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Professionally, yesterday was the best day of my life. I had been preparing for the PMP exam for a long time and finally I cleared the exam successfully on my first try.
For those of you who are preparing for the exam, here are somethings I would like to share:
1. First and foremost, all of you are Project Managers and there is no substitute for the lessons learned on the job. So believe in yourself. It is just a test to make sure that you are indeed a project manager managing projects. Always use your best judgement in the exam and it should be easy.
2. As far as study material goes, I went through the following books to make sure that my understanding of all the knowledge areas were accurate:
1. PMBOK 4th Edition
2. Rita Mulcahy's PMP Exam prep
4. Head First PMP
Each of these books helped me understand different topics more clearly. Head Frost PMP was especially helpful for understanding the Cost Management concepts and Earned Value Management
I had taken mock tests from the following:
In each of these tests, I scored atleast 76% - 80% marks. I know that a lot of people say that if you score 80% or more, you should be ready but the tests mentioned above are quite diffcult and if you can score over 75%, then you should be good for the exam.
Did I memorize the ITTO's for the exam?
No. Absolutely not. Here is where my experience helped me. I tried to relate each ITTO with my project experiences and I was able to guess what came first and what came second. If you understand the processes and the knowledge areas wel, then I do not think that you need to memorize the ITTOs. Your real life PM experience will help you identifying the ITTOs like it did for me.
PMP Exam Formulas: Yes, these are somethings that you can memorize. But again, if you have done a lot of exercises and done a lot of sample questions that use the formulas, you may not need to memorize them. I suggest that you write down all the formulas for EVM, Cost Management, Project Selection and Time Management on a piece of paper everyday till you actually remember each of them. Once you have a practice of writing all the formulas everyday, when you give your PMP exam, you can use the first 15 mins to actually write them down in a sheets provided. Although this is not a ncessary thing, I think that it is a good idea because you would always want the formula's handy/or in front o you when you work on the formula questions in the exam. It will save you time and you can be sure that you did not miss anything.
That's all I can think of. To summarize,
1. Read all the Processes and Knowledge areas 2-3 times.
2. Pratice all formula questions and write the formulas at least once every day on a sheet of paper so that you remember them for your exam.
3. Do not memorize the ITTOs. Instead rely on your understanding of the knowledge areas and processes and your work experience.
4. Believe in yourself and use your best judgement based on practical experience as well as the guidelines set in the PMBOK to select the correct answers.
5. Prepare for at least 3 months before giving the exam.
This interview with Simona Fallavollita (LinkedIn Profile) was recorded at the magnificient Project Management Institute (PMI)® Global Conference 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. We discuss the how, what, why and when of the changes that are coming to the PMP exam.