Even though I am a big fan of the Project Management Institute and its certifications, especially the PMP, I am aware that the PMBOK and some of the study material can be rather dry, particularly since there are not many real examples. And that is because the project management methodology can be applied to any project, such as building a high rise, developing a vaccine, or creating any product for mass manufacturing. Therefore, the material is presented in a general and abstract manner to make it universally applicable. That said, the exam prep courses can present the material in a more interesting and applicable manner.
PMP Certification Exam Prep Course
At PM Workshops, for example, we typically customize our courses so that the participants may apply the course material to their work. In this way, not only does t make it easier for PMP candidates to remember the coursework, but it also helps them perform their work better by learning some skills and learning which pitfalls to avoid. We accomplish this by using as many case studies as feasible and other real-world examples of project management.
In general, when signing up for a PMP exam prep course, try and find out ahead of time what the syllabus looks like. At a minimum, the following processes need to be covered with the aid of case studies and/or other applicable manners:
- Project Charter
- Project Plan
- Baselines: scope, schedule, and cost
- Quality metrics and measurements
- Resource management, such as staff development and conflict resolution
- Communication plan in concert with a Stakeholder Engagement Assessment Matrix (SEAM)
- Risk analysis, including completing a register
The above parts of project management are crucial in any project, but they are also common topics covered in the exam questions in a situational manner.
Other important elements of an effective PMP exam course are templates, guidelines, and standards, which also help to understand the material and make it more tangible, less “dry,” and becoming part of your project management toolbox work. At PM Workshops, for example, we always provide our students with digital files of the templates, processes, and guidelines, which they can customize as needed to fit their projects. Also, we include follow-up assistance should our students have questions months later regarding what they learned and how to apply it to their organizations best.
Although the typical PMP exam course runs four to five days, it behooves you to carefully select the training provider based on their coursework, expertise level of the trainers, and the material provided to you at the end. Also, many training companies offer guarantees regarding their success rate in getting you to pass the exam, but these guarantees come with strings attached. Your best option is to select a solid training provider that understands what it takes to help you pass the exam and, just as importantly, improve your management skills, which will be with you long after you become a PMP.