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TOPIC: Passed the PMP last weekend! First attempt!

Passed the PMP last weekend! First attempt! 3 months 2 weeks ago #22074

  • Ben Altarejos
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Hey guys!

I took the online exam last weekend and passed the exam on my first attempt! woohoo! Let me share my experience/s here for everyone who will attempt the PMP certification this year. My post is quite long but consider this as a gift to Prepcast as my way of saying thanks! Hopefully many would find my post useful. :)

References I used:
* PMBOK Guide
* Rita Mulcahy 9th edition - HIGHLY recommended. While I find Prepcast mock exams to be more similar to the real exam compared to Rita's, Rita’s tips and suggestions are spot on!
* Prepcast - HIGHLY recommended, especially the mock exams (more to this later)
* Agile Practice Guide

Things I’ve done:
* allotted 2-3 hours a day to study
* read the PMBOK guide at least 3 times
* read Rita 3 times although I did take some notes which I browsed through every now and then
* watched Prepcast once but like with Rita, I did take down some notes. I also re-watched some of the course videos which I had difficulty with.
* I have already prepared a list of formulas since last year which I updated every now and then. At least 3x a week, I made it a habit to recite the formulas so by the time I took the exam, I've already memorized the formulas by heart.
* You need to memorize Page 25 of the PMBOK guide. This is A MUST.

What I did not do:
* Memorize the ITTOs. I'm poor at memorization and for me what's important for the ITTOs is you know what they are used for, how they are used for each process applicable to them, and how they're different from tools/techniques that have similar purposes. However, I did memorize the unique outputs of each process which helped me a lot! Lastly, I did not take the ITTO exam of prepcast lol It's a risk that I took before taking the exam.

About my Mock exams:
* Took free exams (like Oliver F. Lehmann’s)
* Rita – Rita questions are a mixture of hard and easy questions. But the exam itself is less ambiguous than some of the Rita questions. There are questions in Rita that are quite similar in the real exam though.
* Prepcast – HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. In fact, among all mock exams that I took, the prepcast mock exams are the closest to the real one! I can attest to that. In fact, I was smiling halfway through the exam since many exam questions are very similar to prepcast.
Note: There are questions in the real exam that still surprised me so it’s recommended to really try other learning materials and exams. But I feel that if you’re averaging above 75% in your Prepcast exams (first attempts), then you could easily pass the real one.

My mock exam scores (prepcast):
I took the mock exams (first five only) 1-3 weeks before the actual exam and I managed between 81-84.5% - all first attempts. I only repeated 1 exam and my grade was around 97%. Having 80% plus grade is a great confidence booster! I did not bother repeating the rest since I feel it’s useless so I focused only on my wrong answers. I did not complete all exams (including the ITTO exam) to save them in the future in case I won’t pass my first attempt. lol

About the Online Exam:
* You will be watched while you’re taking the exam. The proctor will tell you things like “don’t read the questions aloud”, “don’t put your hand on your face”, etc…
* I almost wasn’t able to take the exam because the exam app would not start properly. The onvue app would forcefully close itself if there’s another app that is running in the background. Unfortunately for me there was something running in the background when I tried starting the exam. I did not experience it during the initial system check but thankfully I was able to kill the running app during my third laptop restart. My suggestion is to had the system check multiple times hours before your exam and disable all items in the startup menu (Windows).
* You will only be allowed one 10-minute break. You cannot leave the screen other than during this break. I tried to ask the proctor if I can just go quickly to the washroom during the second half of the exam but the proctor would not allow me to do so – very uncomfortable second half for me.
* No food and drinks allowed
* Pens, papers, and calculators are not allowed. The app has a whiteboard marker and calculator.

About the app itself:
* I think the whiteboard is where you can do the brain dump but I did not do that due to limited space. I don’t think you can resize it as well – I tried during the exam and failed. So I used the whiteboard instead to draw the schedule network diagram and even then, it's difficult to use because of limited space and it’s not the most user friendly tool. I recommend prepcast to add this feature to the mock exams.
* You can both highlight and strikethrough the exam questions and answers. Again, something that I recommend adding to the prepcast mock exams.

Once I finished the exam, I knew immediately I passed since the last page congratulated me for earning the PMP certification. I received the actual results 5 days after through e-mail.

That's it! Big thanks to Cornelius and the entire Prepcast team for putting together the course materials and the mock exams. Really helped me a lot!

Regards,
-Ben

Passed the PMP last weekend! First attempt! 3 months 2 weeks ago #22079

  • Eric Wanyutu Kahiga, PMP
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Congratulations Ben! Well done.

Passed the PMP last weekend! First attempt! 3 months 2 weeks ago #22083

  • Gabriella Dellino, PMP
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Congrats, Ben! Thanks for sharing your experience here in the forum, for structuring it so clearly, including do's & don'ts.
May I ask you to share them in the Lessons learned forum as well - if you haven't done it already?

Gabriella
Gabriella Dellino, PhD, PMP
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Passed the PMP last weekend! First attempt! 3 months 2 weeks ago #22084

  • Emily Rivera, PMP
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Congrats, Ben! Excellent tips too. Thanks for sharing!

Passed the PMP last weekend! First attempt! 3 months 2 weeks ago #22101

  • Ben Altarejos
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thanks guys! Much appreciated :)

@Gabriella - shared my post to the lessons learned forum as well. :)
Last edit: by Ben Altarejos.

Passed the PMP last weekend! First attempt! 3 months 1 week ago #22178

  • Ken Rsh
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Ben, what were your results in each process group (i.e. target, above target etc.) if you don't mind sharing?

Passed the PMP last weekend! First attempt! 3 months 6 days ago #22271

  • Ben Altarejos
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Hi Kenan - I got the following results:

Above Target for Initiating, Planning, and Monitoring & Controlling.
Target for Executing and Closing.

This is almost the same result that I had with the Prepcast mock exams. Hope this helps. :)

Passed the PMP last weekend! First attempt! 3 months 6 days ago #22274

  • Thomas Corcoran
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Congratulations on passing the exam and thank you for your insights.
Moderators: Yolanda MabutasMary Kathrine PaduaCynthia Lim Louis, PMPTracy Shagnea, PMPGabriella Dellino, PMPPatrick Floris PhD PMPJoe PangJohn Paul BugarinAmy MartinezEmily Rivera, PMPLisa Sweeney PMPHarry ElstonMani SelvanDenver MartinEric Wanyutu Kahiga, PMPSarah FucciThiago França, PMP®Felix Kamanga, PMPChan RampersaudElena MekhanoshinaKyle Kilbride, PMP

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