[PMP Exam Changes] How PMBOK Guide 6th Edition Affect PMP Aspirants in 2017?
PMI is currently working on the finalization of the PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition (A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge – Sixth Edition). As announced by PMI, the PMBOK® Guide 6 is expected to be published in Q3 of 2017 (maybe around Sep to Oct of 2017). It is a practice for PMI to continually review and update the PMBOK® Guide to reflect the latest trend and changes in the field of project management and to amend any omissions/errors/inconsistencies of the previous PMBOK® Guide edition (as a reference, here are the details of the update of PMBOK® Guide 4th Edition to PMBOK® Guide 5th Edition). Like previous changes to PMBOK® Guide, the PMP® Exam will also be changed upon the publication of the new PMBOK® Guide.
If you are a PMP® Aspirant and would like to get PMP® Certified in 2017, this article is for you.
If you are currently preparing for the PMP® Exam, rest assured that there will be no changes to the PMP® Exam in 2017. The changes to the PMP® Exam will be seen from 2018 onwards.
How the Publication of PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition Affect PMP® Certification Aspirants in 2017? What Changes to the PMP® Exam in 2017 will be Expected?
Fortunately, the answer is little if not none. Rest assured all the currently available PMP® Exam Prep materials, including PMP® Exam online training courses and PMP® Exam Prep Resources and Books are still useful and relevant for the current PMP® Exam in 2017.
The publication of the PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition does not have major adverse effect on PMP® Certification Aspirants in 2017. And the only effect of the publication of the PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition has on PMP® Certification Aspirants is more on the psychological aspect.
Though PMI has not announced, judged from experience, the PMP® Exam will still be based on the current edition of PMBOK® Guide 5 (i.e. A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge – Fifth Edition) throughout 2017. And the PMP® Exam may only be updated to be based on the PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition in January 2018 onwards. PMP® Certification Aspirants who begin their PMP® Exam journey now will be able to complete their PMP® Exam based on the current PMP® Exam syllabus and PMBOK® Guide version — nothing has changed. My free PMP® Exam study notes and lessons learned can still be relevant for your PMP® Exam journey.
The only adverse psychological effect of the publication of the PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition to PMP® Certification Aspirants in 2017 is that if they can’t get a pass in 2017, they will not be able to take the same version of PMP® Exam in 2018 — as the exam syllabus would have been changed at that time. They would need to study for the PMP® Exam in depth based on the PMBOK® Guide 6th version. It seems that PMP® Certification Aspirants in 2017 may have less time and opportunities (as each PMP® Exam taker is given a maximum of 3 tries to clear the PMP® Exam) than usual which is a disadvantage. But every cloud has its silver lining. The positive effect of this is that PMP® Certification Aspirants are pushed more than ever to get certified in 2017 — which is a good thing as “procrastination” is the top reason for not getting PMP® Certified earlier!
Why Getting PMP® Certified in 2017?
If you would like to get PMP® Certified in 2017, you are highly advised to take action NOW as a kind of risk management:
- the current edition of the PMBOK® Guide and the PMP® Exam are very familiar and PMP® Certification Aspirants can find lots of lessons learned and study resources/materials readily at their hands (i.e. no changes to the PMP® Exam in 2017)
- the PMP® Exam fee may see a hike in 2018 following the introduction of the new PMP® Exam
- the format of the PMP® Exam may be changed
- the PMP® Exam may be getting more difficult as there are quite a few complaints that the quality of PMP® holders is decreasing over the previous years as getting PMP® Certified is becoming easier
- the publishers of the PMP® online courses and PMP® Exam Prep books may not be ready to release the update versions of their PMP® resources with the introduction of the new PMP® Exam (this has happened in 2016 when PMI updated the PMP® Exam Content Outline and the new PMP® Exam was forced to defer)
- some of the previously highly recommended PMP® study resources/materials may not live up to expectation for the new PMP® Exam as the depth of their understanding of the new PMP® Exam may not be the same as before (owing to change of the authors/editors, etc.) — it would take more time to search for the best PMP® Exam Prep materials
- it is expected lots of errors in terminology and project management processes would be spotted in the early release of the PMP® Exam Prep materials based on the new PMBOK® Guide 6th edition as PMBOK® Guide 6 has quite a few updates from PMBOK® Guide 5
- the PMP® Exam results for the first few weeks after the introduction of the new PMP® Exam may not be released immediately after the submission of the exam paper answers as PMI needs to adjust the passing marks — this would create extract psychological burden to PMP® Certification Aspirants
the conclusion is: if you don’t get PMP® certified in 2017, it is highly likely that you cannot get PMP® Certified in the first or even second quarter of 2018 — your career plan may be adversely affected.
Conclusion: Begin Your PMP® Exam Preparation Now and Get PMP® Certified in 2017 Before the PMP® Exam Changes
If you are taking your exam before January 1, 2018, you should continue to study from and prepare for your examination using the Fifth Edition of the PMBOK® Guide along with the examination content outline PMI makes available. If you are taking your exam after January 1, 2018, the PMP® Exam will be changed and you should plan to study from and prepare for your examination using the Sixth Edition of the PMBOK® Guide.
Don’t worry too much if you have begun your PMP® Exam preparation in 2017 but cannot finish it. The bottom line is: if you have understood PMBOK® Guide 5 well and you will find the structure of PMBOK® Guide 6 very familiar. — just learn several new project management processes and changes of naming of the processes/knowledge areas. And as the PMP® Exam is not just restricted to the PMBOK® Guide only, your training, knowledge and experience in project management will still be useful for clearing the PMP® Exam whatever the version of PMBOK® Guide it is based on.
A good new for PMP® 2018 though: ITTOs (Inputs, Tools & Techniques, Outputs) are now given less weight in PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition and PMP® Certification Aspirants would worry much less in remembering all the ITTOs for their PMP® Exam.
Appendix: What will be Changed in PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition?
As PMBOK® Guide 5 is already quite a comprehensive project management framework, the PMBOK® Guide 6 is considered an update rather than a revolution from PMBOK® Guide 5. Below are the key differences between PMBOK® Guide 5 and PMBOK® Guide 6:
- Agile, adaptive and iterative project management practices are given more weights
- The new PMI Talent Triangle (technical, leadership, strategic and business management) would be described in PMBOK® Guide 6.
- Project Management processes are now described according to the 5 Process Groups (Initiating, Planning, Executing, Monitoring & Controlling, and Closing)
- Name changes:
- Project Schedule Management from Project Time Management
- Project Resource Management from Project Human Resource Management
- Manage Quality from Perform Quality Assurance
- Plan Resource Management from Plan Human Resources Management
- Monitor Communications from Control Communications
- Plan Stakeholder Engagement from Plan Stakeholder Management
- Monitor Stakeholder Engagement from Control Stakeholder Engagement
- New and Removed Project Management Processes:
- Manage Project Knowledge
- Implement Risk Responses
- Control Resources
Close Procurements Estimate Activities Resources
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