PMP® application is not an indication of not requiring a PMI audit. PMI will notify candidates for PMP® audit once the payment for the PMP® exam has been made.

In the unfortunate event of being requested an audit, Aspirants will need to take several weeks or even months to have PMI to give a go to the audit (PMI has placed a limit of 90 days for Aspirants to respond to the audit. It really takes time to ask your former or current supervisors to sign the experience verification forms for you and you need to mail the audit package back to PMI.

Once the audit is approved, Aspirants will then be able to actually schedule their PMP® Exam dates.

So, the short answer is that it takes around 5 days for PMI to approve PMP® applications. 

However, for the worst case scenario, it may take up to 3 months to clear the application process.

 

I passed the PMP® Certification Exam with 4 Above Target and 1 Target, click here for my free study notes, tips and resources for Aspirants.

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Though PMI impose a 8-year restriction on the project management working experience to be accepted for PMP® application, there is NO restrictions on when you get your project management education.

In other words, the 35 contact hours of project management education is valid for life.

You can literally get the 35 contact hours based on your university coursework or a training course provided by your employer years ago.

There are many cases that a PMP® aspirant took the PMP® exam prep course for the previous edition of PMBOK® Guide and then got busy and abandoned the certification efforts. Years later, they would want to get PMP® certified again and there is no need for them to get the contact hour education again.

However, it is necessary for you to check with PMI on the eligibility of your contact hour certification for the PMP® certification before applying. When in doubt, always bet on the safe side by attending an additional course provided by PMI R.E.P. which will also help you best prepared for the actual PMP® exam.

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For the working experience verification forms, PMI requires the supervisors / managers to sign on the forms and put the forms in ‘sealed and signed envelopes‘. The following is the instruction on the PMI audit:

A manager, supervisor, or colleague who is intimately familiar with the experience on your application is required to review your Experience Record and then complete the Experience Verification Form. After they verify, they will put the completed Experience Verification Form and Experience Record in an envelope, sign his/her name over the sealed flap of the envelope, and return the envelope to you via in person or by mail. If one person is verifying multiple projects for the same company, they can fill out one form and initial or highlight on the Experience Record the projects that they are verifying. Faxed or scanned forms will not be accepted as the forms need to be placed in a sealed and signed envelope for security purposes. No substitutions will be accepted.

This paragraph essentially means the following:

  1. Download and print the experience verification forms
  2. Send the printed verification forms, each with an empty envelop, to your managers / supervisors named on your application form accordingly*
  3. Ask the managers / supervisors to write the details on the form and sign, put the signed form into the envelope, glue the flap and sign again across the flap (this makes the ‘sealed and signed envelope’)
  4. Ask them to return the ‘sealed envelop’ to you to be mailed to PMI together with other documentations

* If your manager / supervisor is responsible for more than one experience verification forms, he/she will need to enter the details and signs on one form only and write his/her initials on other forms without filling the details. He/She will then need to put all the experience verification forms into a single envelope and seal it with a signature as usual.

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Not a problem. You just need to write a short notice on the envelope that your manager / supervisor forgot to sign on the envelope for the PMI audit.

Though PMI asks you to request your manager / supervisor to seal and sign across the flap of the sealed envelop in order to properly accomplish the PMI audit, it is possible (or even likely) that your manager / supervisor mails / hands the envelope back to you without the signature on the flap. PMI understands that it might be difficult, if not possible, to return the envelope to get the signature again. It is acceptable to have the experience verification envelope without signature provided that you:

make a note on the back of the envelope in question that the signature was omitted

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Could not find the manager / supervisor named in the PMP® application to sign the experience verification form is the greatest problem PMP® candidates would face.

Don’t panic. Don’t just give up and ask for refund of your PMP® application fee.

Though PMI prefers PMP® candidates to get signatures from the named manager / supervisor, in case this is not possible, PMI does allow:

a colleague from the project can verify, or a current manager or supervisor, who has intimate knowledge of the project, can verify.

Even though you are not able to find your manager / supervisor to sign the experience verification form, you can actually find some others who are close to the project to sign it. That’s why PMI leaves blank on the form the information of the one to verify your experience.

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If you are the manager for the organization, then you may ask your senior management, if possible, to sign your project management experience verification form for you. Other than senior management, you may ask

 a colleague, peer, client or sponsor who has intimate knowledge of the project [to] verify.

PMI does NOT require managers / supervisors to be the only persons to sign the experience verification forms. As long as the signee who are intimately familiar with the project you have submitted, it is okay for them to sign the form. PMI will accept the experience verification in such cases.

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PMI-ACP Certification Exam

No.

Whether your PMI audit result is successful or not, PMI will not return the audit package to the PMP® / PMI-ACP® applicant. Therefore, only photocopies of the certificates are required by PMI instead of the original ones.

PMI will need to retain the audit package according to its internal auditing procedures.

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First and foremost, the PMP® or PMI-ACP® candidate is not able to proceed with the certification application and examination. The certification fee paid will be refunded (with the subtraction of the processing fee).

There may be some follow-up actions by the PMI depending on the cause of failure of the PMI audit:

  • if the audit fail is due to incomplete information (including the documents are sent to PMI in more than 1 package), no action may be taken by PMI, but the candidate will only be able to reapply to the certification 1 year later;
  • if the fail is due to fraudulent information, PMI may take disciplinary actions (including banning from application to PMI certification for life) to the candidate in question as PMI takes integrity very seriously.

Therefore, when submitting the PMP® application / PMI-ACP® application, always make sure you are entering truthful information. Honest is the best policy.

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If you decide NOT to proceed with the PMI Audit for whatever reasons, e.g. time clashes, supervisor disagreed with your claimed time, personal issues, etc., you need not do anything. PMI considers it an automatic audit fail if it does not receive your audit package within 90 days of the notice of PMI Audit.

You will be able to apply again for the PMP® Certification / PMI-ACP® Certification one year after your original PMP® application / PMI-ACP® application submission date. But you should note that your application will be subject to a PMI Audit again.

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No.

As PMI-ACP® stands for “Project Management Institute Agile Certified Practitioner”, the keyword here is “practitioner“. As long as you are a member of a team practicing Agile project management (there is no limitation on the Agile methodologies), you would fulfill one of the basic requirements for PMI-ACP®:

  • 2,000 hours working on project teams as a member or project leader within the last 5 years
  • 1500 more hours working on Agile project teams / with agile methodologies within the last 3 years
  • 21 Contact Hours of Agile project management / practices training

As you can see, again the keyword here is “working on“, you can be a developer, sponsor, product owner, business analysts, etc. as long as your projects make use of Agile methodologies.

If you happen to be a PMP®, the 1st requirement for the 2000 working hours will be automatically fulfilled as the number of hours of project management experience required to fulfill PMP® requirements is more.

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The short answer is “unknown”.

The Project Management Institute does not disclose the passing score nor how many questions a PMI-ACP® candidate need to answer correctly. The PMI-ACP® exam candidate does not even know their scores for the exams, the exam report just shows the proficiency level —there are 3 of them:

  • Above Target — performance better than the average Aspirants
  • Target — performance on par with average Aspirants
  • Below Target — performance worse than the average Aspirants

This is because the PMI-ACP® Exam is based on ‘sound psychometric analysis’ (which is a modern way of keeping the standards of those who pass the PMI-ACP® Exam). Also, since most of the PMI-ACP® Exams are administrated on computers, the question sets of individual candidates are different, hence the passing scores for individual exams will need to be adjusted to the overall difficulty of the set, i.e. NOT the same.

However, according to the trainers of PMI-ACP® Agile Certification aspirants, most of them would estimate that the passing score is around 70% (which, by the way, is a bit higher than the passing score of PMP® Exam). This may be because the PMI-ACP® Exam is generally considered a bit easier than the PMP® Exam (but this is just an educated guess only as no information has been disclosed by PMI).

Therefore when you are attempting PMI-ACP® sample exam questions, it is highly recommended to set a higher standard than 70% (e.g. 75% – 80%) for your mock exam performance so that you can walk into the PMI-ACP® Exam centre with better confidence of passing the exam in first attempt.

After having taken both PMP® and PMI-ACP® Exams with a pass in first attempt, I would say that the PMI-ACP® exam is easier than the PMP®. But there are more situational questions in the PMI-ACP® Exam as Aspirants are tested on the actual application of Agile knowledge rather than testing their memorization capability.

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I have both tackled the PMP® and the PMI-ACP® Exams administrated by PMI. My experience tells me that the PMI-ACP® Exam is not that hard or difficult if you have ample preparation for the test.

  • I passed with all Proficient in my PMI-ACP® Exam while I got 4 P and 1 MP for the PMP® Exam. So for Aspirants who have attempted PMP® Exam before, the good news is PMI-ACP® is a bit easier.
    • You have around 1.5 minute to answer each question — the time is more than enough for most candidates. Some candidates can even finish all the 120 questions within 1 hour and take an extra hour for re-reading the questions and checking the answers.
    • According to the feedback of many Aspirants who are PMP®s, the exam is considered to be moderately easy (in particular when compared to the PMP® Exam).
  • But if you have never attempted PMI Certification exams before, tackling the PMI-ACP® Exam would be a little bit trickier than other professional exams as PMI has its own way of doing exams:
    • The majority of PMI-ACP® Exam questions are situational — the format is somewhat like this: you have got a situational in which you need to decide which is the best course of action to follow from a choice of four, and two or even three of theses choices are logical actions but you need to choose “the best according to PMI”.
    • You have to follow strictly the check in and check out procedures of PMI exams and you need to get accustomed to the exam interface.
    • The exam covers a lot of different Agile favours, including Scrum, Lean, Kanban, Extreme programming, etc. that one need to understand in details.
    • Perhaps one of the most difficult part of the certification is to fulfil the experience requirement on traditional project management as Agile project management is very different from waterfall.

It would normally take around a total of 120 hours to prepare well for the exam (of course that depends on the Agile knowledge and experience one has — I have known someone who can pass with 1 week of study though).

  • You should select an Agile course that helps you to prepare for the PMI-ACP® Exam (I used the Agile PrepCast™). Though any Agile courses (e.g. ScrumMaster) with over 21 hours of course duration will satisfy the 21 Contact Hours requirement of the PMI-ACP® Certification, taking a course dedicated to the PMI-ACP® would help build the foundation of your exam prep as the exam tests you on broader Agile knowledge than specific Agile methodologies.
  • Read and study the “pseudo-official” PMI-ACP® Exam textbook – PMI-ACP® Exam Prep by Mike Griffiths – at least twice and finish all the sample exam questions there.
  • Practice more PMI-ACP® Exam sample questions (many are FREE).
  • You are also advised to write your own study notes for your last minute revision.

That said, with proper training and preparation, Aspirants would be able to pass the exam in first try. You may refer to my PMI-ACP® Exam experience here.

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PMI-ACP® stands for Project Management Institute Agile Certified Practitioner while CSM stands for Certified Scrum Master.

CSM (Certified Scrum Master)

  • Certified Scrum Master is a popular Agile certification
  • Only about the Scrum (one of the Agile methodologies)
    • understand the fundamentals, terminology, practices and principles and roles of the Scrum methodology
  • For Scrum Master or Scrum Team Member in the IT / software industry
  • Requirements to get CSM
    1. NO experience prerequisite;
    2. need to attend a course on CSM;
    3. take and pass the CSM exam, which has only 25 questions AND almost everyone can pass it
  • Very easy to get CSM

PMI-ACP® (Project Management Institute Agile Certified Practitioner)

  • Popularity is growing over the several years since its introduction in 2011/2
  • The certification syllabus is more extensive
    • The PMI-ACP® Exam tests on everything about Agile, from Agile Manifesto, different Agile methodologies and frameworks (Scrum, Kanban, XP, Lean, etc.) to Agile tools, techniques, skills, etc.
  • For everyone involved in Agile projects
    • e.g. project managers, product owners, Agile coaches and trainers, developers, testers, business analysts, etc.
  • Requirements to get PMI-ACP® certified:
    1. A minimum number of hours of general project experience and Agile project experience;
    2. 21 Contact Hours in Agile project education;
    3. pass the PMI-ACP® audit of your application (if being selected);
    4. take and pass the PMI-ACP® exam, which has 120 questions (lasts for 3 hours), it is not easy to pass the PMI-ACP® exam without over a hundred hours of hard work
  • Much more difficult to get PMI-ACP®

CSM vs PMI-ACP®

CSM is quite different from the PMI-ACP® certification. You may judge whether to get CSM or PMI-ACP® based on the comparison above.

If you work sole with Scrum and if your organization requires a certificate for your Scrum knowledge, then CSM is certification to go. However, if your team practice other Agile methodologies and if you would like to have an Agile certificate that’s rigorous and valuable, PMI-ACP® is your definite choice.

One word of caution is that since PMI-ACP® has just been around several years, quite a few HR practitioners may not be aware of its existence. You may need to explain the values of PMI-ACP® to them.

Further reading: The Whats and Whys of the PMI-ACP®

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For the PMP® Exam, the PMBOK® Guide (A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge) is believed to be the most popular study material / book. Many PMI-ACP® aspirants would ask is there a PMBOK® Guide equivalent for the PMI-ACP® Exam.

The answer is, unfortunately, NO. PMI does provide a list of PMI-ACP® Exam reference books (a total of 11 Agile books with over 3800 pages!) which, in total, is way thicker than the PMBOK® Guide. That’s why some project managers consider the PMI-ACP® Exam to be even more difficult than the PMP® exam.

Fortunately, there are some PMI-ACP® Exam prep books that have summarized all that are required for the PMI-ACP® Exam into a single book:

This is my recommended exam prep book for the PMI-ACP® Exam. I made use of this book during my exam study and considered it to be excellent in quality. The author Mike Griffiths is a renowned Agile trainer and practitioner who has help formulating the PMI-ACP® Exam structure and syllabus – who else could be more familiar with the PMI-ACP® Exam than this insider?

In the PMI-ACP® exam lessons learned I have read, almost 90% of the authors used this PMI-ACP® Exam prep book to help them prepare and pass the PMI-ACP® Exam.

