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TOPIC: A quick note to PMP aspirants- My lessons learned.

A quick note to PMP aspirants- My lessons learned. 5 years 2 months ago #2520

  • Mohammed Abdul Khaliq
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Cleared the PMP exam on August 18th 2011 (first attempt).
I would like to thank everyone in this forum for the help that I got.In particular to Cornelius [email protected]

I used following books and material for the preparation.

a. PMBOK 4th Edition (read cover to cover Once)
b. The PMP Exam: How to Pass on Your First Try, Fourth Edition by Andy Crowe (read it Once and made lots of notes)
c. PMP Exam Prep, Sixth Edition: Rita’s Course in a Book for Passing the PMP Exam by Rita Mulcahy (read it Once)
d. Prepcast from Cornelius- best and efficient way of earning 35 contact hrs in fact I went through all the audio and video lessons. Listened to the audios in my car..that was a convenient way of learning.
e. Formula guide from Cornelius -best formula guide out in the market.

I had planned to give myself 3+ months to prepare for this test.Found it very difficult to take out time being busy with work and family. My wife and kids supported me.

I started preparing from May 2011. While reading all the books mentioned above once and finishing the PMPrepcast, I applied for the exam in May'11. Then I scheduled to give the exam on 18th August 2011 and took it as scheduled.

Things that I did for preparing for this exam:
1) Memorized the Process group-knowledge area chart on page 43 and the Rita Process chart.
2) Read a chapter from PMBOK, then Andy and lastly Rita. This gave me a deep understanding of the processes.
3) Learnt all the formulae from the formula guide and solved all the formulae questions.
4) Read the PMBOK glossary.
5) Did Rita’s fast-track questions for all knowledge areas and process groups.
6) Did not memorize ITTOs. But read it enough times to know most of them.
7)Played ITTO game on my iphone, during my spare time- People found me crazy of PMP:) while I was doing that.

Mock tests:

1) PMStudy -did 4 full 4 hrs paid exams. Very good questions. Good difficulty and pattern close to actual PMP exam if not the questions.
2) Oliver Lehman’s 175 & 75 question. Very good questions. Good difficulty.
3) End of book exam from Rita and Andy
4)Rita's fast track exams.

I ensured I scored between 70% to 80% for all of the PMstudy exams. Whenever I scored below 70% I went back and studied the weaker areas and took the test again till I reached the above percentage.


My observations & suggestions:

1. The questions on the real exam were not wordy and the choices were not difficult to pick up.
2. Only few questions required more thinking.
3. The exam will be difficult in my opinion if there is NO or partial preparation.
It depends on the understanding of the processes and also on how much do you retain after reading the books/material.Overall, the exam was not as tough as I thought for me but also it was not easy either.
4. Practice at least 3-4 full length tests. If you are doing good on the above mentioned tests, you will be good on the exam.
5. Writing the dump during initial 15 minutes of tutorial may NOT be helpful hence I dint do.
6. Had no time for breaks. Went through some nervous moments, but backed myself. Please do not leave the exam or keep thinking on the question for which you don't know the answer. Give your best shot! Attempt all.
Completed the exam in full 4 hrs including review..
It was a pleasant feeling of relief when I saw the Congratulations message on my screen.

Good luck to all the PMP aspirants!!

Mohammed Abdul Khaliq, PMP
Riyadh, KSA
Last Edit: 5 years 2 months ago by Mohammed Abdul Khaliq.
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