The PMP Exam: Debunking the Eligibility Myths

The PMP Exam: Debunking the Eligibility Myths

There are many questions about eligibility to take the PMP Exam. Many people who want to become a PMP have a high-school diploma but are unsure if they have the required experience. Many myths are created about why someone shouldn’t be eligible because of this uncertainty. I will attempt to clarify some of these myths and to give the truth about who is eligible to take the PMP Exam. The PMP Handbook outlines the eligibility requirements. Education, experience, and 35 contact hours are the requirements for eligibility. Page 8 of the PMP Handbook states that there must be education and experience background, per below: EducationalBackground
ProjectManagementExperience
Secondarydegree(highschooldiploma,associate’sdegreeorglobalequivalent)

Minimumfiveyears/60monthsuniquenon-overlappingprofessionalprojectmanagementexperience
7,500hourswerespent leadinganddirectingtheproject*

OR
Four-yeardegree(bachelor’sdegreeorglobalequivalent)

Minimumthreeyears/36monthsuniquenon-overlappingprofessionalprojectmanagementexperience
4,500hourswerespentleadinganddirectingtheproject*

*Leadinganddirectingtheprojectasidentifiedwiththetasks,knowledge,andskillsspecificintheProjectManagementProfessionalExaminationContentOutline.
Thedetailsmention”leadinganddirectingtheproject”. Whatdoesthatmean? Moredirectionisgivenonpage7ofthePMPHandbookthrough”RoleDelineation(JobAnalysis)”,perbelow
CandidatesforthePMPcredential:
Performtheirdutiesundergeneralsupervisionandareresponsibleforallaspectsoftheprojectforthelifeoftheproject
Leadanddirectcross-functionalteamstodeliverprojectswithintheconstraintsofschedule,budget,andscope
Demonstratesufficientknowledgeandexperiencetoappropriatelyapplyamethodologytoprojectsthathavereasonablywell-definedrequirementsanddeliverables

Myth#1:Myjobtitleisnot”ProjectManager”
ItmakesnodifferencewhatthetitleisinyourexperiencetoapplyforthePMPExam.Whatdoesmatteristheunderstandinghowtherolethatyouplayinprojectsaffectsadeliverable.Infact,theapplicationwillaskwhichofthefollowingrolesyourexperienceisin:
ProjectContributor
Supervisor
Manager
ProjectLeader
ProjectManager
Educator
Consult
Administrator
Other

PMIdoesnotexpecteveryonetohavethetitleof”ProjectManager”.
Myth #2: I have never worked on “projects”.
Keep in mind that a project can be defined as “a temporary undertaking undertaken to create an unique product, service, or result” (PMBOK guide-5th edition, pg 553).
People who have worked in a functional company may be unsure of their experience with project management. Functional companies are structured environments that have a hierarchy of directors and managers. This type of environment is built upon efficiency and system mechanics so employees might see the same type work every day. Are they still working on projects. It is possible to find project lead in your field of experience. Managers may have asked for your permission to coordinate conference rooms if you were an administrative assistant. This is a project that requires planning and coordination. The conference is a temporary project that has a beginning as well as an end. It takes planning to determine when and where the space is available. The conference can provide information that will help teams make informed decisions and increase team awareness. My wife, an elementary school teacher, is involved in a variety of projects. Sh