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Head First PMP®

For those who are familiar with the PMP® Exam, or who are PMP® themselves, the PMP® Exam prep book “Head First PMP®” should be a popular choice for their PMP® exam. The Head First PMP® book is written using “the latest development in cognitive science” and is most suited visual learners. A lot of diagrams, charts, illustrations and games are included in the Head First PMP® book.

Head First PMI-ACP® Book?

For the PMI-ACP® Exam, one can’t help but wonder is there a PMI-ACP® Exam prep book called “Head First PMI-ACP®”. Since Agile embraces charts and diagrams, it seems the format of the Head First PMP® a perfect match for Head First PMI-ACP® or Head First Agile book…

Unfortunately, the answer is NO. The authors of the Head First PMP® do not write the Head First PMI-ACP® for PMI-APC aspirants.

Great News! Head First Agile will be available for Aspirants in 25 June 2017. Though Head First Agile is primarily about Agile concepts, it intends to have 100% coverage of the exam syllabus for PMI-ACP® exam — including end-of-chapter quizzes, exam tips and guide and a full-length PMI-ACP® practice mock exam.

The sad news is that PMI-ACP® aspirants have to wait several more months to get the book. Meanwhile, there are currently two other tried and tested PMI-ACP® Exam prep books on the market:

The links of the above PMI-ACP® Exam prep books go to the Amazon website where you can get a preview of the books. I did make use of these exam prep books for my PMI-ACP® Exam and they are really of superb quality. If you have the budget, do purchase these two books for your PMI-ACP® study and you will not regret it.

Further reading: Recommended PMI-ACP® Book: RMC PMI-ACP® Exam Prep by Mike Griffiths

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Sometimes, PMI-ACP® aspirants may encounter courses that gives both the contact hours and professional development units (PDU). What is the difference between Contact Hours and PDU?

Broadly speaking, Contact Hours and PDU both refers to the duration of Agile education received (i.e. 1 hour of Agile education will give you 1 Contact Hour / 1 PDU). The difference lies in when the Agile education is received:

  • Before PMI-ACP® certified, one will only be able to get Contact Hour. PMI-ACP® aspirants needs 21 Contact Hours of Agile project education to qualify for the PMI-ACP® Exam. The 21 Contact Hours should be finished before submitting the PMI-ACP® application.
  • After passing the PMI-ACP® exam, PMI-ACP® holders can begin getting PDU immediately (there is no need to wait for the arrival of the PMI-ACP® certificate). PMI-ACP® can gain 1 PDU for each hour spent on Agile related course, training, etc. PMI-ACP® holders need to accumulate at least 30 PDU in the 3-year re-certification cycle in order to be eligible for re-certification.

Though some Agile courses can give you both Contact Hours and PDU for PMI-ACP® Certification, you will only be able to get either Contact Hours or PDU from the Agile course you received.

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There are a number of Agile certifications around, the most popular ones are Certified Scrum Master (CSM) and Project Management Institute Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP®). These certifications differ in pre-requisite, exam content as well as exam difficulty.

Scrum is currently the most popular Agile framework in practice. Scrum Master is a role in the Scrum framework who advocates the adoption and practices of Scrum. In order to obtain the Certified Scrum Master (CSM), one need to attend a course to understand and learn the fundamentals, terminology, practices and principles of the roles of the Scrum Master or Scrum Team Member. There is no prerequisite for Agile project experience and the role you current practice on project. The final exam for CSM is a short 25 questions exam paper and the pass rate is 100%, meaning that if you have the money to attend the CSM training workshop, you are guaranteed the CSM certification.

By contrast, the PMI-ACP® is specifically designed for Project & Program Managers, Product Owners, Scrummasters, Scrum Product Owners, Agile Coaches, Agile Trainers, Sr. Developers, Business and IT Managers with extensive experience in multiple Agile methodologies (Scrum, kanban, XP, lean, DSDM, TDD, ATDD, etc.). General project experience is required in addition to Agile-specific experience and education. The exam is designed to test both the practitioner’s level of professionalism in Agile practices of project management and professional versatility in project management tools and techniques.

The PMI-ACP® is quite different from the CSM certification. Unlike CSM is for Scrum, PMI-ACP® is about general Agile principles. The contents of the exam seem to be more “entry level” but the requirements for the exam is quite high. Not everyone is eligible to take the PMI-ACP® exam to gain certification. There are some pre-requisites for the PMI-ACP® exam:

  1. Educational requirements
  2. Working experience requirements
    • a minimum of 2000 hours of general project experience from the past five years (exempted for PMP® certification holders)
    • a minimum of 1500 hours of Agile project experience from the past three years
  3. Pass the PMI-ACP® exam which includes 120 questions in 3 hours

In order to maintain the quality of the PMI-ACP® certification, PMI will carry out PMI audit for PMI-ACP® certification applicants. If selected, the applicant will need to provide documents and proofs of the education and working experiences.

After getting the PMI-ACP® certification, holders will need to obtain enough professional development units (PDU) within the 3-year re-certification cycle in order to re-new their PMI-ACP® certification status.

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No. Though it is often said that the PMI-ACP® Exam Prep Book by Mike Griffiths is almost the “official” study guide for the PMI-ACP® Exam, many PMI-ACP® candidates can pass the PMI-ACP® Exam without reading it. The book by Mike Griffiths is NOT a must read if you have already well prepared for the exam though it is highly recommended if you have just begun the PMI-ACP® journey and don’t know how to proceed with your exam prep or study.

My PMI-ACP® study notes are based on many important PMI-ACP® resources including some of the most important stuffs from the Mike Griffiths book: https://edward-designer.com/web/agile-communications/ If you cannot gain access to the PMI-ACP® book by Mike Griffiths before your exam, you are highly recommended to read my study notes to see if you have missed anything during your exam study.

You are also advised to take more PMI-ACP® practice exams during the last few weeks before the exam (I encountered some questions on the real PMI-ACP® exam that were very similar to the ones listed here):
https://edward-designer.com/web/free-pmi-acp-exam-questions/

Wish you PMI-ACP® success!

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Yes, the original Agile PrepCast™ covers almost all the topics of the new 2018 PMI-ACP® Exam and the team is planning to add the missing topics asap.

The team at Agile PrepCast™ has carried out detailed analysis of the old and new PMI-ACP® Exam outline and found that over 85% of the contents of the new PMI-ACP® Exam have already been covered by the original Agile PrepCast™. The missing contents (e.g. Hybrid models, Agile Mindset, and SAFE) will be covered once all the new video lessons are developed.

If you are planning to purchase the Agile PrepCast™ or you have purchased the Agile PrepCast™ recently, you will be able to get the new video lessons (including 9 new presentations and interviews) once they are released.

But as many PMI-ACP® trainers and consultants have expressed, the new PMI-ACP® Exam syllabus is actually very much similar to the existing one, the changes and updates can be considered as “minor”. The author of the best selling PMI-ACP® Exam book, Mike Griffiths, did not intend to get the 2nd edition published before the implementation of the new PMI-ACP® Exam syllabus as he considers that his book has already covered all the materials of the new PMI-ACP® Exam.

So, if you are planning to take the PMI-ACP® Exam based on the new PMI-ACP® Exam syllabus, you can still make use of all the current PMI-ACP® Exam prep materials (mock exams, text-books, PMI-ACP® Exam prep courses, etc.) for your PMI-ACP® success!

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Below is the step-by-step instruction on how to input the discount offer codes for GreyCampus online courses to get the discounted prices for the ITIL® Foundation, PMP® Certification, PMI-ACP® Certification and PRINCE2® Foundation Certification online courses. Many Certification Aspirants have asked me to show them how to apply the coupon codes as they cannot find the location to enter them. This step-by-step illustrated guide is made to help fellow Aspirants to enjoy the discounted course fee with ease.

Step 1: Go to go to GreyCampus online course website

Please go to the related GreyCampus pages through the webpage: the most updated GreyCampus discount offer codes  (remember to make use of the coupon codes there to get heavy discounts off the retail prices of the certification prep courses)

  • PMP® Certification Online Self Learning
  • ITIL® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official ITIL® Exam included)
  • PRINCE2® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official PRINCE2® Foundation Exam)

Step 2: Click the yellow “Enroll” button to go to the payment page

Just take the GreyCampus ITIL® Foundation Certification Training as an example. Below is the landing page of ITIL® online training courses for GreyCampus. Just click the blue “Enroll Now” button.

You will be presented with a choice of several different delivery modes for the ITIL® Foundation Courses (i.e. online, online live, classroom, etc.). Just chose the left one which is the online ITIL® course option.

Step 3: Check the “I have an offer code” box

After clicking the red “Enroll” button, you will be redirected to the course order page. Do not worry, the price given there is the original list price before discount.

On the right-hand side, under the payment details, you will find the “Have an offer code to redeem?” box- click on it. Enter the coupon code in the box that appears and click “Apply”.

 

Step 4: Apply the Coupon Code/Offer Code

After you input the coupon code in the box, make sure to click the “Apply” button beside it. The final price of the course will only change after you click on the “Apply” button. Make sure you do this before you pay for the course.

Step 5: Check the updated price on the left before submitting the payment details

Once the coupon is applied successfully, the green text will appear below the coupon code box; it will read- “Coupon applied successfully, you will get USD 41.00 discount”. Please also check for the discounted price details on the right side of the page.

After you have ensured that the correct discounted course fee is listed on the right-hand column of the order page, you can then enter your payment information including name, card number, expiry date and CVV. Then click the red button “Pay Now” to make the purchase.

Congratulations! You have just applied the GreyCampus offer code successfully. You should now be able to access the online training course (including the lecture videos, mock exams as well as many downloadable study resources) instantly.

Wish you Certification success!


FAQ on GreyCampus Coupon Codes

  • After pasting the coupon code and clicking the “Apply Now” button, a red sentence reads “The coupon code is invalid” show up. Now what?
    • Please check carefully if you have entered the correct coupon code (note: without spaces at the beginning and end of the coupon code). The best way to ensure the correctness of your coupon code is to copy directly from the coupon code page and paste it there.
    • Please check the validity period of the coupon code, in most cases, an invalid coupon code means that it is expired. Usually the validity period between the first and last day of a month. And the coupon code and discount percentage may vary from month to month.
    • Under the rare case of the GreyCampus website having some technical errors, please let me know so that I can communicate with GreyCampus to resolve the problem.
  • What to do if I have purchased the training course at the original list price instead of the discounted price?
    • I am sorry to learn that you cannot enjoy the discount successfully. But there is hope. GreyCampus online courses offer money back guarantee for several days depending on the types of course.
    • You can just write to GreyCampus to cancel your order first. And your payment will be refunded to you as soon as possible.
    • Then you can come back to the enrolment page to enrol again. Remember to follow the steps outlined above as close as possible and verify that the discount has already been applied to your order before hitting the “Pay Now” button.
  • Where to find the latest GreyCampus Coupon Codes?
    • As I have a working relationship with GreyCampus team, every time when a new coupon code is published, they will let me know at once. I will have the most current GreyCampus coupon code published at this page.
    • If the code for the online course you are looking for is not there, don’t worry, you can still try the coupon codes listed there to see if they are valid.
  • Will I get a better discount later?
    • May or may not. That depends on GreyCampus. However, I would highly suggest you to strike the iron while it is hot. If you have already make up your mind to go for the certification and if your budget allows, why not go ahead and purchase the online course at the current discount and begin your certification right away? Time is the most precious element for all of us.
    • Also, the certification cost may go up year by year owing to inflation and rising costs etc. The training costs may actually become more expensive later on.

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For the working experience verification forms, PMI requires the supervisors / managers to sign on the forms and put the forms in ‘sealed and signed envelopes‘. The following is the instruction on the PMI audit:

A manager, supervisor, or colleague who is intimately familiar with the experience on your application is required to review your Experience Record and then complete the Experience Verification Form. After they verify, they will put the completed Experience Verification Form and Experience Record in an envelope, sign his/her name over the sealed flap of the envelope, and return the envelope to you via in person or by mail. If one person is verifying multiple projects for the same company, they can fill out one form and initial or highlight on the Experience Record the projects that they are verifying. Faxed or scanned forms will not be accepted as the forms need to be placed in a sealed and signed envelope for security purposes. No substitutions will be accepted.

This paragraph essentially means the following:

  1. Download and print the experience verification forms
  2. Send the printed verification forms, each with an empty envelop, to your managers / supervisors named on your application form accordingly*
  3. Ask the managers / supervisors to write the details on the form and sign, put the signed form into the envelope, glue the flap and sign again across the flap (this makes the ‘sealed and signed envelope’)
  4. Ask them to return the ‘sealed envelop’ to you to be mailed to PMI together with other documentations

* If your manager / supervisor is responsible for more than one experience verification forms, he/she will need to enter the details and signs on one form only and write his/her initials on other forms without filling the details. He/She will then need to put all the experience verification forms into a single envelope and seal it with a signature as usual.

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Not a problem. You just need to write a short notice on the envelope that your manager / supervisor forgot to sign on the envelope for the PMI audit.

Though PMI asks you to request your manager / supervisor to seal and sign across the flap of the sealed envelop in order to properly accomplish the PMI audit, it is possible (or even likely) that your manager / supervisor mails / hands the envelope back to you without the signature on the flap. PMI understands that it might be difficult, if not possible, to return the envelope to get the signature again. It is acceptable to have the experience verification envelope without signature provided that you:

make a note on the back of the envelope in question that the signature was omitted

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If you are the manager for the organization, then you may ask your senior management, if possible, to sign your project management experience verification form for you. Other than senior management, you may ask

 a colleague, peer, client or sponsor who has intimate knowledge of the project [to] verify.

PMI does NOT require managers / supervisors to be the only persons to sign the experience verification forms. As long as the signee who are intimately familiar with the project you have submitted, it is okay for them to sign the form. PMI will accept the experience verification in such cases.

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PMP Audit

No.

Whether your PMI audit result is successful or not, PMI will not return the audit package to the PMP® / PMI-ACP® applicant. Therefore, only photocopies of the certificates are required by PMI instead of the original ones.

