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TOPIC: Yes I did it, passed PMP on first attempt with 5MP

Yes I did it, passed PMP on first attempt with 5MP 1 year 1 month ago #6146

  • A. H. Amini
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Hi, I passed PMP exam on my first attempt with 5MPs on 28-Aug-2015 :) :)

It all began last year November when I started thinking about getting PMP Certification for my own career enhancement. I searched from the web, talked to my friends & colleagues who know about PMP then I decided to buy PMBOK Guide first & started reading it. I planned not to take PMI membership& not to register for exam till I’m fully confident that I can appear for PMP exam.

At the beginning it was very slow & it took me almost 3~4 months to complete PMPBOK guide twice because of full time job, birth of our second baby in February 2015 & other family commitments. The time when I was searching for options how to get 35 contact hours to be eligible for PMP application, one of my friends told me the easy & cheapest way by purchasing the PM-Prepcast. I started surfing prepcast website & found it very useful for PMP preparation, then I finally bought it on 02-Mar-2015 together with PM Exam Simulator which I believe was the best decision. From that time onwards I seriously started studying and targeted to give at least 2hrs daily but couldn’t make it often. One thing I committed myself was to appear for exam once I’ve confidence that I’m ready, no matter how long it takes but of course not indefinite period of time. I didn’t want to plan & book my exam date just for the sake of taking test. I believe it’s better to spend more time than appearing for second or third time, in other words “It’s better to be late than never”.
I completed PrepCast videos & PMBOK guide one more time by the end of June-2015, penned down my own notes to refer back later,after that started practicing free sample questions from all the available sources. By Mid-July, I activated my PM Exam Simulator & did mock up exams 1 & 2 where I got 72% & 79% respectively. After that I took domain specific quizzes (50 or 100 questions/quiz depending on the time available each time after office hours) to sharpen & strengthen my weak areas.

I took PMI membership on 11-JUN-2015& applied for PMP on 21-JUL. Luckily my PMP application got approved smoothly without any audit. Then I scheduled my test from Prometric on 28-AUG, from that day onwards I literally put myself under the exam mode & emancipated all my efforts relentlessly to be successful on PMP exam. Did as many sample questions as possible, every day at least 100 questions, took simulator exam3 on 9-AUG & scored 88% which gave me enough confidence that I’m ready for exam. Remaining days I just practiced quizzes, free sample questions, clearing concepts & leaving the balance simulator exams for last week before the exam. Last week before the exam I took leave from office & every day did one simulator exam till exam 8, skipped exam 9 (the ITTO’s) since that was almost covered in other tests.The strategy I devised while doing the simulator mock up exams on last week was to take one exam every day at the same time similar to my real exam time i.e. 8.30am, waking up early in the morning, praying, taking light breakfast or fruits with some water or milk then writing the brain dump on scratch paper with pencil before starting the mock up exam at 8.30am. This helped me a lot in simulating almost the same conditions as in real exam. Another advantage I received doing mock ups early in the morning was the surrounding environment. Usually in the morning it’s very quiet & calm at home as well as outside, so I fully concentrated on answering questions. Rest of the day I used to review all the questions, wrong and marked once, going through PMBOK Guide& mind-map if needed any clarification.

