I passed my exam last week with 2 Proficient (Planning and Executing) and 3 Moderately Proficients (Initiating, Monitor & control and Closing).
I have been following many forums and chats groups (though not actively participating) for my PMP exam preparation. Here is what I did and if it can help anyone out there for their prep work.
My race to PMP started last year when I bought
to attain 35 hours contact training. I did the training and secured the required hours. I submitted my application last year itself. But soon after I got involved in Major project implementation and couldn't study until May this year (did study a little bit around Christmas and New Year holidays though). But as deadline was approaching for my exam, I started working out on my study plan this June.
As many have suggested, I did study daily 2-3 hours for first 4-5 weeks and then last 2 weeks ramp it up for some more hours. For first four weeks, I studied couple hours in the morning with a fresh approach and could grasp mostly what was mentioned in guides. In last 2 weeks I added couple hours in the evening as well.
For the study, I really followed PMBOK as I found it as bible for passing PMP exam. I studied each chapter from PMBOK and then I read Rita to clarify topics where I needed more information/clarification. After reading each chapter, I attempted questions from Rita. I again read PMBOK one more time to polish the concepts. Formula based questions were really easy for me so I spent 3-4 days on them and I believe I hit each one correct on my exam. But I really faced hard time for ITTO's. And PM Prep Cast did great job for me there. The way ITTOs were explained, worked for me to understand ITTOs rather than memorizing these.
I attempted around 500 -600 questions before exam. I was scoring around 69-75 % in most of these sets. Somewhere I did achieve 90% as well. Below are the core exams which I attempted -
PM prep Cast Daily question set (sent to my email) - scored 75-80 %.
Oliver 75 and 175 - correct - 51 out of 75 and 126 out of 175 (one week before exam)
Exam Central - 2 sets of 200 - scored 80-85 % (one week before exam)
Real Exam -
My appointment was at 7.30 AM. I reached there at around 6.50 AM. And I started my exam within 20 mins. Questions on exam were mostly scenario based/wordy and there were 10-15 formula based questions. My strategy was to answer with 30-45 seconds and if I hit question which I couldn't answer in 30-45 seconds, I marked those for review and moved ahead. This way I was able to scroll through 200 questions in 3 hours. Last one hour I used for marked review questions and to eliminate not right answers. I hit complete in last 5 mins of exam and golden words appeared on screen - congratulations, for passing the PMP exam. It is a great feeling !
To Remember - biggest the question, the idea is to trick you. Answer lies in concept !
I remember I got one question which asked me about float - it gave me the biggest ever diagram and asked me to calculate float on critical path. Looking at question I knew, it is to trick me. So I knew the answer of this question by heart (critical path concept) on this question. I marked it without any calculation and moved on.
To my husband and my 2 year old to cope up with my prep.