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My PMP Exam Experience

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Passing exams is a serious process. You have to clear your schedule to make time to prepare for the exam. During training, the main thing is to focus on the subject and not to be distracted. About my PMP exam experience in this essay.

Essay

PMP is a short for “Project Management Professional”. This is a certification from the international organization “Project Management Institute” or PMI.

I already passed PMP in 2009. Since then, there are more case questions, where all four answers are correct and you need to choose the most correct one. These are complex types of questions, and sometimes very controversial.

It was hard for me to prepare for the exam this time.

First, I did not have enough time to prepare. I signed up for the exam 2 months before, which is usually enough to prepare. I planned to spend 2 hours every day, but my work projects ate all the time I planned for preparation. Even on weekends, which I fully planned for the preparation I had to do work.

Secondly, I found that my experience plays against me, because I start to think out questions based on my experience and because of this choose the wrong answers.

I was especially scared when I did a few trial tests and did not pass any of them. Because PMI does not provide access to the official trial tests, all the trial tests are speculative, created by their authors. And I didn’t always agree with them about the answers they chose.

So, I had the last day to prepare, and I had not yet passed a single trial test. I decided to focus on the PMBoK standard. I highlighted all the processes, repeated them, repeated all the inputs and outputs, repeated the tools and technics of project management. As it turned out, it was a very good decision, because I got quite a lot of questions on the knowledge of the standard on the real exam.
I tried to get a good night’s sleep before the exam. For the exam I came in 1.5 hours, so I had 45 free minutes for walking around Moscow.

I was worried, but I already knew what was waiting for me, because I passed this exam 10 years ago. I knew I had to sit in a small stuffy room with 20 computers with video and supervisors observation. I knew that I need to dress a little to prevent my mind boiling, and also to drink water before the test started.

But the exam itself has become much more convenient than before. The test program was able to highlight the text, call the calculator, cross out the wrong answers, as well as mark complex questions to return to them later. And there was air conditioning in the room.

The test takes 4 hours and consists of 200 questions. I answered them in about 3 hours and spent the last hour checking out the 30 questions I had flagged. I changed the answers to these questions several times, from one to the other. All of them seemed either equally true or equally false. But then, when I had 15 minutes left, I decided to press the End Exam button.

The program hung for 5 seconds, which seemed to me an eternity. Would I fail as in the trial tests? And after that thought, a treasured inscription of “Congratulations” appeared on the screen! Now I have updated my certificate to version 6 of PMBoK.

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