PMI will need to retain the audit package according to its internal auditing procedures.

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First and foremost, the PMP® or PMI-ACP® candidate is not able to proceed with the certification application and examination. The certification fee paid will be refunded (with the subtraction of the processing fee).

There may be some follow-up actions by the PMI depending on the cause of failure of the PMI audit:

  • if the audit fail is due to incomplete information (including the documents are sent to PMI in more than 1 package), no action may be taken by PMI, but the candidate will only be able to reapply to the certification 1 year later;
  • if the fail is due to fraudulent information, PMI may take disciplinary actions (including banning from application to PMI certification for life) to the candidate in question as PMI takes integrity very seriously.

Therefore, when submitting the PMP® application / PMI-ACP® application, always make sure you are entering truthful information. Honest is the best policy.

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If you decide NOT to proceed with the PMI Audit for whatever reasons, e.g. time clashes, supervisor disagreed with your claimed time, personal issues, etc., you need not do anything. PMI considers it an automatic audit fail if it does not receive your audit package within 90 days of the notice of PMI Audit.

You will be able to apply again for the PMP® Certification / PMI-ACP® Certification one year after your original PMP® application / PMI-ACP® application submission date. But you should note that your application will be subject to a PMI Audit again.

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For the working experience verification forms, PMI requires the supervisors / managers to sign on the forms and put the forms in ‘sealed and signed envelopes‘. The following is the instruction on the PMI audit:

A manager, supervisor, or colleague who is intimately familiar with the experience on your application is required to review your Experience Record and then complete the Experience Verification Form. After they verify, they will put the completed Experience Verification Form and Experience Record in an envelope, sign his/her name over the sealed flap of the envelope, and return the envelope to you via in person or by mail. If one person is verifying multiple projects for the same company, they can fill out one form and initial or highlight on the Experience Record the projects that they are verifying. Faxed or scanned forms will not be accepted as the forms need to be placed in a sealed and signed envelope for security purposes. No substitutions will be accepted.

This paragraph essentially means the following:

  1. Download and print the experience verification forms
  2. Send the printed verification forms, each with an empty envelop, to your managers / supervisors named on your application form accordingly*
  3. Ask the managers / supervisors to write the details on the form and sign, put the signed form into the envelope, glue the flap and sign again across the flap (this makes the ‘sealed and signed envelope’)
  4. Ask them to return the ‘sealed envelop’ to you to be mailed to PMI together with other documentations

* If your manager / supervisor is responsible for more than one experience verification forms, he/she will need to enter the details and signs on one form only and write his/her initials on other forms without filling the details. He/She will then need to put all the experience verification forms into a single envelope and seal it with a signature as usual.

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Not a problem. You just need to write a short notice on the envelope that your manager / supervisor forgot to sign on the envelope for the PMI audit.

Though PMI asks you to request your manager / supervisor to seal and sign across the flap of the sealed envelop in order to properly accomplish the PMI audit, it is possible (or even likely) that your manager / supervisor mails / hands the envelope back to you without the signature on the flap. PMI understands that it might be difficult, if not possible, to return the envelope to get the signature again. It is acceptable to have the experience verification envelope without signature provided that you:

make a note on the back of the envelope in question that the signature was omitted

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Could not find the manager / supervisor named in the PMP® application to sign the experience verification form is the greatest problem PMP® candidates would face.

Don’t panic. Don’t just give up and ask for refund of your PMP® application fee.

Though PMI prefers PMP® candidates to get signatures from the named manager / supervisor, in case this is not possible, PMI does allow:

a colleague from the project can verify, or a current manager or supervisor, who has intimate knowledge of the project, can verify.

Even though you are not able to find your manager / supervisor to sign the experience verification form, you can actually find some others who are close to the project to sign it. That’s why PMI leaves blank on the form the information of the one to verify your experience.

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If you are the manager for the organization, then you may ask your senior management, if possible, to sign your project management experience verification form for you. Other than senior management, you may ask

 a colleague, peer, client or sponsor who has intimate knowledge of the project [to] verify.

PMI does NOT require managers / supervisors to be the only persons to sign the experience verification forms. As long as the signee who are intimately familiar with the project you have submitted, it is okay for them to sign the form. PMI will accept the experience verification in such cases.

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PMP Application

No.

Application for PMP® Certification is honor-based, meaning that PMI trusts project management professional (PMP®) candidates to submit only truthful information about education and working experiences.

However, in order to ensure the quality of the PMP® Certification, PMI does include a random audit process, this is when PMP® applicants need to submit the supporting documents for:

Therefore, when you submit your PMP® application, you will not be asked to attach any supporting documents. Once you receive an audit email / message, you will need to submit copies of the certificate, experience verification forms, etc. through postage to PMI in order to complete your application.

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Language aids are a translation service offered by PMI for PMP® candidates whose mother tongue is not English. This service is offered for FREE.

The translated question and answers will be displayed below the original English question and answers on the same page for computer based testing (CBT).

Language aids must be requested during:

  • online payment for the PMP® application; OR
  • in the printed PMP® application form

Currently, PMI provides language aids for the PMP® Exam in the following languages:

  • Arabic
  • Hebrew
  • Brazilian Portuguese
  • Italian
  • Chinese (Simplified)
  • Chinese (Traditional)
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • French
  • Russian
  • German
  • Spanish
  • Turkish

PMI treats candidates equally whether they have made use of language aids or not. There is no indications in the PMP® Certificate or on the online registry about when language aids are used.

Therefore, it is advisable to make use of a language aid for your PMP® Exam if your mother tongue is not English.

Further reading: Using PMP® Exam Language Aids for the PMP® Certification

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Yes. This is very important.

At the time of pressing the submit button on the PMP® application form, you should have already finished the project management course providing you with the required 35 contact hours. You would need to enter the course details together with the date of completion on the PMP® application form before submitting.

This is often a commonly confused item for the PMP® application. Many Aspirants would plan to have their PMP® application approved before going through a PMP® Exam prep course either in person or online. Some PMP® bootcamps would even gather Aspirants to attend the course for 4 days and take the PMP® Exam at the 5th day. But aspirants need to understand that PMI would not approve your application before you have got the 35 Contact Hour certificate.

However, since you are able to store your partially filled online PMP® application form on PMI server, it makes no harms to fill the form while you are still studying the project management course. But you should make sure you have finished the course before eventually submitting the application form.

And in case of a PMI audit, you will need to submit a copy of your Contact Hour certificate. If your course is not delivered by a PMI R.E.P., you will also need to send the course outline and descriptions in order to allow PMI to judge whether your course satisfies the project management education requirement.

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Since the PMP® is one of the most recognized and rigorous industry certification, PMI takes every application very seriously. PMI will need to inspect every PMP® application individually for completeness by a dedicated staff member. Therefore the timeframe for processing the PMP® application differs for different channels of submission:

  • online submission through PMI website: 5 days (applicants will receive emails from PMI regarding their submission)
  • paper submission: 10 days for individuals; 20 days for corporate submission

If the application is not complete in PMI’s eyes, they will contact the applicants through email or mail to request them to re-submit the whole or parts of the application package (the part that mostly likely required to be rewritten is the descriptions for working experience). The re-submission may be through email or mail.

Tips: There are guidelines for Aspirants to follow on how to compose the experience descriptions that PMI would love to approve (from the experience of Aspirants who were requested to re-submit that part). Details can be found here.

Only after PMI has received and reviewed the supplementary info the PMP® application would be approved. This may take another several days. Then you will receive an email from PMI asking you to settle the exam fee.

However, the confirmation from PMI for PMP® application is not an indication of not requiring a PMI audit. PMI will notify candidates for PMP® audit once the payment for the PMP® exam has been made.

In the unfortunate event of being requested an audit, Aspirants will need to take several weeks or even months to have PMI to give a go to the audit (PMI has placed a limit of 90 days for Aspirants to respond to the audit. It really takes time to ask your former or current supervisors to sign the experience verification forms for you and you need to mail the audit package back to PMI.

Once the audit is approved, Aspirants will then be able to actually schedule their PMP® Exam dates.

So, the short answer is that it takes around 5 days for PMI to approve PMP® applications. 

However, for the worst case scenario, it may take up to 3 months to clear the application process.

 

I passed the PMP® Certification Exam with 4 Above Target and 1 Target, click here for my free study notes, tips and resources for Aspirants.

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PMP 35 Contact Hours

No. This is one of the popular misconception about contact hour requirements for the PMP® Certification. The PMP® Handbook states that to be eligible for the PMP® Exam, one has to fulfil the 35 educational hours requirement. However, it does not require that you earn all the 35 contact hours from one course only.

 

There is also no requirement that the course material should be about the PMBOK® Guide or other PMI approved project management knowledge. You can earn the 35 contact hours from courses not related to the PMP® Exam syllabus or materials, e.g. Agile project management, etc.

In fact, you can earn 4 contact hours here and 5 contact hours there as long as the total number of hours spent on project management is 35 hours or more. There is not an upper limit for the number of courses you used to accumulate the contact hours as long as you have the proof for each individual course (e.g. attendance certificate, etc.).

But of course it is much more structured to learn all the project management knowledge from a course that focuses on the PMBOK® Guide framework. And such course will help you tremendously in your PMP® Certification exam prep study. If you have the budget and the time to spend on a quality PMP® Exam prep course, do take the PMP® Exam prep course which will help you to pass the PMP® Exam more easily!

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Below is the step-by-step instruction on how to input the discount offer codes for GreyCampus online courses to get the discounted prices for the ITIL® Foundation, PMP® Certification, PMI-ACP® Certification and PRINCE2® Foundation Certification online courses. Many Certification Aspirants have asked me to show them how to apply the coupon codes as they cannot find the location to enter them. This step-by-step illustrated guide is made to help fellow Aspirants to enjoy the discounted course fee with ease.

Step 1: Go to go to GreyCampus online course website

Please go to the related GreyCampus pages through the webpage: the most updated GreyCampus discount offer codes  (remember to make use of the coupon codes there to get heavy discounts off the retail prices of the certification prep courses)

  • PMP® Certification Online Self Learning
  • ITIL® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official ITIL® Exam included)
  • PRINCE2® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official PRINCE2® Foundation Exam)

Step 2: Click the yellow “Enroll” button to go to the payment page

Just take the GreyCampus ITIL® Foundation Certification Training as an example. Below is the landing page of ITIL® online training courses for GreyCampus. Just click the blue “Enroll Now” button.

You will be presented with a choice of several different delivery modes for the ITIL® Foundation Courses (i.e. online, online live, classroom, etc.). Just chose the left one which is the online ITIL® course option.

Step 3: Check the “I have an offer code” box

After clicking the red “Enroll” button, you will be redirected to the course order page. Do not worry, the price given there is the original list price before discount.

On the right-hand side, under the payment details, you will find the “Have an offer code to redeem?” box- click on it. Enter the coupon code in the box that appears and click “Apply”.

 

Step 4: Apply the Coupon Code/Offer Code

After you input the coupon code in the box, make sure to click the “Apply” button beside it. The final price of the course will only change after you click on the “Apply” button. Make sure you do this before you pay for the course.

Step 5: Check the updated price on the left before submitting the payment details

Once the coupon is applied successfully, the green text will appear below the coupon code box; it will read- “Coupon applied successfully, you will get USD 41.00 discount”. Please also check for the discounted price details on the right side of the page.

After you have ensured that the correct discounted course fee is listed on the right-hand column of the order page, you can then enter your payment information including name, card number, expiry date and CVV. Then click the red button “Pay Now” to make the purchase.

Congratulations! You have just applied the GreyCampus offer code successfully. You should now be able to access the online training course (including the lecture videos, mock exams as well as many downloadable study resources) instantly.

Wish you Certification success!


FAQ on GreyCampus Coupon Codes

  • After pasting the coupon code and clicking the “Apply Now” button, a red sentence reads “The coupon code is invalid” show up. Now what?
    • Please check carefully if you have entered the correct coupon code (note: without spaces at the beginning and end of the coupon code). The best way to ensure the correctness of your coupon code is to copy directly from the coupon code page and paste it there.
    • Please check the validity period of the coupon code, in most cases, an invalid coupon code means that it is expired. Usually the validity period between the first and last day of a month. And the coupon code and discount percentage may vary from month to month.
    • Under the rare case of the GreyCampus website having some technical errors, please let me know so that I can communicate with GreyCampus to resolve the problem.
  • What to do if I have purchased the training course at the original list price instead of the discounted price?
    • I am sorry to learn that you cannot enjoy the discount successfully. But there is hope. GreyCampus online courses offer money back guarantee for several days depending on the types of course.
    • You can just write to GreyCampus to cancel your order first. And your payment will be refunded to you as soon as possible.
    • Then you can come back to the enrolment page to enrol again. Remember to follow the steps outlined above as close as possible and verify that the discount has already been applied to your order before hitting the “Pay Now” button.
  • Where to find the latest GreyCampus Coupon Codes?
    • As I have a working relationship with GreyCampus team, every time when a new coupon code is published, they will let me know at once. I will have the most current GreyCampus coupon code published at this page.
    • If the code for the online course you are looking for is not there, don’t worry, you can still try the coupon codes listed there to see if they are valid.
  • Will I get a better discount later?
    • May or may not. That depends on GreyCampus. However, I would highly suggest you to strike the iron while it is hot. If you have already make up your mind to go for the certification and if your budget allows, why not go ahead and purchase the online course at the current discount and begin your certification right away? Time is the most precious element for all of us.
    • Also, the certification cost may go up year by year owing to inflation and rising costs etc. The training costs may actually become more expensive later on.

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Yes. This is very important.

At the time of pressing the submit button on the PMP® application form, you should have already finished the project management course providing you with the required 35 contact hours. You would need to enter the course details together with the date of completion on the PMP® application form before submitting.

This is often a commonly confused item for the PMP® application. Many Aspirants would plan to have their PMP® application approved before going through a PMP® Exam prep course either in person or online. Some PMP® bootcamps would even gather Aspirants to attend the course for 4 days and take the PMP® Exam at the 5th day. But aspirants need to understand that PMI would not approve your application before you have got the 35 Contact Hour certificate.

