Why PMI Won't Say If You Passed Or Failed Your PMP Exam

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The PMP Exam is changing on August 31st 2011. If you are taking the exam on or after this date, then your 200 questions will be based on the new PMP Exam Content Outline.

In addition to what you can find in that article, PMI recently announced the following: If you are taking the PMP Exam on or after 31 August 2011, then - for a limited time only - PMI will not immediately tell you if you have passed or failed your exam.

Let me explain: If you take your PMP Exam today, then “pass” or “fail” will immediately be displayed on your screen and printed on your examination report. But because PMI is changing the exam, they require some time to validate the new structure. They also need to make sure that the percentage of people passing/failing the new exam is in line with the percentages of the old exam. In this way, they can make certain that the new exam is just as fair as the old exam. And all of this means that in the first 4-6 weeks after the new exam is in place, they cannot immediately give you your result. You will have to wait.

Here is PMI’s original statement on this:

“As we transition to the new examination, PMI must update its examination reporting processes. This means for a short period of time examination results will not be available immediately following the examination. There will be a 4-6 week period between taking the examination and receiving the results via email. We know this will be disappointing to candidates, but please let them know the delay is necessary any time an exam changes to validate the new examination structure.”

Here is what this means for you as a PMP candidate:
  1. If you are taking the computer-based PMP exam on or after 31 August you will not receive immediate results (pass/fail) at the Prometric testing center.
  2. If you are taking the paper-based examination there will also be a delay in receiving your examination results.
  3. PMI will notify you (via email) when your results are available at PMI.org.
PMI expects that the new examination structure is validated by mid-October. Once this has happened, exam takers will once again receive their results immediately at the Prometric testing center.

Here are my recommendations for those planning to take the exam between 31 August 2011 and about mid-October:

** Don’t be disappointed: If you are planning to take your PMP Exam between August 31 and mid-October, then don’t be disappointed that you won’t receive your results immediately.

** Smile: Yes! Smile with the knowledge that you are helping PMI to assess the new exam. You have just done a great service to PMI and all other PMP exam takers coming after you. Thank you.

** Be patient: Even though PMI says that you should receive your results within 4-6 weeks we are all project managers and we know about deadlines. Allow PMI to do their due diligence and ensure that the new exam structure works.

** Reschedule: If you cannot take the suspense of having to wait for up to six weeks, then reschedule your exam for around the end of October 2011.

** Don’t leave without a receipt: After you have taken your PMP exam at the Prometric test center you will very likely still receive a printed document. It confirms that you have taken the exam but won’t have your result. Don’t leave without it.

My final recommendation to all PMP candidates is that you should simply relax. If your scheduled exam falls into this “no immediate results” window and you cannot change it… take it easy. There is nothing you can do about it. PMI is doing everything to ensure that the new exam works for you and everyone else. And this process is just part of that. Stay positive and focus your energy on your studies.
Until Next Time,
Cornelius Fichtner, PMP
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