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TOPIC: PMP Certified with 5 Above Targets in 2.5 months of preparation!!!

PMP Certified with 5 Above Targets in 2.5 months of preparation!!! 6 months 1 week ago #21120

  • Anu Achankunju
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My PMP Certification journey
• Decided to take the exam and purchased the PM Prepcast & PM Exam simulator on 20 Jan 2020
• Completed the prepcast videos & course certificate on 8 Feb 2020
• Started preparing the application & submitted on 18 Feb 2020
• Application accepted without audit on 24 Feb 2020
• Started reading Rita Mulchay book and practiced the chapter quizzes from 9 Feb 2020 to 28 Feb 2020
• Booked the exam for 08 Apr 2020
• Started reading PMPBOK from 01 Mar 2020 to 16 Mar 2020
• Started doing mock tests and focused reading of concepts which was not clear based on my mock test results
• Lockdown announced in India on March 24th and exam centres were closed and my exam was cancelled
• Slowed down on studies and I lost the rhythm of my preparation
• Almost 1 month of break and got to know about Proctored exams on 23 Apr 2020 and started reading more on that and made up my mind to go for this option with lots of fear
• Started reading PMBOK from April 24th as I felt I forgot most of what I learned also parallelly started doing Mock tests
• Booked my exam on May 8
• Took off from work from 1st May to 8th May and focussed on Mock test and error logs
• Gave the exam on 8th May and passed with 5 above targets
• Over all 2.5 months of preparation

Mock tests done and the score
1. Simply learn MT 1- 69%
2. PM Exam Simulator MT 1 - 78%
3. PM Exam Simulator MT 2 - 84%
4. PM Exam Simulator MT 3 - 82%
5. PM Exam Simulator MT 4 - 78%
6. PM Exam Simulator MT 5 - 85%
7. PM Exam Simulator MT 6 - 82%
8. PM Exam Simulator MT 7 - 78.5%

Online proctored exam experience

I was really scared to opt for this option and waited for test centres to open. But, there was no sign of opening and hence decided to go for this option. My main concern was about power failure or network outage during the exam. I took slot at night 9:15 PM so that the disturbances and outside noise will be less. Also my family members can sleep during this time. I logged in at 8:45 PM and the process was smooth. I got the exam start option within 10mnts. Exam started and for no reason I felt very nervous. First 12 Qns I couldn't focus at all. But I moved on and tried to calm my mind. After about 12 Qns I started feeling stable and continued. But my timing and exam strategies went for a toss. In about 30mnts after starting the exam, power went off and switching to generator took 2 mnts for the apartment security. Luckily I was connected back and the proctor allowed me to continue the exam. So, don’t worry if u have a short outage in between. It will not affect your test. My plan was to complete the first 90 Qns and submit it in 120 mnts and 2nd 110 Qns in 130mnts. I practiced my last 3 MTs the same way and used MS paint for any calculation & critical path Qns to prepare myself for the new format and no usage of paper. It was difficult to do the critical path in Paint, but was manageable. In actual exam I had one critical path and 1 calculation Qn for which I used the whiteboard and calculator. I submitted my 1st session at 126mnt, 6 mnts above my target hoping I will manage in the 2nd half. 2nd half I was calm and tried to focus more. And completed the Qns 5mnts before the time limit and did a quick review and submitted. I saw the Congratulations screen and was overwhelmed to see that. Next day evening I received my details score card in my mail box and 5 above targets was unbelievable. So even if you are nervous during the exam and doubtful about passing, it might be just your stress and you will still score good. If you are still doubtful on online exam, don't think much and take that option. Trust me the whole process in test centre is also stressful. Now you can take the exam on your system in the comfort of your room. So make use of this opportunity.

Simulator review
Over all exam questions were not very long like the Rita quizzes. Some were simple direct Qns and some were very vague, longer and difficult to decide. I just moved on with my best guess. I felt the Qns were not 100% similar to simulator, but comparable to almost 50-60%. Simulator practice definitely helped me in time management, keeping myself focussed for 4 long hours, looking through all options to choose the best answer, understanding my weak areas and learning that thoroughly. My suggestion is to do as many full MTs at possible than just reading book 2-3 round. One round of Rita & PMBOK is sufficient to start doing test and then focus on topics which you are getting wrong.

Important tips I followed were
1. Practice writing the 49 processes in order daily once until I memorized it. You don’t have to bi-heart it on day 1. Slowly the order will stick to your mind. I never tried to memorize the ITTO and I don't think it's required also.
2. Wrote all formulae daily until I memorized it. May be a week of doing this was enough. Hence there was no need to create any brain dump
3. Created some sticky note on few topics which I got confused and just scanned through daily
4. Spent 4-6 hours analyzing each question & options next day of completing MT. This is very important to understand why each option is correct/incorrect. Prepcast give detailed explanation on that and I found it most useful in my preparation. Wrote the important points in a notebook and kept revising that. This notebook is the only material I revised till last day of the exam.

All the best for your exam!
The following user(s) said Thank You: Tatjana , Shreeraj Pawar
Last edit: by Anu Achankunju. Reason: Formatting

PMP Certified with 5 Above Targets in 2.5 months of preparation!!! 6 months 1 week ago #21122

  • Ferdinand Del Mundo
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Congratulations for passing the exam!
The following user(s) said Thank You: Anu Achankunju

PMP Certified with 5 Above Targets in 2.5 months of preparation!!! 6 months 1 week ago #21123

  • Ahmed
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Hi Anu,
Great... congratulations again. Would you mind sharing the snapshot of your notes plz...
Thanks
Ahmed
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PMP Certified with 5 Above Targets in 2.5 months of preparation!!! 6 months 1 week ago #21124

  • Anu Achankunju
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I have created hand written notes Ahmed not in any particular format. I will try to upload few pics if that helps

PMP Certified with 5 Above Targets in 2.5 months of preparation!!! 6 months 1 week ago #21126

  • Nastaran Akbarzadeh
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Hi,
Congratulation for this big success, I have a question are we allowed to use paper to draw critical path in the online exam?
Last edit: by Nastaran Akbarzadeh.

PMP Certified with 5 Above Targets in 2.5 months of preparation!!! 6 months 1 week ago #21144

  • Anonymous
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No paper or pen allowed in online proctored exam. You have to use the built in whiteboard
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