PMP exam preparation

Hi Friends,

I am new and first time entering to this site.

I want to ask to all who have cleared PMP certification and who are preparing for that like me, 

Is PMBOK not sufficient for PMP certification?

Rita's book is must or it is added advantage?

How e-cources help? Again is it must or added advantage?

I got PMBOK from one of my friend, who never appeared for PMP certification. I am not in position to spent much on this examination. Can any body share Rita's book if it is available in soft copy? It would be very good for me and people like me.

You can always contact me at

Thanks and regards 


admin's picture

For majority , ( or all) PMBOK is not enough, you have to go thought Rita, Andy or similar. Plus practice questions.

 Rita's book is not free , so you will not get a free soft copy . If it is available it would be pirated.

PMBOK by itself is not sufficient. You need to have at least one more reference book - it can be Rita, Kim Heldman or Andy Crowe's book. You can look at the Lessons learnt posts from others in this forum to know how should you plan for the study. None of the reference books are free. However, you can find some free sample questions on various sites (including pmzilla). Some useful material shared on -


Which edition of head first is required for 4th edition of PMBOK? First edition of March 2007 is OK? But it might be based on 3rd edition of PMBOK.

Please advise.



Yes reading and studying one or two books is not enough to prepare for the PMP exams because from each and every book they can get an new idea.. So refer al most all the books based on the PMP and go through the Internet about it.. For more details you go through the site I too got an idea by this site about the books and preparations...


[url=]PMP Certification, PMP Exam Preparation, PMP Courses, PMP Exam Simulation Software[/url]

Hi pmp0001

can you pl post the actual link from this site. Where exactly I have to look. I could not able to find out any details at the site except the product.

pls let me know which test simulator is good for prepartion of exam...PMPsimulator or Techfaq360.....


Each individual will have his / her opinion as I have mine. According to me PMBOK(4e) along with Rita (although it aligns to 3e) is more than suffecient to pass the test. I did so (see my lessons learnt), and I did get very decent scores too. The issue is not what you study, but how you study it--you got to be very analytical while studying. I would recommend studing PMBOK 4e Chapters 1-12 cover to cover and a few relevant appendices and the glossary and study Rita only for the tips & tricks, exercises and chapter end tests, and if you notice a topic not covered in the PMBOK. 

See, one can study as many books and take as many tests as you want. Each book/ test prep material will have its own strength and weakness. The issue here is also a triple constraint of time, resource (money) and motivation. I had constraints on all three--so I just opted for PMBOK +1 (Rita).  Also note, more may sometimes result to the law of diminishing return.

Let me see what I can do about the Rita.

All the very best.


Thanks Niloy,

I have decided now that I will go with PMBOK (4e), Rita (5e based on PMBOK 3e) and Head first March 2007 edition.

I will first read head first with PMBOK than Rita with PMBOK and than PMBOK alone. After completing one round, I will appear for various free tests than again go through PMBOK and Rita and than appear for exam.

Please comment on my plan.


can you pl post the actual link from this site. Where exactly I have to
look. I could not able to find out any details at the site except the


swing sets

Simplilearn's picture

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The PMBOK alone will not help you pass this test; which does not make a lot of sense to me - but that's just my opinion.  I friend asked me this morning what I did to pass the test.  I remember coming to PMZilla while studying to ascertian what others were undergoing and how they passed.  Following is what I sent to him...


·  I used ESI’s 9-disk CD tutorial & their practice questions (I think it was like 250 or 300 practice questions – excellent book) book

· this is the PM boot camp that I attended; their daily quizzes were harder than the actual exam

· I frequented this site to see what other test takers had to say about the exam, as well as get different study material (they have all of the formulas in one section)


I’m not sure what sort of timeframe that you’re looking to get this done, but on average, most people take between 3-6 months to prepare; with the last 3 weeks spending upwards of 4-6 hours studying.  Following is how I did it (using a 3month timeframe):


·         get a copy of the PMBOK (4th edition – this is what the exam is based upon) and start light reading

·         purchase a practice test book from ESI & Rita Machaly (I know I spelled it wrong, but just google PMP prep and her name will come) as well as Rita’s electronic flash cards.

