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It is a wonderful feeling to have your PMP. This is really a highly recognized accreditation that lifts you morally. I am glad to share the wonderful journey from starting up preparing for PMP in Feb 2011 and attaining it on 5th August.
PMI Membership taken Feb 2009
PMI Membership renewed: Feb 2011
Application preparation: 3 weeks
Application approved: 1 week (End of Feb 2011)
I used the following study aids for my preparation:-
1. PM-Prepcast Episodes - 85 episodes
2. Rita Mulcahy Exam Preparation Book
3. Andy Crowe
4. PMBOK 4.0 version
1. Headfirst 200Q
3. PMStudy test1,2,3,4
4. Rita fastrack
5. Andy Crowe 200Q
6. Oliver lehmann 75Q
7. Rita chapter end all questions
8. Andy chapter end all questions
My Study Plan
My journey started with taking membership in Feb 2011. I prepared my application thoroughly in 3 weeks and got it approved in 1 week. I started studying immediately after receiving my credentials approved but was on and off. Serious preparation started in April 2011 when i bought PM-Prepcast audio video learning aid. It is an Excellent way to learn through audio-video lessons and clear your concepts at the same time giving you a fun way learning.
I burnt the audio in CD and play in my car daily going to office and coming back in my 45 minutes drive to office. Also, i downloaded them on my mobile and at off-times or free times i would run through 1-2 lessons. I did this excercise regularly to learn through all the chapters till i finished listening to all chapters. Parallely referred to PMBOK with each chapter.
I then started to read rita finished each chapter and then read PMPBOK for the same chapter. I then solved the rita chapter end questions thoroughly.
I prepared my own notes at the end, tried to correlate all ITTOs and wrote them several times. Also, referred to Rajesh Nair's notes that was quite helpful too. Wrote the formulas several times.
This was my usual pattern of study and followed it for almost 2 months till i finished all chapters. I then moved to Andy Crowe which was a very fine book and helped me through memorizing concepts while explaining the concepts in short and simple manner. Took questions at the back of each chapter to acknowledge my understanding on these chapters.
1. Use audio video aids for reading
This will keep you manage to learn at busy times and listening to lessons always keeps you reguvenated, gets you acquainted with the terms used, clears your concepts. I found PM-Prepcast very well designed and highly oriented to the key concepts, covered most of the topics in great detail. Repeatition of processes and definitions helped memorizing.
2. Take questions frequently
I took questions and 200Q tests frequently from online free sources. This gave me more insight into patterns usually asked in the exam. I used Headfirst, examcenteral, pmstudy tests and whenever i found 10-50Q online practiced and took my hands on these.
3. Use electronic version of PMBOK
It was a good idea to use electronic version of PMBOK. Every time i would review the questions i would check through the concepts explained in PMBOK by making search on the keywords. It was wonderful to get directly to kep points and search for specific words in PMBOK. Especially pmstudy tests would have direct reference to a page no in PMBOK.
I consistently followed pmzilla and pmhub for support on questions and concepts. The lessons learned always kept me motivated. I was also member on pmpprepcast forums and was participating.
The Exam Day
I had already been to the exam center a week before the exam hence was mentally free that i do not have to search for the center and take the last minute hassle. I reached 1 & 1/2 hour earlier to the exam time. I got 15 minute time which i utilized fully to dump all the formulas and the page 43 of the pmbok. I kept milestones of finishing a minimum 50 questions in each hour and expedite in the last hour. I managed to keep the same pace and finished all questions 25 minutes before 4hours used the remaining time to review all the questions. I let the entire time to finish automatically and then took the survey. It was so heartfilling to see the 'Congratulations' prompt on the screen.
All the very best to all the fellow practitioners!!
I read your other post on 'exam discussion' about a week back where you mentioned that you'd been scoring 70% consistently on sample tests (instead of 80% as suggested everywhere).
I find myself in the same boat. I've my exams scheduled after 2 weeks and am scroing similar scores as yours on sample tests.
So am wondering how did you fare in the PMP exam... were the questions easier than the sample one? would you please mind sharing the detailed results of pmp exam (moderate / proficient areas) so that I can gauge my preparedness i.e. whether I will be barely making it or can feel safe?
Also, would you mind sharing which sample test website can be the best indication of scoring compared to the real exam?
Re:Passed PMP 5th August
6 years 3 months ago #2385
Thank you Amit !!
You are right, i was scoring around 70% in most of the 4 hours simulation tests two weeks before the exam. However, on revisiting the wrong questions, i realized i am making some silly mistakes due to lack of concentration. It is highly essential that you take these tests with the same seriousness as the real exam.
This really disappointed me but then i challenged myself and took a deep drive into weak areas and revisited the entire sections in PMBOK & Rita again. I thoroughly revised my wrong answers to strengthen those areas. I used Andy crowe for revision in the last 3-4 days which is a wonderful book, i say i really loved this book.
I also realized some strategies like the elimination technique is very helpful and you can expect another 5-10% questions right in the real exam.
I would strongly recommend pmstudy to be the best source for taking your assessment, that is close to the real exam, you should be easily scoring 80% here. The other sources that are useful is
, Headfirst is good too. It is always advisable you should consider yourself ready when you are scoring 80% in these exams.
Honestly, i found the questions in the real exam comparatively easy and didn't encounter many formula based questions. It is advisable not to underestimate the exam as well.
Approaching the exam with the right strategy is also highly essential. Setting milestones like 50Q in 1st hr, 110-120 in 2nd hr etc and expedite in the 3rd hour. Marking questions for review is a good technique and must have some margin in the last hour to review the marked questions.
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.