A different approach for your studies

I completed my PMP exam November, 12 2009 and was able to pass it on my first attempt.
During my studies, I read many helpful posts and wanted to share my approach and ideas as well.

I started out reading the PMBOK twice (first time to just read through and the second time to highlight important key factors). I work for a great company and they provided us with a four day prep class as well. After the class, I read very slowly through “Head First PMP, 2nd Edition” and am absolutely impressed about the presentation of this book. During my study time, I took several (4) practice exams from pmstudy.com and took the last week to work on my brain dump. The dump included all 42 processes and formulas. I did not learn all ITTO’s and concentrated on reading through them daily during the past 10 days and also used a free online ITTO trainer.

THE DIFFERENT APPROACH (just my perspective):
If I had to do this all over again, I would have made some adjustments to my studies.
I feel that reading the PMBOK is an essential part of passing the test, but felt it was very dry and did not provide me with a good overall picture of processes and (especially) flow. I, personally, would have read the PMBOK once; then work on “Head First PMP, 2nd Edition” (or any other book that is easy to read) to get the overall picture and finish with the PMBOK to fill the gaps. Working on the brain dump and studying important key items (such as motivation theories, leadership, procurement contracts…) during the last 10 days worked out to be perfect.
Don't forget the prep exams and to review your answers!

- Take the practice exams while having some background noise (TV…). Some people get
noisy during their test and you have to learn to shut the noise of.
- Many people stress out during their commute! If possible, check out the location in advance.
  (My co-worker recommened this to me and I am glad I followed his advise). 
- Don’t take a prep exam twice. You just remember the questions and skew your output.
- Read the question and ensure to understand what they are asking for  
  (For example:    What process….?     Let’s you eliminate everything that is not a process)
- Strategize your answer elimination process thought (4 possible answers = 25%, 
  2 = 50%
- Only mark the few questions you really doubt. Too many marked questions lead to accepting
  your previous answers as it gets overwhelming.

ITTO Trainer:
http://www.monkibo.com/pmp-exam-itto-trainer/index.html   (from "Primoz Frelih, PMP")
Practice Exams:
http://pmstudy.com/      (Very realistic questions. Get 1 for free or purchase all 4 prep exams)
http://www.headfirstlabs.com/PMP/free_exam/HeadFirstPMP_PracticePMPExam.pdf )   (NICE)
http://pmhub.net/pmsuccess/Menu.html   (400 questions with explanation)
Good reading material and templates:


If you are a PMI member, you can download the PMBOK at http://www.PMI.org.
I used it for references since the pdf files have search capabilities.

I hope you find this information helpful and wish you all the best luck.

Best regards
Mario Haeck, PMP  


admin's picture

Congrats Mario on clearing the PMP ! . Thanks for sharing your approach with this group, I am sure it will help the future aspirants.


Good news, Mario. Congratulations and thanks for sharing your LL.

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