Take the 5th Edition Exam or Wait for the 6th?

I get the question regularly, “Should I rush and sit for the 5th edition of the PMP exam or should I wait for the 6th edition? Everyone is telling me to take the PMP exam now because it is changing.”

As this is a common inquiry, I decided to type up one of my responses here in this blog to hopefully help others with the same question.

In short, whether you obtain your PMP via the 5th edition or 6th you should be ok. The reason that a changeover gathers so much attention is that when the PMBOK changed from 2nd to 3rd and 3rd to 4th they were relatively drastic. The exams also got more difficult – more situational, less memorization. And in terms of the 4th edition, the structure of the naming conventions got more logical and consistent, but drastically different for those who learned it in previous editions. Now the exam changes are more subtle. I would even argue that the changes are for the betterment of everyone and not overbearing. So now the rush to take an exam is more for those people who have been studying and want to test on the edition they have been working off of, as well as training companies wanting to capitalize on reason to push classes.

I have been thru many changeovers. I got my PMP on the 3rd edition. I started instructing with the 3rd edition. Was a contributor to the 4th and 5th editions of the PMBOK [so if you get a 5th edition, you will see my name on p501, but if you get a 6th you will not].  Have created courses for 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 6th editions. Now I am building a 6th edition online course in the way that I would have liked – interactive, visual, and engaging. Point being, whether you cram and take a weekday or weekend in person class (which is the way I got my PMP 13 years ago) or online or a combination of them in either 5th or 6th, you will be fine. My recommendation to people is to choose study options that fit your learning style and your timing. Are you better at reading… sitting in a class with an instructor… talking with others… going at your own pace or the pace of others… visual learner or prefer lectures… like to do a little each day or fully immersed days…etc.

Do you have a time crunch or just want to get it out of the way? The quickest way is to buckle down and do nothing but prepare and sit for the exam. If not able to afford the high costs, the time off work, and the hours of dedication in short order, then get online courses like mine and other resources and carve out a plan that is realistic AND hold yourself to it! Schedule your exam early and hold yourself to it. Having a deadline set and telling yourself you cannot move it makes you more focused and motivated. It is too easy to pushback something that is not rooted or set. Much harder to deprioritize the exam when you are committed to a date and time.

There are a lot of options out there. Many people use many options. Really it comes down to you. Are you disciplined to study on your own? Are you disciplined to focus for 2-5 days in a class and sit for exam soon after while everything is still jiggling around in your brain?

Let me know what you decide. I am curious about your story. You can enter your stories and thoughts in the comment section.

If you would like to take advantage of my training offering, snagging it now is definitely financially advantageous [only $99 if pre-order; $720 if post-launch in January]. If your plan is to time it for the 6th edition, then using The Crowd Training course on its own or in combination with any other type of course puts you in good hands. If you plan to go for the 5th edition, I do have some games that you could play to help you prepare!

Best of luck!

Advertisements

Kickstarter Fell Short But Project Continues

The Kickstarter campaign to help fund the PM City project fell short of its funding target. PM City is my interactive PMP certification course that incorporates animations, interactive lessons, videos, user controls, quizzes, discussion boards, games, and more. Gaining the funding would have made getting the course out to market easier. Nevertheless, the project is going forward!

The full release is slated for the end of January. One of the options I presented in the Kickstarter campaign was a beta version of the course for only $99. The full release of the course will have a list price of $720 USD. Even though the Kickstarter did not succeed, I did want to honor those who supported me by selecting the beta course pledge. As such, I am extending this offer to anyone that would like to get in early. To take advantage of this offer, go to The Crowd Training’s store and grab one of the limited beta spots here: https://www.thecrowdtraining.com/product-page/pmp-interactive-course-pre-order

Those able to grab the $99 beta offer get early access to the course. As additional thank you for supporting the PM City project, those beta users also receive a full 3 month subscription to PM City based on the 6th edition of the PMBOK post release.

Thanks again to everyone’s kind words and support. I have spent months on this project and there are only a couple more until release. I really think you will be impressed with PM City when it is finished. I am quite excited! I shall post some highlights of the final product in future blogs and on my YouTube page.

10 More Days To Go

Some of you know of my creative work, but may not realize my project management work. As a contributor to the Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) – which is recognized as the pinnacle book in all of project management – and author of numerous courses and books on project management, I have established myself over the last 12 years as a leader in project management training. Recently, I have decided to merge those two strengths even more than I have done in the past.

I am building an incredible interactive project management course. It is now live on Kickstarter – https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thecrowdtraining/interactive-project-management-course

The project incorporates instructional design, graphic design, and of course extensive project management knowledge. I decided to spend almost every Saturday since July working on this because come Q1 of 2018, the PMBOK and the Project Management Professional (PMP) exam based on it is being updated to the 6th edition. Essentially, at the point, all previous material written or produced on the previous edition becomes obsolete. I felt this was my opening to make something great and unlike anything out there to help people study for and pass the grueling PMP exam.

PMBOK 6th

Trying to gain support via Kickstarter has been difficult. Nonetheless, worthwhile experience. I have improved my skills as a designer. It has taught me how to tweak my message and my value proposition. Even if people don’t take advantage of my Kickstarter offerings, I still plan on reaching my goal. This side project is something I am proud of. In all my research, I was unable to find anything like it. Crossing my fingers that all my hard work and sacrificed weekends work out in the end.

LavaCon Presentation – There Has Got to Be a Better Way for Project Management Training

Earlier this week I was asked to quickly put together a presentation at the LavaCon conference in Portland, Oregon.

