If you want to apply for the PMP exam, you have to fulfil three eligibility requirements mandated by PMI.
Therefore, I suggest you read these requirements carefully before applying for the exam.
These three PMP exam eligibility requirements can be classified into three categories. These categories are as follows:
- Project management experience
- Project management training
Okay, now let’s discuss each of these requirements in detail.
The first condition is education. You should hold either a bachelor’s degree holder (or global equivalent) or secondary degree holder (high school diploma, associate’s degree or global equivalent). The degree or diploma can be in any discipline.
Project Management Experience
The second condition is project management experience. If you are degree holder you should have at least 4,500 hours (about three years), and if you are a diploma holder you should have 7,500 hours (about five years) of experience in leading and directing projects.
Please note that project management experience should be non-overlapping and unique.
Project Management Training
This is the third and last condition. You must attend 35 contact hours of formal project management training. This training can be obtained from either a PMI Registered Education Provider (R.E.P) or non-REPs. There are various modes of training available from these providers. Some are online and others are through live classes. Online training programs are found to be much cheaper than live classes.
So, these are the three eligibility conditions that you should fulfil in order to apply for the PMP exam.
I have constantly been receiving many questions regarding the PMP eligibility requirements. Although I have clarified it here, a few visitors are still asking some questions.
So, to answer their queries, I am specifically giving answers to some of their most common questions.
# 1: I’m Not a Project Manager. Can I Apply For the Exam?
Most professionals working in project management do not hold the project manager title, so they find themselves confused if they can apply for the exam.
Please note that the PMI eligibility requirements say that “you should have experience in leading and directing the project.”
This means leading and directing a project as identified with the tasks, knowledge, and skills specific in the PMP Examination Content Outline.
If you’re not a project manager but are working in project management and have experience as mentioned above you are eligible to apply for the PMP exam.
There are also some queries from people who are not into project management and want to know if they can apply for the exam.
Project management experience is a mandatory requirement to apply for the PMP exam. If you did not work in projects, you cannot apply for the exam.
# 2: Only Registered Education Providers (REP) Can Provide the 35 Contact Hours Training.
This is not true.
Many professionals are not aware that there are many other ways to earn 35 contact hours which makes one eligible to apply for the exam. This is because if you attend training from a non-approved provider and you are selected for an audit, you may have to show that the content of your training was aligned with the PMBOK Guide.
However, if you receive your training from any approved provider, you only have to show your training certificate, nothing else. Their courses have already been reviewed and approved by the PMI.
So, you can get your training from any provider regardless of whether it is PMI approved or not. Although it is not necessary, I suggest you get your 35 contact hours training from any renowned training program such as PM Sprout.
The other advantage of PMI approved training programs is that the training material is reviewed by PMI, which itself gives you assurance of the quality of the product.
# 3: The PMP certificate is only for IT professionals.
I have also received some queries from visitors who were in doubt if this certification can be obtained by someone working outside of the IT industry. They were thinking that this certification is only for professionals working in the IT field.
This is not true.
The PMP certificate is industry independent and the project management principles provided in the PMBOK Guide apply to all industries.
If you are in project management, regardless of industry, you are eligible to apply for the PMP exam.
# 4: I’m a Diploma Holder; Can I Apply for the PMP Exam?
Yes, of course.
The PMP certification is for professionals who are working in project management and want to enhance their skills and efficiency. If you are in project management and want to excel your career, you should apply for it. However, if you are not involved in project management and want this certification, you should first earn some experience in project management and then you should apply for it.
You can now move on to the third part, “What is the PMP Application Process?”
This is the second part of a series of five posts. Please read the first post “What is the PMP?”, if you are landing here directly from any search result or a referral. You can also find all the necessary information about the PMP certification exam in the PMP handbook available for free at PMI’s website.