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TOPIC: PMP Guidance and expectation assistance

PMP Guidance and expectation assistance 7 months 2 weeks ago #28879

  • Stephanie Brookes
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Hello PMPers,

After doing a bit of familiarization and studying for the PMP, my plans were derailed by an unexpected move and other life events. I'm expecting my second baby early April, and am wondering if it's realistic to try to study and sit for the PMP beforehand (let's say in 8-10 weeks time). I work full time and have a toddler, so life is busy but I'd really like to become PMP certified before it gets crazier.

I also want to ensure I understand the process, as I still feel a bit confused about the order of events.
- Do I need to complete the PMP prepcast units and assessment exam prior to applying for the PMP?
- What is the turnaround time for applying and getting a slot to sit for the PMP exam?
- I have both the 6th and 7th editions of PMBOK. I read on the forums here that both editions are needed now. This is a lot of material- what time is recommended to be spent on reading or studying these? I'd like to understand what knowledge I should come away with from these resources.

Thanks in advance for any help!

PMP Guidance and expectation assistance 7 months 2 weeks ago #28880

  • Brad Pennington, PMP
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Hi Stephanie,

Congrats on the exciting news for April! All great questions, and here are my answers.

-- Do I need to complete the PMP prepcast units and assessment exam prior to applying for the PMP?
Answer: Not necessarily. I applied first so I’d have a timeline, then completed all the units as part of my study plan. After I passed the PMP, I went back and took the PrepCast exam. This allowed me to bag the 35 PDUs after the PMP, so they counted for the first 3-year PDU cycle (I checked on this with PMI, and they assured me that it’s all good). Technique only, but this is one way you can do it.

- What is the turnaround time for applying and getting a slot to sit for the PMP exam?
Answer: It’s quick. I had solid records of all projects on which I’d worked, so filling in the required data for the application was straightforward. After applying, I had a response in 4-5 business days, then you just apply via Pearson and pay the fee, and you have your test date immediately. This was at the beginning of COVID when no one was working, so your response may be faster.

For your last question, I’ll direct you to my detailed lessons learned post from when I passed the PMP in August 2020. I describe my study habits, references used, etc. PMBOK 7 wasn’t a thing yet, but from what I understand, the exam hasn’t changed that much. Biggest recommendation is use the PrepCast exam simulator! It’s the worth the money and is very very similar to the actual exam. If you’re looking for more detail than what is in this post, then hit me back. Good luck!

www.project-management-prepcast.com/kune...-first-attempt-5x-at
Brad Pennington, PMP
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PMP Guidance and expectation assistance 7 months 1 week ago #28902

  • Stephanie Brookes
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Thanks so much Brad! Quick follow up question: how much time and/or focus should I be spending on reading PMBOK? Since the PMPprepcast lessons cover part of it, should I do those first and fill in with extra reading after? I feel like reading the book will suck up a lot of my limited time right now!

PMP Guidance and expectation assistance 7 months 1 week ago #28903

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Stephanie,

In my opinion, if you’re under some time pressure and you’re diligently working through the PrepCast units, you could probably skip the PMBOK completely. Cornelius does a fantastic job thoroughly covering the PMBOK material in his lectures, so you’re right, using the physical PMBOK as well may be overkill. I can’t stress enough that you should also be using an exam simulator. I’m not being compensated by PrepCast for writing these posts, so I’m not trying to sell their products. Having used the PrepCast Exam Simulator throughout my entire study plan, I can confidently say that I wouldn’t have passed the exam without it. Another great reference is the PrepCast formula sheet. I used this to memorize the EVM and schedule management formulas, and then practiced writing my “dump sheet” during the first 5 minutes of each timed practice exam. If you’re doing regular timed exams and quizzes, using the PrepCast lectures, and working a study guide, this should be plenty given your limited time available.
Brad Pennington, PMP
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PMP Guidance and expectation assistance 7 months 1 week ago #28910

  • Stephanie Brookes
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Thanks Brad! I am grateful you're so responsive and helpful on your own time! I have access to the full Prepcast suite so I am planning to utilize the simulator as much as possible and hope for the best!

PMP Guidance and expectation assistance 7 months 22 hours ago #28957

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Hey Brad- just a quick follow up to our discussion. I tried to go the route you did and get an exam date locked in, and then work backwards with my study program. It turns out you cannot register for/submit an application for the exam without the 35 credit hours already in the bag. I am assuming this must have changed, as another PMP certified individual suggested I do what you did. Oh well!

PMP Guidance and expectation assistance 7 months 22 hours ago #28958

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Stephanie, my apologies, I think I may have misunderstood your original question. For project management-related credit hours, yes, you must have those complete and verifiable before you lock in the exam date. In my case, I already had those hours from grad school, so I was able to use the PrepCast PDUs toward my first 3-year certification. My apologies for leading you down the wrong path!
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PMP Guidance and expectation assistance 7 months 9 hours ago #28962

  • Stephanie Brookes
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I think it's likely I'm the one confused (still)! have 5+ years experience managing projects full time, so plenty of PDUs I can apply towards my cert app. I think my confusion lies in whether the 35 hours being required is drawn from that, or whether it's "PMP test prep" hours specifically. I thought it was the latter, and I don't yet have those hours from PMP prepcast and practice exam studies.

PMP Guidance and expectation assistance 7 months 9 hours ago #28963

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Stephanie,

Unless it’s changed since I applied in spring 2020, the 35 credit hours are specifically coursework related, so they must be verifiable with a transcript. For mine, I used 33 hours from a masters-level project management course (this was the number of hours that I actually spent in class over one term) and another 14 hours from a Leading Project Teams course from a corporate university. The actual project management time required was 4,000 hours I think, so given your 5+ years of project management, this should be a breeze for you. I had about the same when I applied and I didn’t include some of my projects. Once you build up to the required 4,000 hours in the online application, it locks such that you can’t enter any morE data. No extra credit. Hope this helps!
Brad Pennington, PMP
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