~ By John Reiling
Project Managers who aspire to take the PMP exam need to have 35 hours of documented training in the area of project management. However, there is some level of misunderstanding around just how they can achieve this. Many believe they must take specialised and expensive courses, and some are not aware that some of the training and education they already have may qualify. Others think they need to acquire a single 35 hour certificate. Here is a survey of the ways PMP aspirants can satisfy that requirement.
The Requirement In the Project Management Professional (PMP) Credential Handbook, it states that the candidate must
Document 35 contact hours of project management education. This requirement applies to all applicants, regardless of degree or project management experience level. So, just what must the candidate do to satisfy those "Contact Hours of Project Management Education," where at least 35 contact hours of specific instruction addressed learning objectives in project management?
The first step is to document all education hours regardless of when they were accrued. Project management education hours for these purposes do not expire and do not need to be within any recent time frame. However, the course work must be completed at the time you submit the application. PMP Prep coursework does qualify, as it is project management oriented, but it would need to occur before the candidate actually submits the application. Note that
one contact hour is equivalent to one actual hour (60 minutes) of training or instruction received, as per the PMI.
After documenting all hours, PMP candidates need "classify" content of the courses according to the PMBOK knowledge areas, including project quality, project scope, project schedule, project budget, project communications, project risk, project procurement, and project integration management. If all hours add up to 35 or more, the candidate has already satisfied the requirements. In many cases, the candidate will have either no hours or less than 35 hours of PM training, and they will need to fill that gap with additional project management training.
These educational requirements can be met by demonstrating the successful completion of courses, workshops, and training sessions offered by one or more of the following types of education providers:
Note that one hour of classroom instruction equals one contact hour. Non-classroom instruction, such as online training, also must comply with the rule that one hour of classroom instruction equals one contact hour. Project Management podcasts can also satisfy all or a portion of the requirement. The important thing is to be able to provide complete and authoritative documentation of the training and education, such as certificates, tests, syllabus, course descriptions, and transcript to properly support your claim.
Here are some scenarios of what should qualify:
What does not satisfy the PMP Educational Requirements? The following do not satisfy the education requirements:
There are many ways to satisfy the PMI requirement of 35 hours of project management training. Any training must be in the areas of project quality, project scope, project schedule, project budget, project communications, project risk, project procurement, and project integration management. The PMI rule is that one hour of training equals one of these contact hours. Applicants must be able to clearly document the training with proper proof. The final authority is the PMI, and the authoritative document is the Project Management Professional (PMP) Credential Handbook, which can be found at http://www.pmi.org/PDF/pdc_pmphandbook.pdf. Applicants should contact the PMI directly with any questions or concerns.
John Reiling, PMP, MBA is a Project Manager and writer on Project Management topics. John's website, Project Management Training Online, provides online, 24x7 REP training that satisfies the PMI's 35 hour requirement. Details can be found at www.pmtrainingonline.com