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PMP® Exam Preparation – Why Some People Pass Faster?

PMP® Certification Training for the PMP Exam - Why Some People Pass Faster?

Update 2/2/16 by Nereda Haque, PMP

Adults learn differently. Some need to hear, some need to see, some need more doing, and some need to teach, etc. The more we teach others, the better we learn ourselves. That has been proven.

In a good training class you will find different methods of learning. We do this to meet the needs of the various learning styles.

Some people have PMP Exam jitters and they freeze up just knowing they will be taking the Exam. And some are as cool as cucumbers and totally relaxed doing any Exam. Best thing for people with exam jitters is usually not to second guess themselves. They should go with their gut and stay with the answer they picked in the first place! Test yourself on 25 to 50 questions. Mark your gut answer and your final answer. You can determine if going with your gut is right for you most of the time, all of the time or none of the time.

Some people may have taken formal project management training a long time ago, or their Project management experience is more formal than others. Some people practice EVM and critical path and they are lead project managers on projects that expect it. They know so much already about risk, quality, procurement, reports, project deliverables, change requests, Configuration Management and CI, etc. It is second nature to them. Some companies have procurement departments where they will lend support or risk teams already in place where they will give their input, etc. So when procurement people come to learn, they know everything about this subject. The more formal experience you have the faster you will learn for the PMP Exam. Repetition helps.

We met a lady in Georgia who knew the processes. She had another name for them but she could pick them out. She knew what had to be done and when it needed to be done. She only had to make small adjustments in her learning from how she practiced. She was not looking back in her book to find the answers for the PMP® Exam practice questions. She was getting 90% or more for everything. She had no formal training but lots of experience. So there’s your difference.

If you want to learn, try teaching yourself. Pretend you are the teacher and you will train "you" for the PMP Exam. How would you teach someone like "you?" We don't like group study as participants will seek and be influenced by the person with the lowest level of knowledge. This will slow you down. When we hear about it, we inform our people that this practice is not a good idea. Please aware that you may take a lot longer to reach your goal using this method. If you do this, make sure everyone is "smarter or more knowledgeable" than you or they will "bring you down" and possibly mix you up. Verify all information during working groups to mitigate this risk.

Fast track your learning process by making sure you understand what you learned each day in class. Go over it again in the evening and assimilate it. Make a set learning time if you can to establish a habit. Some people find doing this each day doesn’t seem so overwhelming such as doing lots of final learning just before the PMP Exam. If you are doing the PMP Exam the next day after training finishes, then "rolling up your sleeves" to study well into the evening will be worth it. That is the only way you will pass it. We don't recommend the next day approach. The best risk mitigation is to do the Exam fresh, and to practice. With the Version 5 PMP exams we strongly recommend practice. At SmartPath LLC you don't learn before you come to class. You start your learning in class, followed by practice. The earlier you finish all practice the better but it will take daily practice after each day of class, and at least 5 to 8 days of practice following class. Practice is not about memorization and cramming as you cannot apply what you cram. It is about learning through practice. Practice questions are great instructors. They help you get use to identifying the best answer. Practicing in a cognitive fashion, using reasoning and logic will help you pass. Practicing to pick the answer out by rote will not help you pass. Don't expect to see the same questions in the exam. Therefore you need to practice to increase your analytical skillsets. It is just lots of pain for 5 to 10 days or up to 30 days (if you must) after class. If you take up to 30 days, then do Quizzes A, B, C, H, I,J K, L again before taking the exam. If you don't have time for all of these, then do A, I, J and L. If Math weak, redo D also. Or if you are super busy with no time, learn something every day so over time it will stick. Then resit before taking your PMP Exam. Mark your calendar 6 months from the first day of training and get it done before your 6 months ends at SmartPath LLC. Best practice is to allocate time to study by practicing over a 10 to 21 day period. Some people find that 2 full weekends and the evenings in between are perfect study times.

People comes to class, believe our proven methods, follow them to a "T" and within 8 to 10 days pass the PMP Exam. If you are a fast learner you should not need more time than this to practice and pass.

Prep Exercises in pmWorkbook: Some people learn by writing (50% retention) or even more by drawing (75% retention). See all the exercises in your pmWorkbook.

Some people are fast learners. However, don’t forget the story about the tortoise and the hare. Learning slowly can have more sticking power if you seek “understanding” first and foremost, through practice and study. Make it a part of your daily project practice if you are working, for after all this learning is an ANSI standard, not just a guide. You will be surprised how much your director might will like your new found polished skills.

Take a class. Seek our help. Most of the time all of the people in our class pass the first time. And more than 99% of anyone who fail the first time, pass the second time around if they take their second exam within their Exam approval period.

Many take the Exam within 8 to 15 days following class. You can take it in less if you finish the practice. Hey, if you can do 500 quizzes a day and complete your practice productively within 4 days, all power to you. However, we encourage resting a few days after taking the training so you are fresh if you have the time. If you have a lot of gaps, take 3 to 6 weeks to "absorb" the information, and redo all exercises and online practice. Put it to work at the job; that will help you. And take advantage of our resitting benefits. If you failed before coming to SmartPath LLC, then take extra time to learn if you need. Some people fail because the training organization didn't provide enough information for them to pass. However, if you failed due to analytics, then perhaps you do need more time to practice. Don't be in a hurry. Be thorough.

We had someone who had failed 8 times when we meet her. However after renewing her energies she was in a hurry and did not pass the first time. Next time she resat about 6 times and thoroughly did the online quiz practice many times over forcing cognitive practice. She passed the next time. No matter your struggle, with coaching, resitting, and practice, you can do it. We have a saying at SmartPath LLC, if you must, you will!

We have also found that the more inexperienced the PM in terms of formal project management the more they can visualize the concepts and process by taking classes such as Microsoft Project Power Learning, Visio (where we practice many of the skills), etc., because it is applied learning. Other applied learning from SmartPath LLC area: SharePoint for Project Managers Training (group training), business and project skills, analysis skills. All of these courses apply some of what you learned in your PMP Certification training and you will do "example projects" and have a chance to apply the knowledge and visualize what you have learned by practicing.

Some people pass the PMP Exam faster because they have better training companies who provide them industry's best practices training - like SmartPath LLC. Exam-focused training built on core concepts in the right context will help you pass the first time. That's why you don't need prior prep. Take the first step. Join one of our training sessions soon. You'll be glad you did.

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