My PMP Story. Emenike Ezekwesili PMP

My PMP Story. Emenike Ezekwesili PMP

I started this journey during my Executive MBA in 2016 where I had to choose an elective and chose Project Management. It was then I decided I was going to learn more. In the process, I got to know about the PMP® Certification. I dragged my feet between then and 2018 when I decided to take this seriously. I then began to research the criteria for the PMP® Certification, which included extensive project management experience, classroom time and the certification examination. I began to study, but it was like I was hitting a brick wall as a lot of it seemed too complex.

A colleague of mine who was a student of Mr Obalim at Ciel Consulting highly recommended his training school and I came over and made enquiries. The team advised on the specific materials to get and how to go about preparing for the exams. I registered for the classes in December 2018 with the plan to take the exam in March 2019.

Read More

Edgar Abuah passed both his CBAP and PMP exams after training at Ciel Consulting

download (2).jpg

Edgar Abuah. Diamond Bank. LinkedIn

Hello Obalim,

I really appreciate your efforts in helping me to prepare for my CBAP exam. I am an IT project manager at work and a busy one at that managing about 5 projects all the time. I started training in June this year after I felt the need to take my practice to a professional level.

Hello Obalim,

I really appreciate your efforts in helping me to prepare for the CBAP exam. My busy work schedule meant that I had to make use of any available time during the weekend to study.

I started training @ Ciel Consulting in June 2016 in order to take my practice to a professional level. My CBAP training was spread over 2 weeks (weekends only) after which a comprehensive mock test was conducted.

The training, mock test and some self-study helped me understand what to expect in the main exam and it all paid off.

Thank God for helping me.


What i did differently after i failed the pmp exam during my first attempt?

Babatunde+Obrimah.jpg

When you are over 50 and planning to take the PMP exam you need all the support you can get. It gets worse when you are a busy executive and nomadic in your activities.  

I took the class work with Ciel in August 2016 and got busy until August 2017 when I received the notification that I had two months left to take the exam. Was challenging trying to prepare in two months and as expected missed the pass mark at the first attempt. 

My approach was all wrong. I hadn’t been studying for the exam when I decided to enroll in a week-long PMP Course.

After failing my first exam, I took the advice of some of the Testimonials shared on Ciel Consulting website and did the following:

-Studied Rita Mulcahy PMP Exam Prep Book two hours every night. At least 5 hours on a Saturday or Sunday.

-Focused primarily on taking the practice exams from Ciel Consulting and watching some Youtube videos.

-I made flash cards.

-To hold myself accountable, I created a spreadsheet where I tracked what I studied every night, for how long I studied, and my nightly practice exam scores. This helped me identify sections of the exam where I was weak and track improvements. Once I was scoring high enough across all practice exams, I scheduled my 2nd PMP exam.

-One week before the exam, I memorized the formulas. I Googled “PMP Brain Dump” and put together a method for memorizing the math formulas.

-Forget what you know from your own project management experience. You will be tested on the PMI way, so it’s very much about learning as much as you can from the PMBOK Guide.

Working full-time, this is the method that worked for me. I had to gain the support from my wife and in-laws to help support me through the three months of studying. It meant sacrificing a lot of personal time, but in the end - I passed and am happy I did.

Good luck!

Dr Babatunde Obrimah (PMP)

I passed PMBOK 6 Exams. This is how I did it....Anthony Abojeh PMP

I was keen on earning this most coveted credential in the Project Management world. It all started around January 2018 when I started researching ways to kick start my PMP studies.

Soon I learned that it demands lot of commitment, concentration, dedication and hard work.

Actively, I spent 4 months with 2 to 4 hours of preparation everyday. Here is my study plan, resources I used, tips & tricks I learned in during the course of my PMP study.

STUDY MATERIAL AND STUDY PLAN

Rita Mulcahy 9th Edition – I’d suggest reading this book majorly. This book is gold for Quality Management, Procurement Management and Human Resource Mangement. Actually, I started reading only the pointers for tips and ended up reading the whole book. It is so interactive that you feel this book talks to you in person.

Head First PMP – I spent about 3 weeks to finish this book. Even though it was written in line with PMBOK 5, but it was worth the while. This book explains PMP concepts in a pictorial and a fun way, using many memory aids. If you need a light reading of PMP and a fun start, I would recommend you begin with this book.


PMBOK – This is THE book to consider for your PMP study. Majority of questions appear from this book so as much as possible try not to ignore this. It took me 1 month for first reading; took less than a month for 2nd reading; and took about a week to skim through the book for the 3rd time.


Saket Bansel’s Videos – I watched his free videos for the concepts I felt I need more explanation. His white board sessions are awesome.

RESOURCES USED FOR MOCK EXAMS

Mock exams are a great way to prepare for the real exam. They not only helped me identify gaps in understanding concepts, but it also helped manage those 4 rigorous hours of the PMP test. Ciel Consulting provided me with 4 sets of 200 questions during my exam prep class.

Here are my recommendations for free mock tests –

Free Mocks –
SimpliLearn 20
Oliver’s 75 and 175
Head’s first 200
Izenbridge free 100
Whizlabs free 50 and
Rita’s chapter-end around 400 questions. I found this very relevant as the questions were very similar to the exams.

PMP TIPS & TRICKS I LEARNED THAT WORKED FOR ME

1) Never memorize ITTOs
When I was going through the 15 mins instructions in the test center, I felt as if I forgot all that I did in last 4 months!

But believe me, once I started reading the 1st question, everything simply flowed through and fell in place.

I believe this will happen only if one understands how all the inputs and outputs are connected.

I used to create mind maps for self-study, and explained process to myself by picking a process at random.

2) Be it right or wrong, check the explanation of all the answers when you practice
This is where I spent most of my time. I checked all the right answers to validate if my thought process when I answered the questions was correct. Did I select my option for the same reason as given in the explanation? – This approach will streamline and align your thought process with PMBOK.

3) Extra reading while checking the answers
If I got a question wrong, I checked Rita Mulcahy for the explanation and I end up reading the whole page.

For instance, I got Risk Acceptance question wrong, when I read through Risk acceptance, I ended up reading Risk Mitigation, Avoidance and transfer as well. I know this takes lot of time but it will stand in mind forever.

4) Practice managing those 4 hours
I’m a slow test taker. During mock exams with Ciel Consulting, I ended up reading the question more than 4 times. So I always took few extra minutes and in the end ran out of time.

After few mocks, I practiced reading the question only once and infer the information the very first time. Instead of rushing, I took extra 30 secs in reading the question slowly, but only once. This helped me a lot in the real PMP exam.

I took 3hr and 50 mins to finish all the 200 questions. But I had the confidence that I will pass the exam, because I knew I had read the question carefully and selected the best answer.

5) Stay Positive
Give positive energy to your thoughts. It is like nurturing a plant. I even thought of preparing a write-up about my PMP journey to post in this very blog.


LAST WEEK OF MY PREPARATION

I made a detailed study Plan for last 10 days.

Being a busy person, I was able achieve only 75% of my plan. But I felt confident on my preparedness to take the exam.

I regulated my sleep during the last week of my preparation because I scored well in all the mocks I took during the day time than during nights. 

 As I planned and practiced, I read every questions only once slowly and steadily, and at the end of the 4th hour I was confident that I have correctly answered more than enough to the pass the exam.

GIVE BACK TO THE COMMUNITY

I feel this more important – To give back to PMP community. If any part of this post helps you in your own PMP preparation, it would be of immense satisfaction for me. I have earned more well wishers and friends after I started my PMP journey. Sharing is caring- for yourself and for others. Many Thanks.

Good luck,

Anthony Abojeh, PMP

Definitely Possible to Hit Perfect Above-Target Score In PMP If You Plan Well, Anita Ajiyen, PMP

Anita+Ajiyen+PMP.jpg

Obalim, happy to share that I passed my PMP exam with Above Target result in all 5 domains. Here is my study approach as you requested. I have Engineering background related to projects in the Oil industry.