·         spend 30 minutes each day doing the following 3 things (10 minutes a piece)

·         take the attachment, which is a matrix table of the 5 Process Groups & 9 Knowledge areas and spend 10 minutes a day recreating that table.  Just create a table 5X9 in word and fill in the blanks; eventually you should be able to do it from memory and ultimately within 3-5 minutes.

·          Within that same 30 minute timeframe write down the definition of the 5 process groups & 9 knowledge areas.  Because the test is “real world” scenarios PMI wants to know if you recognize (based upon the presented facts) where you are in the process and more importantly – what your BEST next step should be.  Remember, PMI will give 2-3 right answers but they want the best answer for that particular scenario

·         Get a list of the formulas from PMzilla and start replicating those on paper to round out your daily 30 minute PM ritual

·         By week 2 start reading a specific process chapter and the corresponding ESI cd for that process – taking detailed notes; you have to complete the chapter & the cd by weeks end.  Once you’re finish take the practice test; keep a copy of your answers and results.

·         Finish the week off by reviewing from Rita’s flash cards for that process/chapter

·         After about 8 weeks you should have the formulas, the definitions & the Process Group matrix memorized, now focus on being able to write the formulas & replicating that table in 3-5 minutes.

·         After 9 weeks (or the 9 process groups) go back and intensely study your notes for each process group and the corresponding flash card chapter.  Retake the corresponding tests and you should see a significant increase from your original score.  You should score consistently in the 90% & up range; that’s when you know your ready for the test.

·         Week 11 you should compare & contrast your recent test to your original and see if you got the same questions wrong; if so those are the areas that you should focus on thru week 12.

·         After week 12 if you think you still need some assistance take a boot camp and be prepared to take the test within 3-4 days of completing the boot camp.

·         On the day of the test, you will have a 15 tutorial on how to use test system.  Pay attention to this tutorial for 10 minutes, use the remaining 5 to replicate the formulas and the Matrix table.


FYI – you will probably no more than 3 questions that require one of the formulas, the problem is that you don’t know which one, so having them on a sheet of paper will make answering them easier.  I only had one question that required a formula – BUT I was able to successfully answer at least 7 other questions by going back and referencing that sheet.  This is also how that matrix worked for me as well; I probably got 10-15 questions right by being able to go back and look at that chart.  The bulk of my questions were: (Risks – 30%, Closing – 25%, HR [team building] 25%, the remaining 20% sprinkled throughout the rest).


Good Luck


You can download a free pdf copy of Farndale's PMP Prep Guide from here:

It contains 250 prep questions and is frequently quoted as a rigorous practice guide (sometimes even challenging that the PMP exam questions) by people attending our PMP Prep courses in Canada.



I got the following questions & answers from :

Question 1:  Which of the following is NOT an activity type in Project Management?

a) Level of Effort

b) Unplanned effort

c) Apportioned effort

d) Discrete effort 


Question 2:  A new Project Manager takes over a project during execution phase. One of the main issues faced by the project currently is that the customer complaints of poor visibility of the project. What should be his first step towards resolving the issue?

a) Have a discussion with the customer to understand why he feels the project lacks visibility.

b) Hold a discussion with the team members who have been in this project since beginning to understand customer specific communication needs.

c) Go through the communication management plan to understand customer communication requirement and whether it is being addressed properly.

d) Project manager should first understand the project and go through project management plan to understand the project properly.


