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I cleared my PMP exam yesterday and happy to share my experience with all of you
My PM experience/background: 11 yrs in telecom industry
PM preparation: Started watching all videos on the Prepcast chapter-wise and then would read the subsequent chapter from PMBOK 5. After finishing the first round of this, I started attempting free mocks available online. At that point of time, I realized that just one briefing of the Prepcast and PMBOK won't help me pass the exam, but I continued with a lot of mocks to understand my weak areas and also improve my scores over a period of time.
After about 2 weeks of attempting mocks (most of them I attempted were from Examcentral and Scordo), I again started with the videos, but this time I also started making my own notes on the topics I thought were important and also to avoid the need of viewing the videos the 3rd time (unless really needed). This all took around 4 more weeks
Now, I was sure I was ready to hit the mocks again and so tried all questions from RITA fast-track, Oliver Lehmann, PMPstudy etc. My scores kept improving over a period of time and I was getting more versed to the kind of questions being asked
This all process (starting from the videos till finishing mocks) lasted for about 10 weeks which made me realize that I was ready for the final exam. Then I took the exam date (which was a week later). Trust me guys, even though I was very confident of passing the exam, the week before my exam was the most emotional stage. I would go thru my notes and the formulas every single day however the fear of failing the exam wouldn't let me sleep properly each night
My exam was scheduled in the afternoon and I arrived the center 1 hour before. The prometric staff was courteous and allowed me to start my exam 1 hour earlier (I'd would have gone mad otherwise waiting for 1 hour just to enter the exam room)
The exam (as I'd mention) was neither too easy nor too difficult. Some questions were directly from the PMBOK while most of them were situational asking "what will you do next". I was not confident of passing the exam as I was not sure throughout (except the really easy ones) if the answers I was selecting were right. I went with the flow and I finished all 200 questions in around 3 hrs 30 mins. I then went thru the mathematical questions and some others (I marked for review). The mathematical questions were straightforward.
I was left with 2 mins on the screen when I was done with all the questions. I hit the "end exam" button and the screen prompted me for the optional survery. I ended the survey as well (was impatient to know my results) and it took around 5-6 seconds to show the "congratulations" screen:) I cannot explain how relieved I was after seeing this message on the screen
For PMP aspirants who plan to appear for the exam soon, I'd like to share a few lessons learned:
1) Don't go thru a lot of study material (it will confuse you). Just stick with one quality book and PMBOK. In my case, I only used PM Prepcast (extremely helpful and handy) and PMBOK5
2) I got only 2-3 straightforward questions on ITTO's and so I feel it doesn't make any sense to mug up all the ITTO's (rather understand how and why each process would use the ITTOs)
3) Try attempting a lot of mocks (ofcourse the quality ones) - I attempted around 3000 questions from RITA fast-track, Scordo, Oliver Lehmann, Exam Central and PMstudy
I hope this info will help you guys with your coming PMP exams. All the best guys!
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.