The PMP trigger
I am a petroleum Engineer with 5 years of experience in the Oil industry. I hold both a Bachelor and a Master degree in petroleum Engineering, graduating my Masters in petroleum Engineering in 2016 from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA. I work with Forte Oil Nig.

I wanted to earn PMP certification to enhance my career, open the door to new opportunities, and also formally document the experience in Project Management that I have gained so far.

This certification is also very well respected in the industry. An ideal professional certification to get for every project manager.

My study resources
I figured that having too many resources will only slow down the pace of my exam preparation. After some research and discussions with other Ciel Consulting PMPs, I decided on these 3 primary resources –

PMBOK guide
Rita Mulcahy Exam Prep Book and
Headfirst PMP

I took PMI’s 35 hours course from Ciel Consulting Lagos chapter, back in October 2017.

This was a very good course that provided me also with the PMBOK 5th edition and Rita Mulcahy exam prep material. Due to work and family commitments, it was really difficult for me to take the exam shortly after taking the course.

My PMP study strategy
To enhance my understanding, I created my own study cards as I studied these books. And I used the simulation exams contained in these books to ensure I can apply the concepts to a given situation on the exam.

I found some time to study, few hours here and there but I started to study really hard at the end of October 2017. My target to pass the exam was December.

My preparation picked up pace as I deep dived into the course materials, PMBOK and a couple of books. I also wrote several study cards with the key concepts and then reviewed them before taking the exam.

Well, I had few challenges as well.
Remembering all inputs, outputs and tools was the biggest of them all.

I overcame that by preparing my own study cards and notes, doing the exercises and tests in the books, and writing the formulas several days a week, memorizing certain keywords.

I’d recommend going over the Glossary at the end of PMBOK guide and any other books you may choose to study from. Sometimes understanding of a term can even help you answer a question on the exam.

The other challenge was finding time to study.

It was definitely difficult to find time to study several hours straight in a row, having a full time job and family. I’m very thankful to my family for their support. I could delegate some of the work, and carve out time every day to dedicate for PMP study.

Engr Oluwaseun Alabi. How I Passed the PMP Exam.

Hi Obalim. The pmp Journey has been a very interesting one. I started preparing for my PMP exam in April 2016, I began earnestly studying for the PMP certification – with the goal of passing on the first attempt! On October 17, 2016, I earned this prestigious credential and here is how I did it!

My PMP Study Books

The two resources I used were the Head First Book, and the Rita Mulcahy’s PMP Exam Prep – updated eigth Edition. I read the Head First book first to gain a basic understanding of the PMP concepts and then I tackled Rita’s book. (Learned Rita’s process chart).

I did not read the PMBOK Guide – Fifth Edition, I only read the glossary. In my opinion, above two resources form the perfect knowledge base for preparing to pass the examination. After all, that is the goal, right?

After devouring these books, in July, 2016, I began to focus on my study notes and learning to write the 47 process grid as I was thought in Ciel PMP class as well as the EVM formulas. A great tip I discovered is that the best way to learn the 47 processes chart is left to right – up and down. That one tip proved to be invaluable as I began to learn to think the PMI way. I practiced writing my brain dump on a daily basis.

I submitted my PMP application on August 23, 2016 and it only took one week to be cleared. I scheduled for the Paper Based Test PBT in Nigeria. The exam held on the 8th of October at Meadow Hall School Lekki.

Some more PMP study material

After I was comfortable with the study materials, I started taking sample PMP tests and keeping track of my test scores. Please use the exams in Rita’s book as well as the sample exam questions that are offered by the authors of Head First PMP. I believe their sample exams are online.

I also downloaded apps on my iPhone with sample exam questions. Additionally, I joined Facebook groups and answered questions there.

I found many other valuable resources for sample tests; however, about 3 weeks before my exam, I paid for the PM Prep simulator by Cornelius Fichtner. Access to this wealth of PMP sample questions cost $125. I never took a full exam using this simulator; however, I did do the quizzes. I also liked the fact that I could target my questions for a particular knowledge area. The PM Prep simulator questions were very difficult. The questions I found that were most like the real PMP exam were Rita’s.

