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Is the PMP Exam Hard? 5 Tips to Pass

Between 2017 and 2019, employers reduced degree requirements for middle-skill positions by 46% and high-skill positions by 31%. These changes impacted hiring for IT and managerial positions. Rather than requiring degrees, employers are looking for skilled employees who will get the job done.

With employers moving to skills-based hiring, your resume needs to show you have skills for the role. If you are looking to grow into a project manager role, a Project Management Professional certification can prove you have the necessary skills. Passing the PMP exam can make you stand out from other candidates.

Is the PMP exam hard? Not if you put in the work. Read on for five essential PMP certification exam tips to help you pass on the first try.

1. Know the Changes to the PMP Exam

The PMP exam changes every three to five years to keep up with new developments in the project management profession.

The exam outline has changed to focus on three domains instead of five. Agile and adaptive methodologies now have a higher weight on the exam. And while the exam has added time and reduced the number of questions, 25 new tasks have been added.

The changes mean you will have to work harder and focus on understanding the principles and how to apply them.

2. Form Your Study Plan

PMBOK Guide outlines everything you need to know for the PMP exam. It breaks down the exam structure and provides study materials for the tested topics. Although the PMBOK gives a good roadmap for your studies, you can’t rely on it to fully understand the topics.

Instead, use the PMBOK Guide to create your custom study plan that fits your schedule. Find a good prep book and plan to go over each area in depth. Make sure you have plenty of time to review and take practice exams.

3. Find Your Motivation

The variety of topics that the PMP exam tests for can be overwhelming. The test requires practical application of the domains, so you can’t just breeze through it with little effort. So if you don’t stay motivated, you could waste your valuable study time, which impacts your score.

So, set goals for each of your study days. Meeting those goals can help you stay on track and feel like you are making progress. Committing to the process will help you ensure you are well prepared for test day.

4. Enroll in a PMP Exam Prep Course

The PMP exam can test challenging concepts that can be difficult to grasp even with real-world experience. Enrolling in a PMP exam prep course will allow you to learn from an experienced instructor who can provide guidance for beating the exam. An instructor can answer any questions you have and point you in the right direction.

Prep courses can also be a great way to connect with other project managers and study together. The extra time and knowledge you spend studying in prep courses will improve your chances of passing. You can sign up for a PMP exam prep course at

5. Practice Makes Perfect

Due to the COVID pandemic, PMP exams are administered online. So, find online mock tests that simulate exam day. Practice tests will help you get used to the questions and time limit to determine if you are ready for the real test.

Is the PMP Exam Hard?

The PMP exam tests your understanding of project management domains and if you can apply them effectively. You have to have a game plan to fully grasp and apply those concepts to pass. Following these tips to put in the effort will ensure you are prepared so you won’t have to ask the question, “Is the PMP exam hard?”

Do you want more tips to take your career to the next level? Check out our website for more how-to and tips.

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