By Amol Yevale, Senior Project Engineer, Plug Power
Completed training at pmwares and cleared the exam.
How to Prepare & Pass PMP Exam – Here is My Experience
Time Management during PMP Exam:
- We get 230 min for 180 questions in overall. So approx. 75 min for each set of 60 questions. However, this is not a constraint you can take more time but should be strictly avoided & ideally should take 75 min for 60 questions.
- After attending first 60 questions, you will be asked if you want to take a break which is for max. 10 min. This is by default there in the system & you can resume anytime without utilizing complete 10 min. Same break is there after attending next 60 questions. Break time is separate from 230 min exam time.
- I would advise to take a break because it is very much essential. You can utilize this break to refresh yourself, redefine your strategy based on learnings from previous section, time management, eating some light snacks, etc. & can start with increased energy level.
- I would advise to keep very few questions for review. Only 4-5. Yes because, you really do not get much time to review it again & if you are running behind, then it creates back pressure. I made this mistake in my first 60 questions but then in second sections I only kept 2-3 questions for review. Questions which will take time to solve can be marked as review so that your flow will not disturb & you can good control over your time.
About Questions & Answers in PMP Exam:
- Most of the questions were up to 3-5 lines. Try to understand the question first & quickly glance through the answers. Sometimes options provided give more clarity on the question asked. Then you can go through question again if it was not clear at first sight.
- Some questions were from Hybrid approach, you were asked to pick up the best choice based on the situation given.
- Some questions were not clear about which development approach they are using but in options you will find options of both Adaptive & predictive approach.
- I felt this exam difficulty level from Moderate to high. Time constraint makes it more critical.
- You can guess the answers quickly if you have more practice of solving the questions & PMI mindset well developed. This can be only done by practicing & solving more questions.
- No single question was straight forward. I mean simple. I felt more than 80% questions situational base.
- I would advise to give minimum 3 full mock tests at home.
- Don’t waste time in solving simple straight forward question rather go for more situational questions.
- Answers are very similar. So should not forget, we have to pick the best choice.
- Read the last line of question which will provide you what exactly has been asked & assist to pick the right choice.
My learnings out of my preparation and writing PMP Exam:
- I had completed my PMP Prep training on 10th Oct’21 from pmwares. After that I studied for one & half month but then there was a gap of around 3 months due to some family functions. Then I started again from Mar’22. During this period, it was difficult at all the times to concentrate on the studies. Sometimes I used to take a break of few days or even a week & then used to start again with refreshed mind. So, there was efforts put in almost for 8 months which prepared me well for the exam.
- Biggest mistake I committed is I took 100 min for first 60 questions. Initially due to some pressure, I thought I have to only attempt 50 but later realized I have to attempt 60 & then when this time went, I really didn’t understand. This is really disappointing & loosing my confidence & hopes for success. I felt that time that I will not pass because I had left only 1 min for each question & 10 min buffer. I took a break & refreshed myself, gathered my courage, redefined my strategy & decided that we will go fast & will try my best to apply my learnings & experience of 8 months hard work to solve each question in 1 min & I am partially successful but the buffer of 10 min got consumed. For last 60 question, I had exactly 60 min left which I then attempted successfully with the speed & little confidence I gained back in earlier section.
- I only gave one quality full mock test before exam. I should have given at least 3 full mock tests as stated above. This will prepare your mind to sit for 4 hours. You can take breaks as per real exam. Make sure the mock tests that you are giving include questions from all predictive, agile & Hybrid approach & more focused on situation-based questions. Very few questions found checking your theoretical knowledge.
Practice more questions with timer:
- Above 2 points are important & I will say key to the success. Very important to prepare & pass PMP Exam.
- I referred PMBOK 6th Edition, Rita’s Mulcahy’s book thoroughly. To cover up PMBOK 7th Edition, I only went through PMI presentation slides & I think it is sufficient.
- I would advise to practice more questions after you go through the theory. Practicing more questions is the only way to success.
- I used pmwares portal, Rita’s book, Udemy questions for preparation. Many study materials still have very minimal agile questions. So, choose study material wisely which will give good combination of all the approaches.
My biggest assets:
Following points especially helped to prepare and pass PMP Exam.
- Long term efforts helped me to understand the subject well, develop PMI mindset to answer the questions correctly & helped to gain the confidence for passing the exam.
- I think the efforts put in to understand the concepts thoroughly, practicing more questions, consistency, persistence, desire to pass the PMP exam are the key factors of my success.
- When I took 100 min or first 60 questions, I started losing my confidence but did not lose the hope. Took the break, refreshed myself, kept the result aside and focused on maximizing the utilization of remining time.
- Some questions were tricky & discourage me but I maintain the momentum, try my best to utilize your knowledge and ultimately it results into success.
- Finally, I have another asset i.e. pmwares. I would like to thank Mr. Vivek Prakash of pmwares for guiding me throughout this journey. Mr. Vivek has good subject matter expertise & provides personal attention to every aspirant. The PMP Training was conducted online due to Covid. Training was very well planned & executed despite the challenges we have in conducting online training. pmwares portal provides questions which is very helpful for preparation of the PMP exam. In conclusion, it was good experience with pmwares & would say one of the best training providers in the Project Management domain. Thank you, Pmwares!
My biggest mistakes:
Following points were primary drawbacks in prepare & pass PMP Exam.
- I did not practice more full mock tests. So, I could not do proper time management during the exam which shook my confidence during the exam.
- Concentrated more on theoretical part & memorizing the concepts. This definitely helped me finally, but exam is more focused on situational questions. So, practicing more questions is also important & will help you to memorize the concepts.
Do you have any questions or a similar/different experience? Please share your questions/experience in the comments below. I look forward to reading them and replying to your questions.