Foolproof Tips To Crack Your Pmi-acp® Exam In Your First Attempt

Your performance in the PMI-ACP® examination is directly proportional to your learning strategies and smart preparation. Devising a near-perfect study plan and executing it, is undoubtedly the toughest part even when compared to taking the actual exam. Most people fail to score because they do not realize the intricacies involved in a professional project management certification examination. They tend to underestimate its complexity and thus suffer due to last-minute preparations. This article aims at providing you with a thorough insight into gearing up for attempting your PMI-ACP® certification examination. 

Preparing for the exam

  1. Duration of preparation: You should devote at least a whole 3 months to prepare for your examination. If you procrastinate in beginning your preparation, it might end up in wasted efforts.
  2. Fixing your exam date: Schedule your exam date well in advance. This is crucial because if you are aware of the date of examination, that would motivate you to move towards achieving your learning objectives with the available time frame.
  3. PMBOK® Guide: Read the PMBOK® Guide at least twice. The Project Management Body of Knowledge® gives you insightful information and techniques of both traditional and modern practices of project management.
  4. Prepare quick notes: Quick notes are those which contain only the most important points in the form of hints. They would help you in revision before your exam.
  5. Highlighter: If you use textbooks and are not into notetaking, then use a highlighter to mark only the keywords that are most critical to remember. This helps you in skimming and scanning. Highlighting a whole paragraph or entire sentences will not help you during revision.
  6. Mock exams: Mock exams are the safest bets. Your success rate significantly depends upon the number of mock exams you undertake. By consistent mock test practice, you tend to effectuate your learning curve development and learn from the mistakes you commit.
  7. Memorizing doesn’t work: Merely memorizing formulae might not turn out to be effective, as the certifying authority expect you understand the concepts and principles thoroughly and be able to apply them in special circumstances.

The day before the exam

  1. Don’t be stressed out: Nervousness is a common issue that takes over the candidates before the big examination. Remember, if you have rightly followed the above steps during your preparatory stage, you are going to be just fine.
  2. Don’t cram into anything new: You have prepared enough for months together. Even if you haven’t, losing your cool a day before your examination will do no good, instead, would worsen. Restrain from attempting to study anything brand new. It might add on to your stress and sky-rocket your anxiety.
  3. NO to alcohol & junk food: Don’t even think of getting drunk before the day of your exam. And stay away from oily food. You should be healthy and high-spirited at your exam hall and not struggle to recover from a hangover or an upset stomach.
  4. Not less than 9 hours sleep: Your body should complement your mind to give the best attempt in your examination. So do not compromise your sleep due to work. Do not plan on pulling an all-nighter.
  5. List of things to take
  6. a. Authorization letter from the Project Management Institute (PMI)
    1. ID (Passport / Driver’s License)
    2. A bottle of water & a pack of snack
  7. Transportation Options: Check for the best route to get to the Examination Centre and choose the mode of transport that has the minimum risk of unforeseen delays. If you’re driving yourself, look out for suitable parking spots.

During the exam

  1. First 10 mins: Pen down the important formulae and any other reference points which you could later look at during the examination.
  2. Duration for each question: If you manage to spend no more than one minute to answer each question, then after the completion of the entire exam, you would have enough time to review all your answers. If you feel that you’re spending more than 90 seconds on a particular question, mark it for reconsideration.
  3. NO to unanswered questions: Although you are unsure about the answer to a particular question and are considering to mark a question for future review, do not leave any questions unanswered. Go ahead and pick the answer you believe is the best choice and then proceed, as there is no Negative Marking.
  4. Keep track of Time: At the end of each half-hour, check if you’ve completed enough questions as per your plan. Don’t panic if you haven’t. You probably have the rest of your exam in hand which you don’t want to ruin because of your anxiety.
  5. Read all answer choices: The answer choices are often deceiving at first glance. Two or more choices might sound very similar, but there will be slight differences. So, don’t ever consider that reading all the answer choices are a waste of time.
  6. Elimination method: If you are unsure of an answer, choose the worst choices first and eliminate them to identify the right option.
  7. Look out for keywords: If you carefully go through the questions, you will find words such as ‘next,’ ‘never,’ ‘best,’ ‘always,’ ‘most,’ ‘except,’ ‘most likely,’ etc., which tend to overturn your belief of what the right answer is. If you fail to notice these keywords, you would go wrong even if you were so sure that you were right.
  8. Break: If you feel stressed or if your focus drops, take a short break to wash your face and perk up yourselves.

The above mentioned are some of the crucial tips to be kept in mind while preparing for the PMI-ACP® exam. I truly hope that your preparation methodology turns out to be fruitful and also hope that you would implement the methods wisely and become a successful PMI-ACP® certified practitioner.  

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