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Prasanna Sampathkumar: Passed the exam on April 15, 2010 – Lessons Learned

Hi Everyone

I passed the exam on last Thursday (April 15, 2010). I am extremely happy and excited to add those 3 letters to my name. I have studied hard and achieved this. Thanks to all my friends who supported me and cornelius, without the prepcast it would not have been possible.

I decided to go for the certification on November 2009 and did lot of search online and checked with friends. I finalized on using Prepcast, ( Andy Crowe’s book along with PMBoK.

I tried to start with PMBoK first, during December 2009, but it was not progressing well. I purchased Prepcast in the first week of Jan 2010 and devised a plan. I listened to the Prepcast and would read the related topic in Andy’s book and then in PMBoK. I completed the first cycle by Feb end. And from march started taking practice tests. I purchased exam simulators and took all the free simulated tests. based on the scores i would study the weak areas once again in andy & Prepcast & PMBoK. From jan 2010, till april 14, i listened to prepcast daily.

I visited the this helped me in understanding some of the areas, especially the article on PTA. It explained it clearly, i was confident of taking any questions on PTA formulas after that.

I was scoring in the range of 85-90 in all the sample tests, and full mock exams i took. I took atleast 6 full mock exams. It gave me lot of confidence.

I also joined PMHUB websites, the discussions there were pretty useful. From there i came to know about wesbites and maling lists. It has a great set of articles by Jim Owens (note: now obsolete due to PMBOK changes)and its an excellent material for final day review. On the day prior to the exam, I went through all the ITTOs, Formulas, Theories and JIMBOK. It took the whole day. Actually i bough Flashcards for final review, but never find the time to use it. To be more precise i have forgotten that i had purchased flashcards.

On the day of the exam,

1. Everything i brought, including my hand towel, keys, pens, etc, i was asked to keep in locker.
2. I was not allowed to open the locker during exam time and i was asked to place the food items on a table outside the testing area.
3. The center told me that there is a limit of 5 breaks that i can take, in my exam time.
4. Every time you take a break, you need to do the entire check-in procedure again. it took time.
5. You need to click the start within one min, to start the tutorial, otherwise the exam will end.
6. Once started you have 15 mins time to go through the tutorial. during which i have written down all the formulas, in the yellow sheets given to me. But actually i never referred to that sheet during exam.
7. I took 2 breaks one after first 100 questions and one after next 100 question. Then i reviewed marked questions, then i reviewed all the 200 questions.
8. I was not able to find out which are the 25 non-scoring questions, except for a 2/3 questions all looked relevant to me
9. I had very few formula based questions, even that too were too simple that you do not need a calculator
10. They gave a physical calculator, as the online one was having some issue.

11. i clicked the END EXAM exactly after 3 hours from the starting time. And the screen went white immediately. I got terrified. I called the center person immediately. But before she come, some progress bar appeared on screen and then came a 9 question survey.

12. I was afraid to skip the survey and thought they might not give me good score ( ) if i did not give them good rating, so i choose Very satisfied for all the questions, quickly, then again the screen went blank and same progress bar appeared.

13. Then the “congratulations” came on screen, i was soooooooooo relieved.

As i said i am extremely happy to do this. I hope my experience will be useful to someone who reads it.

All the best to all aspirants, dont worry, the exam is not as tough as people make you believe it to be

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8 comments to Prasanna Sampathkumar: Passed the exam on April 15, 2010 – Lessons Learned

  • pandu

    Hi Prasanna Sampathkumar, by seeing your detailed explanation I am getting motivation to go for PMP certification. everythim i want to start preparation but not… Def .. i will start now. Do you have PMI membership? is it helping anyway to take PMP certification … Thanks in advance

  • Tarek

    Hi Prasanna Sampathkumar, i am very happy to you. i wish it will be a good “jump” in your career. i think i get to the exam next month so wish me luck.


  • Prasanna Sampathkumar

    Hi Pandu, do take this up and start your preparations. With good study plan and dedicated preparations you can crack it. Yes I have taken up PMI Membership. It has so many benefits, you can visit this page to know the benefits abt the membership. Above all i got a legal soft copy of PMBoK 4th edition, which i used to prepare, i did not buy any hardcopy of PMBoK. And ofcourse there is a small money saving the exam fee as well.

  • Prasanna Sampathkumar

    Hi Tarek,

    Thanks for your wishes. And wish you all the best for your exam in may. Do not postpone try to take it as per your original plan. Prepare well and crack it. Advance wishes

  • Sameer

    Hi Prasanna Sampathkumar, that was indeed a motivational explanation. I’ve thinking of going for PMP certification since long.However, i have couple of question which need to sorted out.

    1.There are institutes which gives training on PMP cert and a 35 hrs PDU, is this suggestable to for these institutes for training ?
    2.Since i dont have much knowledge about the PMP thing and iam from a Non-science background, how difficult is it for me crack this exam, as u have talked abt formulae’s and etc ???

    Would appreciate if you can answer my doubts.

  • Harish

    Bro, Congrats., and thanks for the valuable advice..!

  • Nanda

    Thanks a lot Prasanna for your valuable tips.

    I have cleared PMP exam y’day(12/Jul/2010)