Given that the passing score for PMP is not published, you might be wondering how to ensure you do get enough marks to pass the test.
Here are our top 5 study best practices, drawn from many years of experience and PMP lessons learned in helping students succeed in their examinations:
Let’s review each of those in more detail so you can be as prepared as possible for your exam day.
First, it’s important to ensure that your PMP study materials are updated to reflect the latest changes to the PMP exam.
The PM Exam Simulator is constantly updated and revised so the questions and explanations are in line with what you should expect to see on the test. Of course, the simulator does not include the actual exam questions you will face on your testing day. Instead, the questions are similar in difficulty and nature. They are also split across every PMP practice exam in the same proportions as you will receive in the real exam.
As stated in the history of PMP development, the certification exam has been around for many years, there are many old learning resources out there. Make sure you invest in materials that will help you achieve the best possible result.
We recommend measuring your progress with mock exams, using a software tool to mimic the digital environment you will see on your test day. Why use a PMP simulator? Because the exam is interactive. You will be expected to navigate through the questions online, use the online timer and calculator and features like ‘mark for review’. You can’t feel comfortable with those if you are using a book to study from as books simply can’t replicate the online experience.
If you aren’t sure what the ‘mark for review’ feature is, don’t worry. It’s a helpful option in the exam that lets you flag questions and come back to them later. If you aren’t sure of an answer, or you feel like answering would take too much time, you can mark the question for review.
Then, towards the end of your exam, you can spend any extra time you have left going through those flagged questions. Check your responses, or fill in the blanks. It’s a good way of skipping questions so you don’t get stuck, and then easily being able to find the questions you need to revisit before your time is up.
There are many good reasons to use PMP books but getting comfortable with the digital interface is not one of them!
Practice exams give you experience of answering the many different types of PMP questions from drag-and-drop to interpreting charts, multiple select and the classic multiple choice, and more.
Sitting down at your computer to answer questions for the full exam time is also worth doing. These days, we don’t often have a reason to be at our computers for hours at a time, focused on one specific task. A practice examination will help you get used to the feeling of being at your desk for that long and the pace required to get through all the questions in the allotted time.
Practice exams will also get you familiar with the language, style, structure and format of the questions. There can be quite a lot of words to read on the screen, and often we receive feedback from students after their PMP exam saying that their test questions were vague and tricky! That’s why the PM Exam Simulator questions are also vague and tricky at times, as they help prepare you for the real thing.
The best study tools don’t simply report that your answer was wrong. They also explain why. That depth of explanation sets some tools apart from others. Detailed explanations help students learn why an answer was correct, why a different answer was correct but not appropriate in this situation, or why a course of action would not have been the right thing to do at that time. These are nuances that mentors share with their mentees – and that you can’t get from the appendix of a book that only lists the correct ‘A’, ‘B’ or ‘C’ response.
Another feature that sets the PM Exam Simulator apart as a PMP prep tool is Live Feedback™.
The Live Feedback feature is designed to address the correctness of the answer, explanation, or reference. It allows students to provide their feedback and input relating to any question in the simulator if:
All you have to do is click the feedback button from inside the simulator and it sends a message directly to the expert team. We have had great feedback about this feature from students. As Paul Saylor, PMP, says: “This feature allowed me to communicate with a certified professional who would review my questions and respond in a manner that would either cause the light bulb to go off in my head or he/she would agree that the manner in which the question was phrased needed modification.”
When you put together your PMP study plan, take into account when you prefer to work. Consider your ‘high energy’ times. Are you more motivated in the morning? Or are you someone who does their best work late into the night? There is no right or wrong answer to this – it’s simply a personal preference.
Once you understand and acknowledge your personal preference, you can build your study plan around those so you maximize your effectiveness by studying at the right times.
The good thing about online resources like an exam simulator is that it is available 24/7 and across multiple devices. You can log in from your phone in the morning during your commute, and then pick up where you left off from your laptop on the kitchen table later in the evening after work.
The passing score for PMP might be a mystery, but how to get an Above Target result on all domains is not! However, you will have to put the work in. You can maximize your chances of passing the exam by properly preparing for your test day.
You can reach the PMP passing score by using the right study materials, answering lots of practice questions, reviewing your responses and planning out your studies are crucial for feeling confident and prepared.
Make the PM Exam Simulator part of your exam prep, and be like thousands of other students who have aced the test with thorough practice and preparation.
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