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TOPIC: Passed my PMP today with only PrepCast and PMBO - detailed Lessons Learned

Passed my PMP today with only PrepCast and PMBO - detailed Lessons Learned 10 months 1 week ago #18348

  • Philipp Miltner
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Dear all,

after being successfull with the exam I wish to follow Cornelius' request and post my lessons learned. I will give you a ton of
detail about my process, for those how are interested in that.

So here is my journey to the PMP with my lessons learned (PrepCast and PMBOK only):

1) Signed up for the PrepCast Course (2nd Half of March)

2) Watched the first introductions and made a study plan
--> Based the Study plan on the excel register of all the lessons. Distributed them over a timeframe of approx. 2 months,
scheduling roughly 1:15 hrs per day in video-time

3) Watched the Videos and did the assessments (March - June)
--> Started as suggested with all the overviews, then went through it chapter by chapter and conluded the chapters with the assessment
(I scheduled 1:00 hrs per assessment in the studyplan)
--> While watching I highlighted important passages in the PMBOK and added Notes, which were plenty (roughly every 2nd page
had some additions, and every 5th was completely filled with scribbeling)
--> After every Knowledge Area, I read the whole KA again, to solidify (I had scheduled this with 1:30 hrs each in my studyplan)
--> I followed my studyplan rigorously and it helped me a lot to determine wether I am done for today and can stop with a good feeling or not.
--> Often I had piled up up to 3 hrs for the weekends, but with the plan I managed to get back on track
--> A flue and a business trip each added a week of delay to the schedule, which I accepted soon after the occurence,
focusing on continuing in the pace originally intended.

4) Took the final Prep-Cast Exam (Mid June)
--> Started to stress about it, but it is really easy after paying attention to the course.
--> Did it as a trial just to see if I need more preparation and I passed and scored 20 / 25 without any further preaparation
--> (Keeping in mind, that the earlier chapters I had last read or seen almost 2 months ago by then)
--> All in all approx. 80hrs went into that

5) Started my PMI-Membership (June)

6) Registered for the PMP exam
--> Prepared my proof of eligibility documentation using my CV and contacts to my former Managers
--> Obtained approval from my former Managers for the claimed hours (was fortunately no problem in my case and done in 2 days)
--> handed in the documentation and waited for the Letter of Eligibility or Notice for an Audit.
--> No audit was requested for me and I had my Certificate of Eligibility within 5 days.

7) Scheduled my PMP Exam
--> I followed the instructions and scheduled my exam for 22-Aug-2019 (today), giving me roughly 2 months to prepare

8 ) Finished the slacking around!
--> Between the Prep-Cast Final Exam and the scheduling of the Exam, I did not work at all on the material for 2 weeks
--> I had studied every evening and enjoyed some time off...
--> I felt like this is a stage that must be kept short!!!

8a) My Ideal learning process (~ 4 Weeks) (skip 9 - 11 if you like, that's how I learned my process)
--> First do one trial Exam to understand how the questions are structured
--> Re-Read all the chapters and write everything worth remembering on flashcards
--> Print the ITTOs from the PMBOK PDF on Flashcards as well (at least from Project Integration to Cost Management)
--> Read at least 3 Processes per every 2nd day and add the Flashcards (also the ITTOs) to your Flashcard system
--> Learn the Flashcards every day, using a Leitner-style system
--> After Cost Management I got a really good feeling for the ITTOs in general, so I stopped doing them

*** Skip if you like ***

9) Started with Exam Questions (June)
--> Realized, I have to focus more on the details to succeed with the questions
--> Did roughly 200 questions starting with Project Integration until I realized I have to read again all the material

10) Re-Read the Material, 1 KA per day (July)
--> Wanted to read a Knowledge Area and then train the questions, but realized around Scheduling, that I need more detail
still and need to REALLY memorize things

11) Stopped with Exam-Questions and started making Flash-Cards (Mid July)
--> Instead of making notes on paper, I wrote anything keepworthy on flashcards, even ITTOs
--> Used my Notes from the PrepCast Course and my understanding of how the questions work for that
--> Started reading chapters and learning Flashcards in a Leitner-Style-System with great success

*** Continue here ***

12) Test Exam Phase ( 2 - 3 Weeks)
--> Start 2 - 3 Weeks before the PMP Exam
--> Plan ahead for all the 8 Trial Exams (4hrs needed for each)
--> I did it in 2 weekends and 4 half-days off
--> Do all the exams in short succession (not more than 2 days between exams)
--> Write down topics that you felt insecure with
--> Review wrongly answered questions & marked topics and make sure appropriate flashcards are in the system
--> continue with the flash cards
--> I scored 84% - 89% in all testexams after this preparation (even though only fully applied the process half-way through)
--> Tipp: All the test-questions in PrepCast were good and fine, but they had a certain "style" that I got used to.
The Real Exam questions had a slightly different "style" which threw me off my game a bit. It would have been good to
also do at least one trial exam in addition, that you would find with google, to get a second perspective.

12a) Special Attention needed for: (at least in my case...)
--> Earned Value Formuals... either know them by heart or understand the math behind the KPIs, you WILL need it.
--> Triangular and Beta Distribution Estimates... they will not likely let you go without one of them....
--> Resource Management Contract Types: I had quite a lot of questions about that too...

13) The last day
--> Relax and be calm
--> I took my pile of flashcards and read them throuh in the evening (~ 200 pcs.)
--> Went to bed early

14) The Exam (August, 22nd)
--> After the good Test-Exam scores I was pretty confident
--> The exam was very similar to the Test-Exams, so no problem
--> I passed with Above Target in all Process groups

15) Verdict & Summary
--> Working with the PrepCast material & PMBOK helped me a lot with my preparation, no additional Literature was needed for me.
--> I invested all in all roughly 200 hrs but never had to suffer anxiety or distress
--> I achieved this with 1:00 - 1:30 hrs daily with some breaks over 5 months
--> I read the PMBOK all in all 3 times (1st with the videos, 2nd after each chapter before the assessment, 3rd as exam preparation)
--> I planned for 8 trial exams but thanks to Murphy only completed 6,5, with an average 1st-Try score on all questions of 83%
--> If less time is available, I think it could be done in 150hrs and 3 - 4 months: Watch all the videos without reading in between
and mark the book, do only 100 test questions, then immediately read the PMBOK and do flashcards. Do at least 4 exams before the official one.

I hope it helps anyone!
Good luck to you all!
The following user(s) said Thank You: Randy Tan, Margaret Forsythe

Passed my PMP today with only PrepCast and PMBO - detailed Lessons Learned 10 months 1 week ago #18355

  • Jenikka Ebias
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Hi Philip,

Congratulations on passing the PMP Exam! We are so glad to hear about the latest milestone in your career. Thank you for sharing a detailed timeline of the lessons you learned during this process.

We wish you all the best in your future endeavors!
Jenikka Ebias
Customer Support
OSP International LLC

Passed my PMP today with only PrepCast and PMBO - detailed Lessons Learned 9 months 4 weeks ago #18426

  • Narsi
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FIrst of all congratulations..Your success journey of wonderful..I have stared preparing for the PMP exam. If possible Could you please share your notes or Flash cards to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. which will save me lot of time and also helps me to understand better.
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