Category: PMP Exam Tips

Getting PMP Certified — Study Notes, Tips and Lessons Learned [Fully Updated for the new PMP Exam]


PMP

Welcome Aspirants!

Hello I am Edward Chung. I passed the PMP® Certification Examination with 4 ‘Above Target’ (equivalent) in Initiation, Planning, Executing, Monitoring & Controlling and 1 ‘Target’ in Closing in my first exam attempt.

During my PMP® journey, I got lots of help from fellow PMP®s. That’s why I created this website in the hope of helping fellow Aspirants to get certified. This is my way of contributing back to the project management community

edward family with 3 kidsI get PMP® certified (and later PMI-ACP®, ITIL® Foundation…) while having to take care of my daily full-time job and my family with 3 kids. It is doable and I will share my experience and tips below.

Latest PMP® Exam Update

  • Breaking News: PMI has announced to delay the new PMP Exam to 1 July 2020 (NOT Dec 2019 as previously scheduled) in response to the feedback from the community. That's a great news to PMP aspirants as we can have more time to prepare for the PMP Exam based on the current exam syllabus and structure.
  • The PMP Exam study notes, resources and mock exams listed on this website are valid for the PMP Exam preparation up till 30 June 2020. That means PMP Aspirants are given more time to prepare and ace the exam!
  • PMI has announced to publish an update to the PMP Exam Content Outline in June 2019. According to experience, the update will be a minor one. You can begin your PMP Exam prep now with cuurent PMP Exam online courses (e.g. PM PrepCast) and get a FREE update once available as promised by the publisher! Wish you PMP success in 2019!
  • To learn more about the PMP Exam Content Outline changes, visit the PMI website here.
  • I have updated my PMP Exam study notes to be aligned with the latest PMBOK Guide 6th Edition earlier and will update the posts as necessary once details on the changes to the Exam Content Outline is known. I hope you will find my sharing useful.
  • PMP® Exam brain dump during tutorial time is NOT ALLOWED now. Yet you can still do the brain dump in your exam time.

Is the PMP® Exam Difficult?

If you are reading this article, it is highly likely that you are considering getting the PMP® Certification. Maybe you are doing some researches about how to apply for the and pass the exam.

Early in my PMP® journey, I have the following questions in mind:

  • Do you find it is hard to find the time for bootcamps while you are having a full-time demanding job as a project management professional?
  • Preparing for the PMP® Exam is very expensive?
  • People say that the certification is very difficult and the passing rate is low?
  • Taking a 4 hour exam would be impossible?

After spending hundreds of hours searching the internet and reading numerous documentations…… fortunately I have found the answers to the above questions to be NO.

Getting PMP® Certified is Much Easier Than You Think!

Read here for the summary of my PMP® Exam process with a view to easing the path to getting certified — as the information provided by PMI nor on the internet is clear enough. My time and cost saving tips may also be able to help you out.

 

Golfbag

Overview: How to Get PMP® Certified?

The following is the detailed account of my PMP® Exam process , including how to meet the requirements of the exam (please refer to PMP® Certification Process Overview for an annotated discussion of the requirements, application process and more):

  1. [Experience requirement] Project Management Experience (4500 hours for degree holders / 7500 hours for sub-degree holders)
  2. [Education requirement] 35 Contact Hours of Project Management Education
  3. Fill the online application form & schedule the exam (tips below)
  4. Study for the exam (you may refer to the PMP® Exam study resources below)
  5. Take & pass the PMP® Exam and get certified

Free and Recommended Prep Resources

I got my PMP® for around US$700 (including all the courses & study materials). Not expensive? Yes, here is the PMP® Cost details. For your easy reference, below is a list of useful study resources (good quality but free/cheap) to help me and other Aspirants pass the exam:

  1. Online training for 35 Contact Hours of Project Management Education & exam preparation
  2. Recommended PMP® Certification Prep Book / PMP® Study Guide
  3. [FREE] My PMP® Study Notes (updated for both aspirants taking the exam before and after 26 March 2018)
  4. [FREE] PMP® Mock Exam Questions
  5. [FREE] PMP® EVM Formulas Explained in Simple Terms — just enough for PMP® Certification Aspirants to answer PMP® questions correctly
  6. [FREE] 20+ PMP® EVM Mock Exam Questions — with detailed explanations and tips on answering PMP® Maths (EVM) questions
  7. [FREE] PMP® Glossary Flashcard
  8. [FREE] 47+ Commonly Confused PMP® Terms

In the sections below, I will include all the exam prep study resources & tips that helped me to pass the PMP® Exam in first attempt. Hope you will find them useful.

Golfbag

PMP® Training & Application

Perhaps the most obscure part for the PMP® Certification require is the “35 Contact Hours”. I spent tens of hours to search for the best exam prep course and discovered that the best is NOT the most expensive. With online training courses, I got both the 35 Contact Hours as well as the preparation to pass the PMP® Exam in the first attempt!

Below are some useful articles to help you get started:

Golfbag

Study Notes, Sample Questions & Formula Guide

That’s how I passed the PMP® Exam after getting a go for my exam application:

  1. Took the PM PrepCast™ online course
  2. Read PMP® Study Guide by Andy Crowe
  3. Practised hundreds of mock exam questions

I wrote down everything I learned during my exam prep in the following study notes in the style of “Cliff notes” — i.e. brief and to the point. I have also included many FREE PMP® sample questions which are similar to the difficulty of the real PMP® Exam.

My exam preparation tips can be found here.

 

Golfbag

Taking the Exam

I confess I was quite nervous while taking the exam despite I had spent over a hundred hours on exam prep and I got around 80% in my mock exam questions. Luckily, I passed with 4P and 1MP. Below are my exam taking experience and tips:

Golfbag

Earning PDUs for Recertification

Every PMP® need to earn 60 PDUs every 3 years in order to be able to renew the PMP® Certificate. Earning PDU is not expensive (can even be free) if you know the following tips:

Golfbag

Step-by-step PMP® Certification & Study Guide

If you are still at a loss of what to do. I have created a step-by-step guide to help Aspirants like you. Just follow the steps outlined in the Guide and you are ready to get certified. This Guide is created with a view to answer thousands of queries I have got from Aspirants around the world over the past few years. Again, getting PMP® is easier than you think if you know the ins and outs!

Golfbag

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