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TOPIC: Achieve at least 80% in first try of simulation exam?

Achieve at least 80% in first try of simulation exam? 8 months 1 day ago #7220

  • Annie
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Hi Everyone,
I am new here and have yet to start Simulation Exam 200 questions. I keep reading feedback saying once we achieve at least 80% score in the simulation exam, we are ready to go for actual exam. I would like to clarify this further. The questions do get recycle. Do you mean achieving 80% in the first try of the simulation exam or it's valid as well if you repeat the same simulation exam?
Thanks.
Regards,
Annie

Achieve at least 80% in first try of simulation exam? 8 months 1 day ago #7221

  • Michael DeCicco
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Annie, overall the goal is to achieve at least 80% or higher on a consistent basis. You might get well below that on your first simulation exam. Don't be discouraged because we get many user stories of things like that happening. Maintain your confidence and learn from all your mistakes and you'll find that you can quickly raise your simulation exam score. If by the third exam you are at 80%, you are on the right track. Aim higher as it will only make you better and boost your confidence to pass the real exam on the first try.
Yours Respectfully
Michael DeCicco, PMP
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Achieve at least 80% in first try of simulation exam? 8 months 1 day ago #7222

  • Lazard Toe, ITBMC, MPM, CIPM, PMP, ITIL
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Dear Sir,
The advice is to have more than 80% of correct responses for fresh questions using the simulator. Not repeated questions.
Good luck and best regards
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Achieve at least 80% in first try of simulation exam? 8 months 23 hours ago #7223

  • John Pelletier
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Hello. True, you always want to aim high. My experience was that I took one new full simulator per week, with study/review time during the week. My scores steadily improved, but I never got to 80%. I actually went backwards on my last exam, was totally demoralized and frustrated, and my real exam was scheduled for the following week. It took all I had to get my confidence back and talk myself into believing that I could pass. I passed 4P, 1MP. Maybe I'm the freak, but the 80% didn't apply to me. The important thing is that you keep the faith and aim high.
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Achieve at least 80% in first try of simulation exam? 8 months 22 hours ago #7224

  • Rahul Kakkar
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Hi Annie,

As Lazard mentioned, the advice is to have 80% or more correct responses for fresh questions.

Having said that, please understand that it's only a guidance. That's not to say that if you happen to get less than 80% in one or even all of your tests that you're guaranteed to not pass, provided it's not too low a score on a consistent basis. As long as your average is close to that figure (even in the 70s), you should believe in yourself and go ahead with the exam!

Good luck!
Rahul Kakkar, PMP, MBA
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Last Edit: 8 months 22 hours ago by Rahul Kakkar.
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Achieve at least 80% in first try of simulation exam? 8 months 10 hours ago #7227

  • Annie
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Thanks John, for sharing your experience. I am reading and practicing the quiz and free questions and the scores isn't giving me much confidence. I shall decide the exam date after I complete at least 3 simulations exams to see how I go.

Achieve at least 80% in first try of simulation exam? 7 months 3 weeks ago #7236

  • C. George Morris PMP CSM ITIL
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Annie:

Regarding your last comment ' see how I go' . One of the best recommendations I received (which is given by Cornelius in the PM Prepcast) is to set a date for yourself. This helped me greatly, in terms of focus and preparation as there was a fixed date by which I had to complete preparation, exam simulations and reviews. As other commentators have said achieving a reasonably consistent score is a goal and will help identify weak areas.

Personally I did 5 simulator exams with scores between 79-87%, (my lowest score being my second attempt). As much as the score, the exam simulation teaches you how to take the exam and process the questions.

