How to prepare for the PMP certification exam?

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How to prepare for the PMP certification exam?
How to prepare for the PMP certification exam? Image source: Pixabay

Project Management Professional (PMP) certification, is an industry recognized qualification for the project managers. PMP helps you get the experience, knowledge, skill, and competency required to handle and lead a project. PMP is administered by Project Management Institute, USA and is amongst the most pursued certification.

What are the benefits of PMP certification?

Every industry has a requirement for Project Management Professionals. The demand for skill requirement varies between different industries and geographies. PMT helps you get benefits in the career. It helps you get more opportunities, get a job, getting promoted, get a raise in salary, and gives you recognition.

How to prepare for the PMP certification exam?

You can crack the PMP certification exam only when you have the commitment, dedication and thorough preparation. PMP examination needs serious preparation which is unavoidable in any situation and gives no heed to your experience and education. One can become a successful project manager by clearing the PMP exam. A successful PMP Candidates spends 35 hours or more to prepare, so don’t forget to give you plenty of time for the preparation before appearing for the exam.

Steps to be followed for being a successful PMP’s

There are some of the easy to follow steps that can lead you to get your certification attached to your resume soon.

1)    Go through the PMP examination content outline: To do well in the PMP examination it is very important to go through the examination content outline. This content outline is published by PMI and is the most important and credible document for the examination. You can review this for the following reasons:

  1. Breaking up the question as per the process area
  2. It provides you with knowledge, skills, tasks and other things required per PMI’s Role Delineation study.

You will get an idea about which area to be covered and how are the questions asked in the examination etc. PMBOK or Project Management Body of Knowledge is a study guide provided by PMI, you should use for your preparation for PMP examination which needs to be covered and you must have a command on every term used in it so that nothing sounds unfamiliar. Study and understand every word as it’s important to understand the meaning not to memorize.

2)    Personal Expertise in the field: It is very important to have a personal experience in project management, which will help you crack the examination. Your personal experience will lead you to have a deeper knowledge of the subject.

3)    Enrolment in a formal study course offered by licensed Registered Education Providers by PMI: Project Management Institute’s Registered Education Providers provides training for project management and is approved by PMI. PMI started accrediting training providers globally to build a network of quality education providers. Many PMI Project Management Professionals across the globe have been benefited by this. The reasons why one should enroll them in a training course on PMP are:

  1. Courses like these provide you with study materials made exclusively for PMP examination.
  2. They help you get a quick knowledge about various project management concepts.

iii.    They make you grasp all the terminology, formulae, concepts and other key inputs required for PMP examination quickly.

  1. Many of the training institutes provide you a 35 contact hours certificate, which is necessary for the candidate to be eligible for appearing in the PMP examination.

4)    Preparation of a proper study plan: Take your certification examination as a project that needs to be completed and accomplished. Planning is the most important step before working on any project or an exam. In this case, a proper study plan should be framed to give you a direction. The study plan should include PMBOK, the practice of mock test papers, the study of various materials and studying the materials provided by the training institutes. Your study sessions should be broken into smaller intervals or small sessions which will include everything to study.

Your study plan will do what you do at work creating plans to manage your projects. Like any real project plan your PMP exam project plan will help you stick to your schedule and it needs to outline your mission schedule, weekly goals and communication efforts putting such a plan into action for your PMP exam preparation will greatly increase your chances of passing and being able to putting those three letters PMP behind your name. Whenever someone starts a project, they should always start with making a template because the template ensures that one doesn’t forget anything. Do the same for your PMP exam.

5)    Giving Importance to the Vocabulary: Appearing for PMP exam means competing on a global level. One of the main reason PMP is given value across the world is that it has a common vocabulary shared by all the project managers worldwide so that their remains no confusion working in any geographical area. The main cause for not passing PMP examination in the first attempt is the lack in understanding of the PMBOK guide Vocabulary. Henceforth, it is very important to read thoroughly and understand the vocabulary given in the PMBOK.

Learning new vocabulary needs a lot of effort and time as it is almost equivalent to learning a language. It needs dedication, discipline, and concentration. You can break down them down into small bite-sized pieces and systematically studied, like any big project. This will make the whole process of learning new vocabulary less frustrating.

6)    Review the latest version of PMBOK and study materials: Always have the latest version of PMBOK and get a hand on as many study materials you can get from a different institution. No matter how many study materials you are using PMBOK remains the most important of all. In PMBOK focus on the table showing the relation between13 Knowledge Areas and 5 Process Groups with 47 processes and the way in which they are applicable in the project management.

Many PMP candidates learn this table by heart which helps them a lot in the examination. A no. of candidates invests their first 5 minutes of their PMP exam in drawing the table, on the blank sheet provided to them, this later is used by them as a reference to answer 200 MCQ in the examination paper.

7)    Regular practice of mock tests: Regular practicing for mock tests will prepare you and make you ready for your examination. It helps you to judge yourself on the basis of your performance and know how much you are prepared for the exam and in which area you are lagging behind. After giving the exam you can check the time you are taking to complete the test papers. The 4 hours examination can be stressful and mentally and physically straining but you need this to get the certification. By practicing giving a mock test for 4 hours just you would do in the PMP examination you will get used to it.

8)    Studying in a group: Studying in a group pushes you to study on a regular basis and the outcomes are more productive. By studying in a group, you can seek help from others in the part where you are having doubts and even you can help others. Helping others will also build up your confidence. It helps in motivating each other to remain positive during the whole time period.

Preparing for any of the certification exams is not easy stuff. You need to follow some of the important steps and should also make sure that you are going the right way. When you are preparing for the PMP exam, abiding by a number of steps can help you in getting the certifications soon.

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