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  Deepak's Lessons Learned - Passed PMP Exam on Mar 23, 2010

Deepak passed his PMP exam on couple days ago. He has some really useful tips to share. Here are his lessons learned:

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I finally cleared my PMP on 23 Mar 2010.

I would like to share a few lessons learnt, Hope the below points will help all aspiring PMP’s to clear in 1st shot.

Books referred:
  1. Head First PMP: Amazing book that can clear your basic concepts, there mode of explaining is just unbelievable, it is like reading a story book,

  2. PMBOK: 4th edition: Once we get the momentum, we can slowly start reading the PMBOK and get acquainted with all the fundamentals and logic
    Remember …no matter how many books u read, if you do not read & understand PMBOK (the mother of all bibles), your chances of passing the exam are very less.

Exams referred on the net:
Head first 200 questions
PMSTUDY 1, 2, 3, 4: 200 questions each.

Web Sites referred for information:
http://www.deepfriedbrainpmp.com/ : Many Thanks to Harwinder for sharing valuable info to aspiring PMP members.
Frankly speaking I cleared my understanding on certain topics like WPI /WPM, TCPI etc from the articles posted at this site.

Before the exam:

Your brain is like a 2 compartment water filter, you fill water on the top and you have to wait for sometime till the water gets filtered and collected in lower compartment.
If you pour more water in upper compartment even after it is full, it will spill out and be wasted. 
Hence do not load your brain too much, let it get absorbed and sort of get indexed in your brain for easy retrieval.

A day before the exam, close all your PMP books and preparation material & do not read anything and sleep well for 8 hours, this will relax your brain and you feel your body has become very light. Watch a movie, go out for ice cream, call your girlfriend/boyfriend/wife/fiancée and talk about your glory old good days, does do anything but do not study. Just relax your mind & body.

Next morning after a good night sleep, give a quick run thru the KA and process groups and formulas and ITTOS.
Preferably plan your exam in the 2nd half of the day, so that you have enough time to eat your breakfast well, avoid morning rush and reach your examination center 1 hour ahead.

Do carry something to eat as your body will need energy during the 4 hour exam. Carry an apple, some sandwiches, groundnuts, dark chocolate, energy drinks, and h2O bottle :)
These foods are quick to eat and give you energy. Drink lots of water as the AC inside feel may make you feel dehydrated.

During the exam, take a break every hour for 5 – 8 min, go out of the examination room, eat something, charge your energy and be back.

Exam Preparation:
It took me exactly 2 months devoting 2 hrs everyday (1 hour in morning and 1 hour in evening) and spending close to 14 hrs on Saturday and Sunday.
Morning time is the best to study as your brain is active and comprehends the logic and material what you read.
Start with Head FIRST PMP book and then once the momentum builds up and your confidence grows, increase your study time.

Tools used:
Nothing like excel document to help you store all the notes you make. You can have a worksheet for KA, formulas, ITTOS, Notes for each process etc...
It is Very easy to refer and all the material at one place.

During the exam:
Skip & Keep marking all lengthy questions, calculation questions on CPI, SPI, TCPI etc, you can revisit them after you have answered all the easy and one liner questions.
Some of the lengthy questions are just to confuse you, just see the last line and the answers you will get a hint what the question is all about.
Don’t get scared by some 25 odd questions that you encounter & have never seen or heard in your life… these are just for survey purpose, just give an educated guess and select the answer and mark it & keep moving on.
You can revisit all the marked questions in the end if you have time and using reasoning and practical approach …answer all of them.

Always Think positive … think good …good will happen. :)
Cheers and wish you all the best.
Thanks for taking out your valuable time and reading thru my lesson learnt post.

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These lessons learned were originally posted by Deepak here (and published above with his permission):

Deepak's Lessons Learned - Passed PMP Exam on Mar 23, 2010

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