The last two weeks before the exam, I took two full sample exams from Exam Central. This resource is free and you can also take timed quizzes here.

About ITTOs

As others have stated, please don’t focus too much time on memorizing the ITTO. I may have gotten just one question asking about an input….. The test is comprised primarily of situational type question… of the type, ‘What does the PM do next?’

I honestly did not feel that the exam was as difficult as I feared. The hardest part is the preparation….. just make sure you KNOW exactly what a PM is doing in every situation and how to handle the next decision. I did not take a break during the exam.

My PMP certification exam strategy

I had about 5 EVM questions total. My strategy (I HATE math), was to answer every question and mark all the math questions for later. (I went back and answered them after answering the rest of the questions). This strategy worked for me. I completed the exam in 3 hours. I did not go back and change any answers because I was confident that I knew my stuff!

Finally, find a method that works for you, exercise good time management strategies, and gain an understanding of the PMI methodology for managing projects and you will succeed. I studied an average of 3 hours on weekdays and 8 hours total on weekends. This WILL consume your life! However, the reward will be worth it!

Reading others’ success stories on this site also encouraged me… who better to learn from than people who have already mastered this exam?

I know this prestigious credential will help me to further my career goals.
Good luck to all!

Enitan Awoga Passed after the second attempt.

download (1).jpg

Enitan Awoga. Sahara Group. Contact on LinkedIn

My journey to PMP began in July 2013 when I obtained my 35 contact hours. The original intention was to write my exam shortly afterwards. However, I had just started writing papers for another professional qualification in addition to other factors which made it impossible for me to write my exams then.

Finally, in January 2016‎ I completed my other professional exam and was then ready to start the process of writing my PMP exam. I submitted my PMP application on the 4th February 2016 and on the 9th of February, I got a mail from PMI approving my application and allowing me to continue with selecting my PMP examination date. I chose 4th June 2016 (4 months away) in order to have enough time and because I felt I was used to writing exams in June because of my other professional examination.

I soon realized I had forgotten most of what I had learned since‎ 2013 and I also did not have enough time to cover all the required reading on my own with work and all. I could see that I needed a refresher class and would appreciate the brainstorming opportunity provided by being in a classroom environment.

I registered with Ciel Consulting 5-weekend‎ days class for May 2016 with Obalim Esedebe. This meant that the day the classes ended I had exactly one week to sit for my exam. I also barely had time to read and got only 3 days off work to prepare.

I sat for my exam on the 4th of June 2016 at JKK House, Ilupeju. I was sick on the day and finished my exam in 3 hours and left the hall. I wasn't sure how I felt about the exam but I was optimistic. I knew it was either I felt the exam was easier than I expected or I underestimated the exam because I just finished writing my other professional qualification which is deemed to be tougher.

I got my result 6 working days later. I failed!

I applied to resit my examination on the 19th of July 2016 and chose 5th November 2016 (4 months away again!). This time around, I tried to use every spare moment reading and also got 3 days off work to prepare (which I spent reviewing all the practice exams in Rita Mulcahy's PMP Exam Prep & focusing on Executing and Monitoring and Controlling Process Groups which were my weak areas in the first exam). This gave me a deeper understanding of what was required from me in each of the questions. I sat for my re-exam on the 5th of November 2016 at JKK House, Ilupeju. I wrote out my brain dump: Process Groups and Knowledge Areas matrix as well as formulas before I began and finished my exam in 3 hours 15 minutes and spent another 15 minutes reviewing my answers and then left the hall before I started second guessing my answers. I felt more confident than my first sitting but still panicked a little when I got a reminder from PMI that my exam eligibility period was going to end in February 2017.

I got my result 6 working days later again. I passed with 5 MP's!

What I did differently: I did not underestimate the exam the second time around. I felt ‎I needed to hear, read and have PMP around me all the time. So I bought Rita Mulcahy's Hot Topics Audio Flashcards for passing the PMP and CAPM Exams CD which I would listen to while going to and returning from work. I also realized a major weak area for me was ITTO's. So I bought Cornelius Fichtner's ITTO Memory Jogger eBook as well as  Fahad Usmani's PM Study Circle PMP Question Bank.