However, since you are able to store your partially filled online PMP® application form on PMI server, it makes no harms to fill the form while you are still studying the project management course. But you should make sure you have finished the course before eventually submitting the application form.

And in case of a PMI audit, you will need to submit a copy of your Contact Hour certificate. If your course is not delivered by a PMI R.E.P., you will also need to send the course outline and descriptions in order to allow PMI to judge whether your course satisfies the project management education requirement.

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Though PMI impose a 8-year restriction on the project management working experience to be accepted for PMP® application, there is NO restrictions on when you get your project management education.

In other words, the 35 contact hours of project management education is valid for life.

You can literally get the 35 contact hours based on your university coursework or a training course provided by your employer years ago.

There are many cases that a PMP® aspirant took the PMP® exam prep course for the previous edition of PMBOK® Guide and then got busy and abandoned the certification efforts. Years later, they would want to get PMP® certified again and there is no need for them to get the contact hour education again.

However, it is necessary for you to check with PMI on the eligibility of your contact hour certification for the PMP® certification before applying. When in doubt, always bet on the safe side by attending an additional course provided by PMI R.E.P. which will also help you best prepared for the actual PMP® exam.

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PMP Exam Prep

By becoming a member of PMI, you will gain access to a downloadable PDF file of the PMBOK® Guide (6th edition) for FREE. You are also allowed to print out a copy of the PMBOK® Guide for your personal use / exam prep.

PMI takes copyright infringement very seriously (as willful copyright infringement is a violation of the PMI Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct which may result in suspending of the PMI Certificate credentials). The downloaded PMBOK® Guide PDF is password protected and watermarked with the PMI membership number of the one who downloads it. And therefore it is unlikely to find FREELY available PMBOK® Guide PDF files on the internet.

Alternatively, you can also purchase a printed copy of the PMBOK® Guide from Amazon.

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According to the update history of PMBOK® Guide, PMI would release a new version of the PMBOK® Guide every 4 to 5 years in order to catch up with the changes in project management practices and trend (e.g. Agile project management is becoming much more important).

Currently the most current PMBOK® Guide update was on December 2012 which is several years ago. Thought there are “updates” to the PMBOK® Guide these few years, the majority of them are just correcting typos and logical errors. The PMBOK® Guide is in need of an update.

And PMI has made a lot of groundworks from 2012 in collecting feedback on the PMBOK® Guide 5th edition as well as noting the latest trends of project management.

PMI has announced that the PMBOK® Guide 6 will be released at around the following schedule:

  • 1st quarter of 2017 for draft release
  • 3rd quarter of 2017 for the final release — that’s around June 2017 (hopefully)

(Click here for a detailed discussion of what have been changed in PMBOK® Guide 6th edition — the changes are not many, unlike the major structural changes from PMBOK® Guide 4 to PMBOK® Guide 5.)

For Aspirants, the most pressing question should be when will the PMP® Exam be changed to be based on PMBOK® Guide 6th edition.

Fortunately, PMI will allow current Aspirants to continue taking the PMP® Exam based on the current version of the PMBOK® Guide for up to half a year.

That means the new PMP® Exam update to be based on PMBOK® Guide 6th edition is in the first quarter of 2018.

Therefore it is safe and recommended to begin your PMP® Exam preparation based on PMBOK® Guide 5th Edition as of now. Read here for the reasons.

Aspirants will only have to study for the exam based on PMBOK® Guide 6 if they begin their studies after Nov 2017 (an average PMP® Aspirant will need around 2 months’ time to be well prepared for the exam).

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Don’t be late for the PMP® Exam. Arrive at the PMP® Exam center at least 15 minutes earlier than the scheduled time. If you are late, the worst case is that you may be denied entry to the PMP® Exam room. In such case, a ‘no-show’ status is implied, resulting in a fail for the PMP® Exam. You will need to pay for the re-examination fee and re-schedule another timeslot for the exam.

However, some PMP® Exam centers will exercise discretionary power to allow you to sit for the PMP® Exam even though you are late (maybe probably for several minutes). But don’t count on that as this is different for different PMP® Exam centers. It is therefore advisable to mark down the telephone number of your PMP® Exam centre and ask for their policies once you have the feeling that you will be late for the exam.

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For each set of 200 PMP® Exam questions, only 175 will be counted towards your final score. The rest 25 questions are termed as “pretest questions” according to PMI.

Pretest questions can be considered as “trial” questions which are used to gather statistical information on the “validity” of the question. If the performance of the candidates on a pretest question is in accordance with normal distribution, PMI will consider adding the question to the question bank for the real PMP® exam.

Otherwise, should too many or too few candidates are able to answer the pretest question correctly, the quality of the pretest question is in doubt and would probably not to be included in the real exam.

What has “pretest questions” to do with PMP® candidates?

PMP® candidates are affected by the pretest questions in the following way:

  • Since pretest questions are distributed randomly in the set of PMP® questions, PMP® candidates will have no way to determine whether a question is “real” or “pre-test”.
  • If many of the “pre-test” questions are too difficult to answer, this may adversely affect the psychological state and confidence of the candidate. This may directly affect the performance of the candidate in the real exam.
  • PMP® candidates may be tempted to spend too much time on the pre-test questions since some pre-test questions are not constructed clearly.

In my PMP® Exam, the first 10 questions were very difficult that I spent more than expected time on that, I couldn’t but think that “will I fail the exam?”. Luckily, the rest questions were similar to what are on the sample question papers that I had tried before. I managed to get a pass in the first try.

My recommendation is to prepare well for the PMP® Exam and ignore those “out-of-syllabus” questions by guessing the answer and move forward. Don’t be discouraged if many “out-of-syllabus” questions appear in a row or at the beginning of the exam. Remember to keep your cool and move on!

I have also shared other psychological preparation for you to ace the exam:

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The ITTO (inputs, tools and techniques, outputs) of the PMBOK® Guide is by far one of the most “dreaded” question types of the PMP® Exam. It really takes a great memory to remember all the 600+ ITTOs from the PMBOK® Guide in the PMP® Exam preparation.

Many PMP® aspirants would surely ask themselves: should I remember all the ITTOs?

In my PMP® Exam, there are less than 4 questions about ITTOs (though as the PMP® Exam questions sets are different for different PMP® candidates, you may get more or fewer questions on ITTOs) – which is only 2% of all the PMP® Exam questions. Among those 4 ITTO questions I encountered, only one was asking directly about which is the ITTO for the process. The other three were just kind of related to ITTO, e.g. what would you use for a process at hand. The other questions on my PMP® Exam were mainly situational questions.

As a reference, I passed the PMP® Exam with ‘Proficient’ in Initiation, Planning, Executing, Monitoring & Controlling and ‘Moderately Proficient’ in Closing domain.

As you can see, the PMP® Exam is more about than asking you to apply the project management concepts than to memorize all the facts from the PMP® Exam.

Further reading: PMP® ITTO mindmap (not yet updated) – it is far more efficient to make use of mindmap to remember discrete facts such as ITTOs, this PMP® ITTO mindmap can be downloaded free!

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In additional to the ITTO questions, PMP® Maths formulas questions are generally considered to be the more difficult questions.

In my PMP® Exam question set, I got around 10 PMP® calculation questions in total (that is around 5% of all the questions). 5% is definitely not a significant number of questions for the PMP® Exam which has 200 questions.

If you are not comfortable with the PMP® Maths questions, it is advisable to just guess the answer, flag it for review and move on to the next question. Don’t spend more than the allocated time (around 2 minutes for each question) to the PMP® calculation questions as the Maths questions carry equal marks with other PMP® questions. When you still have time at the end of the PMP® Exam, you may spend more time with the Maths questions.

Plus, it is highly advisable to write down all the PMP® formulas at the beginning of the PMP® Exam as your PMP® Exam brain dump in order to offload your brain.

Further reading: PMP® Maths / Formulas Guide

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Perhaps, this is the question every PMP® aspirants would probably have during their course of PMP® Exam preparation, especially while they are reading the PMBOK® Guide. Most PMP® candidates would agree that the PMBOK® Guide is way too boring for reading or studying. But since the PMBOK® Guide is published by the Project Management Institute (PMI) which is the authority behind the PMP® Exam, it is logical to consider the PMBOK® Guide as one of the most important reference book for the PMP® Exam.

It would be a great help if some authoritative voices would assure that they can pass the PMP® Exam in first try without having to even read the PMBOK® Guide once. Unfortunately, there is no definite answer to this question.

A survey of 100 PMP® Exam candidates (who successfully pass the PMP® Exam) has found out that only 5% of them did not read the PMBOK® Guide during their study. That means 95% of the PMP® candidates did read the PMBOK® Guide at least once during their PMP® exam prep. Though it can be safely said that all of the most popular PMP® Exam reference books (like Andy Crowe, Headfirst and Rita) do cover most of the materials in the PMBOK® Guide, the emphases and organisation of the material would be quite different. In particular, since the PMP® Exam tests not about your project management knowledge, experience nor skills but how deep you understand project management from PMI’s perspectives, the PMBOK® Guide is the only place where you can fully understand PMI’s viewpoint in an organised and systematic way. All other PMP® Exam prep books would include the personal viewpoints of the authors.

In order to fully prepare for the PMP® Exam, it can be said that the PMBOK® Guide is indispensable. If you have the time, do read through the PMBOK® Guide at least once. There is no need to read it from cover to cover in one attempt. You can read the PMBOK® Guide together with your PMP® Exam prep book chapter by chapter. Most PMP® Exam prep book would organise the materials according to the sequence as used in the PMBOK® Guide. By reading the PMBOK® Guide and your PMP® Exam prep book in parallel, you can compare the two literatures to understand what are the differences between them in order to have a more comprehensive coverage of the materials required for the PMP® Exam.

Though the PMBOK® Guide is boring (according to most PMP® aspirants), it is a worthwhile read for the PMP® Exam!

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What is the most realistic mock PMP® Exam one can take? It is to take the mock PMP® Exam at the same centre as one would take the real PMP® Exam.

Prometric, the organisation that runs the PMP® Exam for the computer based test around the world, has launched a new service for test driving the PMP® Exam for PMP® aspirants. The “Test drive” all PMP® aspirants to take a mock PMP® Exam at the Prometric center for 30 minutes for the cost of US$30.

As long as there is a free place in the test centre and you are willing to pay the mock exam fee, you will be able to take the mock exam in real conditions as part of your PMP® Exam prep.

More details on PMP® Exam Test Drive can be found on the Prometric website.

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PM PrepCast™ Executive has a price tag of US$1199.99, which is way much expensive than the PM PrepCast™ Standard and the PM PrepCast™ Elite. Though there is a 28% discount applied to the sum of all products included in the PM PrepCast™ Executive, many would wonder is it worth to invested almost 3 times more than the PM PrepCast™ Elite which is already a great PMP® Exam Prep course and question bank.

What are included in PM PrepCast™ Executive

The PM PrepCast™ Executive is the package of the PM PrepCast™ Elite plus a few more:

  • PM PrepCast™ – the highly acclaimed online PMP® Exam Prep course providing 35 contact hours to qualify for the PMP® Exam (US$199.99)
  • PM Exam Simulator – access to 1800 PMP® mock exam questions to be written in an environment that resembles the real PMP® Exam interface
  • 12 hours of live personal (one-to-one) coaching (US$89.99 per hour * 12 = US$1079.88)
  • 5 hours of live group coaching sessions (US$49.99 per hour * 5 = US$249.95)
  • PMP® Formula Study Guide –  which includes the Formula study guide, Formula brain dump / cheat sheet and 105 formula sample questions (US$29.99 value)
  • Premium eBook Bundle – which includes the PMP® Essentials Study Guide, ITTO Memory Jogger and PMI Exam Audit Kit) (US$29.97)

What are the PMP® Live Coaching?

PMP® live coaching will offer you the chance to work with a PMP® coach during  your PMP® Exam preparation through an internet connection in order to maximize your opportunity to pass the PMP® Exam in first try. PMP® live coaching is also the most time-efficient way to prepare for your PMP® Exam as you can get immediate advices from an experience PMP® Exam Coach who will help you to formulate a tailor-made study plan that suit your schedule and style of learning. I still remember I have to “google” hundreds of blogs and webpages in order to understand how to plan for my PMP® Exam and carry out the study.

You will work with the PMP® Exam Coach during your PMP® Exam Prep journey, usually once a week or at a schedule that suits you, all the way from the very beginning of planning the study plan, answer your queries, assess your knowledge gaps and help you to determine whether you are ready for the real PMP® Exam.

Since the PMP® Exam Coach has profound experience in helping PMP® aspirants to study and pass the PMP® Exam, he can offer you valuable tips and tricks to help you attain the PMP® Certification in the shortest time possible.

As the name implies, “Personal Coaching” will allow you to meet one on one with the Coach, all the time is dedicated for you. You can present your case and the Coach will give you personalized advices. You can book the timeslots that are most convenient to you.

On the other hand, in “Group Coaching”, you will join other PMP® aspirants every week at the same time to discuss the common PMP® Exam topics such as:

  • Project management framework
  • Earned Value calculation / PMP® Formulas
  • PMP® practice questions / sample questions review

You will gain the benefits of peer discussion.

Other than the fact that the Coach will meet you through an internet connection instead of meeting you face to face, the PMP® Live Coaching service will offer you all the benefits of PMP® Exam bootcamps.

Who is the PMP® Coach?

The coach is Dan Ryan, MBA, PMP®, who has over 20 years experience in the IT and project management industry. Dan has been delivering face-to-face and virtual PMP® Exam prep courses since 2011. He has pioneered a unique, blended learning solution to tailor to the needs of every individual PMP® aspirant. Dan currently lives in the United States.

Is the PM PrepCast™ Executive Worth the High Price Tag?

Online learning, just like the PM PrepCast™ Standard, offers a cost-effective way to prepare for studying and preparing for the PMP® Exam. However, online courses require you to have excellent disciplines and probably more time as you will need to do researches into the difficult topics yourself. You may also have to waste some time to search for accurate information on the internet. If that describes you, then you are an ideal candidate for the PM PrepCast™ Standard/Elite.

