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TOPIC: Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT

Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT 7 months 3 weeks ago #31012

  • Elena Zelenevskaia
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I'm thrilled to announce that I passed my PMP exam with an 'Above Target' rating in all domains yesterday!

I used a PMP prep course as the primary source to gain a basic understanding of the knowledge required for the exam. Then, I studied the PMBOK Guide, Sixth Edition (which I had to purchase on eBay, as I'm unable to study from screens), and prepared a kind of abstract/outline along the way.

I also utilized an exam simulator extensively and completed just one full exam to understand and prepare myself for the time pressure (scored 71%). After this practice exam, I identified areas where my knowledge was lacking and focused my studies more intensely in those areas.

Additionally, I answered many practice questions from the PMI Study Hall. I must admit that those questions are phrased much more vaguely, and, let's say, less elegantly than those on the actual exam.

The three videos about the PMP exam mindset actually helped me a lot, so I would like to express my special thanks to Cornelius for them.
Elena Zelenevskaia, PMP
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Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT 7 months 3 weeks ago #31014

  • Daniel Soerensen
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Hi Elena,

I'm super thrilled for you for passing your PMP exam. This is a huge accomplishment that definitely takes time and dedication to achieve, so well done for getting through the finish line. Enjoy your credential!

Cheers,
Daniel Soerensen, PMP, CSPO
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Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT 7 months 3 weeks ago #31018

  • Lauren
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Congratulations! Thank you for sharing. Now I wonder if I might be ready to take the real exam since I scored 78.9% on the first practice exam.

Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT 7 months 3 weeks ago #31021

  • Elena Zelenevskaia
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I spent some time reviewing my mistakes after my full exam. So if you've done that already, I would say you are ready. Good luck!
Elena Zelenevskaia, PMP
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Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT 7 months 3 weeks ago #31022

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Thank you! I was feeling pretty good after doing the post exam review until I met SH and it aniliated my confidence and made me question so much of what I learned with Prepcast that I feel is correct.

Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT 7 months 3 weeks ago #31023

  • Dominic Hickey
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Congratulations to the OP, Elena, for a great pass in the PMP.

To Lauren:
What you wrote in your latest post is what I could have written, word for word, the day that I got a Study Hall subscription and started using it!

The good news is that you've had a very good first practice exam using the PM Prepcast platform. Do not let SH diminish your confidence. (That's easier said than done, I grant you.) Concentrate instead on the fact that your practice exam was a very solid pass and build on that.

I felt terrible after that first SH experience, which was just two or three weeks before my booked exam date. Pragmatically, I decided to ignore that platform from then on (wasting the sunk costs, admittedly) and to concentrate on PM Prepcast, my study notes and flash cards. It helped that no one else in my PMP exam prep group was using SH, and that our highly experienced course leader hadn't recommended using SH, just this one. And he had an impressive track record of student passes going back years. In the end, I did at least as well in the real exam as my best practice exam, getting AT/AT/AT. (Not posting that to brag; just showing that my SH results were a poor indicator of my abilities.)

My advice -- which is maybe only worth as much as I charge for it :) -- is to do as many more practice exams as you have time for, learn from all of the results and rebuild any lost confidence. Then when it's time, go into the PMP exam knowing that all the time you've put into studying, along with your professional experience means that you more than measure up to the PMP qualification.
Dominic Hickey, PMP

Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT 7 months 2 weeks ago #31028

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Congratulations and thank you for sharing your experience! I'm happy to hear that more people are passing without SH. I agree with your sentiments on the value and I'm willing to accept the sunk cost. Many Redditors emphasize the importance of SH for passing, so I decided to purchase it on 11/25. I wanted to give it a fair chance, but I'm encountering challenges with blatant incorrect answers and navigating the unclear writing. In your experience, were the exam questions and answer choices written more clearly? Were they as vague as SH?

Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT 7 months 2 weeks ago #31029

  • Dominic Hickey
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Lauren wrote: In your experience, were the exam questions and answer choices written more clearly? Were they as vague as SH?


That's a difficult one to answer because I don't know that my own experience of and recollections from the exam are worth building expectations on. It has been many months, so my memories are dulled. I certainly cannot recall any specific questions or their details anymore. (Not that I'd repeat any on this Forum or elsewhere if I did.)

I will say that I did find the exam questions and answer options, overall, to be more vague than what we encounter in PM Prepcast quizzes and practice exams. When using PM Prepcast, I had become accustomed to being able to quickly identify the correct answer with confidence very often. That is thanks to how well-crafted those questions are, and also how much textual information is provided in the questions and/or answers. In my PMP exam session, that wasn't the case.

It seems to me that the vagueness of PMI content, be it in Study Hall or the actual exam, is down to a) the relative sparseness of the wording, which provides little context, and b) the crafting of the sentences themselves. I know that I appear heavily critical of PMI in that respect, but I do believe that there's a real problem in how the organization goes about producing the questions, since I encountered several cases in both SH and the exam of the wording being simply wrong, syntactically or grammatically. This cannot be explained by regional differences in English (e.g. US, UK, SA, etc.), which I'm used to working with. Instead, they are straight-up errors that render the questions far less clear than they should be.
It's annoying for this to occur in a high-pressure exam that costs a large amount of money to have the privilege to sit. But unless PMI have gone over the bank of possible questions recently and done some proofreading/correcting, this may well still be occurring, so you just have to be prepared for it.

The bottom line is that despite feeling a lot less at ease during the exam, I was relieved to receive a very positive result. I thank the thorough and enjoyable preparation done through using the PM Prepcast quizzes and practice exams for that (no affiliation whatsoever). While that likely won't feel encouraging to someone before their exam, I don't think there's any way around it. Go in being prepared for 'vague' or even language errors and you'll be less surprised.

Maybe the people who promote the use of SH have a different experience of it, or have it as their sole means of doing quizzes and practice exams. In the absence of PM Prepcast, and with plenty of time to work through all its content, I can see SH being better than nothing, but I still find it poorly conceived and certainly not a good platform for active learning/testing.

Trust in your abilities and all the best with your continuing preparation!
Dominic Hickey, PMP
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Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT 7 months 2 weeks ago #31035

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I wanted to say that I genuinely appreciate you sharing your perspective. After reading, I gathered my resolve and returned to Study Hall for a full practice exam, scoring a surprising 79% (65% is typically the benchmark for passing the real exam)! I believed it was crucial to familiarize myself with the vagueness and confusion now rather than risk surprises during the actual exam. Interestingly, the exam felt like a breath of fresh air compared to Study Hall, and I'm thrilled to announce that I passed. I eagerly await my official confirmation!
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Passed on my first try AT/AT/AT 7 months 2 weeks ago #31036

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That is a great "take the bulls by the horns" approach, Lauren. A most proactive attitude, which led to a superb result! I take my figurative hat off to you and congratulate you on getting your PMP. Enjoy celebrating!
Dominic Hickey, PMP
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