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PMP exam lesson learned on 18th April

Just share my experience of my preparing PMP exam, passed the exam at the first attempt on 18th April. I finished 35 contact hours training in July 2010, it was more than half year after the course, because most of the time it’s difficult to focus on preparation when engaged in my busy work and frequently travelling, less time spent means I am always not ready to proceed to take the exam, I suggest don’t let this preparation takes too long, you will quickly lose memory of what you have learnt, just hit the iron when it is hot, there is also the eligibility period only 1 year, I don’t remember how many times I postponed my exam date, when it comes to only several month my eligibility period will expire, so I have to squeeze the time out and prepared it seriously.

The preparation material,

1, PMP Exam Pre 6th edition by Rita Mulcuhy, read twice, the questions at the end of each chapter really helpful.

2, PMBOK 4th edition, read once, 2nd time just skim reading.

3, the forum, there are lots of lessons learnt really helpful.

4, print one ITTO, read try to understand, but never memorize it, really difficult for me to do it.

5, practice the questions as more as you can, can clear the gap of your knowledge you learnt and the exam questions, used Rita PM Fast track, normally more than 80%, because after some practice, you got really familiar to the questions in the database.

6, one day before the exam, did the PMP Head First free 200 questions, got 78%, I think it’s a good mock exam compare to other free questions on the internet.

The PMI testing centre at the NTUC Trade union house, right at the MRT station Bras Basah, the testing room has good facility, after checking the ID, I got a locker to put all my belongs inside, totally 24 seats only around 8~9 people siting for the exam, I think not all of them are for PMP, some other exams may taking place at the same room.

During the four hours exam time, I only took one 3 minutes break, and I was really slow to answer the questions, took 3 and half hours to finish all the questions in the first round, and marked too many questions to review, so have to randomly review the answers, only changed 3 of them, and I am not sure it’s hurt or help to the result, so remember on the exam, do not mark too many questions, most of the time the first choice will be the final choice, except for the crystal clear error you have made.

The questions in the exam allocated to me are very much like the Rita Mulcahy questions, not wordy, most of them are less than 3 lines, there is no much calculation, but there is one TCPI question and earned value question I felt it really difficult to answer, cannot get the right number, finally chose the option the closest to the result I calculated, also got quite a lot questions on WBS, risk, problem solving, risk transfer, avoidance, mitigation, procurement, control chart, NPV, EMV, quality audit, didn’t have network diagram calculation at all, … etc. cannot recollect more, some of the questions you can get the answer at the first glance, but more questions need your time to choose the best options, this caused me average more than 1 minute to solve one question.

The professional code question difficult to answer, some is situational question, hard for me to distinguish the bribe or it is local custom to follow, got below proficient in this domain, other domains are moderately proficient, before the exam, I don’t have much confidence, I think I was really lucky maybe performed at somewhere between failed and pass level.

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