But, if you flourish with the help of an instructor or if you are too busy to do researches on your own, the PM PrepCast™ Executive is the most suitable PMP® Exam prep for your among the different PM PrepCast™ products. The PMP® Coach will assist you all the way from your planning to tackling PMP® practice questions to confirming your readiness to attempt the real PMP® Exam. Try to think of the time saved and the possibility of not having to re-take the PMP® Exam owing to failed attempt, the high price tag is not really that expensive.

In addition, normal PMP® bootcamps will have dozens of PMP® aspirants studying together with you. This means that the course instructor will have to divide his/her attention among all the students in the class. For the Live Personal Coach, you will have the FULL attention of the PMP® Exam Coach for 12 hours! The time should be enough to answer your every questions about the PMP® Exam!

Summary

Below is a simple chart to help you understand the various PM PrepCast™ products on sale in the market:

  • PM PrepCast™ Standard = PM PrepCast™
  • PM PrepCast™ Elite = PM PrepCast™ Standard + PM Exam Simulator
  • PM PrepCast™ Executive = PM PrepCast™ Elite + Coaching + Formula Study Guide + Premium eBook Bundle

The PM PrepCast™ Elite is the most popular PMP® Exam Prep package providing both the required 35 contact hours certificate and lots of good PMP® Exam practice questions.

If you have the time to navigation through the planning processes for your PMP® study through trial and error and discipline to stick to your study plan, I would highly recommend the PM PrepCast™ Elite which is both cost effective and high in quality.

I would like the interactive nature of PMP® Exam Study bootcamps (where you can talk directly to the instructor on any queries you have and have the instructor assist you to plan your study) but there is none around you or  you are too busy to take 5 days off to attend the bootcamp, the PM PrepCast™ Executive would be perfect for you as you can prepare for the PMP® Exam at the comfort of your room or office without the need to travel a lot.

Wish you PMP® success!

 

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Following the announcement of updating the syllabus of the PMP® Exam in Nov 2015, every publisher of PMP® Exam Prep book are working extremely hard to get the updated version of the book out to help fellow PMP® aspirants to begin preparing for the new PMP® Exam.

Rita's PMP Exam Prep book 8th Edition updated

Rita’s PMP® Exam Prep book 8th Edition updated

The publisher of Rita’s PMP® Exam Prep book, RMC Learning Solutions, has just announced the updated eighth edition of Rita’s PMP® book will be published by end of July 2015 has been published, has been published: take a look at the preview of the Rita’s PMP® Exam prep book here. The new edition of the PMP® Book includes new tasks and modified knowledge and skills as mentioned in the PMI Role Delineation Study 2015 as well as the new PMP® Exam Content Outline.

This latest version (8th edition) of the Rita’s PMP® Exam preparation book is updated to align with the PMBOK® Guide 5th edition as well as the PMP® Exam Content Outline released in June 2015. PMP® aspirants aiming to take the PMP® Exam on or after 2nd Nov, 2015 are advised to purchase the Rita’s PMP® Book updated 8th edition instead of the original 8th edition.

But as the changes are not considered drastic, PMP® aspirants preparing for the PMP® Exam based on the original 8th edition will still get a pretty good coverage of the new PMP® Exam syllabus as the PMBOK® Guide is still the 5th edition.

Note: If you own the original 8th edition of the Rita’s PMP® Exam Prep and would like to sit for the PMP® Exam after 1st Nov 2015, you are advised to download an update document issued by RMC which covers a few changes to the Rita’s book so that you are good for the new PMP® Exam!

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RMC Learning Solutions is now shipping the updated eighth edition of Rita’s PMP® book (note: if you are buying a new exam prep book, you should look for the “updated 8th edition” not the “8th edition”). 

The new edition of the PMP® Book includes the updated tasks and modified knowledge and skills outlined in the new PMP® Exam Content Outline (for PMP® Exam in 2017) so that the book will have full coverage of the exam syllabus.

However, does this mean that the original 8th edition of Rita’s book is no longer useful?

The good news is that the original 8th edition of Rita’s PMP® book is still valid for the new PMP® Exam, in RMC’s words:

Comparing each line of the 2015 PMP® Examination Content Outline to the previous version published in 2011, RMC has determined the changes were mostly minor, and/or already consistent with our interpretation of the project manager’s role in the existing edition of the book.

Since the changes in the PMP® Exam syllabus nor the contents of Rita’s book are NOT dramatic, RMC has actually issued an additional “update” for owners of the Rita’s PMP® book 8th edition which can be downloaded here (as you will see, there are just several changes only).

In fact, a recent PMP® exam taker has read both the 8th Edition and the 8th Updated Edition from cover to cover and find that basically the Rita’s PMP® 8th Edition = Rita’s PMP® 8th Edition Updated. He passed the PMP® Exam in first try.

Therefore if you get hold of the original 8th edition of Rita’s book, you can still rely on it to ace  your PMP® Exam. There is no need to purchase the updated 8th edition.

 

Note: I passed the PMP® Exam with 4 Proficient and 1 Moderately Proficient, click here for my study notes, resources and tips (can be downloaded for free).

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For those who would like to get PMP® certified, one of the major roadblock should be worrying about the level of difficulties of the real PMP® Exam.

PMI has published a PDF file containing 3 official sample PMP® questions to help PMP® aspirants to get a taste of the level of difficulty as well as the wording of the real PMP® Exam questions:

As you will see, in order to correctly answer the PMP® Exam questions, you must get to know the exact meaning of the terms used by PMI. The good news is that all the terms can be found in the PMBOK® Guide. However, the questions also require you (as the project manager) to exercise expert judgement to understand what actions to take next (which is one of the most difficult type of PMP® Exam questions).

You would definitely like to attempt more PMP® Exam practice questions (best of all many quality sample PMP® Exam questions are FREE).

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PMP PDU

ITIL® v3 Foundation and PMP® are two of the most popular project management certifications in the world. Every year, thousands of exam aspirants would prepare and sit for the ITIL® and PMP® exams. Some holders of PMP® would study for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam while some ITIL® holders would aspire for the PMP® credential. Below we will outline the similarities and differences between ITIL® and PMP®.

Similarities of ITIL® v3 Foundation  and PMP®

  • You will need to pass an exam consisting of multiple choice questions in order to be certified.
  • ITIL® and PMP® provide best practices to implement projects (though ITIL® focuses on projects in the Information Technology field).

Differences between ITIL® v3 Foundation and PMP®

  • PMP® exam is about general project management knowledge while ITIL® is about information technology service management (i.e. for people working in the field of information technology).
  • There are no pre-requisites for sitting the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam while PMP® exam will require the aspirants to have 35 Contact Hours and at least 4500 hours of working experience in project management over a period of at least 3 years.
  • The PMP® Exam is much longer and consists of more questions, it is generally considered that the PMP® Exam is much more difficult than the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam.
  • ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification will never expire while PMP® certification holders will need to re-certify every three years by accumulating enough PDUs.
  • PMP® Certification holders will need to earn at least 60 PDU during every 3-year re-certification cycle in order to be able to renew their PMP® Certification status. Holders of ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification will not need any mandatory continuous education.

ITIL® v3 Foundation and PMP®: Recommendation

If you have not begun your journey on getting ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification and PMP® Certification, it is highly recommended you study for and pass the PMP® Exam first. Afterwards, you will be able to claim the time spent on studying and preparing for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam as PDU for your PMP® re-certification in either Category A or Category B PDU (by taking courses provided by accredited training institutes) or Category C PDU (by self-study). In this way, one can kill two birds with a stone!

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PMI-ACP Audit

No.

Whether your PMI audit result is successful or not, PMI will not return the audit package to the PMP® / PMI-ACP® applicant. Therefore, only photocopies of the certificates are required by PMI instead of the original ones.

PMI will need to retain the audit package according to its internal auditing procedures.

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First and foremost, the PMP® or PMI-ACP® candidate is not able to proceed with the certification application and examination. The certification fee paid will be refunded (with the subtraction of the processing fee).

There may be some follow-up actions by the PMI depending on the cause of failure of the PMI audit:

  • if the audit fail is due to incomplete information (including the documents are sent to PMI in more than 1 package), no action may be taken by PMI, but the candidate will only be able to reapply to the certification 1 year later;
  • if the fail is due to fraudulent information, PMI may take disciplinary actions (including banning from application to PMI certification for life) to the candidate in question as PMI takes integrity very seriously.

Therefore, when submitting the PMP® application / PMI-ACP® application, always make sure you are entering truthful information. Honest is the best policy.

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If you decide NOT to proceed with the PMI Audit for whatever reasons, e.g. time clashes, supervisor disagreed with your claimed time, personal issues, etc., you need not do anything. PMI considers it an automatic audit fail if it does not receive your audit package within 90 days of the notice of PMI Audit.

You will be able to apply again for the PMP® Certification / PMI-ACP® Certification one year after your original PMP® application / PMI-ACP® application submission date. But you should note that your application will be subject to a PMI Audit again.

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For the working experience verification forms, PMI requires the supervisors / managers to sign on the forms and put the forms in ‘sealed and signed envelopes‘. The following is the instruction on the PMI audit:

A manager, supervisor, or colleague who is intimately familiar with the experience on your application is required to review your Experience Record and then complete the Experience Verification Form. After they verify, they will put the completed Experience Verification Form and Experience Record in an envelope, sign his/her name over the sealed flap of the envelope, and return the envelope to you via in person or by mail. If one person is verifying multiple projects for the same company, they can fill out one form and initial or highlight on the Experience Record the projects that they are verifying. Faxed or scanned forms will not be accepted as the forms need to be placed in a sealed and signed envelope for security purposes. No substitutions will be accepted.

This paragraph essentially means the following:

  1. Download and print the experience verification forms
  2. Send the printed verification forms, each with an empty envelop, to your managers / supervisors named on your application form accordingly*
  3. Ask the managers / supervisors to write the details on the form and sign, put the signed form into the envelope, glue the flap and sign again across the flap (this makes the ‘sealed and signed envelope’)
  4. Ask them to return the ‘sealed envelop’ to you to be mailed to PMI together with other documentations

* If your manager / supervisor is responsible for more than one experience verification forms, he/she will need to enter the details and signs on one form only and write his/her initials on other forms without filling the details. He/She will then need to put all the experience verification forms into a single envelope and seal it with a signature as usual.

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Not a problem. You just need to write a short notice on the envelope that your manager / supervisor forgot to sign on the envelope for the PMI audit.

Though PMI asks you to request your manager / supervisor to seal and sign across the flap of the sealed envelop in order to properly accomplish the PMI audit, it is possible (or even likely) that your manager / supervisor mails / hands the envelope back to you without the signature on the flap. PMI understands that it might be difficult, if not possible, to return the envelope to get the signature again. It is acceptable to have the experience verification envelope without signature provided that you:

make a note on the back of the envelope in question that the signature was omitted

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If you are the manager for the organization, then you may ask your senior management, if possible, to sign your project management experience verification form for you. Other than senior management, you may ask

 a colleague, peer, client or sponsor who has intimate knowledge of the project [to] verify.

PMI does NOT require managers / supervisors to be the only persons to sign the experience verification forms. As long as the signee who are intimately familiar with the project you have submitted, it is okay for them to sign the form. PMI will accept the experience verification in such cases.

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PMI-ACP Exam Prep

The short answer is “unknown”.

The Project Management Institute does not disclose the passing score nor how many questions a PMI-ACP® candidate need to answer correctly. The PMI-ACP® exam candidate does not even know their scores for the exams, the exam report just shows the proficiency level —there are 3 of them:

  • Above Target — performance better than the average Aspirants
  • Target — performance on par with average Aspirants
  • Below Target — performance worse than the average Aspirants

This is because the PMI-ACP® Exam is based on ‘sound psychometric analysis’ (which is a modern way of keeping the standards of those who pass the PMI-ACP® Exam). Also, since most of the PMI-ACP® Exams are administrated on computers, the question sets of individual candidates are different, hence the passing scores for individual exams will need to be adjusted to the overall difficulty of the set, i.e. NOT the same.

However, according to the trainers of PMI-ACP® Agile Certification aspirants, most of them would estimate that the passing score is around 70% (which, by the way, is a bit higher than the passing score of PMP® Exam). This may be because the PMI-ACP® Exam is generally considered a bit easier than the PMP® Exam (but this is just an educated guess only as no information has been disclosed by PMI).

Therefore when you are attempting PMI-ACP® sample exam questions, it is highly recommended to set a higher standard than 70% (e.g. 75% – 80%) for your mock exam performance so that you can walk into the PMI-ACP® Exam centre with better confidence of passing the exam in first attempt.

After having taken both PMP® and PMI-ACP® Exams with a pass in first attempt, I would say that the PMI-ACP® exam is easier than the PMP®. But there are more situational questions in the PMI-ACP® Exam as Aspirants are tested on the actual application of Agile knowledge rather than testing their memorization capability.

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I have both tackled the PMP® and the PMI-ACP® Exams administrated by PMI. My experience tells me that the PMI-ACP® Exam is not that hard or difficult if you have ample preparation for the test.

  • I passed with all Proficient in my PMI-ACP® Exam while I got 4 P and 1 MP for the PMP® Exam. So for Aspirants who have attempted PMP® Exam before, the good news is PMI-ACP® is a bit easier.
    • You have around 1.5 minute to answer each question — the time is more than enough for most candidates. Some candidates can even finish all the 120 questions within 1 hour and take an extra hour for re-reading the questions and checking the answers.
    • According to the feedback of many Aspirants who are PMP®s, the exam is considered to be moderately easy (in particular when compared to the PMP® Exam).
  • But if you have never attempted PMI Certification exams before, tackling the PMI-ACP® Exam would be a little bit trickier than other professional exams as PMI has its own way of doing exams:
    • The majority of PMI-ACP® Exam questions are situational — the format is somewhat like this: you have got a situational in which you need to decide which is the best course of action to follow from a choice of four, and two or even three of theses choices are logical actions but you need to choose “the best according to PMI”.
    • You have to follow strictly the check in and check out procedures of PMI exams and you need to get accustomed to the exam interface.
    • The exam covers a lot of different Agile favours, including Scrum, Lean, Kanban, Extreme programming, etc. that one need to understand in details.
    • Perhaps one of the most difficult part of the certification is to fulfil the experience requirement on traditional project management as Agile project management is very different from waterfall.

