Wowwww, PMP Certified - August 17, 2011

Finally the day has arrived to which I was eyeing from last 1 year. I cleared PMP examination on August 17 2011. It was a great immense experience during preparation of PMP.

Please find my Lesson Learned below.

I started my preparation last year July 2010, where I first attended and certify the criteria of 35PDU’s. Actual journey started from there. I was highly impressed with the PMP content from PMI and start thinking and applying PMI practices more and more into my projects.

Towards my preparation I started my preparation with PMBOX 4 which I studied at least 5-6 times in an year. During initial days I used to study on an off criterion where I study 15days then break for another 1-2week and then again I jump back onto my preparations.  I used to prepare my own notes after every Knowledge area, so that I can recall everything which I learnt during my preparations and also put down an examples from my day to day projects. I always start writing down my notes with Knowledge Area heading, and then in which process group and then what all process are part of this group. Post adding 1 or two appearances for each process area. By doing this, I was simple able to grab and absorb Input Outputs with their tools and technics more effortlessly.

I used to study PMBOX once then switch it to Rita Mulcahy, which means studied Rita Mulcahy 5-6 times. I must appreciate Rita Mulcahy here. Excellent book with real life project examples. Hats off to this book, the way its content is written and explained it’s purely breathtaking.  It helped me to a great extent to understand each and every process in much more detail and helped me to relate the same with my examples due to which I was able to grab learning’s more quickly. I keep on practicing the ITTO during my preparations and used to write them in excel sheet and next time whenever I used to repeat the same process I ensures myself that this time I will not skip the facts which I missed last time.

By doing this, I am able to understand and relate my strong and scrawny areas. Again I put all my weak areas in separate excel sheet and keep them marked as RED with date. Post i only focused on my scrawniest areas and start exploring the learning’s from surfing couple of blogs like the GREATEST of all ‘PMZILLA’ excellent, immense discussion forum. Now once I am through with the missing facts I have started reading book from Kim Heldman (outstanding case studies after every chapter which actually focused me as in I am truly doing some large projects with 1000 of project team members around and applying all PMI best practices)

During my initial days with PMZILLA I found chapter notes from Rajesh Nair (damn good, helped me so much throughout my last days of preparation that I actually didn’t ever get a chance to touch any book).  I was so confident every time I read these notes. My confidence level start rolling up day by day I start reading these notes.

Once I am through with all my learning’s I started practicing online sample papers from various sources like PMZILLA (excellent set of 25 questions), PMSTUDY (amazing set of questions), Simplelearn (I found them really tough, which actually got me scared coz I never scored more then 70)
I practiced Simulator from RITA where I benchmarked the score of minimum 90%, which actually start rolling up before a week of my exam schedule. Before that it was always between 80 – 85. Same goes with 200 practice questions with PMBOX, I highly recommend to practice sample questions of PMBOX 2-3 times before writing up your exam.

Below are few source sites from where I got lot of questions to practice and helped me to Benchmark my score everytime I practice. Best way to Benchmark is write down your score against each source mentioned below with date of attempt and compare your score using PIE charts or Bar Charts.

I collected this source of sites from PMZILLA itself, very useful content this site holds.

Source Link
PMStudy 1 
Head First Labs 
Oliver F. Lehmann 
PMP Question Bank 
PM perfect
EdWel Programs
OSP International LLC (Excellent Source)
Ajith Namboothiri
Voight Project Solutions

Exam Experience:

Finally day has arrived August 17, 2011. I read each and every question at least 2-3times and try to understand the question first and use to relate the question with which knowledge area it is refereeing too. Most of the questions where 1-2lines and few where there of 4-5 lines also. i used to mark the question for latter reference whenever I feel I am not confident. In the last I took 3 hrs to finish all 200 questions and then I counted how many questions I kept for later reference for which count was 67, then slowly and gradually I start referring marked question one by one. Lastly it was 7 mins left I clicked ‘END EXAM’. Oofffffff 3-5 seconds pause with a white screen and my hearts beats are attacking in all corners. I got a screen to submit a feedback, quick I finished the feedback and again 3-5seconds pause and then screen came saying ‘CONGRATULATIONS’wowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww cant explain what a killer vibes you get that time.
In end my recommendation please please please please read exam questions more carefully before reading out the options. Do not panic, exam is not touch but I must say it not easy too.

Much appreciate PMZILLA Admin and team members who helped me a lot in answering to my concerns i posted on PMZILLA discussion forum section in last couple of weeks.
Hats off to every one!!


admin's picture

What a great compilation I am sure this post will help a lot of folks here. For me its a pleasure to help PMP aspirant

Congratulations on your PMP.


Can you please tell where we can find the practice questions (200) of PMBOK?





If you plan to take your PMP test then you must be a member of or it might be my assumption.


On PMI site, you need to go to the e-learning section and there you would get it. Alternatively, you might search for Ansari on the site after you log in. Or else you can visit and can order the book from there. The cost is somewhere around 12-1300 and it takes around 15+ days to reach your home, but in case you are located in the United States then there are several book stores from where you can procure it. This is where you have to do alternative analysis :)


Its a good read. I regulalry monitor myself on it. I have also subscribed to examcentral. Its free. THANKFULLY! I have taken two tests since yesterday and have scored 70% each time.