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After quite a long time of study and preparing I passed the PMP exam on my first try ON 6.1.2015.
Here is how I did it:
REASONS and STORY BEHIND
About a year ago, I’ve concluded with my employer that I should do the PMP exam. I saw my benefit in self-fulfillment, gaining and exploring knowledge and certifying it, while my employer saw opportunity in gaining a better and more satisfied worker and also a certificate which is commonly requested for sellers in local government projects.
First I visited the PMI organization page to check which qualifications I needed and realized by analog estimation that I needed about 1 year of project management experience more.
So I had time to prepare for such (as I heard) demanding task.
I’ve learned through a coworker and by browsing on www that the PMBOK is a hard book to read and concluded I should get a book that would introduce me in “PMI way of thinking” and also try to practice the gathered knowledge in my daily work. I’ve decided for the Head First PMP book.
I gave myself a plan
- to read or do other activities connected with PMP learning in my spare time for at least 8 hours per week,
- to solve all the tasks in the book,
- to complete the book in approximately 6 months and
- to record interesting things that I could use in my daily work.
In later phases as additional study I would go through PMBOK and PM PrepCast.
I wanted an agile plan, which would accept changes so I could do all the extra things I ran into – stuff like:
- articles on the web concerning project management and project management and current study area,
- other project management and human management education which I connected with the PMP knowledge
- variety of tools (for gathering requirements, making WBS, project schedule, estimating costs…)
- expand tasks from my work by trying different techniques for planning at work and home
At the end of the book there was a test exam which I solved 71 % correct.
For next 2 months I decided to follow the same technique but to use the PMBOK.
WARM UP FOR THE TEST
4 months to the planned exam and also final phase I wanted to make more exact plan.
My next study material was combined Rita’s PMP Exam Prep and PM PrepCast, and I planned to examine it in 2 and a half months, leaving the last month and a half for test exams and consolidation of my knowledge in themes that wouldn’t go as expected.
Before the start of the PM PrepCast I did the preliminary test, answering 75 % correct.
After I went through PM PrepCast and Rita’s book I finally got over the 80% of correct answers in a test exam.
I never went through same test twice and almost always tried to answer test exam in full length so I could get used to the tempo. I used some free tests on the web (by Cornelius’s and also PM Exam Simulator.
Even though I planned to solve all the exams in the PM Exam Simulator, I did not do so due to lack of time (because of work), the fact I was getting near 90 % of correctness and required resting time for the exam.
I got to the exam location half an hour before and was allowed to take the exam immediately.
Result of my work was PROFICIENT level in all domains except for the closing, where I got MODERATE PROFICIENT score.
The things I’ve learned in the first phase and practiced them stuck in my brain best. So I would recommend such learning to everyone.
I would also recommend PM PrepCast because it is structured well and you definitely get great value for your investment.
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.