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I'm proud to say that I passed the PMP test on 1/9 and I'm shocked with my score.
I have a full time job(and then some), and my study/prep time took 5 months. I put in at least a couple of hours after work and more on the weekends. I was disciplined in my approach. I put in approximately 20 hours per week. My plan was as follows:
1) Watch at least chapter of PM prepcast every week.
2) Take detailed notes in evernote
3) Read corresponding chapters/quizzes in Rita
4) Repeat 1,2,3 until I went through everything
5) Read PMBOK guide
6) Develop and practice brain dump of formulas and process grids
6) Skim Rita
7) Take 1 full exam simulator test per week for 7 weeks
In between tests read up/study on weak areas. Also squeeze in formula practice and flash cards using PM Prepcast materials
9) Final couple of weeks focused on the big picture of hand-offs between processes. I looked for patterns and documented how the processes interfaced. I also increased up my brain dump practice by doing it every day.
My use of the simulation was a huge benefit. I started off with scores in the low 70's and gradually increased to high 70's. I was disappointed in my progress because I expected my scores to improve faster. I wanted to score above 80. I thought I was going to break 80 with my last test, which was one week before my real exam. I was devastated when I scored one of my all time lowest scores. I figured I was in trouble, big trouble. I tried to stay positive and keep my face in the books/internet/etc.
I signed up for a "dry run" with my testing facility. Basically they walk you through the check-in process and you're able to to take the tutorial. Well worth the $30.
On the day of the exam I extremely nervous and not very confident. My fallback was that I did all that I could do - I couldn't have put in more time or effort, so whatever happens..happens. I went to the facility an hour early and they let me start. I began with my brain dump but was shaking so much I was afraid I wasn't go be able to read my writing. I marked the first 5 questions because I had no idea what the answer was, the next 10 or so weren't much easier. I tried to calm myself, be positive, and march on. Eventually I settled in. I took a couple of minutes break on the hour, stretch, snack, and loosen up. By the end of the exam I started to think...."maybe I'm going to pass this thing", but I needed to keep my guard up. When I went back to review the marked answers the first 5 that I had no clue on 3 hours earlier were easier, which goes to show how much your nerves can play on your mind strength. I've read it out here so often...STAY CALM....they were right.
I can't describe how good I felt when the screen flashed CONGRATULATIONS to me, and I can't tell you how shocked I was to see 4P 1MP. I did that??
Thanks to everyone on the forums and PM Prepcast. This was a fantastic experience.
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.