I have exam schedule for 20th July, so about 6 week left. I'm studying using Rita's book, and find it very usefull. I have also purchased PrepCast's PM Exam Simulator, but haven't used it yet.
Reading the PMBOK and Rita's book (I'm about half way through Rita's book), I find most, if not all, of the concepts rather familiar and relatively easy to understand - so far there was nothing I read that I didn't know about (at least at high level). The Earned Value formulas are a bit difficult, but only because there are quite a few of them. My main fear is that I may not remember all the right terminology when it comes to the exam. Rita's book reitirates that the exam is about understanding the concept rather that knowing specific terms, true? Haven't tried practice exams yet, guess that's when my gaps are goining to be uncovered.
So, the question is - is this exam really difficult for someone who has project experience, but may not have been exposed to the truly PMBOK specifics? And - do I have enough time to fully prepare myself? I guess, I need a bit of reassurance.
That's perfectly normal. Take a deep breath and continue studying You'll do just fine. Rita's exam simulator is great for practice (I used that as well in addition to many others). I would suggest spending the last 1-2 weeks going over simulated exams. Take as many of them as you can (from reputable sources). They will help reinforce the concepts that you need to know and will highlight areas that you need to focus on for revisions.
You'll do just fine! Good luck!
Yasir Mehmood, MBA, PMP, PMI-ACP, CSM, CSP, CLP (LeSS), CSPO
I just passed the exam on June 1st. It is a difficult exam, but you can pass it!! You definitely want to start taking the simulator exams as soon as possible. I took 5 or 6 full length exams and many other timed quizzes of varying lengths answering well over 2000 questions during my studies. It is really important to put yourself in that exam mode so that you can learn how to pace yourself and feel the time pressure. Best of luck!
I just passed on June 7th. It was harder than I thought, but if you study consistently, you will do fine. Lots of questions on stakeholder management, so make sure you know this topic inside and out. Make sure in you know in which situations a PM would update what document, i.e. risk register vs. stakeholder management plan.
ALL the questions on the exam are situation based, not just simple tests of knowing a concept. sometimes the answer is given, but not in the exact term you would expect, but some variation of it, so really take the time to read the questions carefully. The questions test you on your decision-making and the application, the "how-to" of the concepts. They'll give you lots of situations and ask "what should the PM have done differently to avoid this" or "what should the PM do FIRST to remedy the situation." Then all the answers are logical, but you have to really know what is the first thing the PM would do. So it's the nuance of things that makes the PMP hard. I did not encounter many (prob. 5-6 total) EVM related questions, and they were very easy, nothing tricky there. But the situational ones I found tricky. Good luck, don't stop studying till the end. A little bit every day will help you remember terms for the exam.
Another tip I would suggest is to practise creating a 'brain dump' sheet. This is a sheet that you create immediately after the exam has started to quickly jot down all the definitions and formulas that are floating in your mind so you can then concentrate on the questions displayed and not worrying about forgetting something. I found it very calming to do. If you practise it beforehand, it helps lock in the information. You can also get a sense of how long it will take to complete come Exam day.
I would spend some time working through the PrepCast Exams. They are a very good gauge to your readiness but also teach you how to sit and pace yourself for 4 hours.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Rakesh Mishra
You're probably half way through the 9 Simulator exams, so my response is more to others who come across this thread with a similar question that you had about 3 weeks ago. I agree with everyone who stressed upon the importance of taking the exams and want to add my two-cents on why it is important to take exams as you are studying and not just push that to the end.
Like Mariana said - the questions on the exam are much harder than what you would expect. The real question is usually hidden within the long-winded description of the situation; so for example the question may start by telling you all about this glorious project that the PM has been working on and the events that have taken place, the CPI, SPI values and that the PM did this and did that and then it may ask you what the PM should do next. Using the information in the question you first have to deduce what process the PM was in and then what are the steps to be taken in that process, or what outputs are produced from that process and then choose the right answer.
Many questions in the simulator will train your brain to think that way... don't worry about the number of questions you get wrong - in fact, that can help you - because you probably already knew the topic, but you were not able to understand exactly what the question was asking for. So when you read the explanation of the right answer (while reviewing your answers), you would learn how to decipher information in the questions. Working on these questions and the explanation for the right answers helps you to start looking at the question and glean what you need to answer the question correctly. Once you attempt some tricky questions in the simulator, you would see the topics differently, you will start paying more attention to the information in the books/PMBOK, which earlier, you may not have considered very important. Of course, pace your exams such that you still have a couple-three left after you have completed your studies. Take these 3-4 days before your exam to be in the exam mode, get used to sitting there for 3-4 hours. Best if you take these simulation tests around the same time that your real PMP exam is scheduled for, so that your brain and body gets used to it and starts expecting it.
I have roughly 20 years of experience as a program manager. I thought I understood the subject matter from PMI perspective. I prepared on and off for the exam for about 9 years. I finally got somewhat serious as of 2014, and read Rita twice, plus PMBOK. I practiced pm-simulator and was scoring about 70 - 75%. I thought I was ready. I took the exam last December and scored 73%, with moderately, moderately, below, below and below. I have been studying really hard since, and now my scores on PM simulator are mostly above 80%, even so, I do not feel I am ready.
The most important thing to remember after you feel you are ready for the exam is to completely relax during the exam so that you may overcome the psychometric questions being thrown at you.
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