How to Pass PMP® Exam – Part1

Project Management Professional (PMP)® is one of the most recognized and respected certificate in the project management field. In order to apply for the exam you should fulfill all PMI’s requirements, details can be found here PMP Requirements.

Facts about the PMP Exam:

  • Multiple choice questions.
  • 200 questions.

Questions Distribution


Percentage of   Questions

Number of Questions










Monitoring & Controlling









  • 4 hours duration.
  • The exam is designed to test you on:
    • Your Knowledge of PMI’s processes and philosophy.
    • Your Understanding of the many terms that are used to described the processes.
    • Your Ability to employ those processes in different situations.
    • Your Ability to use key formulas to estimating, scheduling, costing and other problems.
    • Your Understanding of professional responsibility as it applies to the project management discipline.
  • The exam is not designed to test you on:
    • Your Project Management experience.
    • Your intelligence.
    • Your common sense.
    • Your knowledge of industry practices.
    • Your knowledge to use software tools.

Things to keep in mind while taking the exam:

  • Stick to the book, do not answer based on your experience.
  • Always assume that the question is talking about a large project.
  • Always assume that the project is running in a perfect environment.
  • Read question answers from bottom to top.

You may consider one of the below books for studying:

I personally used the first book “Rita’s Book”, PMBOK Guide Fourth Edition is a must, and it will be your reference while reading other resources.

So you fulfilled all PMI requirements, attended a training course based on PMBOK® Guide fourth edition, and you have chosen a book to study, we need start studying for the exam, the purpose of this article is to guide you on how to prepare yourself to do so.

How much time does it need to prepare for the exam, I would say 4 to 6 weeks, why? Most of the preparing books contain about 12 or 13 chapters covering Project Management Framework & Processes, 9 knowledge areas, and Professional and Social responsibility, on average each chapter needs about 3 to 4 days depends on how much time you spend every day.

Personally I treated the PMP exam as a project, so after each chapter I finished I did the following:

  • Write down all the keywords that I need to remember.
  • Apply chapter processes on my project (PMP Exam project) if possible, for example I have created a Project charter (Charter Sample) and identified the Stakeholder (Stakeholder Analysis Matrix).
  • Take a quiz to evaluate yourself, and don’t get upset if you did not score well on the first time.

Stay Tuned, in Part 2 of this article I will be talking about the most important processes and what formulas we need to memorize.

References: PMI Website

About Wafi Mohtaseb

Software Development & Management Specialist, Technology enthusiast, Project Management Professional PMP, Agile Certified Practitioner PMI-ACP, & Certified ScrumMaster

One Response to “How to Pass PMP® Exam – Part1”

  1. Great blog 9/10! Bookmarked 🙂

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