Besides reading the PMBOK, the free tools I used were:

PM Study Circle 400 PMP Exam Sample Questions https://pmstudycircle.com/pmp-question-bank/

Cornelius Fichtner’s/OSP International LLC Free PMP Exam Sample Questions http://free.pm-exam-simulator.com/

Exam Central’s PMP Exam Questions http://www.examcentral.net/pmp/pmp-exam-questions

Oliver Lehmann 75 and 175 Prep Questions http://www.oliverlehmann.com/pmp-self-test/75-free-questions.htm

BrainBOK https://www.brainbok.com/app

Praveen Malik/Gumroad’s PMP Formulas Pocket Guide (very handy for complex Earned Value Formulas)

I also joined “I want to be a PMP” group on LinkedIn and signed up with Passionate Project Management for daily PMP Question-of-the-Day for community support.

Lessons learned:

  1. Don’t jump from a 5 Day Class to the examination hall. The class would provide you with a good foundation but you still need to read a lot on your own!

  2. Don’t underestimate the exam!

  3. Take your time answering your questions correctly. However, if you are finished with your exam, feel free to submit and don’t begin to second guess your answers.

  4. If at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself up and try again!

Mayowa Fowotade complete PMP Resource lists

download (3).jpg

Mayowa Fowotade Osprey Zenith Consulting Ltd

First, I thank my God Almighty, my Husband and my beautiful daughter for their contribution to my success.

Big thanks to my teachers, Esedebe Obalim PMP and Enabulele Mary PMP both facilitators at Ciel Consulting and the Ciel Consulting team.

Study materials used in my PMP® preparation

  1. PMBOK 5

  2. Course in Ciel Consulting

  3. Head First PMP

  4. Rita Mulcahy Exam Prep Book. Updated 8th Edition

  5. Rita Fastrack Exam Simulation

Challenges I faced

My PMP® journey too was filled with challenges like most PMP® aspirants. Here are a few that I had to work around –

1. Updates to PMP® syllabus

When I initially decided to get PMP® certification, the old Exam content outline was still being used. Then PMI introduced the new exam content outline in January 2016.

I was able to overcome this by taking PMP® course in Ciel Consulting as they have the updated syllabus which were updated to latest PMP content.

3. Time management

Training myself to manage solving 200 questions in 4 hours was a challenge. I overcame this by practice, practice and more practice. As I started taking full-length mock tests I could identify what type of questions I was spending more time on, and consciously managed my time.

4. Studying alone seemed bit boring and disconnected. It was part of my target in the office. I realized that two of my other colleagues were taking the PMP exam aswell. So we formed a whatsapp group. With WhatsApp group we connected with each other daily. The support of each other, both morally and through content sharing, helped all of us in the group.

My method for preparing for the exam

I started with my new plan in the month of January 2016.

I created a plan as the following –

  • The 1st week chapters 1,2,3 from PMBOK and Rita

  • The 2nd week chapters 4 from PMBOK and Rita

  • The 4th week chapters 5 from PMBOK and Rita

  • The 5th week chapters 6 from PMBOK and Rita

  • The 6th week chapters 7 from PMBOK and Rita

  • The 7th week chapters 8 from PMBOK and Rita

  • The 8th week chapters 9 from PMBOK and Rita

  • The 9th week chapters 10 from PMBOK and Rita

  • The 10th week chapters 11 from PMBOK and Rita

  • The 11th week chapters 12 from PMBOK and Rita

  • The 12th week chapters 13 from PMBOK and Rita

Then I followed the following steps –

  1. Read chapters 1,2,3 from PMBOK

  2. Read the same chapters from Rita book

  3. Did PMStudy chapter exam

  4. Did Fast track for the same chapters

  5. Back to the steps from 1 to 4 on the rest of chapters.

I listened to Rita Audio book in my car during my commute in Lagos traffic.

I took PMP Simulator exams and solved more than 1600 question out of the database of 1800 question.

When my score reached 72% in Rita PMP® exam (200 Questions I scheduled the real exam.

