Passing the PMP Exam: How to Take It and Pass It

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Overview

This book uses the PMBOK Guide, Third Edition, so that all information is up to date for the new PMP examination.

Don't just take the PMP® exam: Pass it, the first time!

Less than 50% of PMP exam candidates actually pass the exam on their first attempt. But one group passes at an amazing 80+% rate: the students of Dr. Rudd McGary, PMP. McGary has spent years teaching the PMP certification exam and helping professional project managers prepare for it. Now, he's integrated all of these techniques and knowledge to assist you in one book: Passing the PMP Exam.

Dr. McGary shows you exactly what the Project Management Institute expects from you and exactly how to be prepared for the certification examination. Whatever your experience, he'll help you rapidly achieve deep mastery of PMI's Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK®). Other books cover PMBOK, but this book is relentlessly focused on helping you ace your exam the first time.

  • Learn proven strategies, methods, and tips for passing your PMP exam
  • Master all five project phases: initiation, planning, execution, control, and closing
  • Use the book to become a project management professional in project integration, scoping, scheduling, costs, quality, human resources, communications, risk, and procurement
  • Understand critical project management details, from Work Breakdown Structures (WBS) to change control systems
  • Review the professional conduct and ethics standards you will be tested on
  • Continue to use the book as a valuable resource of practical information after you are certified

The accompanying CD-ROM presents Rudd McGary's unique approach to passing the PMP exam. You'll find more valuable content than on any other PMP study guide CD-ROM—including more than 400 sample exam questions and answers!

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780131860070
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall
  • Publication date: 7/21/2005
  • Pages: 504
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.28 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Dr. Rudd McGary, PMP, lives in Columbus, Ohio, with his wife Sharon, and sons Clayton and Carter. As an educator, practitioner, and writer in project management, McGary has helped countless people as they have worked on and studied about project teams and project management. He continues that tradition with this book, which will aid people interested in passing the PMI certification examination to become familiar with the various areas of interest and study that make up project management.

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Read an Excerpt

PrefacePreface

There is no profession more interesting or challenging than modern project management. Because of the nature of projects, the project manager will be working in environments where change is occurring, where there is uniqueness to the management, and where time constraints guide the work to be done. Project management has been used for thousands of years with almost all of the projects including some aspect of building. From the pyramids of Egypt to the great cathedrals of Europe, projects involving thousands of people and sometimes hundreds of years have been completed.

While there were de facto project managers all throughout history, the formalization of project management did not really begin until the second half of the twentieth century. As large organizations, such as the U.S. military, began to run larger and more expensive projects, there was a need for the discipline and common knowledge base that is the hallmark of a profession. Some sort of passing on of best practices and common language that would make each successive generation of project managers able to have much the same skill set and background information as the previous one was needed to make project management professional.

In 1969, a group was formed that was dedicated to making project management a profession. The Project Management Institute (PMI) was formed in that year and later brought out a book, the Project Management Body of Knowledge or PMBOK that began to codify information concerning the various unique factors of project management.

A validation of the status of the PMBOK came in the year 2000 when the American National Standards Institute declared the PMBOK theofficial publication of project management and the work was set up as the standard for project management in this country.

PMI instituted a certification test so that there would be a standardization of information and a knowledge base that could be transferred and used by people coming into the project management arena. Because of its very nature, project management is a job that is serendipitous. Most people come to it by chance, not by planned education or career path intention. So the one place that all aspiring project managers can go that has been accepted by ANSI is the PMI certification test leading to the designation PMP, or Project Management Professional.

The aim of this book is twofold. First, the book and CD-ROM are designed to help anyone taking the certification examination to pass it. (For information about the practice exam on the CD, see Appendix C.) This is the driving force of the book. However, the manner in which the book is presented is also useful for information that can be used long after passing the exam. Anyone who has been a project manager will recognize the two uses of the book. It is both a primer for the exam and a textbook for project managers to use as they project manage.