It would normally take around a total of 120 hours to prepare well for the exam (of course that depends on the Agile knowledge and experience one has — I have known someone who can pass with 1 week of study though).

  • You should select an Agile course that helps you to prepare for the PMI-ACP® Exam (I used the Agile PrepCast™). Though any Agile courses (e.g. ScrumMaster) with over 21 hours of course duration will satisfy the 21 Contact Hours requirement of the PMI-ACP® Certification, taking a course dedicated to the PMI-ACP® would help build the foundation of your exam prep as the exam tests you on broader Agile knowledge than specific Agile methodologies.
  • Read and study the “pseudo-official” PMI-ACP® Exam textbook – PMI-ACP® Exam Prep by Mike Griffiths – at least twice and finish all the sample exam questions there.
  • Practice more PMI-ACP® Exam sample questions (many are FREE).
  • You are also advised to write your own study notes for your last minute revision.

That said, with proper training and preparation, Aspirants would be able to pass the exam in first try. You may refer to my PMI-ACP® Exam experience here.

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For the PMP® Exam, the PMBOK® Guide (A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge) is believed to be the most popular study material / book. Many PMI-ACP® aspirants would ask is there a PMBOK® Guide equivalent for the PMI-ACP® Exam.

The answer is, unfortunately, NO. PMI does provide a list of PMI-ACP® Exam reference books (a total of 11 Agile books with over 3800 pages!) which, in total, is way thicker than the PMBOK® Guide. That’s why some project managers consider the PMI-ACP® Exam to be even more difficult than the PMP® exam.

Fortunately, there are some PMI-ACP® Exam prep books that have summarized all that are required for the PMI-ACP® Exam into a single book:

This is my recommended exam prep book for the PMI-ACP® Exam. I made use of this book during my exam study and considered it to be excellent in quality. The author Mike Griffiths is a renowned Agile trainer and practitioner who has help formulating the PMI-ACP® Exam structure and syllabus – who else could be more familiar with the PMI-ACP® Exam than this insider?

In the PMI-ACP® exam lessons learned I have read, almost 90% of the authors used this PMI-ACP® Exam prep book to help them prepare and pass the PMI-ACP® Exam.

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Head First PMP®

For those who are familiar with the PMP® Exam, or who are PMP® themselves, the PMP® Exam prep book “Head First PMP®” should be a popular choice for their PMP® exam. The Head First PMP® book is written using “the latest development in cognitive science” and is most suited visual learners. A lot of diagrams, charts, illustrations and games are included in the Head First PMP® book.

Head First PMI-ACP® Book?

For the PMI-ACP® Exam, one can’t help but wonder is there a PMI-ACP® Exam prep book called “Head First PMI-ACP®”. Since Agile embraces charts and diagrams, it seems the format of the Head First PMP® a perfect match for Head First PMI-ACP® or Head First Agile book…

Unfortunately, the answer is NO. The authors of the Head First PMP® do not write the Head First PMI-ACP® for PMI-APC aspirants.

Great News! Head First Agile will be available for Aspirants in 25 June 2017. Though Head First Agile is primarily about Agile concepts, it intends to have 100% coverage of the exam syllabus for PMI-ACP® exam — including end-of-chapter quizzes, exam tips and guide and a full-length PMI-ACP® practice mock exam.

The sad news is that PMI-ACP® aspirants have to wait several more months to get the book. Meanwhile, there are currently two other tried and tested PMI-ACP® Exam prep books on the market:

The links of the above PMI-ACP® Exam prep books go to the Amazon website where you can get a preview of the books. I did make use of these exam prep books for my PMI-ACP® Exam and they are really of superb quality. If you have the budget, do purchase these two books for your PMI-ACP® study and you will not regret it.

Further reading: Recommended PMI-ACP® Book: RMC PMI-ACP® Exam Prep by Mike Griffiths

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No. Though it is often said that the PMI-ACP® Exam Prep Book by Mike Griffiths is almost the “official” study guide for the PMI-ACP® Exam, many PMI-ACP® candidates can pass the PMI-ACP® Exam without reading it. The book by Mike Griffiths is NOT a must read if you have already well prepared for the exam though it is highly recommended if you have just begun the PMI-ACP® journey and don’t know how to proceed with your exam prep or study.

My PMI-ACP® study notes are based on many important PMI-ACP® resources including some of the most important stuffs from the Mike Griffiths book: https://edward-designer.com/web/agile-communications/ If you cannot gain access to the PMI-ACP® book by Mike Griffiths before your exam, you are highly recommended to read my study notes to see if you have missed anything during your exam study.

You are also advised to take more PMI-ACP® practice exams during the last few weeks before the exam (I encountered some questions on the real PMI-ACP® exam that were very similar to the ones listed here):
https://edward-designer.com/web/free-pmi-acp-exam-questions/

Wish you PMI-ACP® success!

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Yes, the original Agile PrepCast™ covers almost all the topics of the new 2018 PMI-ACP® Exam and the team is planning to add the missing topics asap.

The team at Agile PrepCast™ has carried out detailed analysis of the old and new PMI-ACP® Exam outline and found that over 85% of the contents of the new PMI-ACP® Exam have already been covered by the original Agile PrepCast™. The missing contents (e.g. Hybrid models, Agile Mindset, and SAFE) will be covered once all the new video lessons are developed.

If you are planning to purchase the Agile PrepCast™ or you have purchased the Agile PrepCast™ recently, you will be able to get the new video lessons (including 9 new presentations and interviews) once they are released.

But as many PMI-ACP® trainers and consultants have expressed, the new PMI-ACP® Exam syllabus is actually very much similar to the existing one, the changes and updates can be considered as “minor”. The author of the best selling PMI-ACP® Exam book, Mike Griffiths, did not intend to get the 2nd edition published before the implementation of the new PMI-ACP® Exam syllabus as he considers that his book has already covered all the materials of the new PMI-ACP® Exam.

So, if you are planning to take the PMI-ACP® Exam based on the new PMI-ACP® Exam syllabus, you can still make use of all the current PMI-ACP® Exam prep materials (mock exams, text-books, PMI-ACP® Exam prep courses, etc.) for your PMI-ACP® success!

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PMI-ACP Application

No.

As PMI-ACP® stands for “Project Management Institute Agile Certified Practitioner”, the keyword here is “practitioner“. As long as you are a member of a team practicing Agile project management (there is no limitation on the Agile methodologies), you would fulfill one of the basic requirements for PMI-ACP®:

  • 2,000 hours working on project teams as a member or project leader within the last 5 years
  • 1500 more hours working on Agile project teams / with agile methodologies within the last 3 years
  • 21 Contact Hours of Agile project management / practices training

As you can see, again the keyword here is “working on“, you can be a developer, sponsor, product owner, business analysts, etc. as long as your projects make use of Agile methodologies.

If you happen to be a PMP®, the 1st requirement for the 2000 working hours will be automatically fulfilled as the number of hours of project management experience required to fulfill PMP® requirements is more.

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PMI-ACP 21 Contact Hours

Sometimes, PMI-ACP® aspirants may encounter courses that gives both the contact hours and professional development units (PDU). What is the difference between Contact Hours and PDU?

Broadly speaking, Contact Hours and PDU both refers to the duration of Agile education received (i.e. 1 hour of Agile education will give you 1 Contact Hour / 1 PDU). The difference lies in when the Agile education is received:

  • Before PMI-ACP® certified, one will only be able to get Contact Hour. PMI-ACP® aspirants needs 21 Contact Hours of Agile project education to qualify for the PMI-ACP® Exam. The 21 Contact Hours should be finished before submitting the PMI-ACP® application.
  • After passing the PMI-ACP® exam, PMI-ACP® holders can begin getting PDU immediately (there is no need to wait for the arrival of the PMI-ACP® certificate). PMI-ACP® can gain 1 PDU for each hour spent on Agile related course, training, etc. PMI-ACP® holders need to accumulate at least 30 PDU in the 3-year re-certification cycle in order to be eligible for re-certification.

Though some Agile courses can give you both Contact Hours and PDU for PMI-ACP® Certification, you will only be able to get either Contact Hours or PDU from the Agile course you received.

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Below is the step-by-step instruction on how to input the discount offer codes for GreyCampus online courses to get the discounted prices for the ITIL® Foundation, PMP® Certification, PMI-ACP® Certification and PRINCE2® Foundation Certification online courses. Many Certification Aspirants have asked me to show them how to apply the coupon codes as they cannot find the location to enter them. This step-by-step illustrated guide is made to help fellow Aspirants to enjoy the discounted course fee with ease.

Step 1: Go to go to GreyCampus online course website

Please go to the related GreyCampus pages through the webpage: the most updated GreyCampus discount offer codes  (remember to make use of the coupon codes there to get heavy discounts off the retail prices of the certification prep courses)

  • PMP® Certification Online Self Learning
  • ITIL® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official ITIL® Exam included)
  • PRINCE2® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official PRINCE2® Foundation Exam)

Step 2: Click the yellow “Enroll” button to go to the payment page

Just take the GreyCampus ITIL® Foundation Certification Training as an example. Below is the landing page of ITIL® online training courses for GreyCampus. Just click the blue “Enroll Now” button.

You will be presented with a choice of several different delivery modes for the ITIL® Foundation Courses (i.e. online, online live, classroom, etc.). Just chose the left one which is the online ITIL® course option.

Step 3: Check the “I have an offer code” box

After clicking the red “Enroll” button, you will be redirected to the course order page. Do not worry, the price given there is the original list price before discount.

On the right-hand side, under the payment details, you will find the “Have an offer code to redeem?” box- click on it. Enter the coupon code in the box that appears and click “Apply”.

 

Step 4: Apply the Coupon Code/Offer Code

After you input the coupon code in the box, make sure to click the “Apply” button beside it. The final price of the course will only change after you click on the “Apply” button. Make sure you do this before you pay for the course.

Step 5: Check the updated price on the left before submitting the payment details

Once the coupon is applied successfully, the green text will appear below the coupon code box; it will read- “Coupon applied successfully, you will get USD 41.00 discount”. Please also check for the discounted price details on the right side of the page.

After you have ensured that the correct discounted course fee is listed on the right-hand column of the order page, you can then enter your payment information including name, card number, expiry date and CVV. Then click the red button “Pay Now” to make the purchase.

Congratulations! You have just applied the GreyCampus offer code successfully. You should now be able to access the online training course (including the lecture videos, mock exams as well as many downloadable study resources) instantly.

Wish you Certification success!


FAQ on GreyCampus Coupon Codes

  • After pasting the coupon code and clicking the “Apply Now” button, a red sentence reads “The coupon code is invalid” show up. Now what?
    • Please check carefully if you have entered the correct coupon code (note: without spaces at the beginning and end of the coupon code). The best way to ensure the correctness of your coupon code is to copy directly from the coupon code page and paste it there.
    • Please check the validity period of the coupon code, in most cases, an invalid coupon code means that it is expired. Usually the validity period between the first and last day of a month. And the coupon code and discount percentage may vary from month to month.
    • Under the rare case of the GreyCampus website having some technical errors, please let me know so that I can communicate with GreyCampus to resolve the problem.
  • What to do if I have purchased the training course at the original list price instead of the discounted price?
    • I am sorry to learn that you cannot enjoy the discount successfully. But there is hope. GreyCampus online courses offer money back guarantee for several days depending on the types of course.
    • You can just write to GreyCampus to cancel your order first. And your payment will be refunded to you as soon as possible.
    • Then you can come back to the enrolment page to enrol again. Remember to follow the steps outlined above as close as possible and verify that the discount has already been applied to your order before hitting the “Pay Now” button.
  • Where to find the latest GreyCampus Coupon Codes?
    • As I have a working relationship with GreyCampus team, every time when a new coupon code is published, they will let me know at once. I will have the most current GreyCampus coupon code published at this page.
    • If the code for the online course you are looking for is not there, don’t worry, you can still try the coupon codes listed there to see if they are valid.
  • Will I get a better discount later?
    • May or may not. That depends on GreyCampus. However, I would highly suggest you to strike the iron while it is hot. If you have already make up your mind to go for the certification and if your budget allows, why not go ahead and purchase the online course at the current discount and begin your certification right away? Time is the most precious element for all of us.
    • Also, the certification cost may go up year by year owing to inflation and rising costs etc. The training costs may actually become more expensive later on.

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PMI-ACP PDU

Sometimes, PMI-ACP® aspirants may encounter courses that gives both the contact hours and professional development units (PDU). What is the difference between Contact Hours and PDU?

Broadly speaking, Contact Hours and PDU both refers to the duration of Agile education received (i.e. 1 hour of Agile education will give you 1 Contact Hour / 1 PDU). The difference lies in when the Agile education is received:

  • Before PMI-ACP® certified, one will only be able to get Contact Hour. PMI-ACP® aspirants needs 21 Contact Hours of Agile project education to qualify for the PMI-ACP® Exam. The 21 Contact Hours should be finished before submitting the PMI-ACP® application.
  • After passing the PMI-ACP® exam, PMI-ACP® holders can begin getting PDU immediately (there is no need to wait for the arrival of the PMI-ACP® certificate). PMI-ACP® can gain 1 PDU for each hour spent on Agile related course, training, etc. PMI-ACP® holders need to accumulate at least 30 PDU in the 3-year re-certification cycle in order to be eligible for re-certification.

Though some Agile courses can give you both Contact Hours and PDU for PMI-ACP® Certification, you will only be able to get either Contact Hours or PDU from the Agile course you received.

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ITIL Foundation Exam

In the past, the Official ITIL® Publisher (Office of Government Commerce) did publish an official study guide for ITIL® Foundation Exam aspirants – Passing Your ITIL® Foundation Exam: Study Aid – The official book of ITIL® of which the author is OGC (Office of Government Commerce). However this guide is for the 2009 version of the ITIL® Foundation exam which has been superseded by the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam.

