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TOPIC: Passed PMP - All above target

Passed PMP - All above target 2 years 1 month ago #15007

  • Leathel Grody
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What a last couple weeks, is all I have to say, but on Friday I passed the PMP all above target on first attempt. These lessons learned have been helpful and inspirational during the last few months of studying. It has been beneficial to see other's tips as well as motivation to take the test even if not getting the 80% on the prep tests. So here is what worked for me.

I started about 3 months ago. All the processes were not making sense to me. I was watching the PM Prepcast but until I watched Ricardo Vargas's YouTube video and reviewed the flow of his chart did the whole PMP process finally click in and make sense. That gave me the big picture and I was able to dig in better. I read part of Rita Mulcahy's 9th edition book but was running out of time about a month ago and skimmed through the last half. I used the PM Prepcast and watched videos and taking notes. Then about a month ago I went through a PMTraining 5-day bootcamp. I wanted to spend the first two months reviewing the data from multiple sources and then the last month doing prep questions to find the gaps. Since Rita's book and PMTraining went over the data Knowledge Areas(Left to right) I watched the Prepcast videos by Process Group(Up to down). This helped understand the flow of tasks better in my opinion. I also finished a Graduate Certificate in Project Management over the summer so some details from that were helpful. But the classes were not focused on PMI specifically. If I had to chose one, I would use the PM Prepcast. I don't know how anybody can just use the 5-day bootcamp and pass. There is just too much data to take in. The PM Prepcast you covers the details deeply at your own pace.

So for the last month I have been really trying to do questions. I work full time, have kids, and working on my master degree so while I wanted to do a 4-hour test, I never was able to do it. So I basically would do 50 question blocks during my lunch and a couple at night. I knew I could do 50 questions in an hour pretty easily so that worked to know my timing. For my questions I used the PMTraining prep questions, RMCs 9th edition FASTrack questions, and the PM Exam simulator questions. I probably did about 2500 questions overall. I ran out of time and was only able to do about 1300 of the PM Exam simulator questions. I would rate PMTraining, FASTrack, then PM Exam Simulator as easiest to hardest. PMTraining is know the data and a lot of ethical questions, FASTrack is very broad and starts throwing in tricky questions, PM Exam Simulator is tricky in the way it uses the question details toward the answer details. Executable or planning in question, or least likely, etc... I was getting an average of 80% with PMTraining, 65-75% with FASTrack, and 70-80% with PM Exam Simulator. The last two weeks I had been doing trying to fit in 200 questions a day and I was going to bed exhausted. After each prep test, I reviewed both right and wrong answers. Many times you guess and get an answer correct, so it is good to know why you got questions right, not just why you got questions wrong. If I only had to choose one source I would go with the PM Exam Simulator. The detail it provided for each of the wrong and correct answers was the best out of all the prep software I used. Also, the option to take only unanswered questions is a huge feature. I didn't have to retake questions I had already done over and over.

From there, I memorized the process chart and used somebody's link from here off using the trick of know the top was 2,24,10,12,1 and the side is like a phone number 766-436-3734. Another good suggestion from these lessons learned was to know the major unique outputs. Varga has a chart with the ITTOs and I went through and highlighted all those (Project Charter, Assumption log, Project Scope Statement, Scope baseline, etc.) so I knew which process they were coming out of.

On test day I choose my food specifically. I took in a very little amount of coffee and ate a protein bar for breakfast and another right before going into exam site. I didn't want to have to use the restroom if I didn't have to and it worked. I did spend 5 minutes to braindump the process chart and formulas. When you begin the journy and look at the list of formulas they are overwhelming, but after using them over and over in questions, you really do start to memorize them. I will say, I really didn't have many questions I used the process braindump for like I was expecting. A handful of formula questions as well. The funny thing is I can't even remember what the actual questions were about. I was so focused that is all a blur now. I will say they are more like RMC's FASTrack if I had to choose one. They really aren't tricky. I think there was alot about know what you would do next, so you need to understand the order of how things work(more like Rita's flow process than the process groups) and also when you should use Integrated Change Control and when you do not need to. There were a handful of questions I marked because none of the answers made any sense to the question. And as everybody says, there usually are two possible good answers. Around question 175 I had to refocus. At that point I was just wanting to be done. At question 200 I had twenty minutes left and reviewed the few marked questions I had. When I ended exam, I really had no clue whether I passed or failed. Then after the survey I saw congratulations and was able to control myself from doing the happy dance in the testing room.

Passed PMP - All above target 2 years 1 month ago #15013

  • Jenikka Ebias
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Hi Leathel,

Congratulations on passing the PMP Exam! Thank you for sharing your lessons learned here. I'm sure other aspiring Project Management Professionals would find this helpful.
Jenikka Ebias
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