Training and Certification

PMP® Requirements to Earn Your Certification

July 18, 2017

Ashley Neu

In order to earn a Project Management Professional (PMP)® certification you need to first meet a number of education and work requirements. However stringent these requirements may seem, in the end it is worth it to add the PMP® cert to your qualifications arsenal and starting reaping the benefits such as:

  • Improved project performance
  • Access to greater job opportunities available across the globe
  • Earning up to 20% more than your non-certified peers

PMP® Eligibility Requirements

In order to apply for the PMP®, candidates need to validate their education and work experience. Professional development experience must have been earned within 8 consecutive years of submitting the application; so, while you may have worked as a project manager for 15+ years you can only apply your experience in the 8 most recent years towards your PMP® eligibility. Additionally, candidates’ professional development experience must have spanned all 5 process groups, however, they do not all need to be tied to a single project but can be developed across multiple projects. The 5 PMP® process groups include:

  1. Initiating
  2. Planning
  3. Executing
  4. Monitoring and Controlling
  5. Closing

For a full description of each process group view the Project Management Professional Exam Content Outline.

PMP Education & Professional Development Requirements – Option 1

Candidates must have:

  • A secondary degree – this includes a high school diploma or an associate’s degree; the global equivalent of either accreditation will also be accepted
  • Spent a minimum of 60 months gaining professional project management experience. This experience must be unique and non-overlapping and the candidate must have accrued at least 7,500 hours leading and directing projects during this timeframe.
  • 35 hours of project management education

PMP Education & Professional Development Requirements – Option 2

Candidates must have:

  • Four-year degree
  • Spent a minimum of 36 months gaining professional project management experience. This experience must be unique and non-overlapping and the candidate must have accrued at least 4,500 hours leading and directing projects during this timeframe.
  • 35 hours of project management education
Earn 40 Hours of PM Education with a PMP Training Course

PMP Application

Once you have accrued the necessary education and work experience, you need to apply for the PMP® certification, here’s the process for submitting a PMP® application:

  1. Create an account or log into an existing account on the PMI® website
  2. Make sure you have met all requirements and have proof to verify your eligibility before you begin. Note – You can’t cancel an online application once you begin and you have 90 days from the time you open an application to finish it.  
  3. Log your PM experience in number of months
    1. Remember experience cannot overlap so if you worked on Project 1 from Jan-May, Project 2 from Feb-Jul and Project 3 from Sep-Nov you can only record 10 months of PM experience because 4 months of Project 2 overlapped with Project 1
  4. Log your PM time spent leading or directing a project in number of hours
    1. In this section if you worked multiple projects at a time you can count all hours from each project toward your total time spent leading and directing.
  5. Log your PM education hours
    1. All hours must be directly tied to an aspect of project management such as project scope, quality, schedule, budget, communications, risk, procurement or integration. This means if you spent 70 hours in an education program but only 40 of those areas were about project management, then you can only submit 40 education hours.
    2. Education must be through successful completion of a course, workshop or training sessions offered by an approved education provider; such providers include:
      1. PMI® Registered Education Providers (R.E.P.s)
      2. PMI® chapters
      3. Employer/company-sponsored programs
      4. Training companies or consultants (e.g., training schools)
      5. Distance-learning companies, including an end-of-course assessment
      6. University/college academic and continuing education programs
  6. Wait for processing – Your application should be processed by PMI® within 5 calendar days so long as it is not selected for an audit.

PMP® Payment

After an application has been processed, the candidate will receive notice to submit payment. Candidates should again navigate to the online portal they submitted their application through and then complete the following steps:

  1. Select the exam delivery method, options include (Note – Member rate only apply if you are considered a member in good standing at the time payment is submitted, refunds will not be awarded for membership obtained after payment):
    1. Center-based or paper-based testing for PMI members – $405
    2. Center-based or paper-based testing for nonmembers – $555
    3. Center-based or paper-based reexamination for PMI members – $275
    4. Center-based or paper-based reexamination for nonmembers – $375
  2. If necessary, choose the language aid and/or test accommodations needed for your exam
  3. Submit payment

Schedule Your PMP® Test Date

Once PMI® receives payment, you can schedule your PMP® exam appointment. To do so simply navigate to the Prometric Website, choose the location you wish to test in and begin the scheduling process. The online portal will walk you through each step of the process, so simply follow the prompts.

Show Up on Test Day Ready to Pass Your PMP®

Make sure you arrive early for your testing appointment as there is a process for being admitted into a testing event. Also, make sure you bring at least two forms of current identification and that they match the name provided at the time of registration. One form must be government-issued including name, photo and signature and the secondary must also have a name and signature.

Not sure if you’re ready for PMP® training? Test your skills with our free assessment!

Start Your PMI PMP Quiz Now

Should you fail your PMP®, PMI® does offer reexamination prices that are significantly lower and you can retest two more times so long as you are within the 1-year eligibility period from when you started your application process.

Now You’re a PMP®

Once you pass your PMP® certification exam, you have completed all the necessary PMP® requirements and an proudly add the acronym to your name! PMI® will send within 6-8 weeks your certification package that includes your certificate and the information needing to renew your certification each year.

*PMP, PMI, PMBOK, Project Management Professional, Project Management Professional (PMP) and its Logos are registered marks of the Project Management Institute.

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