10 Days prep, NO PMBOK!, Here's My Detailed LL :) - 20Mar'13

 Hey All,

Pleased that I have passed the PMP [2P,3MP], in only 10Days of "intensive" Prep.

Since PMZILLA has been a generous contributor towards my success (and I was a silent observer along the way), I feel bound to contribute back by sharing my  LL.

First of all, a disclaimer: I, in no way, promote the way I proceeded as the optimal way, and it would be up to you to decide how to go with your planning, for my circumstances could be different to yours… so pls be vigilant before deciding on a “Analogous” approach 


How I did it:




Andy Crowe’s:  

Easy, straight forward, concise, and MOST IMPORTANTLY: POSITIVE. (This was the differential that made me choose this over Rita’s)…. AND the book had a 1 week access for velociteach’s insite, which provides ample exercise as well as web-classes to go through the whole material.

PMFasttrack V7:




Internet Material:

Rajesh’s notes are really good, however they include overlapping and extensive information, so I used them as a basis for my own notes.








Insite for my practical prep:






Gone through the book. laid down a list of concepts confusing to me [KEY TO MY SUCCESS!]


Clarified the confusing terms by active research. Kept adding and refining this document as I progressed forward [remember, progressive elaboration ]


Completed 3 full tests + Oliver’s 75 +exercises from Insite and Fastrack; scores:

Andy Crowe’s End of Book (easier than the actual)


PMP FastTrack (comparable to the actual “situational questions” but has more number of conceptual questions)


Oliver Lehman – 75 (difficult and quite far from the actual)


PMP Fasttrack Knowledge Areas

Avg 85%

PMStudy test1 (free) (similar to the Fasttrack and to the actual)


Exercises from Insite

Avg 80%


Exam strategy:


Any question where I had doubt, I marked for review. Ended with around 70 questions. This way I knew I am comfortable with 65% of the exam and I only needed to revisit these


At 100th question, took 10 mins break: Washroom, coffee and a pack of OREO’s


Completed the exam with 25 mins to spare: reviewed the marked ones. Changed around 20 answers!


Used all the 4hrs up to the last second.




Lessons Learned:


You CAN pass the test without referring to the PMBOK. Today’s guides are comprehensive at least to the extent of passing the exam


Set your priorities right and build your plan according to it: Do I want to PASS or do I want 5P?


DO NOT take the practice tests results as a benchmark to your readiness. The most important thing is how clear the concepts to you are. And this is NOT a grey area, and CANNOT be measured by a % (you cannot say I’m 80% sure what the difference is between QA & QC therefore I will pass). Use tests only to identify your areas of confusion and then work towards clearing the confusion.


Use your own notes… what you know and what you don’t is almost certainly different from what those of the author of notes posted in the net. Take the notes with a pinch of salt. Again only use these materials to identify new areas of confusion, and do your own research to clarify them.


It would pay to revisit the reference book, but ONLY WHEN IT ADDS VALUE. Many candidates say I went through PMBOK at least 4 times before the exam. This is purely using the means as an end. Your starting point should always be around the areas of confusion, and clarifying them should be your END: how you do is completely up to you. (I only went through Andy Crowe’s once… and then concentrated on patching my knowledge.)


Theory is nothing without practice. Knowing all the material without knowing how to solve PMP questions is like owning a weapon without knowing how to use it. Take at least 2 full exams. The actual experience will be very demanding so be prepared. PRACTICE


Only practice from reputable sources (I recommend the resources I used, accurate and more than enough). Do not go out of your way in getting too much practice from all the sources you can find. This will confuse you


Finally, book for the exam and give yourself enough motivation to make it happen. If u “wait until you’re ready” till you register… you will not feel the urgency (trust me on thisJ)


Finally, take the whole experience as a project… and apply the project management lifecycle to it (I did, and as part the closing process, I updated my LL :P)

Wish you all the best. J


admin's picture

Great and congratulations. however, I will not advise skipping PMBoK. But overall good tips

 Thanks and agree... This is why I mentioned a disclaimer at the beginning.

 Congrats man!.


~ Diba

Congratulations Abed.

Congratulations, did you utilize ExamCentral at all?



 Thanks all

Focused, I didn't use exam central... 

 Dear Friend,

          Congrats and thanks for sharing LL.