Q: What are Category B PDU Courses?
4 years 6 months ago #3319
Question: I've enjoyed reading your articles and listening to your podcast. I'm hoping you can guide me to finding an answer to my question.
I'm preparing to take training in Business Continuation Planning to obtain the ABCP certification. I will be attending 25 hours of training later this month and there is much that will directly apply to Project Management. I'm wondering if I can 'leverage' this training for PMP PDU's? I've already checked PMI.org to see if the course is recognized but it is not listed as a REP course, so I don't think I can get Cat A credit for it. (But maybe I still can, if you think there may be a way)
So who should I contact at PMI to ask if I can submit my course certificate to gain credit? Would this be Category B or C? I hope its not just Cat C, because I do listen to podcasts often and think I will max out on Cat C credits through that avenue.
Answer: First off, let me reassure you that this course will not "mess up" your Category C PDUs, because you are going to be in a classroom situation with an instructor. Category C PDUs are specifically for "self directed learning" situations, where you do not have an instructor in a structured learning environment. Category C - as you correctly said - is for things like listening to podcasts or reading books about project management.
Since you already checked on the PMI website at
and found that neither this course nor the training provider are listed, this also means that Category A is out, because Category A PDUs can only be granted by PMI Registered Education Providers.
This means, the course will fall under Category B PDUs. And just so that we are clear: That is not a bad thing at all. Many people think that Category A PDUs are somehow "better" than Category B. That is not so. You could decide to earn 60 Category B PDUs and this would be exactly what you need to re-certify your PMP status.
However... not all 25 hours of the course may count as PDUs, because you can only report those training hours as PDU, which relate directly to our profession. Here is how PMI describes this: "When only a portion of a course relates to your credential area of expertise, calculate PDUs by the percentage of the overall curriculum focused on the topic."
So my recommendation for you (and anyone else who may be in a similar situation) is this:
Contact your training provider and ask them if they can tell you how many PDUs you will earn from this course. We can safely assume that you are not their first PMP certified student taking this class, so they may have an answer for you. If they don't know, then simply wait until the course is over and do a quick review, asking yourself: How much of the training that I just received was really related to PM? Then simply take that number and submit your PDU claim as Category B on the PMI website.
Also, don't forget to keep records just in case you get audited. Always keep a copy of the registration form, certificate or letter of attendance, and a brochure or course materials (syllabus) outlining the subject matter covered and (if you can get it) the qualifications of the instructor/lecturer.
Last but not least, let's come back to earning PDUs via Podcasts. You correctly said that those would fall under category C. But did you know that I also offer a podcast that allows you to earn Category A PDUs? It's called The PDU Podcast and you can find more information at http::www.pducast.com
This interview with Simona Fallavollita (LinkedIn Profile) was recorded at the magnificient Project Management Institute (PMI)® Global Conference 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. We discuss the how, what, why and when of the changes that are coming to the PMP exam.