Currently, with the change in the structure of ITIL® governing bodies, the book is not updated to the current ITIL® Exam edition. Instead, another book titled “Passing Your ITIL® Foundation Exam” which is published by the Stationery Office, UK – the privatized publishing arm of Her Majesty’s Stationery Office and also the official ITIL® publisher, is now considered the official ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam book.

The ITIL® book is endorsed by the Official ITIL® Accreditor. It is currently the only official ITIL® Foundation Exam prep book that is updated in line with the ITIL® 4 Foundation syllabus. The book tries to present ITIL® Foundation syllabus in an easy-to-follow structure. It is suited for both self-study or as a complement for classroom learning. Readers will be able to develop an understanding of ITIL® basic concepts, principles and terminology associated with IT service management.

You can take a preview of the official ITIL® study guide at Amazon.

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For the ITIL® Foundation Exam, candidates will need to get 26 answers correct from a total of 40 questions (i.e. 65%) in order to pass the exam and get the ITIL® Foundation Certificate. This is a remarkably low passing mark compared to other international certifications.

The low entry threshold allows more IT practitioners to begin their journey in the ITIL® Certification and make use of ITIL® best practices in their daily work in order to promote the adoption of ITIL® around the world. ITIL® Foundation Certificate holders are not expected to be able to adopt ITIL® best practices in organizations without additional help.

As a reference, the passing mark for ITIL® Intermediate Exam or above has been increased to 70% as the requirements for the ITIL® Intermediate Exam or above are more stringent. Holders of ITIL® Intermediate Certificates or above are expected to be able to help the adoption of ITIL® best practices in organization with little or no help.

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No. ITIL® v3 Foundation certificate will never expire.

Therefore once you get the ITIL® v3 Foundation certificate, you will be able to include the credential in your resume for the rest of your life.

That being said, the version of ITIL® will change. As you can see, there is a “v3” for the ITIL® Foundation certification scheme which is the short form of “3rd version”. In fact, the full name for the current ITIL® Foundation Certification is “ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification”, the “2011” version is an upgraded version from the original “v3” version (so literally speaking, there are 4 generations of ITIL® Foundation Certification so far).

However, the fact that ITIL® Foundation certificate would not expire would create a lot of confusions as people normally just refer to “ITIL® Foundation” without the edition.

Please be reminded that when you intend to search for exam prep materials for your foundation exams, do make sure the materials are based on the latest ITIL® version.

In the past, there are “bridging programs” provided to help ITIL® Foundation certificate holders to easily upgrade from the previous version to an updated version (e.g. from v2 to v3). However, for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification, there is no bridging programs provided, meaning that the certification holder need to re-take the new ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification exam in order to get the most updated credential of ITIL® Foundation Certification.

It is not known when ITIL® v4 will be published as Axelos (the organization behind ITIL®) has not made any announcements on that. But judging from the fact that Axelos does not update the ITIL® from v3 to v4 in 2011 would reveal that maybe the ITIL® is already quite polished that only minor changes would be needed. Maybe v4 will never come.

If you are considering the ITIL® Foundation Certification, v3 2011 version is the one to go for now.

 

Further reading: get my ITIL® study tips, notes and resources for FREE here (I passed the ITIL® Foundation exam with 95% in first try)

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Yes. ITIL® Exams are provided in many other languages other than English. The ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam has been translated into most number of languages among all ITIL® Exams including:

  • Arabic
  • Brazilian Portuguese
  • Chinese (Simplified)
  • Czech
  • Danish
  • Dutch
  • Finnish
  • French
  • German
  • Hungarian
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Polish
  • Romanian
  • Russian
  • Spanish (EU)
  • Spanish (Latin American)
  • Swedish
  • Vietnamese

This list should cover most languages where ITIL® is in active practice.

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The ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam 2011 on Prometric website is sponsored by Exin (an authorized ITIL® exam administrator), you may simply go to the following URL to register for an ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam session:

https://www.prometric.com/en-us/clients/exin/pages/landing.aspx

On the ITIL® exam registration page, simply click on the top banner with the words “Ready? Click Here” button. You can then find an exam center near you to sit for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam as well as schedule the exam, re-schedule the exam or even cancel the exam. You can select your preferred exam session in all the exam centers will free slots.

 

The first step is often to find an exam centre that carries the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam and to look for the seat availability on the preferred dates you would like to sit for the exam.

Once found, you can proceed to schedule the ITIL® v3 Foundation exam online by choosing “Exin” as the “Client”.

Please note that the ITIL® v3 Foundation certificate obtained though Exin on Prometric website is digital only (i.e. you will be able to download a digital certificate). You will need to pay for the hardcopy certificate if needed.

The exam code for the ITIL® v3 Foundation exam is “EX0-001 ITIL® Foundation (Syllabus 2011)”. You can choose the language for taking the ITIL® exam from the list including: German, U.S. English, Castillian Spanish, French, Italian, Polish, Portuguese Brazil, Lat-American Spanish and Russian. The net price for the ITIL® exam will also be shown which will need to be settled online in a later step.

Further on, you are requested to create an online account or sign into your account on Prometric website in order to book the exam seat, pay the ITIL® exam fee as well as confirm the booking. You will be able to re-schedule the exam later on with the same account.

The cost for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam (2011) is around US$230+, depending on where in the world you are writing the exam as the actual cost of the exam is not listed on the Axelos ITIL® website.

Discount Tips: 10% discount offer for GreyCampus ITIL® v4 Foundation Training + Official Exam Fee! (with coupon code) Please click here to find my first-hand review.

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In the unfortunate case that one should fail the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam, you are allowed to re-sit the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam by booking another exam session with paying the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam fee. You can resit as many times as you need to pass the exam as there is not a limit on the number of resits in total or per year. Once you have passed the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam, your certification will never expire, meaning that you only need to pass the exam to be ITIL® v3 Foundation certified.

That said, it is sometimes advisable to study at an accredited training course instead of self-study in order to increase your likelihood to pass the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam. You may also take reference to my ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam study notes which should contain all the basic stuff required for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam.

Wish you ITIL® success!

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ITIL® v3 Foundation and PMP® are two of the most popular project management certifications in the world. Every year, thousands of exam aspirants would prepare and sit for the ITIL® and PMP® exams. Some holders of PMP® would study for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam while some ITIL® holders would aspire for the PMP® credential. Below we will outline the similarities and differences between ITIL® and PMP®.

Similarities of ITIL® v3 Foundation  and PMP®

  • You will need to pass an exam consisting of multiple choice questions in order to be certified.
  • ITIL® and PMP® provide best practices to implement projects (though ITIL® focuses on projects in the Information Technology field).

Differences between ITIL® v3 Foundation and PMP®

  • PMP® exam is about general project management knowledge while ITIL® is about information technology service management (i.e. for people working in the field of information technology).
  • There are no pre-requisites for sitting the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam while PMP® exam will require the aspirants to have 35 Contact Hours and at least 4500 hours of working experience in project management over a period of at least 3 years.
  • The PMP® Exam is much longer and consists of more questions, it is generally considered that the PMP® Exam is much more difficult than the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam.
  • ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification will never expire while PMP® certification holders will need to re-certify every three years by accumulating enough PDUs.
  • PMP® Certification holders will need to earn at least 60 PDU during every 3-year re-certification cycle in order to be able to renew their PMP® Certification status. Holders of ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification will not need any mandatory continuous education.

ITIL® v3 Foundation and PMP®: Recommendation

If you have not begun your journey on getting ITIL® 4 Foundation Certification and PMP® Certification, it is highly recommended you study for and pass the PMP® Exam first. Afterwards, you will be able to claim the time spent on studying and preparing for the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam as PDU for your PMP® re-certification in either Category A or Category B PDU (by taking courses provided by accredited training institutes) or Category C PDU (by self-study). In this way, one can kill two birds with a stone!

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ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam 2011 is based on the updated version of the ITIL® v3 which was originally published in 2007. The updates made to the publications of the ITIL® v3 in 2011 includes:

  • Errors and inconsistencies in the original text and diagrams in the 2007 version are corrected to achieve greater consistency in both content and presentation.
  • Improvements have been made for a number of issues raised by readers and reviewers of the ITIL® v3 after publication. The publisher of ITIL® v3 received a lot of suggestions after the 2007 version and intend to improve the ITIL® publications with greater clarity, consistency, correctness and completeness.
  • The Service Strategy publication has been reviewed to allow the concepts involved to be explained in a more easily accessible fashion.
  • A number of changes have also been adopted with suggestions by the training community of ITIL® to make it easier to teach ITIL® concepts.

As you can see, the ITIL® v3 2011 version (and hence the ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam 2011) is largely an update / improvement over the ITIL® v3 published in 2007. There are no major change in the concepts of IT Service Management. That’s why the current edition of the ITIL® is still called as Version 3.

Holders of the ITIL® v3 Foundation 2007 need not retake the ITIL® Foundation Exam to be certified in the ITIL® 4 Foundation.

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Free IITL Training Courses: Good or Bad?

Since there is no an official training required for the ITIL® Foundation Certification Exam, many websites have tried provided free training courses (as they are not required to pay the fee for accreditation). A random search through Google for “free ITIL® foundation course” would yield the following results, to name but a few:

Before investing your efforts into these free ITIL® Foundation resources, you should at least first ask the following questions:

  • Are the training materials based on the most current version of ITIL® Foundation exam? 
    There are 4 versions of ITIL® (ITIL® v1, ITIL® v2, ITIL® v3 and ITIL® v3 2011), the study materials must be based on the latest version ITIL® v3 2011 in order to really help you with passing the exam. Note that most of the free ITIL® Foundation Training courses online may be based on ITIL® v3. Though the changes from ITIL® v3 to ITIL® v3 2011 may not be considered drastic, there are a number of important changes such that if you base your education on the obsolete version, you will get quite a number of questions WRONG in the new ITIL® 4 Foundation exam.
  • Do the ITIL® free training courses free from errors?
    Unlike professional training courses provided by leading training institutes, the free training courses are often written by a single instructor — there is a high chance for careless errors and typos. For more serious trainers, they will have their course materials proofread by a team of professionals in order to ensure it to be as free from error as possible. In professional exam, a typo in the training materials may mean a pass or fail!
  • Do they provide quality learning aids (e.g. flashcards, summary notes, etc.) and mock ITIL® Foundation exams?
    Anyone having taken a professional exam would know, one of the most important study resources for the exam is mock exams. ITIL® Foundation is no exception. Finding free training courses is important, but finding quality training courses is even more important for the ITIL® Foundation Exam. You would need want to save a few dollars for the ITIL® Foundation exam prep only to find that you need to re-take the ITIL® Foundation exam for another US$250.

I personally would not trust free online ITIL® Foundation training courses unless they are backed by a lot of testimonials (though testimonial may be made up……). If budget permits, I would search for quality ITIL® Foundation training to really ensure that the exam prep materials can really help me to pass the ITIL® Foundation Certification the first try.

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The ITIL® Foundation website has undergone a revamp recently, the information architecture (i.e. the structure) of the website and all the URLs have been updated. Previous URLs pointing to the ITIL® Foundation Sample Exams are no longer valid. That’s why it is now so difficult to download ITIL® Foundation Exam sample papers.

It took me much time to search for the download page. The good news is that Axelos still provides the exam sample papers for free. But Aspirants would now have to find and download the papers at the following URL:

https://www.axelos.com/qualifications/itil-qualifications/itil-foundation-level

On the page, you will need to scroll down to around the middle of the page to find the “Examination Format” section. There you will find a sub-section named “Sample Papers” and a link below in the sentence: “Practice for your ITIL® exams by testing yourself with these Sample Papers.”

Clicking the link will lead you to a page where you will need to log in before being able to download the ITIL® Foundation Exam sample papers.

If you have not previously created an account on Axelos, you will need to “Create User Profile” there.

Luckily, creating an account on Axelos website is simple and free (no need to ask for your secrets or credit card information). You will just need to fill in your name and email address only to complete the registration process.

A verification email will be sent to you to verify your email address. Afterwards, you will be able to log in and download one ITIL® Foundation Exam Sample Paper together with the answer key and rationale for the answers at the Axelos website below:

https://www.axelos.com/qualifications/itil-qualifications/itil-foundation-level

Actually, there were two Sample Papers in the past. Don’t know why Axelos has left only one there now. There are also many online ITIL® training courses that would have the official sample papers (historical and current ones) included in their exam prep resources package.

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Below is the step-by-step instruction on how to input the discount offer codes for GreyCampus online courses to get the discounted prices for the ITIL® Foundation, PMP® Certification, PMI-ACP® Certification and PRINCE2® Foundation Certification online courses. Many Certification Aspirants have asked me to show them how to apply the coupon codes as they cannot find the location to enter them. This step-by-step illustrated guide is made to help fellow Aspirants to enjoy the discounted course fee with ease.

Step 1: Go to go to GreyCampus online course website

Please go to the related GreyCampus pages through the webpage: the most updated GreyCampus discount offer codes  (remember to make use of the coupon codes there to get heavy discounts off the retail prices of the certification prep courses)

  • PMP® Certification Online Self Learning
  • ITIL® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official ITIL® Exam included)
  • PRINCE2® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official PRINCE2® Foundation Exam)

Step 2: Click the yellow “Enroll” button to go to the payment page

Just take the GreyCampus ITIL® Foundation Certification Training as an example. Below is the landing page of ITIL® online training courses for GreyCampus. Just click the blue “Enroll Now” button.

You will be presented with a choice of several different delivery modes for the ITIL® Foundation Courses (i.e. online, online live, classroom, etc.). Just chose the left one which is the online ITIL® course option.

Step 3: Check the “I have an offer code” box

After clicking the red “Enroll” button, you will be redirected to the course order page. Do not worry, the price given there is the original list price before discount.

On the right-hand side, under the payment details, you will find the “Have an offer code to redeem?” box- click on it. Enter the coupon code in the box that appears and click “Apply”.