I decided to speak about the need to view things from different perspectives and angles. I provided the examples of experiences with project management training and being a student in a very dry, boring PMP exam prep course about 13 years ago and how I set out to change it. There is no reason that more people out there should have to relive the mundane project management training I endured simply because that is the way it has always been done. So many people I have talked to said that they too sat through PMP prep classes that were boring, mind-numbing experiences. In many cases the instructor simply lectured or read the slides to the participants.

Sadly, the trend in online project management training is to take that same, ineffective method and transfer it to the online delivery.

Lavacon YouTube pic

I argue that video in this approach only makes things worse. If things were meh before, they are even worse now. Without any way to interactive with the content and the instructor and fellow students, all the onus of the learning and retention is placed solely on the student. Too often I hear and read stories of others who were forced to take on numerous modalities of learning – such as in person classes, audiobooks, books, flashcards, and many others – simply to get the PMP content to stick. Since so many had to rely on so many different methods tells me that their first plan of just watching videos in an elearning course to prepare for the PMP exam was insufficient.

There has got to be a better way.png

My goal is to disrupt the current PMP training options. I have a Kickstarter project launch in effort to create and offer something new. The Kickstarter project page is Http://kck.st/2hubLhS

At Http://kck.st/2hubLhS you can pre-order the PMP online interactive training course for only $99. Once the PMP exam prep course is fully launched, the course will retail for $720. Offering is so low at $99 is to thank the early supporters and to help the infrastructure costs that must be taken to make it possible.

Thanks in advance! You can find out more about The Crowd Training and the project management courses and learning opportunities offered at www.thecrowdtraining.com

In this video, I also reference the new book by Anthony Brandt and David Eagleman called “Runaway Species”. More about their book is at their book’s website https://runawayspecies.com/

The video is available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mkzlfFkabY&feature=youtu.be

Reddit Conversation

In discussions on Reddit about my kickstarter project page, some had suggested that I look at reducing my costs and using free or reduced cost offerings. I appreciate the suggestions and the ideas. Alas, I have looked into those options and many do not work. As such, my online project management course is going to a more expensive infrastructure to deliver it to those that enroll.

I looked into many options. If I was building the traditional “instructor-talking-at-the-students” type of online training course, then many of the resources out there would work. I don’t want to deliver that form of instruction. Having professors drone on and on in person rarely works well – especially in highly technical content like the Project Management Professional PMP exam – in person; it is even worse online.

Trying to retain the attention of the learner for 35 – 45 minutes at a time while they passively sit staring at their computer screen may not be the most effective and efficient use of their time and exam preparation. The computer is far too distracting. Facebook, Twitter, instant messages, the web, etc. are just too tempting. They are like sirens begging you to sway. These temptations are hard enough in a classroom when there are others around noticing what you are doing. Remove the instructor or any type of peer pressure or authority, you are kidding yourself if you think the learner is not going to give into any of those temptations. Sure there may be a really dedicated student. But I argue those are rare. They are the minority. They are the most successful and for a reason. The vast majority of others are not going to ignore that email or text that comes in. Few are going to stay focused. Most that shift attention to the email or text that comes in are not going to stop the guy or lady talking on the screen. When they return to the lecture, they may be lost, they are going to need time to catch up. They may even be forced to rewind the video. And scrolling and hassling with a video play bar is not efficient and annoying use of one’s learning time.

Hence, I am passionate about making something – even if just incrementally – better. It takes more thought, energy, and resources [read: costs]. In the end I think it will be worth it for the thousands upon thousands of individuals that study for and attempt to pass the PMP exam every year. Please take a look at my Kickstarter page: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thecrowdtraining/interactive-project-management-course
ks screenshot

Here is my latest response on the PMP subreddit: https://www.reddit.com/r/pmp/comments/7acjcr/kickstarter_pmp_interactive_online_course/

I have tried Udemy and it sucks. They take half of your fee. And they give away coupons to lower the value of your work even further without any input of yours. So a PMP class that should be valued at $200 is reduced to $10 by Udemy, then they take half of that! So the person and teams that did all the work only get $5 from a class that is worth far more.
Plus Udemy only has video based lecture courses. I am building something interactive and engaging. The online courses on Udemy are just people talking over their slides or paying actors to read a script (I know because I wrote scripts for some of the other companies out there).
I know that blazing a new trail and trying to bring more dynamic project management online courses to the world is going to cost me more and make my courses cost more, but that is the price of quality and good work. Interactive online courses cannot work with all the options you mentioned – I wish they did, it would save me a lot of money. If I was just going to talk at you thru my video camera for 35 hours straight, then yes I would definitely go with the resources your suggestion. Although, I am aiming to bring out something better and long term. I am building it for 6th edition (I was a contributor to earlier versions of the PMBOK) and plan to support PMP candidates for many years to come.
If you want to see some of the games I made thus far, go to http://www.thecrowdtraining.com/games I’ll give you a 90 day subscription of $10 (like the Udemy pricing you mentioned) if you use code Reddit.
Thank you for the great discussion. I appreciate your input. I am open to more of your thoughts and discussions. It helps make a better product and help more project managers.

My Kickstarter Project for the Interactive Online Course is Live!

 

It is alive!

I launched my side project of building a 6th edition Project Management Professional (PMP) exam prep course. This course is to be different because I am making it interactive, creative, and engaging!

ks screenshot

Learn more on the Kickstarter page: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thecrowdtraining/interactive-project-management-course?ref=1xc8jj

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thecrowdtraining/interactive-project-management-course/widget/video.html

Thanks for the support! Really appreciate it. Even a $1 goes a looooooooooong way!!