Monday, January 17, 2011

The PMP Exam Brain Dump

There’s no better catalyst for self realization than taking the Project Management Professional (PMP)® exam. I’m kidding you, of course, but there is some truth in that the PMP exam day will illuminate that “you don’t know what you don’t know.”
The PMP Exam is a ‘closed’ book exam. That means the only reference material you are allowed to carry into the testing facility has to be contained in your brain. But during your exam, your brain is going to be very busy interpreting the exam questions and trying to apply all of the knowledge, skills and principles you’ve accumulated in your studies and work experience.
If you haven’t already, you should go for a visit to the local testing facility where you’ll take your exam and confirm what to expect. Most likely, on your exam day, the exam monitor will check you into the testing facility, hand you six or so sheets of scratch paper and two pencils, then show you to your seat and confirm that your PC is working. Then you’ll have about 15 minutes to go through a tutorial that really only takes about 5 minutes to do. Then you begin your exam.
During the test, recalling what you do know can be daunting. Quite frankly, some of your ability to access that knowledge is going to seem misplaced amongst your grey cells. So how do you create the best opportunities to pass the PMP Exam that day? You can use the 10 minutes you don’t need from the tutorial time to do a Brain Dump!
What goes into a Brain Dump?
Brain Dumps are only as good as the quality and quantity of information that you can spill out on the piece(s) of paper just before you begin your PMP Exam. They contain the formulas, theory, concepts and PMP-isms that you might otherwise forget for a moment at the very moment when you need it most.
Here is what you can generally find as part of a PMP Exam Brain Dump:
  • Table 3-1 of the PMBOK® Guide 4th Edition
  • Formulas, such as earned value, PERT, communication channels, procurement, probability, project selection and depreciation
  • Values, such as 1, 2 and 3 sigma and estimate ranges
  • Acronyms, such as BAC or TCPI
  • Powers of a project manager
  • Conflict resolution (best to worst)
  • Sources of conflict (order of priority)
  • Herzberg’s motivators
  • Project closing check list
And of course: you must include all the items that you personally have trouble remembering during your studies and that you feel need to go onto your sheet. The list above or using a Brain Dump that someone else created can be a good start but you really need to customize it to your needs. Don’t study what others are having trouble remembering. Instead, include what gives you the hiccups.

Article by Cornelius Fichtner, PMP :
The PMP Exam Brain Dump - PM Hut


  1. Now a days PMP exam become easy because there are number of books available online which are on basis of project manager. There are different calculations. It is tough to remember all formulas. It is enough to understand the relation between variables.

    PMP Exam Software

  2. Hi i think a PMP certification is very recognized these days, and if you have the capabality you should try to aim for a PMP certification. There are also a lot of useful resources on the web; most of which are free..One of the useful resource is avaialable PMStudy website. PMP Certification