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TOPIC: Passed PMP above target in 2nd attempt - PMBOK vs Rita's Book vs PrepCast

Passed PMP above target in 2nd attempt - PMBOK vs Rita's Book vs PrepCast 2 weeks 3 days ago #23221

  • Dusan Karan
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I am delighted to share with Prep Cast community that I have successfully passed PMP exam in my 2nd attempt and became certified PMP last week, on the 24th of August. Additionally, I would like to share with you my truly honest and as transparent as possible experience and lessons learned while preparing and taking the exam.

So, my preparation began almost 4 months ago. I started with reading PMBOK 6th edition and after about first 2 hundred of pages I realized that the book is written really bad in my opinion. While I was reading, I had a feeling that I am reading just pure definitions, which was like some kind of dictionary or lexicon. Then I said to myself, is this exam really about this? Is this the knowledge that certified PMP should have? So, that was the beginning. After a while, I consulted with a few certified PMPs, who explained to me, that it is not possible to memorize everything, but instead just to understand terminology. So, I listened to their advice and immediately started to read Rita Mulcahy’s book, PMP Preparation Exam book 9th edition. That book was so readable, and I must admit that I have even enjoyed reading it couple of times. At the same time, I attended Joseph Phillips’ Preparation course on Udemy which helped my obtaining the necessary 35 PDUs. Listening to his lectures and in parallel reading Rita’s book really boosted my confidence that I can do it. I also noted everything that Joseph mentioned in his lectures which was not in the Rita’s book. So, after 2 months of hard work, listening so many tips from blogs and youtube clips I had a feeling that I am prepared for the exam. Unfortunately, my 1st attempt was unsuccessful and I didn’t pass, but I was sooo close to the target.

After my first attempt, I made a short brake of 2 days and started all over again and didn’t lose motivation. After a week of reading again Rita’s book, I realized that I need to practice more situational questions because on the exam I had a lot of questions which I have found really ambiguous. With that being said, it is really thin line between pure success and wrong answer. While searching all over the internet I have finally found the solution. A lot of positive feedback and satisfied customers - Prep Cast simulations!

Although every of 8 simulations I have successfully passed with average score of 80% in the first attempt, questions really showed me where my knowledge was lacking. After this first round I didn’t want to do simulations again because It wouldn’t be fair. After reading all my wrong answers and explanations and seeing explanations of my right answers, I would probably have more than 90%.

So, instead of doing simulations all over again, I started to read in parallel one last time Rita’s book and all questions, answers and explanations from simulations that I did first time. After couple of weeks I was fully prepared and full of confidence. Guess what? I have successfully passed the exam in my 2nd attempt with every process group above target!

Lessons learned:

Still did not find PMBOK 6th edition helpful in passing the PMP exam. It only provides a raw foundation of everything which in my opinion is unreadable. Maybe, the book is useful in CAPM preparation, but for PMP you have to go much further since the exam tests your understanding of situational questions, not theoretical knowledge.

Rita’s book is really helpful and readable, but it is 50-50% that you will reach your target score. Rita’s situational questions at the end of every chapter are too weak and easy to answer. It tests your understanding of the chapter instead of focusing on the real situational questions that you will get on the real exam.

It is necessary to get into the tricky PMI’s mindset and practice real situational questions!

Prep Cast simulations really helped me achieve PMP certification, but still these questions are not the closest ones that you will get. On the real exam, from my experience, which is the same in these two attempts, questions are not so long in comparison to the simulations and answers are more ambiguous than in simulations. But, with every answer explanation within these 8 simulation tests it will help you in the most cases choosing the most proper answer on the real exam. I am sure that without these simulations I would not have been able to achieve such a brilliant score.

My advice:

Whoever wants to be prepared for the real exam and boost confidence, start immediately with simulations to get into the tricky PMI’s mindset! Use PrepCast’s live feedback! They can really show you the right direction to focus on while answering ambiguous questions in both the simulations and the real exam!

I am sure that maybe some people will not agree with me regarding the preparation literature, but I am sharing my experience with two exam attempts and I am pretty sure that other people will find this information valuable in obtaining PMP certificate and achieving the 2020 goal!

I wish good luck to every potential PMP candidate and do not let drop a single word while reading questions! 4 hours is more than enough to think about every question and choose the proper answer.

Passed PMP above target in 2nd attempt - PMBOK vs Rita's Book vs PrepCast 2 weeks 3 days ago #23233

  • Yolanda Mabutas
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Hi Dusan,

Congratulations on your great achievement!

Thank you for sharing your journey.
Yolanda Mabutas
OSP International LLC
Moderators: Yolanda MabutasMary Kathrine PaduaJohn Paul BugarinKyle Kilbride, PMP

Training for Project Management Professional (PMP)®, PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)®, and Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)®