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TOPIC: Break Time During Center-Based Exam

Break Time During Center-Based Exam 3 years 9 months ago #22964

  • Sheila Naisho
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I am looking for advise on how to manage my time while at the center with regards to marking questions and the optional break time. Do you get to choose when to take a break? What's the strategy for time management with breaks? BTW, when I did the PrepCast Exams at home, I run through all the questions, reviewed the marked questions and did not take a break. I used up all my time, although I scored 86% on Test 1 and 90% on Test 2.

Break Time During Center-Based Exam 3 years 9 months ago #22987

  • Felix Kamanga, PMP
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Hello Sheilla,

The most suitable time to take your break during the exam is mostly about your time management.
In my opinion, the best time is at midway during your exam, around the end of the second hour.
But you should be monitoring the pace at which you are answering questions. The average of 60 seconds per question could be a good one, and practically, it is good to see where you are before deciding to go for a break.
Taking a break is optional. You said that with the PrepCast Exams you were not taking a break and still making good scores, that will be up to you to evaluate the real situation you will face during the exam if you will have the same level of confidence, that will be good. But remember, it is your time management. If you feel comfortable with the remaining numbers of questions comparatively to the rest of the time, the ability to take a break is an advantage you may think to exploit because that will help you to perform even better for the rest of the exam.
Those are my points, and I hope you may find them helpful.
Felix Kamanga, PMP
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Break Time During Center-Based Exam 3 years 9 months ago #22999

  • Gabriella Dellino, PMP
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Hello Sheila,

Felix gave you great suggestions for your time management.
I cannot help specifically about center-based testing. However, my understanding from PMI Certification FAQs is that the built-in break has now been introduced in both testing options, so even at the testing center. You may want to check this by asking PMI and/or PearsonVUE for confirmation. This recently introduced break for the online exam works as follows:
  • The exam is now divided into two parts; the first part is composed of 89 questions, the second part of the remaining 111.
  • The break starts once you review and submit the first part of the exam. It is crucial to review questions from the first part of the exam NOW (if you want to), because after you submit it and start your break, they will be gone and you will NOT be able to review them anymore.
  • It is a 10-minute break, but you do not need to take the entire 10 minutes. It's up to you, whatever makes you feel more comfortable.
  • As Felix said, the break is optional; i.e., you may decide to skip it, when it comes the time for it. However, you still have to submit the first part of the exam. So, if you decide to skip the break, you will move on to the second part of the exam, but still won't be able to review the first part anymore.
  • This 10-minute break is extra time, so when you submit the first part of the exam the timer pauses for 10 minutes (or less, if you decide to take less than the entire break).
Again, this applies to the online proctored exam for sure; what I would check with PMI is (i) if this equally applies to center-based testing, (ii) if you are allowed to take any additional breaks as needed—even at the expenses of your 4h exam time).

Gabriella Dellino, PhD, PMP
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Moderators: Yolanda MabutasMary Kathrine PaduaJohn Paul BugarinHarry ElstonJean KwandaDaniel SoerensenAlexander AnikinElena ZelenevskaiaChristian ElmerChristine Whitney, PMP

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