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TOPIC: Situational Questions

Situational Questions 5 months 2 weeks ago #8554

  • Cox
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Hello guys/gals - it's there a way to crack situational question on the exam. I have attempted 2 practice tests and scored 50, 62. I went back and re-read PMBOOK and Rita and continued to do daily sample questions. But missing something and any help is greatly appreciated. What would you do next...

Situational Questions 5 months 2 weeks ago #8564

  • Mark Wuenscher, PMP
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I can't offer any simple solutions for this. I would certainly read many of the lessons learned that others have posted to gain insights on common study materials and habits that have resulted in successfully passing the exam. I think it really comes down to:

- Study hard, especially the PMBOK, but supplement with other materials to deepen your understanding.
- Others on this forum have raved about the PM PrepCast videos. I didn't use them in my exam prep because I didn't learn about them in time but many others swear by them. I did use the PM Exam Simulator and it was absolutely critical to my success.
- Take as many practice exams as you can and spend the time to review all right and wrong answers. Follow up with further study in your weak areas. If you can't find the 4 hour blocks of time to do full exams then do other shorter timed exams which is easy to do with PM Exam Simulator. The key is to get as many questions under your belt as possible.

Good luck,

Mark Wuenscher, PMP
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Situational Questions 5 months 2 weeks ago #8565

  • Rahul Kakkar
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Hi Cox,

PMP situational questions are usually lengthy questions in themselves, however they are also more tricky. These questions will describe a situation (usually problematic) and ask you how to best deal with it. There is usually no black and white distinction for the “correct” answer as usually 2 to 3 answer options are logical or reasonable. Situational questions will usually ask you to identify:

the best next course of action
the first thing to do
the best response

Don’t make the common mistake of reading the answer choices from A to D and select the first option that looks okay — there are usually 2-3 situational question options that look okay, your task is to find the BEST one among them according to PMI’s point of view.

It should be noted that since PMI expects project management to exercise responsibility and autonomy, ignoring the issue, escalating the problem to senior management or pausing the project to solicit advices from others tend to be incorrect…… be careful here as this is a general observation NOT a law.

Here are some tips that could help tackle such questions:
1. Pick the most important and relevant information from the description of situation.

2. Read carefully all the answer choices for at least twice (it may be a good idea to read the options in reverse order, i.e. from D -> C -> B -> A for the second time).

3. Eliminate the obviously wrong answer(s) — usually only 1 to 2 options are obviously wrong.

4. For the remaining options, re-read them to closely understand their implications / rationales in order to find the best answer according to principles outlined in the PMBOK Guide. Pay attention to the consequences for the actions.

Hope this helps.
Rahul Kakkar, PMP, MBA
Community Moderator

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Situational Questions 5 months 2 weeks ago #8586

  • Regina Holzinger
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It is really important to understand the process flows.
Then in the exam you have to read the question really, really carefully to determine where exactly you are in the process flow. It then should be clear what came immediately before and what will come immediately after.
You should also be aware that often the question is, what comes next. What they are asking for is not any next step, but the most immediate next step.
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