You will realize that free PMP study material is not useful after reading this post. You can pass the certification test by studying from cheap exam prep material instead of free sources.
You have to be careful while choosing the study material. PMP credential exam is an expensive test. Free sources can be costly and detrimental for passing the exam.
In this post have shared story of a Reddit user. He has shared is preparation strategy and provided suggestions for the study material. His main advice is to schedule the exam and then follow it up with the preparation.
Let’s jump straight into his PMP story.
Did I Use Free PMP Study Material?
Quick and easy, I have project records so I know the dates of them and a lot of the projects were similar in scope so my descriptions for each were similar. I had a Construction Management class in college (engineering) a while back that fill the education requirement. I got my application approved DEC 3, 2017.
I put the PMP on the back burner for a while since I had other commitments. Come September I realize I will need to resubmit the application if I don’t take the test soon. I skimming some books and looking at some videos at this point but not really studying.
I scheduled the test for Nov, 5th, this would allow me another 4 weeks of study to take the test again without the application expired. This was the #1 motivator to study.
A piece of personal advice “Do not study then schedule the test when you think you’re ready, Schedule the test and be ready for it when the time comes”
Studying – I kept it pretty simple, and Cheap
($11) Joseph Phillips Udemy Course – I watched this first- Good baseline course, gives you a great overview of everything in the PMBOK, is easy to watch, and you can watch at faster speeds (though sometimes this makes the audio horrible) The handouts and summary sheets are good too. No need to memorize every ITTO, that will be a waste of time. Went back and re-watched a few videos in areas where I had bad practice exam results.
($68) PMTraining practice Exams– The bulk of my studying was just doing practice questions, this was well worth the $68. I probably did around 2000 questions. PMTraining also tells you what areas you need improvement in. When I would miss a question I would reference the area of the PMBOK for the answer.
($Free) PMBOK Guide – A PDF version is free with your membership, I was able to borrow a friend’s hard-copy though which I prefer. I didn’t really read this. I used it as more of reference for the questions I missed on pm training practice exams. I read through the glossary the day before the test just to see if there were any terms I may have overlooked.
Overall I had probably about 45 hours of studying over 5 weeks. I watched a few youtube videos as well but nothing that I felt wasn’t covered elsewhere.
The Test Day
Ate a good breakfast and checked in at 8:30, no locker access allowed but kept a red bull and cliff bar on top for my break. I didn’t do any brain dump or anything. After the first 10 questions, I thought I was going to fail, they were a bit harder than I expected and the very first one did require a little in-depth calculation (the only one that did)
I kept an eye on the timer and made sure I kept an appropriate pace. (50 questions/hour Minimum if not better). I ended up not taking any breaks and finished with 10 minutes left. I used the 10 minutes to go back through the marked questions I probably changed 30% of them. With 3 minutes left I was so burned out I just clicked end exam and got my score, which to be honest was a bit surprising. I figured closing would have been my strongest Process Group as closing projects was a major duty for me when I was an Assistant PM.
My take on the questions is similar to a lot of other peoples here. A lot of Change Control, Risk and what do you do first/next questions. Another important thing is to know the difference between manage/control quality as there were a lot of questions on those processes.
Thought the test seemed harder than I expected, I did much better than I expected. I was getting around 80% consistent scores on PMTraining.
As far as best advice for studying- Do as many practice questions you can, then review the ones you got incorrect in the PMBOK and understand why. No need for $1500 boot camps, my company would have paid for one but it would have never worked with my schedule.
Over To You
How are you planning to get the PMP certificate? What study sources have you used or are using? Which free source did you find useful?
Please put in your comment below.