Question about preparing for a retake (and a rant)


Well I too failed the exam.   I took this last year as my eligability was running out.  Studied the last 3 to 4 months for this one, knowing it would change, and attended a week long class.   There was nothing in the class that was enlightening or earth shattering. It was ok, but there wasn't anything in there I have not heard before.   I honestly thought this exam was easier.   I couldn't wait to check the score because I was sure I passed it. 

To see I failed is pretty discouraging. I've put all this time in and it seems it went to waste.    I was pretty mad after I got the results and was seriously contemplating a career change.  

Last year I memorized all the process, and the order of the planning processes.  I can tell you most of the inputs and outputs.    I know the formulas and what the purpose is - in fact I can write all of the formulas used in the PM world, and the caluclations behind them - from scratch.    I score pretty well on the practice tests. 

When you get your feedback sheet, it tells you the process areas you are weak in.  Does anyone think that helps at all?  I was weak in Initiating and Monitoring.   Why initiating - I have no idea.   The first time I was profecient in Initatiin and Closing. 

Take Monitoring and controlling - did I miss scope related questions, quality mangement questions, or stakeholder management....the reality is....I don't think you can really know.   So I believe you have to go through it all anyway, correct?  There is just so much integration I just don't feel like the feedback really helps - or am I looking at this all wrong?

So my question there anything out there in terms of a study aid which organizes the content based on these areas?  I haven't seen it. 

I know this looks like sour grapes, if I passed I wouldn't care about all the quirks with this thing.   It's just so frustrating, and to spend the kind of money - which is hard to come by these days - makes it worse. 


While it's on my mind, just some observations about the exam-

Little difference I could tell with this new version.  Yes there were some questions about stakeholders but that's common sense anyway. 


I would say this isn't like any practice test I have seen.   Very few questions I felt like I saw in any simulation or practice test.  I am not taling about the exact question, it's just that they are that different.   

A bunch of questions requiring a computation related to EV, some you had to work backwards.  There were a lot more than I expected.  I know the formulas, it was just time consuming to walk through the same type of problem a half dozen times.

Yes there were a few questions with a bunch of figures but you really didn't have to compute anything (if you understood the question). 

Not one question about ethics or responsibility - which I thought was odd.

I had just TWO questions with a critical path diagram.  Both were very easy.  Last year I had maybe 8-10. 

Some  of them were incredibly wordy,  but it seems the majority of questions this time were simple one liners.  I was surprised by this. 

There was one question, I swear there wasn't enough information to get an answer.   I will not post the exact question, but it gave you one of the variances and asked for another value.   The answers were such that without at least another value you had no idea.   It could have been any of the four.   I was about to write the same question down and send it to PMI after the exam but thought it may have been one of those they don't count.    It was just stupid.  I spent 5 minutes at the end looking at this one. 

There were a few of the what comes next thing that did not involved planning (Rita's chart).   I was able to eliminate one or two answers but the other two - well there is nothing written anywhere that I recall that  said you must do x,y,and z in this order, in this process, the only mandatory was the predecessor input or output, or finishing somethign to finish the phase.