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Third time was the charm!
3 years 7 months ago #4146
I took the 4th edition exam twice and thought I knew the material. When it came to the test it seemed that everything I had studied wasn't what was on the exam. After the second time of failing it, as I was driving home I told myself I was done and not taking it again.
After a break away from it all, something inside of me later convienced me to don't give up. I begin studying again and this time tailored my studying to more of trying to memorize the ITTO's and formulas. I bought Andy Crowe's PMP book to try to get a better understanding of the process' and I feel i did have a better understanding.
I was scheduled to take the exam for the third time, and fortunately we had the bad winter storm and I wasn't able to get to the testing site. I contacted PMI and requested an extension due to the extreme weather. They granted me a one time 90 day extension.
Once the extension was granted I rescheduled my test and I remember seeing a email from someone that is helping with studying for the PMP exam. In that email he recommended PM Prepcast along with several sample exam resources. I debated on spending the money for PM Prepcast for about a week and then I decided I needed to take advantage of the extension granted and go for it. I knew I had a 90 day guarantee with PM Prepcast so it then became a no brainer. I bought PM Prepcast and downloaded the Podcast on my IPod. I am fortunate to have a job where I travel by driving so I would listen to the podcasts during my traveling. I found myself really understanding the process and not memorizing them and I could start putting them into examples to see how they are used.
While driving i couldn't see the screen for examples that were being given so I would find myself looking up any questions I had once i got to my destination. I used You tube especially for Network diagraming, calculating float, brain dump and EVM. I was able to take the visual examples and the podcasts and put them together to where I had a good grasp, not just trying to memorize them as before.
I also used the PMI website to get sample questions along with Oliver Leman's free questions. I thought if PMI put questions on their site for its members, it must mean something!
One thing that really helped me on the sample tests and the actual test was I remembered hearing go to the last part of the question and see what they are actually asking! In my sample test questions I would go directly to the last part and there were many times I could answer the questions without reading the complete question. To me it seemed I was eliminating the unnecessary distractions and focusing on the important part. Some of the questions did require me to read the entire question to get some useful information, but by then I knew what i was looking for to answer the question so I could block out the non essential stuff.
My test was scheduled for 1:00 pm so I figured I would spend the morning reviewing. Just so happened I ended up doing my normal PM work. I guess my contractors didn't get the memo I wasn't working that day, but that actually was a blessing because my mind was more on my projects than my exam. I drove the 45 minutes to the testing site and I had this calm easy feeling the entire way there. While i was taking the exam I was so relaxed, at one point I thought to myself something is wrong this is going to easy. It was in no way a easy test I had an understanding of the use of the material so that gave me the confidence I never had.
I marked about 12 or so questions and after finishing the test I went back and reviewed those 12 and changed a few answers that after I reread realized that I made a mistake. I told myself not to second guess myself and if I wasn't 100% sure, don't try to reason yourself into changing an answer.
I took the survey and then submitted my test. It came back Congratulations. I looked at the screen and remember thinking to myself "Cool" and got up and went to the desk to get my paper.
I wasn't overly excited just continued on as nothing had happened.
No doubt in my mind that PM Prepcast prepared me for the exam along with taking the PMI sample questions which I understood better because of PM Prepcast. I feel without the storm and then buying PM Prepcast, I wouldn't have passed the exam for the third time becauseI wasn't as ready as I thought I was.
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.