For example, in my first and second year of engineering studies, I used to make short notes for every subject by referring to various reference books and at the time of exam, I used to read only these notes.
When I came into third year, I stopped making notes and started studying directly from the books — No more short notes.
The point is, style of study can change and no rule defines it. You should follow the plan suitable to you and stick to it.
In this blog post, I am going to give you some general guidance that will help you to plan your studies accordingly.
This blog is a first part of a series of two blog posts. After reading this blog post, you can go to:
Okay, let’s get started…
Gather All Information
This will be your first step towards the PMP Certification Exam preparation. Go to www.pmi.org, download the PMP Handbook and read it thoroughly. The PMP Handbook will give you information about eligibility, exam fee, mode of exam, etc. Read the FAQs available on PMI’s website and here at PMSC. Search on the Internet, go to various forums and read queries posted by people like you. You can also post your queries here, if you wish.
Collect Study Materials
After gathering all the information, you should start collecting the materials for your PMP Certification Exam Preparation; e.g. reference books, manuals, slides, exam preparation software, etc.
Join the PMI membership and download the latest version of the PMBOK Guide.
At this stage you must read any good reference for the PMP Exam Preparation at least one time and then the PMBOK Guide. Never start with the PMBOK Guide because it is a juiceless and dry book, you will feel bored and your confidence level may go down. Therefore, go through any PMP exam preparation reference book and then start reading the PMBOK Guide, as it will help you to understand the PMBOK Guide better.
Obtain 35 Contact hours
Once you become familiar with Project Management terms and the PMBOK Guide, you should go and get the 35 contact hours of formal PM education and make yourself eligible to apply for the PMP Certification Exam.
There may be many of you who will not agree with me on this sequence. You may want to get your 35 contact hour before you start preparing for the exam; however, my suggestion — don’t do it.
Because if you go for 35 Contact hours program before having a general idea about the PMBOK Guide, it is possible you will hear many terms for first time that may make you feel bored and confuse. People who have already studied the subject may be participating in arguments, asking advanced questions, solving mathematical problems immediately, and you will still be reading the question.
I made the same mistake. The moment I became aware of the 35 Contact hours eligibility requirement, I joined a live classroom training program without even referring to any reference book or the PMBOK Guide and suffered a lot. During training, at times I was not even able to take part in the discussions.
Nobody was there to tell me these things, and I don’t want you to be in my situation. Therefore, refer to at least one reference book and get a general idea about what you are going to be taught, before you join the training.
Schedule Your PMP Certification Exam
Once you get your 35 Contact hours for formal PM education, schedule your Exam.
You will never start studying seriously unless you schedule the exam. Once you schedule the exam date, your hidden potential will unlock and you will start studying more aggressively, passionately, and punctually.
Now you can move to the second part: