above target pmp exam

Do you want to want to know how to get above target in all domains of the PMP exam? Do you want to find out the best way to pass the PMP exam in the first attempt? If your answer is yes, then read on.

In this post I have shared tips from Mayank Garg who has recently passed the certification exam with the flying colors. He has kindly shared his PMP exam prep experience to be published on the blog on my request. I believe it will help you to pass the PMP exam with in first attempt with above target score.

Next words are from Mayank.

My PMP Journey of passing PMP Exam in first try with Above Target in all Process Groups

I am from Software Engineering industry. I passed my PMP certification on 05-Mar-2018. This is one of the happiest day of my life.

The idea of PMP came into my mind when I met few senior executives of a big multinational software development company. I noticed one common thing in those executives, and that was their badge with PMP certification. That time, I decided that I will also give a try to PMP certification as I also desire to reach that position.

In April 2016, I completed my 35 hours training course for 4 weekend classes from PMExperto and started studying with the aim of giving my exam in Jun-Jul same year. But after 1 month of study some office urgency came, and I lost my continuity. I started my studies again next year in April 2017, but again to lose my interest due to office and family urgency after a month of study.

Then in November 2017, I spoke to Mr. Praveen Malik, my guide in PMExperto, and got the news that PMP fifth Edition is changing and last date of exam is 26-Mar-2018. Then finally I decided, come what may, I will complete my PMP certification before 26-Mar otherwise I would have wasted all my earlier preparations and I would need to start again for the new course. Then I took my preparations seriously. I uninstalled all social networking apps from my phone, removed myself from all WhatsApp groups and focused only on the preparation for the PMP exam. I decided that that I will dedicate 2 hours daily on working day and 8 hours on weekends for PMP preparations. I religiously followed that for 3 months Dec, Jan & Feb. In these 3 months, I kept on speaking to Praveen every weekend for 5 minutes to get clarity on my doubts. The best thing about Praveen is that he was guiding me even after 2 years of my training from him. He gave me some very important advice. I was aware that I need to have a strong will power, perseverance and self-motivation, and only then I’ll be able to clear the exam.

I submitted my exam application and got the confirmation in January. Then paid my examination fees and scheduled my exam for 5th Mar (just after the Holi weekend). I visited Prometric centre one week before my exam just to get the feel of the place. I decided that this year I will not celebrate Holi, and I will use these holidays for my preparation. I sent my family to my hometown so that I could focus more on my studies. I studied 16 hours a day consecutively for 3 days before the exam, spending most of my time giving mock tests and get the clarity on missing questions. This really helped me a lot.

Regarding the study material, I started my studies with the book, The PMP Exam by Andy Crowe. I recommend everyone to start their studies with this book as they have explained PMP concepts in a very easy language. Then I read Head First PMP, and finally the PMBOK Guide. Before started reading each book, I prepared a project plan and completed each book as per the plan. I completed these 3 books end-to-end and then I revised all highlighted points of these books. Then I reviewed all the study material provided by PMExperto. I also bought one online course PMP Exam Prep Pro: Ace the Last Mile. Finally, I bought PMTraining Mock Exams as suggested by Praveen, one week before the exam and continued giving mock tests on daily basis till the last day before my exam. This mock test was really helpful for me to prepare myself for the PMP exam. I prepared all this stuff without taking even a single day leave from my office.

Finally, I gave the exam on 5th of Mar. They didn’t allow water bottle and eye drops in the exam lab. It was bit of a surprise for me as I was not aware about this. It was bit difficult to control the nervousness during the exam, but taking deep breath in-between helped me. Before pressing the final submit button, it was really difficult to control the nervousness because exam was quite tough. When I submitted on final button and saw “Congratulations!”, it was like Wow…I am above clouds. I thanked God. It seemed as if I was on top of the world. I scored “Above Target” in all 5 Process Groups. All my hard work paid off finally. After coming out from Prometric centre, I called my parents and wife to thank them for all their support during my preparation time.

Let me share my top 10 important study tips

1. Start your study with the book “The PMP Exam by Andy Crowe” as it is very easy to understand all PMP concepts, next take the 2nd book of your choice (Rita Mulcahy or Head First) and finally the PMBOK Guide.
2. Read at-least 3 books, one online course and online mock tests; total 5 resources.
3. Use mnemonics as much as you can to memorize the stuff.
4. Be consistent in your studies.
5. Perseverance and Self-motivation is very important to prepare for this exam.
6. Un-install all social media apps and games from your phone at-least 3 months prior to your exam, to better focus on your studies.
7. Take care of your body, specially eyes, neck, and back as you will be studying a lot while sitting, staring at your laptop/computer continuously for hours.
8. Plan at-least 4 days off from your office, before your exam and try to live alone in those 4 days.
9. In the last week before your exam, try to practice at-least 3 mock tests of complete 4 hours without break (even without water and bio-break). Use the same time duration as your actual scheduled exam time duration, for ex. 8am to 12pm.
10. Don’t forget to take blessings from God before going for your exam.

Finally, all the best! Cheers!

Mayank Garg, PMP

Study Material Used

Christopher Scordo’s PMP Exam Practice Tests

Andy Crowe’s PMP Exam Prep Book

Over To You

How many aspirants do you think pass the exam with above target in all process groups? Do you have such a target or you just want to pass the exam in first attempt? How are you studying for the exam? What extra things are your doing?

Please leave a comment.

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