I am often asked what the key to taking the exam is, and the best answer is "Know the material." Taking this exam is not about knowing answers to questions; it is about having the depth of knowledge that will be useful in future endeavors. If you have the knowledge base, you will pass the exam. I have enjoyed writing this book because of the dual nature of both passing the exam and then being a professional project manager. As you use the book, I hope that it is helpful in both ways and that when you pass the exam, you understand you are starting, not finishing your education in project management. The project management profession is ongoing and can be fascinating, demanding a large range of skills for its practitioners. If this book helps people find new careers and challenges, then it will be worthwhile.

Good luck on the exam and in being a project manager.

Rudd McGary
Columbus, OH
April, 2005

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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Table of Contents

Preface.

Acknowledgments.

About the Author.

About the Contributors.

1. Introduction.1

The PMBOK.

How Much Time Do I Have?

Project Management and Projects.

Two Different Models of Approaching the Study of Project Management.

The Phase Approach.8

The Knowledge Area Approach.

How Is the Test Constructed?

Questions You Should Not Answer.

Why Do People Fail This Exam?

What Do I Need for the Exam?

When Should I Apply to Sit for the Exam?

Style of the Book.

Questions from One.

Answers from One.

2. Initiation and Planning.

Initiation and Feasibility.

Planning.

Scope Statement.

The Work Breakdown Structure (WBS).

Questions from Two.

Answers from Two.

3. Planning and Execution.

IT and Engineering.

Organizational Design.

Stakeholders.

Communication in the Execution Phase.

Channels.

Baseline.

Status Meetings.

General Comments on Planning and Execution.

Questions from Three.

Answers from Three.

4. Execution and Control.

Change Control System and Change Control Board.

Project Management Information System (PMIS).

Version Control.

Work Authorization System.

Statement of Work (SOW).

Earned Value.

Earned Value Acronyms and Formulas.

Questions from Four.

Answers from Four.

5. Control and Closing.

Administrative Closure.

Project Archives.

Project Closure.

Contract Closeout.

Lessons Learned.

Formal Acceptance.

Questions from Five.

Answers from Five.

6. Professional Conduct and Ethics.

Responsibility to the Profession.

Compliance with All Organizational Rules and Policies.

Candidate/Certificate Holder Professional Practice.

Advancement of the Profession.

Responsibilities to Customers and the Public.

Qualifications, Experience, and Performance of Professional Service.

Conflict of Interest Situations and Other Prohibited.

Professional Conduct.

Questions from Six.

Answers from Six.

7. Mid-Book Exam.

Mid-Term.

Mid-Term Answers.

8. Project Integration Management.

Develop Project Charter.

The Project Plan.

Develop Preliminary Project Scope Statement.

Developing the Project Plan.

Project Plan Execution.

Integrated Change Control.

Close Project.

Questions from Eight.

Answers from Eight.

9. Project Scope Management.

Scope Planning.

Scope Definition.

Create WBS.

Scope Verification.

Scope Change Control.

Questions from Nine.

Answers from Nine.

10. Project Time Management.

Activity Definition.

Activity Sequencing.

Network Diagrams.

Activity Resource Estimating.

Activity Duration Estimating.

Schedule Development.

Schedule Control.

Questions from Ten.

Answers from Ten.

11. Project Cost Management.

Resource Planning.

Cost Estimating.

Cost Budgeting.

Cost Control.

Earned Value.

Not in the PMBOK but on the Examination.

Questions from Eleven.

Answers from Eleven.

12. Project Quality Management.

Quality Planning.

Performing Quality Assurance.

Performing Quality Control.

Questions from Twelve.

Answers from Twelve.

13. Project Human Resources Management.

Human Resource Planning.

Acquire Project Team.

Developing the Project Team.

Managing the Project Team.

Questions from Thirteen.

Answers from Thirteen.

14. Project Communications Management.

Communication Planning.

Information Distribution.

Performance Reporting.

Stakeholder Management.

Administrative Closure.

Channels of Communication.

Questions from Fourteen.

Answers from Fourteen.

15. Project Risk Management.

The Project Risk Management Processes.

Risk Management Planning.

Inputs to Project Risk Management Planning.

Project Risk Management Planning Tools and Techniques.

Outputs of Risk Management Planning.

Risk Identification Process.