Question 3:  Your project team is involved in estimating cost of the project as a part of project cost management. Which of the following tool and technique will NOT be applicable for the purpose?

a) Cost Benefit Analysis

b) Reserve Analysis

c) Cost of Quality 

d) Vendor Bid Analysis 


Question 4) You are a Project Manager managing a large team at diversified locations. There are many groups within project like architects, human resources, legal, quality engineers etc with their own hierarchy and reporting structure. To ensure that each team member has clarity on their own and other members reporting structure you decide to capture all this information graphically. You would be using which of the document for the purpose?

a) Project Organization Chart

b) Resource Breakdown Structure

c) Organization Breakdown Structure

d) Resource Assignment Matrix 


Question 5) Which of the following statement DOESNOT describe the essence of Integration Management in context of Project Management?

a) Balancing of competing objectives and the exploration of alternative actions.

b) The processes and activities needed to identify, define, combine, unify, and coordinate process and project management activities within the Project Management Group.

c) Integrating different components from the development cycle to create the final deliverable.

d) Managing interdependencies among Project Management knowledge areas.


Question 6: You are a project manager in a construction company and urgently require some expert welders for short duration. You checked about their availability internally with functional manager but he is not able to match the skill set required by you. You decide to acquire these resources on contract. Which is the BEST type of contract for your requirements?

a) Cost Reimbursable

b) Fixed Price

c) Time and Material

d) Cost Plus Incentive Fee



Ans Q 1) (b) Unplanned effort.


The activity type can be described based on the type of effort involved as either Level of Effort, Apportioned effort or Discrete effort . There is no activity type like unplanned effort. Option (b) Apportioned effort indicates effort that specifically and directly on the performance of other efforts. For example the quality assurance division within a major corporation wholly reliant on the performance of the manufacturing team as a whole and would represent apportioned effort. Option (a) Level of Effort (LOE) is a support type project activity which must be done to support other work activities or the entire project effort. It usually consists of short amounts of work which must be repeated periodically. Examples of such an activity could be project budget accounting. Option(d)Discrete effort refers to the effort that can be directly traced and identified to completion of the project-related work breakdown structure components as well as the deliverables. 


Ans Q 2 (c) Go through the communication management plan to understand customer communication requirement and whether it is being addressed properly.


Since Communication management plan details communication requirements of all the stakeholders, he should first ensure that the plan is being properly followed. Option (a) and (c) can follow later. Option (d) though true is not relevant to the situation.

Refer PMBOK 4th Edition Chapter Project Communication Management PN 257.


Ans Q 3) (a) Cost Benefit Analysis.


Option (b) Reserve Analysis is a analytical technique to determine a reserve for budget, estimated costs and funds for the project it is an important technique in the process of estimating costs. Option (c) Cost of Quality is the sum of all costs a company invests into the release of a quality product and can be a used to prepare cost estimates. Option (d) Vendor Bid Analysis can also be used as a technique to evaluate the project cost based on responsive bids from qualified vendors However (a) Cost Benefit Analysis is a technique that compares positive factors or benefits with negative ones to determine the net result of doing the action. It is a popular technique for project selection method but will not be useful during cost estimation at activity level.

Please refer PMBOK 4th edition Project Cost Management PN 171 for more details 


Ans Q 4 (a) Project Organization Chart.


Project Organization Chart is a part of Human Resource plan and displays project team members and their reporting structure. Depending on the project requirements, team size and their reporting hierarchy this chart could be highly detailed or broadly framed.

Please refer PMBOK 4th edition PN 223.


Ans Q 5 (C) Integrate different components of development cycle to create the final deliverable.


Integrating different components from a development cycle to create a final deliverable is an example of Software integration management used in software development projects. During this software integration phase, components from different development module is integrated into one product and tested. Whereas Integration management involves making choices about resource allocation, trade-offs among competing objectives and managing interdependencies among Project Management knowledge areas ie options (a),(b) and(d).

Please refer PMBOK 4th edition Project Integration Management PN 71.


Answer Q 6 (c) Time and Material


Since the requirement is short term and project manager wants to have a brief and quick contract Time and Material is best option. Time and Material contracts are most suitable for staff augmentation, acquisition of experts etc.

Please refer to PMBOK 4th edition Project Procurement Management PN 324


To get 400 such questions along with the explanations, you can buy our two paid PMP Tests. To get directly to the course page, you can use this link: