PMP. Exam. What is worth considering and why it is needed

    Recently, I became the owner of the coveted certificate confirming the degree of PMP.

    And in the wake of this happiness, I want to share tips with the community: what should be taken into account when preparing for the exam.

    How to get permission to surrender

    Much has been written about this, including in the PMI Handbook itself. I would not like to repeat. My profile was not checked. They say they check every 10th.

    When I received permission, there was only one difficulty - for some reason I thought that Contact hours (what I needed to access the delivery) and the PDU are the same. This is not true!

    Here is an article that explains the difference quite well:

    How long did the preparation take

    My training took 8 months. Six of them, I was preparing not very intense. And the two were very busy. In the end, the eyes began to hurt not only from the company, but also from the books.
    I spent about 4 hours a day in recent months.

    You can, of course, not stretch like me! If you practice evenly, then you need 4-5 months to prepare, taking into account that you work and there is enough work :)

    How to prepare


    Everything is standard here. The key is Rita Mulcahy's PMP Exam Prep. There are books that cost 20 others! For studying English grammar, it's Murphy, for understanding PMI project management fundamentals - Rita Mulcahy's PMP Exam Prep, not PMBoK, if not strange (but this is my opinion).

    She is in English, Rita recommends reading it three times, I read it twice and it’s enough. Read interesting!
    The book is expensive and delivery cost about 9 000 p.

    The second book is PMBoK itself. It is provided free of charge if there is a PMI membership, and a year’s membership costs about $ 130. Membership provides access to download a whole heap of useful books. Just have time to read!

    When I was at the project management training, I asked Turner: “Is it possible to pass the exam without reading PMBoK?”, He answered unequivocally - “It’s unrealistic!”. My opinion - Rita and experience may well be enough.

    I read the entire PMBoK once (not counting some chapters I read before). The book is boring, but there is certainly useful information in it. PMBoK must be read precisely after Rita (perceived better).
    No entrances and exits (ITTO) did not memorize and do not advise you!

    Rita will have to read in English, PmBOK is better in Russian to compare the translations of terms. This is important for the exam! Unless of course you will pass with the translation into Russian.
    Last, I recommend doing it anyway, even if your knowledge of English is perfect.

    Why it is better to order a Russian translation during the PMP exam

    Very little time is allotted for the exam and, if your speed reading in Russian is higher, then this gives additional time.
    There were questions to answer which were easier due to the fact that the Russian translation clarified the situation. Sometimes, in the English version, the words were written differently, and in the Russian version the same, and this simplified the question.
    In general, the questions were translated correctly, although before preparation I repeatedly met the opinion that the translation complicated the question. I have difficulty in 4-10 questions due to translation. Then I read in English and the situation cleared up.

    I am pretty sure that I would not pass without a translation. Although written English is quite good.


    From the sites I can advise only:

    The site provides templates for project documents. Parsing templates helps a lot in understanding PMBoK and even Rita.


    Tests are very important!
    I made the tests in Rita’s book. Then he tested the Oliver Lehmann tests in open access and some more.
    I put myself free apps on my phone and, while the car was warming up, I solved the tests. But! In applications, questions are very different from what is on the exam.

    Now I want to announce my main discovery. The questions in the tests described above, and even in Rita, are quite different, both in complexity and in content, with what was in the exam.
    It is clear that other questions !? But they are fundamentally different in complexity (more difficult!) And in format.

    I had a good percentage of answers on Rita.
    But on the exam, after the first 20 questions, I experienced a slight feeling of confusion.

    Almost every question on the exam is designed so that it is quite simple to exclude the two answer choices, and you have to make a really painful choice between the two others.


    Timing is a very important moment. Moreover, I have not met in the preparation of such an obvious advice.
    Solving tests, you need to develop a sense of time! You should feel that you have to make a decision and respond (without looking at your watch). Without this, it will be very difficult to pass the exam.

    To catch this feeling, you need to solve the tests for a while and fit. I took blocks of questions of 20 pieces and solved them with a timer in 24 minutes. As a result, I precisely understood the sensations as I walked ahead of the schedule or was late.

    Also, I advise you to remember the reference points:
    30 minutes - must answer at least 25 questions.
    1 hour - 50.
    and so on.

    Presentations and training of others.

    This is a very time consuming, but very effective way. I conducted one training on risks and exam on questions related to risks, the answer was the easiest.


    Almost everywhere, the strategy “Answer simple questions - Mark and skip complex ones - Answer marked ones” is described. I also prepared according to this principle, but at the exam I had to adjust the strategy and respond thoughtfully to each question (this decision came by the very same and was correct).
    When answered the last question, there are only 30-40 seconds left. I looked at the marked questions and became sad - about 70-80% of the questions were marked. A thought flashed: “I won't pass!” Long preparation was in vain! ”. There were still 15 seconds left, I clicked “End Test” or something like that. Saw the inscription: “Congratulation! “. About two minutes was really happy, then I was asked to leave the testing room!


    At the exit I was given a test report and, to my surprise, almost everywhere I answered “Above the goal”, i.e. Passed with a large enough margin.

    Still! At the time of delivery, it happened that the questions literally “pounded” into one topic and had to answer almost equally to 10-15 questions. This caused excitement, I could not believe that the answer could be the same for 10-15 questions. But it looks like it was close to that.

    What was unusual in the testing center

    I live in Vladivostok, so I went to Korea to pass (so as not to change the time zones in particular).

    • I came to the test center earlier for 2-3 hours. Walking around Seoul before the exam was not in the mood, and more earlier, I did not reserve time (I was reinsured in case of road disturbances).
    • They say to me: “You have time at 13:00”, I: “Can I get early?”, They: “No problem”, and they began to draw up.
    • There was no safe in the hostel, so I took all the money and credit cards to the testing center. Everything had to be left in a box, similar to what they are in supermarkets. The key to the box, in my opinion, had to be given at the entrance to the test room.
    • Then he twisted his pockets, rolled up his pants. Scanned by a semiconductor detector, I guess.
    • As warned, they gave two pencils and an A4 sheet, you can take your passport with you. Everything else in the box you leave.
    • Upon entering the room, I was surprised! It seemed to me that I would be there alone. But no! Rows of computers, the Koreans are sitting and rent something.
    • I sit down at the computer, the assistant explains something to me in English, I do not really understand it. It turned out that the passport does not need to be placed in front of the monitor, there may be a hidden camera in it, as I understood it.
    • The mouse did not seem very “alive”, and the chair was not very comfortable.

    What does the preparation

    When you pay for the exam a decent amount of money, and everything in the circle with the flight and accommodation cost about $ 1800, then you are preparing very conscientiously.

    The PMP degree is not very much appreciated in Russia, but the knowledge you get is very good. PMBoK is in many ways a codebook that refers to other areas of knowledge and forces you to read a lot.
    I wouldn’t say that I didn’t know before the exam what it was: 6σ, Kaizen, Lean, JIT and so on, but the training forced me to learn a lot of new and interesting things.

    I hope my article has helped those who are planning to take PMP!
    I'm already thinking about ITIL certification. They say it is easier :)

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