If you’re interested in taking the PMP you’ll know that the PMP® exam is changing in 2018. Here’s an interview with project management trainer, author and certification expert Jeff Furman who explains what’s coming up and the deadines you need to be aware of.
Key Dates for PMP® Exam Changes and Other PMI Exam Changes
Last day to take current PMP® Exam: 25 March 2018
Dates for new exams based on A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) Sixth Edition:
- PMP® Exam: 26 March 2018
- PMI-ACP® Exam: 26 March 2018
- CAPM® Exam: After 1 April 2018, exact date to be announced
- PgMP® Exam: After 1 April 2018, exact date to be announced
- PfMP® Exam: After 1 April 2018, exact date to be announced
If you would prefer to read instead, here is the transcript:
Elizabeth: I did just want to ask you one thing about certification, which is, the exam’s changing isn’t it? So what do you, in the PMP. So the PMP exam’s changing.
Elizabeth: Is there anything else that’s changing, in the PMI set of qualifications?
Jeff: Yeah, so PMI has become so big there are many certifications, and there’s a whole checklist of key milestones that people need to know about. So first of all, March 25th coming up, is the last day all over the world, for people to take the current PMP test, which is based on PMBOK5 and has no Agile in it, but starting March 26th coming up, everyone in the world’s new PMP test will be all about PMBOK6 and with a lot of Agile built-in.
That’s one good motivator to get it done before the change, for one thing, because no one ever knows exactly what the new test will bring. And it’s not even enough to know some Agile, you really have to know more than one kind of Agile.
I think Scrum is the biggest kind of Agile that’s on the test, but really no one knows, because the test isn’t out. So March 26th, the PMP test changes. Also the PMI-ACP test changes, the same day, also in first quarter. The PgMP test will be changing to go with the new PMBOK, and in second quarter, so PgMP is programme manager and PfMP is portfolio manager, which is also changing, that one is changing second quarter, on, both of those are dates to be announced.
Elizabeth: Okay so they’re doing a complete tidy-up. I was aware of the PMP changing, but I wasn’t aware, there’s been very little communication then about the others, or have I just missed it?
Jeff: No it’s just that most people in the world think PMI and PMP, and the PMP is the one that sounds most obviously connected to the PMBOK, but another one that is super connected to the PMBOK is the CAPM, Certified Associate in Project Management.
That one is changing sometime in second quarter so I just confirmed this against yesterday with PMI the PMP is changing exactly March 26th, almost the very end of the quarter, and then the CAPM on a date to be determined, is also changing to map to the PMBOK6, and the CAPM is closer to the PMBOK than the PMP test.
The PMP is largely based on the PMBOK but not exclusively. The PMP [exam] can ask anything in the world and it also is built with scenario-based questions and ethics questions, but the CAPM is more just the facts.
So the CAPM is even more of an issue that you want to make sure you know the PMBOK and so the CAPM, though you get about at least one or two or three more months, so again if you can do the CAPM before the change, that is recommended, because all of the books that are currently out today, are 100% PMBOK5.
Elizabeth: Yes, so if you are looking at taking your exams at some point in the next year, there really is an incentive now to consolidate your learning, get on your PM prep course, whatever it is you need to do, and book up your exams before the end of March.
Jeff: Yeah, you really still have, there’s still five months really until March 25th which is the last day for the PMP so I think it’s do-able and highly recommended. Every book that anyone has heard of, like my book, the Cornelius Fichtner tools, the the Andy Crowe book, the the Rita Mulcahy book, the Head First PMP: all of the books that are out are tried and true based on four years really of people taking the PMP exam. They’ve been tweaking the books and all of the test materials.
So it is a gamble to wait until after the test change, but that said, a couple of your readers were asking me about what’s out already on PMBOK6, so I started to put out for a couple of your listeners, Joanna and Meera, I believe their names are. I started to answer a couple of questions on your Facebook page last night, here are some things that are already out, like a video from PMI, and things like that.
Materials are starting to come out, but I don’t believe any of the books are anywhere near ready yet, the earliest that I know of is the Rita Mulcahy book, the [publishers] at the conference said that they’re shooting for February for the new Rita book, which I think will be edition nine or 10, and that will be PMBOK6.
But even that book, that book will come out before the test changes, and most likely there will be some revisions to any of the books after the test changes, to make sure that they can tweak it to get it right.
Elizabeth: Yes, I think that’ll be true, they’ll want to see some people go through the exam, won’t they, and what the feedback is from that, before…
Elizabeth: Well things evolve all the time, but it happens every few years, doesn’t it, materials get updated, it’s always strange for that transition period: do we go, do we wait?
Jeff: Yeah and another key point: many people don’t know there are a couple of other materials from PMI that can help toward the test, so as tough as it is to keep up with the changing PMBOK, there’s another document that’s very important, called the exam content outline or ECO, and that comes out after the PMBOK change, based on the PMBOK change partly, but it doesn’t come out at the same time, it’s usually a year or two later.
So people will try to take the test, scrambling to learn the new PMBOK6, but then they’ll discover that there’ll be more changes when there’s a new exam content outline coming out, let’s say in 2019 or ’20 which is available right now for the PMBOK5, saying “here’s literally “what are the areas of emphasis on the test.”
So any of your listeners who wants to take the PMP, rather than reading the PMBOK 10 times, a good idea is to take a good look at the short document called the ECO which is available free right now on PMI.org, the exam content outline for the PMP.
Elizabeth: Brilliant. Okay, that’s been so useful and someone’s commented in the group as well, saying the same thing, so thank you so much Jeff for sharing your experiences from the conference, because I know the congress is a big event, but we don’t all get to go, so it’s nice to hear from people who’ve been and seen it first hand, and also your experiences and the information you’ve shared about the exam changes, because I think that’s going to affect so many people, and it’s good to hear from someone who really knows what they’re talking about because you train it every day, your advice on what we should do, so thank you very much.
Jeff: Thank you Elizabeth, and thank you so much.
Elizabeth: Thank you, I’ll get Shannon to put some links to your book in the comments so we can direct people to that, and yeah thank you very much for taking the time to come onto the group and answer questions today, and have a fantastic weekend.
Jeff: You too, Elizabeth, thank you so much.
Elizabeth: Thanks everybody, bye!
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