Inputs to the Risk Identification Process.

Tools and Techniques of Risk Identification.

Information Gathering Techniques.

Outputs of the Risk Identification Process.

Qualitative Risk Analysis Process.

Inputs to the Qualitative Risk Analysis Process.

Qualitative Risk Analysis Process Tools and Techniques.

Quantitative Risk Analysis.

Quantitative Risk Analysis Inputs.

Quantitative Risk Analysis Tools and Techniques.

Decision Tree Analysis.

Quantitative Risk Analysis Outputs.

Risk Response Planning.

Risk Response Planning Inputs.

Risk Response Planning Outputs.

Risk Monitoring and Control (RM&C).

Risk Monitoring and Control Inputs.

Risk Monitoring and Control Tools and Techniques.

Risk Monitoring and Control Outputs.

Conclusion.

Questions from Fifteen.

Answers from Fifteen.

16. Project Procurement Management.

Planning Purchases and Acquisitions.

Contract Types.

Plan Contracting.

Request Seller Responses.

Select Sellers.

Contract Administration.

Contract Closure.

Questions from Sixteen.

Answers from Sixteen.

Appendix A: Abbreviations.

Appendix B: Glossary.

Appendix C: About the CD-ROM.

Index.

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Preface

Preface

There is no profession more interesting or challenging than modern project management. Because of the nature of projects, the project manager will be working in environments where change is occurring, where there is uniqueness to the management, and where time constraints guide the work to be done. Project management has been used for thousands of years with almost all of the projects including some aspect of building. From the pyramids of Egypt to the great cathedrals of Europe, projects involving thousands of people and sometimes hundreds of years have been completed.

While there were de facto project managers all throughout history, the formalization of project management did not really begin until the second half of the twentieth century. As large organizations, such as the U.S. military, began to run larger and more expensive projects, there was a need for the discipline and common knowledge base that is the hallmark of a profession. Some sort of passing on of best practices and common language that would make each successive generation of project managers able to have much the same skill set and background information as the previous one was needed to make project management professional.

In 1969, a group was formed that was dedicated to making project management a profession. The Project Management Institute (PMI) was formed in that year and later brought out a book, the Project Management Body of Knowledge or PMBOK that began to codify information concerning the various unique factors of project management.

A validation of the status of the PMBOK came in the year 2000 when the American National Standards Institute declared the PMBOK the official publication of project management and the work was set up as the standard for project management in this country.

PMI instituted a certification test so that there would be a standardization of information and a knowledge base that could be transferred and used by people coming into the project management arena. Because of its very nature, project management is a job that is serendipitous. Most people come to it by chance, not by planned education or career path intention. So the one place that all aspiring project managers can go that has been accepted by ANSI is the PMI certification test leading to the designation PMP, or Project Management Professional.

The aim of this book is twofold. First, the book and CD-ROM are designed to help anyone taking the certification examination to pass it. (For information about the practice exam on the CD, see Appendix C.) This is the driving force of the book. However, the manner in which the book is presented is also useful for information that can be used long after passing the exam. Anyone who has been a project manager will recognize the two uses of the book. It is both a primer for the exam and a textbook for project managers to use as they project manage.

I am often asked what the key to taking the exam is, and the best answer is "Know the material." Taking this exam is not about knowing answers to questions; it is about having the depth of knowledge that will be useful in future endeavors. If you have the knowledge base, you will pass the exam. I have enjoyed writing this book because of the dual nature of both passing the exam and then being a professional project manager. As you use the book, I hope that it is helpful in both ways and that when you pass the exam, you understand you are starting, not finishing your education in project management. The project management profession is ongoing and can be fascinating, demanding a large range of skills for its practitioners. If this book helps people find new careers and challenges, then it will be worthwhile.

Good luck on the exam and in being a project manager.

Rudd McGary
Columbus, OH April, 2005

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Read More Show Less

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2006

    Just failed the exam

    This book covers about 50% of what you need to pass the latest PMP exam. I do not recommend it. I scored 90%+ consistently on the test questions in this book and on the CD and felt like half of what I was reading on the PMP exam was greek. Try another book.

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