Thirteen days before exam I went to see the test center as per Cornelius advice, it helped me planning & reaching the test center one & half hours before without any hurdle on actual exam day. The last day before exam, I just went through all the concepts, theories, formulas, process flows & wrong answers. The night before the test went to bed timely since my exam was early in the morning but I couldn’t sleep well, every now & then my eyes used to open & start thinking about the exam in next few hours. However, I managed to control my senses & when sat for exam I was panic free & quite focused. My strategy for exam was to finish all the questions in three hours except numerical & long questions, means every 1.5hrs I must finish 100 questions. Another approach I adopted was the categorization of marked questions; I made three categories on scratch paper, one for formula questions, second for long questions and third for highly uncertain questions which I must look back before clicking the finish button, this truly helped me in completing all questions. Surprisingly I got so many formula based questions, around 20+ but I managed to finish that all within the available time, left with 10mins to review the marked questions, just reviewed few questions as per priority and 4mins before I clicked the finish exam button. During the last one hour I literally pushed all my limits to complete the questions, at one point I was having the feel that I may not be able to finish it but I didn’t give up and kept on trying and trying vigorously & finally achieved the goal. After completing the exam, I started making my mind to be ready for both scenarios & was little hopeful that I would pass the exam; that 10~15mins from finishing the exam to the final result was so horrible. During the time I did the survey and started waiting anxiously till the computer screen flashed with ‘CONGRATULATIONS’, I can’t explain my feelings how I felt that moment, it was like going to burst into tears. The whole duration, PMP preparation as well as the exam was so brutal & fierce but thanks to Allah, my months long preparations & efforts finally paid off & I have become PMP on my first attempt :)

To my utter surprise I got straight 5MPs, nothing less nothing more. I would like to thank all my friends, colleagues, parents for their prays & family specially my wife, without whose support, sacrifices & encouragement I couldn’t achieve this goal. She had always been there to help encourage & boost my morale, taking care of kids, household stuff, understanding my mood swings and letting me locked inside the study room. At one point, when I was so depressed & down (thinking if I’m heading to the right direction, what if I fail, etc.), she told me one thing, “A person, whose winning desire is outshined by the fear of losing, cannot succeed“, from that day onwards I made up my mind and persistently focusing on studies no matter what comes next.

I also want to convey my heartfelt thanks to Cornelius & his team whose guidance, support & perfect study material greatly helped me prepare for the exam. My study materials were;
1. PMBOK Guide
2. PM-Prepcast & Exam Simulator
3. Free online mock tests as per Cornelius advise
4. Oliver Lehmann’s 75 & 175 mock tests
I didn’t buy any other study material, no Rita, no other simulators, no boot camps, no flash cards, no formula guide, no webinars or paid forums and no study groups or classroom sessions. During the last one month all the time it’s only me and Cornelius, Cornelius & Cornelius, hats off to you Sir; I strongly recommend PM Prepcast & Exam Simulator for PMP preparation. On average I answered almost 3,500 sample exam questions including eight full length PrepCast simulator exams. My average score for last five simulator exams was 85% approx. Oliver Lehmann’s I got 63% & 68% respectively.

I didn’t memorize ITTO’s rather understood the concepts, process flows & connections among them. There was not a single question on my real exam asking the straight forward ITTO’s like following are 6 out of 7 inputs or T&T which one is the missing one, or which of the following is an output of control cost process let’s say, instead most of them were situational based questions where you need to read, understand and pick the best answer within that short period of time. So my honest advice is do not waste time in memorizing it by heart rather understand & polish up the concepts every time you sit for study, look at the holistic view.

Wishing all the best to future PMP aspirants. Do let me know if you have any questions or comments.

A. H. Amini, BEng., MSc., PMP
Amini, BEng, MSc, PMP
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Yes I did it, passed PMP on first attempt with 5MP 1 year 1 month ago #6156

  • Sana
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Well done!! :)

Yes I did it, passed PMP on first attempt with 5MP 1 year 1 month ago #6167

  • Ashwin Seshadri Mathur Ramaswamy
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Yes I did it, passed PMP on first attempt with 5MP 11 months 3 weeks ago #6397

  • Yousif Elbadri
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:) My sincere Congrats!

Exactly as my plan going now, and I decide to take Exam in Dec, 2015.

Pls my brothers pray for me.

= Me too my colleagues; I have to thank Cornelius & his team, since they are created to the (PMPian) GREAAAAT PrepCast, really (PrepCast is a beautiful PMP world)as it keeps bring us all in one place.

A lot of thank Mr. Cornelius (the biggest figure in PMP world)
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