I did my PMP® exam on 6th June-2016. Paper Based test at JKK Ilupeju Lagos and passed!

All the best,

Uwayeme Oni shares her PMP experience

download (4).jpg

Uwayeme Oni PMP Osprey Zenith Consulting Ltd

Initial prep

I planned for PMP in the December 2014 and first thing I did was bought HeadFirst

book, because I like to keep things simple.

Headfirst explains the things in easy way. However it does not cover all the topics

for the exam but gives u basic understanding of the concepts.

Gaining momentum

After going through HeadFirst book twice with slow pace, in December 2015 I

enrolled for Ciel Consulting PMP Training. That wass when I hit the top gear for my

studies.

Post training, I reviewed all the concepts once again from the training material

given by Ciel Consulting and then started taking mock exams.

It is important to take the mock exam but it is more important to review the

questions and answers as well to get the understanding of the concepts.

I observed my weakness in certain areas like Quality and Procurement knowledge

areas, and revised it.

If I had any doubts during mock tests, I would refer Rita’s book and PMBOK to gain

the confidence on the topic.

Exam hurdles

The major hurdle that I faced was to get the exam date, as my application was

rejected for the first time since PMI did not seem to like the descriptions of my

project. But thankfully they gave me leverage to re-apply for the exam any time I

wanted. I did not want to wait for long and re-applied on the same day it got

rejected.

With the second attempt it got approved and I applied for the June exam as I was

confident of my preparation.

Subsequently I got my PMP certification!

I wish you good luck!

Muhideen Lawal's PMP Study Plan and Tips

download (5).jpg

Muhideen Lawal PMP. Program Manager Ericson

Hi Obalim. I wanted to share my PMP success story for others to benefit from. I hope this helps.

  1. The study materials I used were

    • Rita-PMP® Exam Prep 8th Edition - Rita Mulcahy, and the updated version

    • PM FASTrack PMP v8

    • PMBOKGuideFifthEd

    • Mock test PMP administered by Ciel Consulting

  2. The quality of your training

    • The high quality PMP training from Ciel was highly invaluable towards understanding project management. It also enabled me to gather the 35 contact hours required for the exam.

  3. The reading method adopted.

    • Had time to read only during weekend and spent about a month reading Rita’s book (first time) (10-12 hours per weekend)

    • Read about four chapters before starting Ciel PMP training, weekend class

    • Read each chapter once and practiced the chapter questions at the end of each chapter, reviewed comments on right and wrong answers to understand Rita’s perspectives and understand gap in my knowledge (Right answers were between 70% and 85%)

    • Practiced Exam Simulations twice and scored 81% and 82.5%

    • Registered for the Exam, downloaded the PMBOK Guide Fifth Ed

    • I spent about 1.5 weeks reading PMBOK

    • Practiced Mock Exam from Ciel, scoring about 82%

    • Read Rita’s book the second time (updated version) for a week before the exam, redoing the chapter questions sequentially. My score increased to between 80% and 95%.

  4. The exam itself.

    • The exam was mostly situational

    • Question length was generally medium-sized passage, similar to the style in Rita’s Exam Prep

    • There were very few questions based on calculations (less than 5 that I could remember)

    • Spent an average of 63sec per question and finished about 3.5hrs but used the rest 30mins to review 22 marked questions, changed about 8 to 10 answers

  5. Lessons learned

    • Aim to understand instead of cramming Rita’s book and PMBOK

    • There were hardly any noticeable differences between Rita’s book v8 and updated version but it is good to read the latest one where possible.

