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TOPIC: Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 3 months 1 week ago #18420

  • Anshul Agrawal
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Hello,

Here's a brief summary of my experience and what I learned in the process.

I studied for a total of 3 months. In the first month, I took a prep class (4 Sundays), and that was pretty much it. In the second month, I studied for 3 hours every day. In the third month, I studied for 4 hours every day for 2 weeks and then for the remainder of the month, I took one exam every day (almost). My main source of studying was Rita Mulcahy's PMP Exam Prep. I found the book to be very helpful. I read the book once thoroughly, skimmed it twice, and then referred to it on an as-needed basis. I felt that I could have taken the exam after 2-2.5 months of studying. The key was to read/do something every day. Once I was through the book, I started doing the exams, which is when I found out my weak spots. After every exam, I would review what went wrong and quickly refresh that area.

I found that most mistakes that I was making were more due to the gap in my experience as opposed to academic knowledge. As a result, I started following these rules whenever I got stuck on a question, which helped me a lot:
* PMI wants to know you would address a situation using PMI's principles and not your experience
* How would you address the presentation situation for a large global project (think 100+ team members spread globally, budget in millions, a high-stake project)
* What process is being described in the question? (this was the single most helpful rule that I followed)

Reading materials:
* Rita Mulcahey
* Reading materials from a local PMP class prep course (Uloom Training in Mississauga, ON)
* acethepmpexam.com - this was a great resource for a quick review of the processes and ITTOs

Mock Exams:
* Rita Mulcahey (78%, 82%, 82%) - I felt that these exams were more difficult than the actual exam. They were very different than the actual exam too. Questions on the actual exam were very short and RM's questions were very long and wordy. While the underlying principles were the same, I highly recommend trying exams from at least 2 more sources.
* Prepcast (84%, 79.5%, 83%, 79.5%, ITTO - 70%) - PC's exams were much closer to the actual exam, however, they were still very different. The way questions were worded in the actual exam was very different than any test on PC. This threw me off a lot for the first half-hour. Eventually, I calmed down and did well. I read a lot about that the difficulty of PC's exam was more than that of the actual exam, I did not find that to be the case. I thought they were similar in terms of difficulty to the final exam.
* Oliver Lehmann (71%)
* PMTraining (88%) - This is a good resource for quizzes. Their exams were much easier than the actual exam.

I found that on most mock exams, I kept running out of time to go through all marked questions. I was concerned about this a lot. However, I found that on the actual exam, I was able to take a full pass in only 2.5 hours and used the remaining 1.5 hours to review questions. I highly recommend trying exams from 3-4 sources so you can get used to answering questions written in different styles.

Exam day:
I went to the exam center about 30 minutes early. It took me 5 minutes to do all the paperwork and then they started the exam right away. I was given a locker and asked to keep everything there. I told them that I have a snack in there that I want to eat, they asked me to keep the snack in the second locker. The exam room was CHILLY! I had taken a sweatshirt but they said that no sweaters are allowed. When I told them that it is very chilly, they allowed me to take the sweatshirt after checking all pockets.

I was given one sheet of A4 size erasable paper. They asked me if one would be enough, I asked him for two then they gave me a sheet of 4 erasable papers (legal size).

While the exam room was quiet, there were small disturbances. For example, new students kept coming in and old ones kept going out, which was always a bit irritating. One student, in particular, was asking a bit too many questions and was fairly disruptive. The exam center was a room in an office, so there was some light office noise. At one point, someone's kids came in the office making a lot of noise. Overall, the place was quiet only a few minutes of issues. Expect such an environment and get earplugs from them. Do not let these small disturbances get to you. Expect the unexpected!

Hope this is helpful. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 3 months 5 days ago #18435

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Hello,
First off all congratulation for your success in PMI exam. can you please help me out to share your notes on my email id This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 2 months 4 weeks ago #18490

  • Ashvini K. Chhabra
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Hats off to you to for passing the PMP exam. You purchased the Rita's mock tests or you practiced those questions which are printed at the end of each chapter in Rita's book.
How many questions you got from Agile & did you study agile guide ?
I have PM prepcast mock tests & 5 tests from my REP. Will they be sufficient ? I don't have mock tests of Rita & PMtraining.com

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 2 months 4 weeks ago #18494

  • Anshul Agrawal
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Hello Amit,
I do not have any virtual notes. I had some notes on paper from my class and made some notes in the book.
Thanks,
Anshul

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 2 months 4 weeks ago #18495

  • Anshul Agrawal
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Hello Ashvini,
I bought the mock tests from Rita M. Do not worry about PMTraining tests. As far as purchasing Rita M's tests, it depends on how you are scoring on the current tests. If you are scoring more than 85%, I would not worry about it. If not, it may be worth the investment.

There weren't that many questions on Agile maybe about 5-10. I did not study agile, just took a lot of practice questions and got to know the main topics of agile questions - burndown chart, the difference between agile and traditional, no CCB in agile, the purpose of retrospectives, who manages quality, skills of team members.

Hope this helps.

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 2 months 4 weeks ago #18498

  • Ashvini K Chhabra
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Hi Anshul,

Thanks for your quick reply. So far I have given prepcast exam chapter wise & I have scored 80 to 90 out of 100. The cost of Rita's test is too high.

For agile, what I understood is that you didn't study the agile guide which is separate book & bundled with pmbok6. I have studied agile from pmbok6 but it doesn't contain info about retrospective, quality & skill of team members. It contains brief info about agile.

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 2 months 3 weeks ago #18519

  • Anshul Agrawal
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That is correct. I got most of that knowledge through practice tests. I got those questions on agile wrong and then read the correct answers. Are you planning on buying the prepcast exam package? If yes, then don't worry about Rita. But do try all the free tests available to you.

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 2 months 2 weeks ago #18556

  • Ashvini K. Chhabra
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I would like to know what type of maths questions were asked like PV , NPV , FV depreciation , economic value add (EVA) etc for project selection. In quality , sigma , variance etc. In procurement
calculation of point of total assumptions, calculating seller's fee , profit , incentive & total cost for the buyer ?

Questions related to ITTO were explicit like which plan , document or other is required as input or are the outputs, tools & technique OR which is not an input, output or tools & technique for XYZ process?
Last edit: by Ashvini K. Chhabra.

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 2 months 2 weeks ago #18571

  • Anshul Agrawal
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I do not remember the details but questions around any calculations were very simple and straightforward. ITTO related questions were not direct, they asked those questions indirectly.

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 2 months 2 weeks ago #18573

  • Joe Sekiya
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Congrats! I always read about the exam room being chilly, but mine was around 72 degrees.

Passed on the first attempt with 5 ATs + Pearson VUE experience 1 week 4 days ago #19216

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Very helpful. thank you for the time to explain!!!
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