PMP Pass - First Attempt 10/11/2012
Well, I faced that fateful day and came out on top and for that I am thankful to my wife, daughter, and God (and my very supportive and understanding boss). I felt compelled to share my thoughts since I utilized other's thoughts on here to prepare myself.
I have planned on going for my PMP for over a year but finally decided September 20th to schedule the exam date and take it. My preparation was quick and precise (less than 3 weeks).
Week 1 - I watched the videos from the Insite website (6 hours/day). They were good and probably helped me get 8-10 questions correct. The biggest thing I used from them was their practice tests. They are fairly decent although there are free alternatives that are just as good.
Week 2 - Took lots of practive tests and skimmed the PMBOK but only to look up answers I got wrong on practice tests or to hit an area I didn't fully understand (never read it nor any other book). (6 hours/day)
Week 3 - I spent 14 hours/day studying for 7 straight days leading into the exam. This mostly consisted of taking tons of practice tests from all over and studying Abhishek's Version - Rajesh Nair PMP Notes. I made flashcards for the ITTO and had my wife go over them with me several times per day. I also used some memorization mnemonics for areas that had quite a few ITTO.
All in all I want to say that reading Lessons Learned can be very, very good but also scary in some instances so be cautious. The test was much easier than I had anticipated but still requires some significant effort. I had 4P and 1MP and I am certainly no genius (as my wife would tell you). I chalk my success up to cramming and memorization....oddly several weeks later now I can still remember most of what I "memorized".
PM Fasttrack/RIta Tests: 58%-85% (considerably more difficult that the actual exam in my opinion)
ExamCentral: 91% (too easy)
I think the main thing is to stay positive and know yourself and your abilities. When I began the test, I was 5 questions in and thought to myself "oh crap...i'm screwed!" but by the time I had gotten to the 50 question mark I was confident and focused and I knew that I could do it. With my new found confidence I went back over the first 20 questions again even though I hadn't marked them and fixed 5 of them. I had an hour left at the end of the exam so I wouldn't concern myself with the time.
I had 7 formula questions on my exam (one was duplicated which was odd). I had many questions that would give me info I could jot down and use on others. There were also a noticeable amount of questions on PM Ethics which were basically all freebies.
Please do not take this LL as me saying "Don't study much, it's easy" but rather me telling you to think positive, be positive and positive things will happen for you.
Good luck to all aspiring PMPs and thank you to PMZilla for the wonderful place to prepare.