When preparing for the PMP (Project Management Professional) exam, you should familiarize yourself with everything about it, including its duration. That’s, of course, if you want to pass from the first attempt.
Many people require more than one attempt to pass the exam, but that can be costly and time-consuming. So, how long is the PMP exam? Continue reading to find out.
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PMP Exam Duration
How long is the PMP exam? The short answer is 4 hours. However, the actual time you need to answer all the questions can be less or more than that, but most people find the exam time to be more than sufficient to answer all the questions.
If you’re well-prepared, you can possibly answer all the questions within 2.5 or 3 hours, depending on how fast you are. You can then use the remaining time to revise your answers carefully and review the questions you left out at the beginning of the exam.
There are no breaks, which means that the clock will keep ticking if you do take a break. It’s not recommended to take long breaks since you’ll need that time to revise your answers and calculations. However, there’s nothing wrong with taking a few minutes off every one or two hours if you feel overwhelmed.
It’s crucial that you prepare yourself very well for the exam if you want to quickly answer all the questions and pass from the first attempt. This includes covering and understanding everything in PMI’s PMBOK Guide book, practicing with mock exams, and researching the topics you’ve studied.
Online PMP Exam
If you’re taking your PMP exam online, you will have a break at the 2-hour mark. At this point, you can leave the room. However, you will not be able to see and revise the answers to any of the questions you answered prior to the break.
If you are taking the exam online from your home, you cannot take any other breaks aside from the one scheduled at the 2-hour mark. Also, after the break is over, it is up to you to resume the exam because the exam does not resume automatically.
PMP Exam Structure
The PMP exam is computer-based, and it consists of 200 multiple-choice questions. Each question has a single correct answer, and if you do the math, you’ll find out that you have precisely 72 seconds to answer each question.
Some questions, especially situational and calculations-based questions, may take a longer time to solve than other straightforward questions. A general rule of thumb is not to waste your time on a single question unless you’ve already answered and revised all of the other questions in the exam.
25 out of the 200 questions are pretest questions, which are randomly placed throughout the exam. These questions are used by PMI for research purposes and aren’t used to evaluate your score. This means that the actual number of questions used for assessment are 175 questions.
There’s no predefined passing score for the exam. It’s not clear how many questions you should answer correctly to pass the exam, but many people agree that the passing score is roughly 70 to 80%.
Before taking the PMP exam, remember to practice using several mock tests. This way, you’ll be able to manage your time in a much better way in the real test. Aim to reduce the overall time you need to answer with every new mock test until you’re able to save an hour or more for double-checking your answers.