27.06 20120

To Test or Not to Test

By: michelemuse Categories:Uncategorized

Before becoming a PMP, I spent a bit of time pondering a few questions:  (1) Should I take the PMP exam?  (2) How should I prepare for the exam? (3) What will it be like taking the exam?  I have written a three-part post answering those questions from my personal experience.  I hope you find my experience helpful to you.

My PMP Exam Experience:  Part I

The PMP exam … it is a rite of passage for a career in project management.  It is a test of fire for those who accept the challenge.  It is a challenging exam for most.  As my son’s elementary teacher says, “a test is challenging, not hard; a person’s head is hard; exams are challenging.”  I am excited to say that I recently passed the PMP in May 2012, and I find myself anxious to share my experience with others.  It was a challenging endeavor.

The exam seems to create much anxiety in the project community.  The test is not intended solely for the academic – being a good test taker won’t necessarily ensure passing the test.  The exam is not intended solely for the highly experienced project manager—years of experience do not necessarily ensure clearing the exam.  A successful exam taker must have a toolkit of academic knowledge to understand the vocabulary and concepts that are being tested and the experience to apply the toolkit to the situational nature of the exam.

We, project managers, attempt to mitigate the uncertainty of the exam and the risk of failure by preparing thoroughly…project managers hate failure!  Project managers know how important planning is to any endeavor.  The exam must be approached like a project—you must identify the specifications — the information you need to know for the exam; identify the time frame—the amount of time that you have to study; and define your budget –- the amount of money that you have to spend on boot camps, study books and aids and exam question simulators.

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