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TOPIC: PMP 1st Attempt Pass - Lessons Learned/Struggles/Successes

PMP 1st Attempt Pass - Lessons Learned/Struggles/Successes 6 months 1 week ago #30989

  • Christian Elmer
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I used the PM Prep Cast as well as the PMI Study Hall application to prepare for the exam. I took 6 weeks, dedicating anywhere from 30-40 hours a week to studying. My approach to studying was based on understanding myself as opposed to a prescribed method. I benefit more if I maintain a high work load knowing it will be a relatively short period of time, as opposed to studying over the course of 3+ months.

I passed with an AT/AT/T, but during and after the exam I was sure there was a very good chance that I failed. Opposed to what many others say, I actually thought the PMP was harder than the practice exams. I took three practice exams with Prep Cast and two with Study Hall. The PMP questions were extremely vague and bogged down with details, filler, etc. Coming to a conclusion on an answer was more difficult than I had practiced, reason being the practice exams on the Precast seemed carefully worded, provided you the necessary details to make deductions, and very reasonably structured. The questions in your Precast practice exams will give you the opportunity and ability to think through problems systematically using the information provided, and come to a logical answer that nest well with the question. On the actual PMP exam, you will need to avoid overthinking, maintain your thought process on the high level topics and work your way down as necessary. I experienced significantly more brain/eye fatigue on the actual exam than the practice exams as well, the vagueness of the questions left me thinking much harder and longer per question. I was scoring 72-76% on average for the practice exams, and felt great about the PMP. My confidence slowly deteriorated during the test as it was not what I was expecting in terms of content, however I trusted my training in not over thinking, using deduction, and choosing the most logical answer. The key take away is to manage your expectations for test day, understand how you need to approach the thought process in each question, and fall back on your training.

My key recommendation for practice exams is to take all of the Precast exams. The knowledge gain from those is unsurmountable to any other thing I did. Once done, create a note file and number each incorrect answer with the new knowledge gained, why you got it wrong etc. Also, as you go through the practice exam, mark answers you're unsure of. If you got those answers right, still review them and take note of the new knowledge gained, since you have already acknowledged you were unsure of yourself. These notes will be very beneficial, easy to skim, and read. Also, take the Study Hall practice exams. They are much more vague and force you to not over think, which is important when taking your test. Both have positives and negatives, balance the requirement between the two and you will do just fine.
The following user(s) said Thank You: EM07, Lauren

PMP 1st Attempt Pass - Lessons Learned/Struggles/Successes 6 months 1 week ago #30992

  • Coy Studer
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Hello Christian,

Congratulations on passing your PMP certification exam on your first attempt. Thank you additionally for the excellent feedback, especially your suggestion on mentally preparing oneself for the vagueness of actual exam questions as compared to those encountered in the Prep Cast and Study Hall practice exams. I believe those who read your post, and put it to practice, will benefit from your sage advice. Thanks again. I wish you well on your future endeavors.

Respectfully,
Coy

PMP 1st Attempt Pass - Lessons Learned/Struggles/Successes 6 months 1 week ago #31000

  • Daniel Soerensen
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Christian,

Congratulations on passing your PMP exam! What an accomplishment. Your hard work definitely paid off. Wish you all the best in your professional journey as a PMP.

Cheers,
Daniel Soerensen, PMP, CSPO
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