I decided to pursue PMP as it would give me the required push to take the big leap from technical to project management path. And I don’t mean just job opportunities wise. Though I did have some PM experience when I took up PMP, I realized while I was preparing for it that I had lot of gaps which I had to fill. The preparation for the exam helped me identify and fill these gaps which will help me in my work. While textbook learning is not the same as hands-on experience, it equips you with the knowledge and tools required to do the work.
I gave myself 60 days of time for preparation. I arrived at this number based on the suggestions I saw on the internet and my personal evaluation of how much time I would need to prepare. I based this on PMBoK and Rita Mulchay’s book (details later in the post). Once I had the exam date in hand, I made a detailed plan. I made a list of the things I had to study and the different mock tests/exams I had to take. This is what I ended up with:
2. Rita Mulchay’s PMP Exam Prep
I know there are many books out there which are highly recommended. Some names I heard were Head First PMP, How to pass PMP on your first try, but I didn’t read those. I found PMBoK and Rita to be sufficient.
While I limited my study material to just two, I more than made up for it in mock exams. I went the whole mile and took whatever exams I could find. The complete list:
3. Oliver Helmann 75 questions
4. PMZilla 30 tough questions and 200 tough questions (the latter is not free)
5. Exam Central
6. PMP For Sure (Register to access the free exam)
8. Tech FAQ 360
9. Prepare PM
12. Christpher Scrodo (Available to PMI members. Access the URL after logging in to PMI)
13. Exercises at the end of every chapter in Rita Mulchay’s book
Of all these, I found Rita and Scrodo to be very similar to the actual exam questions in terms of structure and difficulty. The other tests helped me find my weaknesses so that I could focus on that.