    • Cross check shaded answers with corresponding questions to avoid shading wrong answers

    • Shade properly and erase properly if need be

    • An extra effort is required for the PBT to ensure correct and proper shading

    • Result was communicated via email 10days after the exam was taken

    • It is cost effective to register as PMI member before registering for the exam, this will also help on the long-run for certification maintenance

    • Answer all questions even if you are not sure during first time, and mark for review the ones with concerns

    • Write down all questions to be reviewed on one of the papers to be provided. This provides quick and more efficient reference to the questions to be reviewed

    • Follow the exam instruction

  6. Advice for those who plan to take the exam

    • Attend your PMP training class and irrespective of what you, engage during the class and share your learning and experience, and learn from instructors and colleagues, this helps strengthening understanding of vague concepts in the text books

    • Remain calm in the exam to avoid the negative effects such as missing keywords in questions and shading wrong answers

    • Take a walk if you become tensed to take in fresh air or practice other stress relieving techniques

    • If possible, take CBT as you would spend less time ensuring quality of the answering process and also it is easier to track questions to be later reviewed plus the benefit of seeing the result immediately

    • Ensure you are scoring at least 70% in each process group before taking the exam, this boosts your confidence to pass the exam

    • It is not advisable to be reading on the day of the exam but instead have free mind and relax

My PMP Experience. Nonye Nwokolo.

download.png

Emmanuel Nonyelum Nwokolo PMP. Business Developer, Diamond Bank

These are the 5 study resources (well the last one is simulator for test practice) that I used for my preparation.

  1. HeadFirst PMP (I read this before PMBOK),

  2. PMBOK Guide V.

  3. RITA Mulcahy, updated 8th Edition (read along with PMBOK)

  4. RITA FAST TRACK (Exam Simulator)

My PMP exam study plan

1. I started the journey with classroom training at Ciel Consulting for 35 PM contact hours. It’s very important that you select an institute with a good trainer. I was fortunate to get trained under Mr. Esedebe Obalim PMP. He broke down the topics in very simple and easy to follow examples.

2. Since I was working, I could only manage to spend 2-3 hours for studying (during weekdays) which got me worried in the beginning on whether I would be able to do sufficient revisions to pass, but I promised myself to be persistent.

3. During free time, I used to solve questions for practice from

  • http://www.projectmanagement.com/questions (PM Challenge) and

  • http://www.examcentral.net/pmp/pmp-exam-questions.

I also used some Android apps like PMP Exam(Free),

PMP Exam Prep.

4.I read PMBOK and Updated RITA’s book twice, took down notes while studying and revised only those notes.

5.After reading the books, I started taking mock tests from Rita Fast Track Simulator, wherein I was scoring between 80-90%.

6.Alternately I took mock tests from EPMC. These tests were way more difficult than the main PMP exam, because of which I could prepare for questions with higher level of difficulty. I was scoring 70-75% in them.

The Exam day

I did the Paper Based Exam at Meadow Hall School in Lekki.

I reached the exam venue an hour before my exam, to get myself comfortable. I have always been a nervous test-taker, but I still tried to be very calm before and during the exam.

The exam was well organized. We were checked and signed in at the reception. After which we were ushered in to our already numbered chairs. First the questions papers were distributed sealed. Then the Procter read the exam rules to us. We were also give Pencil and Eraser.

Shortly after we were given the answer sheet. At exactly 10am the exam started.

There were many situational questions on the exam related to project charter, business case, lessons learned, managing stakeholders and communication. The exam seemed to focus much on Integration Knowledge Area, the Perform Integrated Change Control (PICC) to be precise.

There were very few numerical questions on EVM, PERT and EMV. I think about 3 questions were numeric.

No straight forward ITTO questions, but given a situation, questions were asked on what would be the most appropriate tool & technique or input to be used.

The exam indeed reflects the new changes of the exam content outline, so it’s better to prepare these topics thoroughly. The Updated Rita Exam Prep book was really helpful here

Overall I found the questions easy to solve except for some questions whose answers were actually tricky and hard to make a choice from the options.

Final round of suggestion and advice

Read the PMBOK and Updated Rita Exam Prep for at least 2 times, if possible memorise important areas.

My set of papers were filled with lot of questions on Integration and Procurement knowledge areas. You may get a concentrated set of questions on any one or two KAs, so please focus on ALL KAs equally.

Try mock tests only with situational questions. Straight forward questions are of no use. The new pattern had 100% situational questions.

You may find the real exam much difficult than what you imagine so mentally be prepared for it, and stay as calm as possible.

Finally attempt lot of mock tests – practice alone can get this exam passed.

Good luck!