 

Step 4: Apply the Coupon Code/Offer Code

After you input the coupon code in the box, make sure to click the “Apply” button beside it. The final price of the course will only change after you click on the “Apply” button. Make sure you do this before you pay for the course.

Step 5: Check the updated price on the left before submitting the payment details

Once the coupon is applied successfully, the green text will appear below the coupon code box; it will read- “Coupon applied successfully, you will get USD 41.00 discount”. Please also check for the discounted price details on the right side of the page.

After you have ensured that the correct discounted course fee is listed on the right-hand column of the order page, you can then enter your payment information including name, card number, expiry date and CVV. Then click the red button “Pay Now” to make the purchase.

Congratulations! You have just applied the GreyCampus offer code successfully. You should now be able to access the online training course (including the lecture videos, mock exams as well as many downloadable study resources) instantly.

Wish you Certification success!


FAQ on GreyCampus Coupon Codes

  • After pasting the coupon code and clicking the “Apply Now” button, a red sentence reads “The coupon code is invalid” show up. Now what?
    • Please check carefully if you have entered the correct coupon code (note: without spaces at the beginning and end of the coupon code). The best way to ensure the correctness of your coupon code is to copy directly from the coupon code page and paste it there.
    • Please check the validity period of the coupon code, in most cases, an invalid coupon code means that it is expired. Usually the validity period between the first and last day of a month. And the coupon code and discount percentage may vary from month to month.
    • Under the rare case of the GreyCampus website having some technical errors, please let me know so that I can communicate with GreyCampus to resolve the problem.
  • What to do if I have purchased the training course at the original list price instead of the discounted price?
    • I am sorry to learn that you cannot enjoy the discount successfully. But there is hope. GreyCampus online courses offer money back guarantee for several days depending on the types of course.
    • You can just write to GreyCampus to cancel your order first. And your payment will be refunded to you as soon as possible.
    • Then you can come back to the enrolment page to enrol again. Remember to follow the steps outlined above as close as possible and verify that the discount has already been applied to your order before hitting the “Pay Now” button.
  • Where to find the latest GreyCampus Coupon Codes?
    • As I have a working relationship with GreyCampus team, every time when a new coupon code is published, they will let me know at once. I will have the most current GreyCampus coupon code published at this page.
    • If the code for the online course you are looking for is not there, don’t worry, you can still try the coupon codes listed there to see if they are valid.
  • Will I get a better discount later?
    • May or may not. That depends on GreyCampus. However, I would highly suggest you to strike the iron while it is hot. If you have already make up your mind to go for the certification and if your budget allows, why not go ahead and purchase the online course at the current discount and begin your certification right away? Time is the most precious element for all of us.
    • Also, the certification cost may go up year by year owing to inflation and rising costs etc. The training costs may actually become more expensive later on.

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I have received a number of enquires stating that some ITIL® training providers would indicate that they have training courses for the ITIL® v5.5 Foundation Exam. Many Aspirants are confused with the versions of the ITIL® exams and training courses, fearing that they are not taking the most updated and correct version. To them, the most important info to help them get started with the ITIL® Foundation Exam is the correct ITIL® version.

To clear any doubts, the latest and most current ITIL® Foundation Certification Exam version is ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam 2011. The ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam 2011 is based on the the 3rd version of ITIL® (i.e. v3) published in 2007 with updates made in 2011 (and hence the 2011 at the end).

Why the ITIL® v5.5?

The version 5.5 is somewhat a misleading term when used in the “ITIL® v5.5 Foundation Exam” exam. The current version of the exam syllabus for the ITIL® Foundation Certification Exam (The ITIL® Foundation Certificate in IT Service Management SYLLABUS) is v5.5 as can be read online on the Axelos website, this only indicates that version of the exam syllabus (NOT the version of ITIL® it is based on) for the ITIL® Foundation Certification Exam.

And Axelos may make small amendments to the ITIL® exam syllabus from time to time to correct any typos or clarify any confusion. And a version or sub-version may be added (e.g. v5.4, v5.5, etc.). But the exact exam syllabus, which is based on the ITIL® v3 2011, rarely sees huge changes when the ITIL® does change.

Therefore, if you are preparing for the ITIL® Foundation Exam now, you should base your studies on the v3 2011 version of ITIL® (not ITIL® v5.5 which is yet to be published in the distant future). After the publication of the ITIL® v3 2011, ITIL® has not made any announcements on the review and update of the ITIL® to version 4 and beyond. It is now safe to begin ITIL® preparation based on this version.

All the online courses that are based on ITIL® 4 Foundation Exam 2011 is still applicable for your exam studies.

 

Wish you ITIL® success!

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PRINCE2 Foundation Exam

For the PRINCE2® Foundation Exam, candidates will need to get at least 50% to get a pass.

But as there are 5 questions in the PRINCE2® Foundation Exam paper that are trial questions and would not be counted towards the final score, PRINCE2® Aspirants would need to answer correctly at least 35 questions out of the 70 marked questions within the 1-hour examination time.

However, as there is no way to tell which are the trial questions and which are not, it would be practical to aim at a minimum of 40 right answers out of the 75 exam questions (i.e. the passing mark for the PRINCE2® Foundation Exam would be equivalent to 53.33%).

For reference, the details of the PRINCE2® Foundation Exam format:

  • Multiple choice — choose 1 correct answer from among 4 choices for each question
  • 75 questions for the PRINCE2® Foundation Exam paper
    • 5 questions are trial (not counted towards the final scores)
    • passing mark: at least 50% for the rest 70 questions (i.e. 35 marks out of 70 remaining questions)
  • 60 minutes duration
  • Closed book — no reference book nor the official PRINCE2® Manual allowed

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The question is both yes and no. Yes — there are not just 1 but 3 PRINCE2® Study Guides published by the official sponsoring body of the PRINCE2® Exams; No — the official guides are not *very* exam oriented, meaning that the guides are written either with a general purpose not aiming at helping readers to take and pass the PRINCE2® Foundation and Practitioner Exams.

AXELOS, the owner of PRINCE2®, in fact has published a number of “official” PRINCE2® reference books aiming to provide the study materials for PRINCE2® Aspirantsfor the PRINCE2® Certification Exam. These titles include the following:

  • Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2® 2009 Edition Manual
  • An Introduction to PRINCE2®: Managing and Directing Successful Projects
  • Passing your PRINCE2® Examinations 2009 Edition

Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2® 2009 Edition Manual

The first official PRINCE2® book: “Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2® 2009 Edition Manual”, aka PRINCE2® Manual, is the official document for the PRINCE2® project management methodology. Most of the PRINCE2® reference books on the market are based on the content and even the organization of the topics in this manual. It is also the only book that can be used during the PRINCE2® Practitioner Certification Exam (i.e. PRINCE2® Candidates are allowed to bring this study guide into the exam centre). Every PRINCE2® Practitioner Aspirants should buy 1 for themselves.

However, just like the PMBOK® Guide published by PMI, this PRINCE2® Manual is a dry read and is difficult to comprehend on one’s own reading. Many even expressed that they cannot understand PRINCE2® based on this manual alone. If you have just started out on PRINCE2® or would like to tackle the Foundation or Practitioner Exam, you will need to purchase other PRINCE2® study guides or training courses in addition to this book which cannot really help you to pass the PRINCE2® exams.

As a reminder, if you are to bring this PRINCE2® Manual to your PRINCE2® Practitioner Exam, you would need to keep this book very clean. Tabs, marks, labels, written words, etc. are forbidden. If you carry a manual with some study notes on it, you will not be allowed to bring the PRINCE2® Manual into the exam room. Do take note!

An Introduction to PRINCE2®: Managing and Directing Successful Projects

The second one “An Introduction to PRINCE2®: Managing and Directing Successful Projects” is also published by AXELOS. It is targeting senior managers responsible for a project as an executive role for the first time. Many consider this publication as a high level introduction and overview of the PRINCE2® Manual which introduces the principles, processes and key themes, and gives practical examples of applying them. It is aimed to help executives to decide whether their organizations would like to adopt PRINCE2® or not at a high level. And the actual working details would be left to PRINCE2® Certification holders to resolve.

Considering that this guide is just an overview of PRINCE2®, this book alone would NOT be sufficient for preparing for the PRINCE 2 Foundation / Practitioner Certification Exam. PRINCE2® Aspirants are advised not to spend their hard earned money on this not so useful PRINCE2® guide for their certification studies.

Passing your PRINCE2® Examinations 2009 Edition

The third one “Passing your PRINCE2® Examinations 2009 Edition” is an examination preparation guide for the PRINCE2® Certifications. It provides checklists on what are required in the Foundation and Practitioner Exams and sample exam question papers for both PRINCE2® Foundation and Practitioner Exams. This official PRINCE2® guide seems to perfectly match the requirements of PRINCE2® Aspirants, but you should note that no updated has been made for this book in 2013 following a change of question numbers / marks for the Practitioner Exam. It seems that AXELOS does not think that this PRINCE2® guide is popular and useful enough to deserve an update to the important facts of the PRINCE2® Exam.

Therefore, this book is now considered obsolete and PRINCE2® Aspirants should not waste money on purchasing it. However, if you can gain access to it for free, the mock exams there are is quite relevant and useful.

Then, any Recommended PRINCE2® Study Guides?

Aside from the official study guides for the PRINCE2® Foundation and Practitioner Exam, many training institutes have published far more useful PRINCE2® study guides that can really help PRINCE2® Aspirants to prepare well for their certification exams as the instructors are experienced in helping candidate to study and pass the PRINCE2® exams.

My recommendation is PRINCE2® Study Guide by David Hinde which explains the PRINCE2® knowledge in much clarity with many practical application examples. I personally made use of this study guide to help me prepare for the PRINCE2® Foundation Exam (it contains enough details to help PRINCE2® Practitioner Aspirants too).

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Below is the step-by-step instruction on how to input the discount offer codes for GreyCampus online courses to get the discounted prices for the ITIL® Foundation, PMP® Certification, PMI-ACP® Certification and PRINCE2® Foundation Certification online courses. Many Certification Aspirants have asked me to show them how to apply the coupon codes as they cannot find the location to enter them. This step-by-step illustrated guide is made to help fellow Aspirants to enjoy the discounted course fee with ease.

Step 1: Go to go to GreyCampus online course website

Please go to the related GreyCampus pages through the webpage: the most updated GreyCampus discount offer codes  (remember to make use of the coupon codes there to get heavy discounts off the retail prices of the certification prep courses)

  • PMP® Certification Online Self Learning
  • ITIL® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official ITIL® Exam included)
  • PRINCE2® Foundation Certification Online Self Learning (Official PRINCE2® Foundation Exam)

Step 2: Click the yellow “Enroll” button to go to the payment page

Just take the GreyCampus ITIL® Foundation Certification Training as an example. Below is the landing page of ITIL® online training courses for GreyCampus. Just click the blue “Enroll Now” button.

You will be presented with a choice of several different delivery modes for the ITIL® Foundation Courses (i.e. online, online live, classroom, etc.). Just chose the left one which is the online ITIL® course option.

Step 3: Check the “I have an offer code” box

After clicking the red “Enroll” button, you will be redirected to the course order page. Do not worry, the price given there is the original list price before discount.

On the right-hand side, under the payment details, you will find the “Have an offer code to redeem?” box- click on it. Enter the coupon code in the box that appears and click “Apply”.

 

Step 4: Apply the Coupon Code/Offer Code

After you input the coupon code in the box, make sure to click the “Apply” button beside it. The final price of the course will only change after you click on the “Apply” button. Make sure you do this before you pay for the course.

Step 5: Check the updated price on the left before submitting the payment details

Once the coupon is applied successfully, the green text will appear below the coupon code box; it will read- “Coupon applied successfully, you will get USD 41.00 discount”. Please also check for the discounted price details on the right side of the page.

After you have ensured that the correct discounted course fee is listed on the right-hand column of the order page, you can then enter your payment information including name, card number, expiry date and CVV. Then click the red button “Pay Now” to make the purchase.

Congratulations! You have just applied the GreyCampus offer code successfully. You should now be able to access the online training course (including the lecture videos, mock exams as well as many downloadable study resources) instantly.

Wish you Certification success!


FAQ on GreyCampus Coupon Codes

  • After pasting the coupon code and clicking the “Apply Now” button, a red sentence reads “The coupon code is invalid” show up. Now what?
    • Please check carefully if you have entered the correct coupon code (note: without spaces at the beginning and end of the coupon code). The best way to ensure the correctness of your coupon code is to copy directly from the coupon code page and paste it there.
    • Please check the validity period of the coupon code, in most cases, an invalid coupon code means that it is expired. Usually the validity period between the first and last day of a month. And the coupon code and discount percentage may vary from month to month.
    • Under the rare case of the GreyCampus website having some technical errors, please let me know so that I can communicate with GreyCampus to resolve the problem.
  • What to do if I have purchased the training course at the original list price instead of the discounted price?
    • I am sorry to learn that you cannot enjoy the discount successfully. But there is hope. GreyCampus online courses offer money back guarantee for several days depending on the types of course.
    • You can just write to GreyCampus to cancel your order first. And your payment will be refunded to you as soon as possible.
    • Then you can come back to the enrolment page to enrol again. Remember to follow the steps outlined above as close as possible and verify that the discount has already been applied to your order before hitting the “Pay Now” button.
  • Where to find the latest GreyCampus Coupon Codes?
    • As I have a working relationship with GreyCampus team, every time when a new coupon code is published, they will let me know at once. I will have the most current GreyCampus coupon code published at this page.
    • If the code for the online course you are looking for is not there, don’t worry, you can still try the coupon codes listed there to see if they are valid.
  • Will I get a better discount later?
    • May or may not. That depends on GreyCampus. However, I would highly suggest you to strike the iron while it is hot. If you have already make up your mind to go for the certification and if your budget allows, why not go ahead and purchase the online course at the current discount and begin your certification right away? Time is the most precious element for all of us.
    • Also, the certification cost may go up year by year owing to inflation and rising costs etc. The training costs may actually become more expensive later on.

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