Good luck with your studies and set the date - you will be surprised at how that motivates you :)
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Achieve at least 80% in first try of simulation exam? 7 months 3 weeks ago #7239

  • Ahmed Amin
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Hi Annie,
My recommendation is to seek continuous improvement. after each exam simulation, take your time to spot the areas you didn't do well and come up with actions items to enhance your knowledge in this particular area (review it, read it from other resources, answer questions focused on that area, etc.) and I agree with George, based on your current situation, you should be able to estimate a date, commitment to a deadline will motivate you.
Ahmed Amin Abdullah, PMP
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Achieve at least 80% in first try of simulation exam? 7 months 2 weeks ago #7275

  • Joe Riley
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Annie,

My initial experience was very similar to what you're reporting. Rather than jump right into a full exam, I prepared by taking a few 10 question "Learning" quizzes. I consistently scored in the 60-70% range, and made a bargain with myself I'd continue studying, re-watching certain PrepCast lessons and taking "Timed" quizzes until I could consistently hit 80% or higher. For me, this was helpful in a couple ways; most importantly I now knew what the exam was going to look and feel like, which helped focus my thinking while studying new content. For instance, while learning something new (say Qualitative Risk Analysis), I started asking myself questions about the topic and thinking about how one could create questions to test this item ex. what is the intent of this step? what makes it different than Quantitative Analysis? why is this knowledge area ordered in such a way? what does it require in order to function (in other words Inputs/Outputs)?...etc.

For me, asking those questions while studying helped transfer the knowledge from memorization into learning. After only a few days of this approach I was hitting my 80%'s and decided I was ready for my first practice exam (Exam #1 in the Exam Simulator)....I got 136 correct out of the 200, otherwise known as 68%. I was discouraged, but I learned a couple very important lessons that I carried with me into my real PMP Exam:

1.) Don't let the clock intimidate you. I still had 45 minutes left to review my marked questions and that was on the first try, my time left for review got steadily better with each practice exam. Also, watching the clock makes you rush through questions, don't let that happen to you. You'll miss questions you would have gotten right had you slowed yourself down (at least I missed them).

2.) Insert a couple mental breaks. 4 hours of deep thinking is a long time. Upon review of my first practice exam, I noticed I missed quite a few questions that I really did know. After pondering, I came to the conclusion I was mentally fatigued. In subsequent practice exams, I made a point of staying aware of my focus. If I noticed I was drifting or skim reading, I stopped, stood up and stretched/took a 30 second walk and came back refreshed. It helped. This may sound obvious, but diligently taking practice exams also helped. I noticed my ability to focus grow longer and longer the more exams I took.

3) Keep track of the questions you struggle with. I kept a notebook beside me with 3 columns (Struggle, Skip, Changed). As I took each exam, I'd jot down the question number in the corresponding list. After completing each exam, I'd of course review each of the incorrect responses, but I also went back and reviewed each question I jotted down. I did this for a couple reasons, first being a correct guess, even an educated one, is still sort of wrong. You want to learn that item so you don't miss it, or something like it, in the future. Second, ever go back and change an answer and find out you had it right the first time? Happens to me all the time, common wisdom (Cornelius also says this in a PrepCast Lesson) is to trust your gut, but sometimes you can't help yourself. I kept track of each question I changed, and if the change was correct. Turns out about 75% of my changes went from right to wrong. Math is never wrong, I immediately stopped changing answers unless I was POSITIVE and my scores went up. I also stopped taking guess that I would be forced to consider changing later. If I didn't know it, I'd skip the question and come back later. Again, my scores went up.

It goes without saying the majority of the knowledge I needed to pass the PMP Exam came from the PrepCast Lessons and the PMBOK Guide, but those 3 tips I mentioned went a LONG way toward helping me improve my test exam scores. I think it was between taking test 4 and 5 that I scheduled my PMP Exam, so in this case my personal experience blends what the others in this string recommend and your proposed approach. I didn't want to schedule the exam until I had demonstrated a certain ability in the exams, but at the same time, there's always going to be a part of you wondering if you're ready. It was in this mindset I scheduled my exam. I was doing well in practice, not as well as I wanted but well nonetheless, and I found adding the pressure of the real exam helped get me over the hump (I passed first try). My advice, try not to worry so much about your first few scores. Get familiar with the layout, keep studying and learn from your mistakes. You'll be alright.

Good luck.
Last Edit: 7 months 2 weeks ago by Joe Riley.
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